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Moving During Coronavirus: Tips For a Safer move during a Pandemic

Moving during coronavirus: ‘It’s really stressful to buy a home in general. This just felt surreal.’

 

Moving isn’t an easy task during the best of times. But when you add a global crisis like the coronavirus, it’s bound to cause more challenges. For some, the answer may be to delay moving plans. But what if you can’t, or prefer not to, put off moving to a new home?

To assist consumers with relocations during the coronavirus outbreak, the moving industry is taking steps to maintain health and safety operations, according to the American Moving and Storage Association (AMSA).

We’ve also put together some proactive steps, drawing from guidance from AMSA, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and PODS’ over 20 years’ experience providing moving and storage services to consumers, businesses and organizations during good times, as well as times of crisis.

These tips are designed to help you reduce the risks and stress if you’re moving during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic:

1. PLACE YOUR HIGHEST PRIORITY ON THE HEALTH AND SAFETY FOR YOU AND YOUR FAMILY.

While moving is important, be sure you’re aware of all the facts and risks. Be willing to change your plans if that’s what it takes to keep you and your family healthy and safe. Here’s what AMSA advises:

  • If you are in a high-risk group (over 60 or have pre-existing respiratory or cardiovascular conditions or compromised immunity), then postpone your move if at all possible until after the health authorities announce the pandemic is over.
  • If you or someone in your household may have contracted coronavirus, or are self-isolating after being exposed, call your moving company and explain the situation. In many cases, movers will work with you.

2. LOOK FOR MOVING SERVICES THAT MINIMIZE HUMAN CONTACT.

Normally, that would sound odd, but health experts are advising that social distancing is one of the most effective ways to avoid catching or spreading the virus. Moving containers allow you to take total control of your own move, avoiding any physical interaction with others. For example, it’s standard procedure for PODS drivers to use customer instructions provided via their online portal or phone when delivering their containers. You don’t even need to be present for delivery or pick-up, and you provide your own lock and key.

If you’re working with a traditional moving service, make arrangements by phone or online, and ask what sanitation practices their movers are following to reduce risks.

3. CONSIDER BUILT-IN STORAGE AS A BACKUP PLAN IF THINGS CHANGE.

Even with routine moves, move-in and move-out dates frequently shift. You may want to consider using a portable container that offers built-in storage options – either on your property or at a secure storage center – to keep your belongings safe and out of the way in case of a postponed closing or other delay. If that’s not possible, ask your movers if they provide storage. If they do, ask about costs and access to your belongings during storage.

4. ASK ABOUT YOUR MOVER’S POLICIES FOR SCHEDULE CHANGES, CANCELLATIONS, AND REFUNDS DURING THE PANDEMIC.

This is a fluid time when many different things could happen to cause a delay or cancellation, so you want to have maximum flexibility. Find out:

  • How easy – or hard – is it to change your moving dates?
  • What type of deposit is required?
  • If you need to cancel your move, will you get a full refund?

You want to feel confident that if a change or cancellation occurs, you can get your money back. For example, PODS makes schedule changes easy, and provides a full refund when you cancel up to 24 hours before your first container delivery.

@houseblisscleaning via Instagram

5. USE EXTRA SANITATION PRECAUTIONS DURING YOUR MOVE.

Whatever type of moving service you choose, here are some additional health and safety tips:

  • Avoid using recycled boxes from other sources. Since the coronavirus can live on surfaces like cardboard, this isn’t the time to economize on boxes. You can use boxes you have on hand, as well as purchase new boxes from several sources, including Amazon, home improvement and office supply stores, and PODSBoxes.com, which offers free delivery.
  • Wipe down items and boxes before moving. Use disinfectant wipes to clean surfaces of furniture, boxes, and other items before loading. This will help reduce the risk of carrying germs to your new home.
  • Provide your moving crew with hand-washing supplies and sanitizer. Whether you’ve got professional movers or family and friends helping you, make sure everyone has access to a sink, soap and water, and paper towels to use often throughout the move. If possible, provide hand sanitizer and disposable gloves as well.

As you’re following these safety measures, check out our moving checklist to help stay focused and on track as you navigate your move during these challenging times. If you have a college student in the family who needs a last-minute moving or storage solution due to campus closings related to the coronavirus, you may also be interested in these tips for students.

Thanks https://www.pods.com/ for sharing!

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COVID-19 Update

As a COVID-19 essential service, we are open for business and are committed to providing safe and efficient moving services to our customers.

Our Commitment to You

We are committed to moving you safely. In these unprecedented times, we take our role as essential service providers very seriously. We will continue to provide services while following recommendations from the CDC and the WHO while working to protect our customers and front-line employees.

Limiting in-person contact is the best practice when limiting the spread of COVID-19. While our business requires we enter the residence to provide packing and loading services, we can conduct the quote process via virtual survey.  While the staff is working remotely, they are available to customers, agents and drivers during the same business hours and in the same manner as if they were working in the office.

As you plan and prepare for your move, here are some steps you can take:

 

  • Rather than greeting the crew with handshakes, greet them in some other way, verbally for instance.
  • To ensure everyone’s health and safety, if you or anyone within your household may have contracted Coronavirus, or are isolating due to exposure to the virus, call us and explain the situation; in many cases, we will try to work with you
  • If you must cancel your move, be sure to ask questions about how we are managing cancellations now
  • Your health and the health of your family is important. If you are in a vulnerable group, over 60 or have a compromised immune system, schedule your move after the pandemic is over if it is at all possible.
  • Provide the moving crew access to a sink, soap and paper towels throughout your move. If this isn’t practical, and it is readily available, provide hand sanitizer
  • Purchase new moving boxes and tape; this isn’t the time to use recycled boxes from online sources and free sites or from stores
  • If you have not already purchased food for the next couple of weeks, you’ll want to stock up on items that you eat regularly. Any shelf-stable items can be donated to Move For Hunger before your move to lighten your load
  • When moving long distances, you may want to fly in to meet your moving truck. Be sure that you book refundable plane tickets and select hotels that offer free cancellation. Ask about cancellation policies before you book, and remember to read