When planning a move, ‘where’ is only one of several considerations. You also have to think about ‘how’ (FlatRate can help with that!) and ‘when.’ From weather to cost to timing, there are plenty of reasons you may be tempted to opt for one season over the other. Here is a list of the pros and cons of choosing to move in each season.
The winter is generally considered the “off-season” for moving companies (most people don’t opt to move during the colder months) which means rates are generally lower and scheduling is easier. Additionally, should you need them, storage facilities are usually at their lowest occupancy meaning you might be able to take advantage of promotions and the lowest pricing of the year. Finally, forget worrying about your belongings in hot cars or trucks: cold weather means your items are less likely to melt or bake.
Despite the potential benefits of moving in the winter, there is a reason it’s considered the “off-season.” Unpredictable weather (see: winter storms) can quickly derail moving plans. Additionally, colder weather means you might need to wear heavy layers while transporting items to and from the locations which can be uncomfortable and restrictive. If you have kids, switching schools in the middle of the year can be extremely challenging– so check ahead with your school district beforehand. Finally, colds, flus, and viruses are at an all time high during the winter months, so exposure to many different people in enclosed spaces isn’t ideal. Extra precautions you might need to take include pre-salting walkways and driveways, waterproofing boxes, and monitoring the weather carefully.
TL;DR– Why you should move in winter: Money and flexibility. Why you shouldn’t: Bad weather, off-season.
Not too cold, not too hot, the months of March, April, and May are an ideal time to do almost anything (including move!). Because March, April, and early May are still considered the “off-season,” you may be able to take advantage of the lower prices and increased flexibility when hiring a moving company seen in the winter months. Additionally, “spring-forward” (daylight savings) means days are getting longer (more daylight hours to move). Another benefit of moving in the spring? Way fewer concerns about the weather! Ice and snow are much less likely to derail your day and without the frigid temperatures or scorching heat, moving can be downright pleasant!
Depending on where you live, weather in the early spring can be unpredictable (March comes in like a lion and out like a lamb). However, late spring (towards the end of May) is when “peak” moving season starts to pick up (as do the prices and schedules of moving companies). Additionally, Spring is not an ideal time for families. School-aged children might be unable to adapt to a new school more than halfway through the year.
TL;DR– Why you should move in spring: Milder weather and (potentially) lower costs. Why you shouldn’t: Unpredictability and family considerations.
Warmer weather and longer days all make summer an appealing time to move. On top of that, home selling season is at its peak which means selling your place will be substantially easier. If you have kids, summer break will simplify any school transitions (and you won’t have to worry about disrupting their education). If you want to time your move so you’re settled into your new place come fall, summer is the ideal time.
Because home selling season is at its peak, so are moves. Approximately 70% of all moves will take place in the period from Memorial Day to Labor Day meaning booking a mover will need to be done well in advance of any planned move. And don’t expect to score any discounts, when moving is at its peak, so are prices. While summer weather may be more amenable for outside activities than winter, it can also be hot, humid, and uncomfortable. When doing strenuous activities like moving, you’ll want to be sure to hydrate and take regular breaks to avoid any heat related health problems. Finally, your belongings may end up in the back of a car or truck for a long period of time. The prolonged exposure to intense heat of summer has the potential to damage your belongings so be wary of the time and conditions when you move.
TL;DR– Why you should move in the summer: Ideal time to sell a home, warm weather, easy transitions. Why you shouldn’t: High prices, booked schedules, hot weather.
Around most parts of the country, the summer heat gives way to the crisp cool of fall in the months of September through November. Without the buggy warmth of the spring, the stifling heat of summer, and frigid temperatures of winter, fall can be an ideal time for planning your move. Housing markets tend to slow down during this period of time meaning finding a great deal in a new place might be easier. Finally, as peak moving season has passed, it’ll probably be easier to book a mover with more flexibility and for less money.
While there are many reasons to choose a fall move, there are several drawbacks. As autumn progresses, days will get shorter (and dark will come earlier) meaning you’ll have a smaller window of time to move. Weather in the fall can span from hot to freezing (and sometimes on the same day!) so dressing for the weather can be a challenge. Additionally, if you have children, they will either have to start the school year a few weeks in, or will have very little time to adjust to their new surroundings before starting at a new school. On top of that, the beginning of the school year means busier roads and more traffic, both of which can easily complicate your move.
TL;DR: Why you should move in the fall: Temperate weather, lower costs with more flexibility. Why you shouldn’t: Shorter days, eclipses the beginning of the school year.
Bonus: How Do I Select a Date to Move?
So you’ve examined the pros and cons and carefully selected your ideal moving season but now you need to narrow in on a date. Most importantly, should you move during the week or the weekend? Which is better? What time of the month should I move? Time of day? We have answers.
Best Week of the Month to Move: Mid-Month
If you want to save the most money, mid-month is your ideal time to move. Most leases begin and end at the beginning or end of the month meaning demand for movers is higher. Higher demand means difficulty scheduling and higher prices, so if you can avoid it– do so.
Best Day of the Week to Move: Monday-Thursday
Demand during the week is generally substantially lower so if you can get time off, try to schedule your move during the workweek.
Best Time of Day to Move: Early-Mid Morning
As the saying goes: “early bird gets the worm!” When moving, you want to maximize daylight hours so the earlier the better. Plus, you don’t want to be in a situation where you’re the second (or third!) move of the day! Since it will likely take a few hours to finish packing, loading your items onto the truck, etc., by the time you finish up you are likely to avoid traffic from the morning commute. Plus, if you’re moving in the spring or summer, temperatures are generally lower in the morning making for a more pleasant move.