Back to blogs

How to Save Money When Moving in the Winter

Monday, November 6, 2023

Cold, gray, drizzling winter days are for snuggling up with a warm blanket and cup of cocoa, not for moving. Right?

Well, not necessarily. Winter can be perfect for packing all your belongings and heading to your new home. Why? Because others are not as brave as you. There will be fewer people moving in winter and you will get better prices, and save money while moving. 

Besides easing the pressure on your wallet, moving in winter can be a positive experience. All you need is some careful planning and preparation. In this post, discover moving in winter tips tailored to the conditions, from weather-proofing your belongings to protecting your floors. Get ready to successfully navigate relocating during the winter while keeping your moving budget down and saving money on your move.

A house in winter covered in snow in the off-season for moving

Why Move in the Winter?

Picking the moving date is one of the first and most important decisions you’ll make when relocating. Generally, people shun moving in the winter. They do it mainly because they have to. But why not turn the tables and choose to move in winter?

Winter is an off-peak moving season because the demand is low. That comes with several advantages. As already mentioned, you’ll get better prices. Moving company rates typically decrease from late September to April. If you schedule your move in the slowest month (typically January), the percentage of your savings can run into a two-digit figure.

You will have more flexibility when selecting the dates and moving services that suit you. Since movers will have open slots, they will, more often than not, be happy to accommodate you.

Sometimes, you may need to rent a storage unit. Again, winter is a good time to do that. You can negotiate a discount because demand for storage space falls during the cold months.

A winter move can be faster unless the weather conditions are unfavorable. There is less traffic on motorways, which makes it easier to reach the final destination.

On top of all that, it’s a shame to waste beautiful summer days on packing, moving, and unpacking. Instead, use the winter for settling into your cozy new home. 

Moving in Winter Tips

Advantages notwithstanding, a winter move in the states with continental climates presents specific challenges. Cold weather, icy roads, and shorter days can complicate the process. But fear not! With proper planning and some clever strategies, you can overcome these challenges. Here are some moving in the winter tips:

Check the weather forecast: You may want to reschedule your move if the conditions are particularly inclement, with heavy rain or snow. Since movers won’t be too busy, they will be more flexible. Besides, bad weather does not suit them either.

Choose the right movers: Moving in winter, especially if the move is long-distance, is best done with the help of professional movers. Choosing the right moving company is crucial for the success of your relocation.  

Don’t skimp on insurance: Moving insurance provides coverage for your possessions and can give you peace of mind.   

Pack well: When moving in winter you'll need weatherproof cardboard boxes with several layers of commercial-strength cling foil or plastic bags. Borrow or rent several plastic bins for your most delicate items. Cold weather can adversely affect electronics, dishware, musical instruments, and other fragile items, so protect them with towels or bedding. 

Remember the utilities: Get the utilities in your new place up and running several days before the move. 

Clear the walkways: Clean the snow from your driveway and cover icy spots with salt or sand to prevent slips and falls.

Protect the floors:  Cover your floors with cardboard or plastic sheets and tape them if necessary so no one slips. Place a sturdy mat at the entrance and have a few old towels for wiping the hands, boxes, and shoes.

Start early: Winter days are short. Schedule your move in the early morning and plan to arrive before dark.

Dress for the weather: Moving in winter also requires layered clothing. You can take off a layer or two while carrying boxes or driving your heated car to avoid sweating.

Turn off the heat: Your doors will be open most of the time with people carrying objects in and out, so there’s no point in running the heaters. 

Heat one small space: Prepare a room where you and your movers can take a break and warm up. Try to provide some seating. Even a bathroom can be suitable.

A man offering treats to his helpers and movers after helping him move to his retirement home

Treat your movers: Offer your movers and helpers hot beverages and tasty snacks. 

Mind the road conditions: If you plan to drive to the destination while the movers transport your belongings, ensure your car is winter-ready and follow AAA winter driving tips.  

Unpack wisely: The golden rule of unpacking is to start with the necessities and later proceed room by room. However, if the boxes you neglected to protect get wet from rain or snow, they become your priority. Unpack them as soon as possible and recycle the cardboard boxes.

More Ways to Save Money While Moving   

Moving can be expensive, but there are several ways to save money while moving besides scheduling your move in the winter. For example, when you know that the rates are higher on the weekends and at the end of a month, you can opt to move during the work week and mid-month. 

Moving in any season provides an excellent opportunity to declutter your home and dispose of items you no longer need. The less stuff you have to move, the less money you'll spend on packing supplies and transportation costs. Consider selling or donating items you no longer use to lighten your load and save on moving expenses.

Pack as much as you can yourself and ask friends and family to lend a helping hand. Instead of buying brand-new moving boxes and packing materials, look for free or low-cost alternatives. Grocery stores, liquor stores, and local businesses often have sturdy boxes they're willing to give away. Also, use blankets, towels, and clothing to wrap fragile items instead of purchasing bubble wrap or packing paper. 

However, leave the large, heavy, or delicate items to the professionals. That will reduce the risk of any weather-related accidents. Hiring a professional moving company can save you money in the long run because professional movers have experience dealing with winter conditions. They have the necessary tools and equipment for a smooth and efficient move. 

Get relocation quotes from several different moving companies. Research moving companies thoroughly to ensure you hire reliable professionals and compare their prices and services to find the best deal.

It is tempting to eat out or order takeout when you are moving. Save on food expenses by planning your meals and snacks for moving day. Make some wraps, meat pies, or sandwiches in advance. You may even want to cook a simple meal such as pasta or stew the night before and cool it in plastic boxes, ready to be heated up in your new home. Fresh and dried fruit, nuts, and protein bars are excellent for snacking. And don’t forget to prepare several thermos flasks with hot beverages for you and your movers.

A retired couple with their granddaughter enjoying their winter season in their cozy retirement home with loved ones

Shyft is for all Seasons 

Moving in the winter is much easier when you have professionals to do the hard work. Whatever the season, move size, distance, or services required, your belongings will be in good hands when you entrust Shyft to organize your relocation. 

Have Shyft’s moving checklist on hand to keep track of your moving process and enjoy a stress-free winter moving experience. 

This innovative platform harnesses cutting-edge digital tools to seamlessly take your inventory and connect you with trusted moving professionals. Within its extensive network of rigorously vetted moving companies, Shyft offers a comprehensive array of relocation solutions tailored to your needs.

AARP Moving Services powered by Shyft caters to people over 50 who may have unique requirements and could need additional support during the relocation process. 

Your dedicated Shyft Move Coach will be at your service should you have any questions or concerns.

What’s more, AARP members automatically qualify for an exclusive discount of up to $250. 

Shyft's primary aim is to make every move a secure and hassle-free experience. Shyft meticulously vets all moving companies within its network, so you don’t have to spend hours searching for trustworthy movers. With the help of the highly precise ShyftNext mobile app, a Shyft representative conducts a virtual assessment of your moving inventory, so there’s no need for relocation company agents to visit your residence.

Since vetted moving companies bid for your relocation project through the Shyft platform, you are guaranteed competitive pricing. Your personal information is safe throughout the process. Shyft only reveals the details of your relocation on the bidding platforms, such as the size of your shipment, the distance, and the services you require.

Once you accept a quote, it becomes binding. That means the price is fixed, protecting you from unexpected fees and unanticipated costs. Shyft's pricing remains unchanged unless you make alterations to the size or destination of your move.

Booking your move with Shyft is a straightforward process. Get in touch by completing a short online form or call Shyft at 1-888-501-3181. Then download the free ShyftNext mobile app, available for both iPhone and Android devices, and schedule a video call with a Shyft representative who will be your dedicated Move Coach.

At the arranged time, lead your Move Coach on a virtual tour of your residence by pointing your device's camera at the items you intend to move and discuss your options with their expert guidance. The video survey usually lasts about 30 minutes.

The inventory list you receive half an hour after the survey is typically 95% accurate. Make any necessary adjustments and give your approval. 

Your Move Coach will send you at least three top quotes from professional movers in the Shyft network. Choose the one that suits you best and enjoy peace of mind, knowing that your dedicated Move Coach will supervise your relocation from start to finish. Shyft remains at your disposal seven days a week, 24 hours a day.

Have Shyft’s moving checklist on hand to keep track of your moving process and confidently embark upon a stress-free winter moving experience. 

Remember, all AARP members are entitled to an exclusive discount of up to $250 each time they use Shyft's services. Don't delay. Book your move with Shyft now.

Get Free Moving Estimates