I’ve always said that Murphy’s Law was invented for moving. If something is going to go wrong, it will. However, the coronavirus is bringing this to a whole new level. Fear not. You can still prepare for your move during coronavirus. You just need to be creative.
Get your moving supplies now
While everyone else is rushing out to get toilet paper, go buy your moving boxes and packing tape. I typically recommend getting free boxes online from craiglist or NextDoor. Now is not that time. You just don’t know where those boxes have been. Splurge on the new boxes. To see how many boxes you will need, check out the moving supplies calculator on my resources page. Caveat: If coronavirus is already in your area, then wait and get your supplies later (more on social distancing below).
Stock up on non-perishable food during the coronavirus scare
I know you are moving and the last thing you want to do is bring more heavy items into your home. I get it. I’m usually the person telling you to get rid of everything. Not in this case. Stock up on enough food to get you through a couple weeks. Remember to wait until the last minute to pack items like can openers or microwaveable plates. If the coronavirus blows over, then use Move for Hunger to donate any unwanted non-perishable food to your local food pantry. No food will be wasted.
Ask for a virtual estimate from three moving companies
Under normal circumstances, I recommend getting at least three in-home estimates. Thankfully, the moving companies understand that people are busy and in-home estimates are not always possible. Moving companies have been doing this for a while, so they can give you an accurate estimate with a virtual tour of your home. Don’t put your health or the health of the movers at risk. Do it virtually. Here are some ways to find a mover you can trust.
Verify the cancellation policy of truck rentals or movers
It’s always a good idea to review the cancellation policy for your truck rental or the professional movers (See: Murphy’s Law for moving). While companies are likely to be more forgiving during a pandemic, the fine print still matters.
Book refundable travel
For long-distance moves, you may need to fly across the country or stay in a hotel for a few nights. Airline fares are low right now, so book your travel but make sure the fares are refundable. Many airlines are currently offering flexible cancellation policies. Book a hotel that offers free cancellation until the day before you travel.
Ask your employer to let you work from home
If you plan to move to another city, you’re leaving your job anyways. It doesn’t hurt to ask about a work from home option right now. If enough employees ask about remote work opportunities, maybe your employer will let all employees work from home for a period of time.
Put that bucket list away
If this were any other moving season, I would say to create a bucket list of the places you want to visit in your town before you move. Save that bucket list for when you come back to visit. The greatest parting gift you can give your town right now is to stay home. Instead of that whirlwind city tour, create a list of things you want to do inside of your apartment. Catch up on Netflix shows. Read on the couch. Enjoy the sanctity of your home before it’s time to move elsewhere.
Enjoy some time of social distancing
There is currently no vaccine for coronavirus, but you’re young, you’re healthy, and it may not affect you much. However, this is about the bigger picture – your friends, your family, your community. The only way to stop the spread of this disease is to limit the expontential growth and practice social distancing. What does that mean? Stay home. Don’t go grab drinks with your friends. Don’t schedule in-person meetings with colleagues when you can do it online. Let the introvert in you enjoy the moment you’ve been waiting for your entire life.
Declutter your home during the coronavirus scare
If there’s one silver lining, it’s that you’ve got nothing but time to be at home. So, start decluttering for your move – even if your move is months and months away. You’ll need to declutter at some point and there’s no time like the present. Take before and after pictures. The rest of us need some entertainment on Instagram.
Get organizational help from a virtual expert
Let’s say decluttering isn’t your thing, and you need professional help. It’s a good thing professional organizers can help you with a virtual walk-through of your home. If you are looking to declutter and organize your home, check out Organized Mamas or a professional organizer in your area. If you want to sell your items, check out an online auction house like Everything But the House.
Network for a job while you’re sitting on the couch
Again, there are benefits to not being able to leave the house. If you don’t have a job set up in your new city yet, it’s time to start networking online. Update your resume, connect on LinkedIn, and get ready to find your dream job.
Imagine how fabulous your life will be after the move (and after coronavirus)
One thing we don’t get enough time to do is think. When you are sitting in your apartment with nowhere to go, your mind will wander. Take advantage of that time. Imagine how you want to design your new life. Jot down notes of any habits you want to change after you move, because moving is the perfect time to make life changes.
Remain calm & practice gratitude
You are lucky you are moving right now. You have so many other things to focus on that refreshing your Twitter feed to see the news isn’t at the top of your list. That’s good. First, take a deep breath. This will pass. Second, go to my resources page to download free moving checklists or find other resources that can help you. I hope that having a moving plan will help make this less stressful for you. Finally, it is moments like this that help us appreciate what we have. Keep a gratitude journal or text yourself daily reminders of all the things that are good in your life right now.