Moving During a Pandemic: Tips and Testimonies

The COVID-19 outbreak has changed many people’s plans, including homebuyers. The housing market is experiencing record numbers across the board. The pandemic has allowed people to reassess their current and future living situations and isolation has given them time to plan a move. However, we all know that moving is no easy task. Whether it is a one bedroom move across town or a five-bedroom household cross-country move, there are many factors to consider. Some include deciding on a moving company, choosing where to live, and settling into a new community. Moving companies are deemed as essential during the pandemic. While it is possible to move during the pandemic, it is not necessarily encouraged to do so. Some people have no choice if their current lease is up or if they need to move for work or health reasons. If you do decide to move, be sure to consider all aspects of the process before going down this journey.

As previously mentioned, the housing market is experiencing a temporary boom during the pandemic and DC is no exception. Year-over-year activity in the District is up in every measure according to Clint Mann, president of Urban Pace. Local news firm DCist asked 13 locals about their decisions to move. Some people, like Alex Clegg, wanted a larger space in the city. He said that trying to find a house was a nightmare because houses in their price range would last four days on the market. He and his fiancé opted to buy a house with a small yard to grill and for their dog to play in. Other people, like Samantha Phillips, wanted to switch to a more spacious suburban lifestyle with private outdoor access and room for an office. She moved from a one-bedroom basement apartment in Shaw to a one-bed with den in Alexandria. Natural light was at the top of her priority list especially with winter coming. The change of season will influence people’s home-buying decisions and will influence housing market activity in the region.

Moving is stressful enough as it is but here are three tips to assist with planning and executing a move during the COVID-19 pandemic,

  1. Do a virtual in-home estimate. Many moving companies are adapting to the changing times by implementing new policies such as asking movers and customers to wear masks. Many now offer virtual in-home estimates to minimize contact between their employees and customers.
  2. Disinfect your new home and personal belongings. The CDC has a list of EPA-registered disinfectants on their website that can be used to sanitize various surfaces. It is highly recommended to disinfect all frequently touched surfaces and electronics regularly. Disinfecting a home before you settle will reduce your chances of contracting the virus and ensure a less stressful settling-in process.
  3. Check local guidelines in the area where you are going. Each jurisdiction is changing its laws and regulations frequently during the pandemic. Be prepared to quarantine for 14 days after moving depending on the location. Also keep in mind that social distancing mandates can prevent friends and family from helping you load and unload the truck if you cannot gather in groups of 10 or more without standing six feet apart.