Moving to a new house is never easy. In fact, it can be a total nightmare. Especially if you are moving with young children, or far away. Moving in winter can be even worse. The weather is terrible, there may be icy roads to contend with, and if your new home has been empty for a while, you can never be entirely sure what condition it’s in. Even a thorough inspection or survey can’t tell you how warm it’s likely to be or prepare you for frozen pipes if the weather suddenly turns.
However, there are a few things that you can do to prepare. The first thing that you should do is read these 7 must-read tips when moving house to make your move less stressful at any time of the year. But, for a winter move, there’s a bit more consider. Let’s take an in-depth look at how to make sure your house move goes without a hitch and that you can be settled in a lovely warm home as soon as possible.
Check the Weather
The weather forecast is often pretty unreliable. In fact, it’s rarely spot on. Unfortunately, even with all of the available information, it’s tough for even the professionals to predict, so you need to be prepared for changes. But, it is still worth checking and keeping an eye on the forecast as moving day gets closer.
Try to find a few days where the temperature is mild, and there’s no risk of snow and ice. If snow is forecast any time during that week, it might be worth waiting a few days.
Run the Taps
Buying a house can take time. From viewing your house, to actually moving into it can be months. If the house is empty for a long time going into the winter months, there are risks. The first being frozen pipes. When water freezes, it expands. This can cause pipes to leak or even burst, causing very expensive damage and leaving you without water when you first move into your new home.
To check the pipes, go around, turn the water on and run your taps before you move in. If it’s very cold outside, there’s frost on your outdoor pipes, and there’s no running water, chances are you’ve got a frozen pipe. Get help as soon as you can.
If they aren’t frozen, running water could help prevent freezing. You should then turn off the water, and open your taps to empty the pipes so that there’s nothing to freeze. Then, make sure your pipes are insulated before you leave.
Get the Boiler Serviced
Your boiler should always be checked before moving in, but this is even more important in the winter. Sign up for boiler insurance while it’s being serviced, so you’ve always got help if you need it, and book in for a full service at the start of every winter.
Think About Parking
Ideally, you’ll have off-street parking. But, this isn’t always the case. You always want to be parked as close as possible when you’ve got heavy furniture to carry in, but this is especially true when it’s cold, wet or even icy. If you can’t park right in front of your new home, speak to your neighbours or the local council to arrange to park as near as possible. Sort this out before moving day, don’t just assume it will be possible.
One of the worst things about winter is the dark. Even with the clocks changing, mornings can be very dull and grey and then it can easily be dark by 4 pm. Moving in the dark is, of course, possible, but it won’t be very nice, and you could find yourself in danger of tripping or falling and breaking something.
Set your alarm early and start making the final preparations straight away, even before you can collect the moving van. Then, get started as soon as you can, making the most of whatever light there is.
Pack flasks, and move in a kettle and some supplies before moving day, or at least in a separate and easy to find box. Treat your moving team to a hot drink whenever they need it. You should also make sure all of your winter clothes and shoes are easy to find.
When that big move day is all done, order takeout and get some rest, you deserve it.