It’s a cruel bit of irony that the most convenient time for families to move is also the trickiest time for a number of reasons. Data from the U.S. census indicates 50 percent of all civilian moves take place in the summer months. In addition, according to Naval Supply Systems Command (NAVSUP) data, more than of 65 percent of all Permanent Change of Station (PCS) moves for U.S. military personnel take place between May 15 and August 31.
In real terms, this means the summer months are hectic for both those moving and the businesses who help them. According to Sperry Hutchinson, U-Haul spokesperson and product expert, the time between Memorial Day and Labor Day is the busiest of the year, and the end of each month from May to August sees particularly dramatic spikes in moving as leases expire.
Balancing all the demands of moving during the busiest time for the industry takes time and patience. For parents, it’s also important to take time to understand the challenges of moving for children and focus on ways to minimize the impact on everyone. Before you start packing your boxes, make sure you consider every aspect of a summertime move.
Plan Ahead — A Lot!
No matter when you move, you can expect something unexpected to happen, and the best protection against disaster is planning. For the busy summer season, you need to get everything in order immediately, from hiring a moving company to securing a rental truck.
In fact, according to Hutchinson, “The further ahead you can plan, the better. You’ll get the best rates, and you are more likely to get the exact equipment you need at the location you choose.” If your move is last-minute, Hutchinson emphasizes focusing on convenience. This includes services like U-Haul’s self-pickup and return options as well as services such as CORT Furniture Rental, which eliminates the need to move large items.
Pack with the Kids in Mind
Children sometimes attach to objects for security. With a move pending, they may become especially connected to previously ignored items, such as a chair or pillow. Ease their trepidation by involving them in the packing process. For example, give them each a “treasure box” to pack themselves, and carry the boxes in your personal vehicle.
Over the years, Hutchinson has noticed that children who feel “part of the process” are more enthusiastic about the move. Also, when packing the truck, position key items, such as a favorite toy set and their beds, in the back of the moving truck for fast, easy access on the other end of your move.
Manage the Heat
Moving in any season has its challenges, and in the summer, it’s the heat. With daily highs that climb into the triple digits in some parts of the country, managing the heat for everyone involved in the moving process is critical. For families, this means making a plan for the children on both ends. Whether it’s staying with family members or renting a hotel room, it’s important to keep kids hydrated and cool.
Help Kids Settle in ASAP
Change is hard no matter how old you are, but it can have an especially harsh effect on children. In fact, a study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology entitled “Residential Mobility, Wellbeing, and Mortality” connected moving in childhood with a host of adult problems, including difficulty with social relationships and a generally lower sense of wellbeing. That’s why paying attention to your children and considering their physical and emotional needs is so critical during this big life change.
One simple way to do this is to prioritize their comfort in your new space. For example, set up their bedrooms and playrooms before any other rooms in the home. When you set them up, focus on familiar, calming items that will help them settle in faster and feel at home.
Your New Home Awaits
As a parent, it’s natural to want to do everything possible to make a move easy for yourself and your children. By taking time to consider everything from extreme heat to convenient furnishing options for your new home through CORT, it’s possible to make a busy summertime move easier on everyone.