1. Blog
  2. Moving Tips
  3. Tips for Moving During the Winter

Moving Tips

Tips for Moving During the Winter

Are you moving in winter? While moving at any time of the year can be stressful enough, add in the freezing temperatures, unpredictable weather conditions, and shorter daylight hours, and you’re faced with a whole new set of challenges. As professional movers in New York City, we know a thing or two about winter moving and how to make it as simple, stress-free, and enjoyable as possible. Follow our winter moving tips and tricks to help you conquer the elements while relocating in NYC. 

12 Winter Moving Tips to Melt Away Your Relocation Worries

You’re in the right place if thinking of moving in winter sends shivers down your spine due to icy roads, frozen pipes, and chilly weather. Here are our top tips for winter moving to help you get through without a hitch. 

1. Prepare Your Belongings for the Cold

Most moving truck trailers don’t have climate-control systems, so temperatures inside the container may be at or below the outdoor temperatures. For this reason, it’s important to prepare sensitive items for moving in winter. For example:

  • Electronics: Electronics can be severely affected by the cold. Items like televisions, computers, and other devices should be packed carefully and kept in a controlled environment for as long as possible. If they must spend time in the cold, once unpacked, let them gradually adjust to room temperature before turning them on to avoid any internal condensation. 
  • Household Items: Dishes and glassware can become brittle in the cold and are more prone to breaking. To prevent this, you can wrap these items in blankets or use special moving padding. Read our guide on packing glasses for moving to learn more.
  • Liquids: Liquids, such as cleaning supplies or toiletries, can freeze and potentially burst, so it’s best to transport these separately if possible.
  • Wooden Furniture: The cold can make wood contract, which could lead to cracking or other damage. To protect against this, consider treating the wood with a protective polish before the move or wrapping pieces in moving blankets for added insulation.

2. Prepare Your New House Ahead of Time

Be sure that your new house is ready for the move before you head over with your belongings. Verify that lights and plumbing are operating. Make sure the heat will work as well, or bring space heaters.

3. Turn the Heat off While Moving In

Consider turning off the heat in your home if your living space opens to the outdoors. It can be a huge waste of electricity to try to keep the place warm while people walk in and out of your apartment or home all day. Instead, close the door to your bathroom and keep it warm with a small space heater so you and your helpers have a place to warm up.

4. Clear the Snow


Slipping on snow and ice can change a simple transfer to a disaster. Before you even begin, make sure all walkways at both old and new homes are clear; de-ice or add sand if necessary. Keep shovels, salt and sand on-hand.

5. Plan for Parking Arrangements

One of the most significant challenges of winter moving in New York City is parking. A winter weather event can make this roadblock even more hazardous with snow banks, unpredictable roads, and parking bans for plowing. Metropolis’ team of moving professionals has plenty of experience parking in some of the busiest locations in the country, however make sure you’ve got somewhere else if you’re bringing your own car as well.

6. Guard Your Floors

Winter’s snowfall, ice and salt are notorious for dirtying and scratching some types of flooring. It would be impossible to take shoes on and off every single time a mover comes in and out, so instead cover your floors for the day. Floors and carpets can be protected with big pieces of cardboard boxes or plastic sheets for the big day. You can use duct tape if the floors can withstand it, and small tacks work well on carpeted areas.

7. Have a Plan B

new york winter

One of the best winter moving tips is to have a plan B. With the regular threat of winter storms, there is a chance that your move must be rescheduled. Communication is vital in a situation like this. First, call your moving company and ask about their policy. If the weather is bad, they may need to reschedule the move. Because this would prevent you from moving out and someone new moving in, it’s essential to communicate with your landlord, homeowner, or real estate broker to coordinate needing a few extra days. If it’s not possible, you may have to arrange a couple of days of short-term housing.

8. Monitor Mother Nature

stormy city

If you’re facing a long-distance move, keep an eye on the weather along your travel route, checking with local authorities by phone or online if the forecast is ominous. Scout out overnight accommodations in the event you need to make an unforeseen stop. If you are moving locally, keep a close eye on the weather report in your area. 

9. Prep Your Automobile

man working on car

Before winter moving, make sure your car is serviced and winterized, with brakes and tires checked and fluids topped. Carry salt or kitty litter in case you get stuck, and pop a compacted snow shovel and blanket in the trunk. Consider joining a roadside assistance program such as AAA, as you never know when or where you might need a hand.

10. Keep an Inventory of Belongings

Using an app like Sortly can help you keep an inventory of all your belongings. You can also print the checklist (shown below) provided by Metropolis Moving when you submit a quote. Maintaining an inventory of your belongings guarantees each item is located, packed, transported to your new location, and properly accounted for.

11. Carry Extra Clothes

Staying warm and dry is crucial while moving in winter. Carry a bag of gloves, caps, sweaters, and socks in case of changing weather or wet clothing. If you plan to stay in your new place as soon as you arrive, notify the utility company ahead of time and have your electricity or gas turned on so that you’re settled in as soon as possible. Also, pack as many warm clothing options as possible, just in case.

12. Feed the Gang

Obviously, you are not required to provide food and drinks for your moving team. But something as simple as offering the movers a hot cup of cider or tea–maybe even some comforting food like chili or soup–can really make their day. It’s a great way to say “thanks” and show them you appreciate all their hard work. Check out our how-to guide for more information on tipping movers.

Winter Moving in NYC? Let Us Help!

If you’re relocating to or around New York City this winter, hiring professional movers can make your experience a breeze. Our experienced team at Metropolis Movers is well-equipped to manage the unique challenges of relocating during the colder months. We strive to make your move smooth, efficient, and hassle-free, regardless of the weather conditions. So don’t let the cold give you second thoughts about your move. Request a quote today, and let us transform your winter relocation into a warm, stress-free journey. We’re here to help every step of the way!

map of New York City