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The pandemic has put a lot of things on hold, but moving is not one of them. According to the USPS, over 15.9 million people have moved during the coronavirus pandemic. That’s an increase from 2019’s 15.3 million. The reasons are clear when you think about it: Some moved out of a desire to be somewhere with less exposure (28 percent) or closer to family (20 percent). Others had to leave when their campuses closed (23 percent) or because of financial reasons (18 percent). So if you find yourself considering a move, don’t worry: It can be done.

Still, moving is not exactly the same as it’s always been. You’ll still need to take the pandemic and health guidelines into consideration when planning and executing your move. As experts on the ins and outs of moving, we at Avignon Apartment Homes have put together these tips for moving during COVID-19.

Coordinate with Your Movers

We know: You were going to do this anyway. But with COVID, you need to be extra aware of your movers’ needs. If you are enlisting a moving company, be sure to hire one that has a cancellation or rescheduling policy. That way, if someone does fall ill, you can make arrangements to change the date without losing your investment. 

Also, familiarize yourself with your moving company’s health measures. “Moving companies are putting in lots of safeguards to help protect their clients, and it helps to be on the same page as them in terms of what is expected,” says Laura Mueller at Moving.com

If you’re enlisting friends and family, coordination will be just as important. Make sure everyone knows to bring a mask, and provide hand sanitizer. You might not be able to treat them to the traditional thank-you pizza afterward, but gift-cards can work just as well!

Buy Everything at Once

During the pandemic, we’ve been advised to consolidate our trips to the store. That advice holds just as true for moving. 

We know it can be difficult to anticipate how many boxes and rolls of tape you’ll need to get everything packed. Fortunately, the good people at Moving.com have provided a packing calculator to help you figure it out. Enter your household’s number of rooms, packing style, lifestyle, and family size, and the calculator will give you an estimate of how much to buy and what to spend.

And remember that, while it may be tempting to buy your boxes second-hand, you’ll be safer buying them new.

Plan Your Donations

There’s nothing like moving to help you realize just how much stuff you have—and with that realization comes the siren call of the donation center. As you begin to execute the Marie Kondo method of separating your belongings into “keep” and “donate” piles, don’t forget to consider where you’ll be donating them. As Kelly Lawler from USA Today puts it, “dropping off a bag of clothes at Goodwill isn’t as simple as it was before.” Many thrift stores no longer allow drop-in donations and now require you to make an appointment before arriving. Decide where you’ll be bringing your second-hand goods and make sure you understand their current pandemic policies.

No matter what challenges arise, life presses on. If you find you need to move, remember to coordinate with your movers, buy all your supplies at once, and plan your donations. Follow these tips for moving, and all will go smoothly.