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Moving During the Winter

Updated: Jan 30, 2023

It’s “the most wonderful time of the year.” Everyone decorates their homes with festive lights, a tree, greenery, and candles. They are throwing holiday parties, sipping hot chocolate, and singing around the piano. But not you. You are MOVING during the holidays! Congratulations on gifting yourself a new home! You may feel a bit stressed about making a big move during the busy holiday season. Here are some tips on making the most out of the holidays while moving.

You Can Still Be Festive During The Move

You might think that your holiday season will be anything but festive because you are packing up all of your belongings instead of unpacking the mistletoe and tree ornaments. But you can still be festive during the move.

Pack some but not all of your holiday decorations. Place a holiday wreath on your door, place a small tree on a table that you won’t be moving until the last minute. Keep the decorating to a minimum, but enough to bring out the magic of the season. You can still do fun holiday traditions when you have some downtime from packing. Drive around the neighborhood and look at other people’s homes with their festive light displays. Sip hot chocolate while watching Christmas movies. Take the kids ice skating.

Don’t feel pressured to host your usual holiday gathering when preparing to move. Instead, see if another family member would be willing to host at their house this year. Or, if you really want to have one last gathering at your home, keep it simple. Have everyone bring a dish to share, so you don’t have to do all of the cooking and meal planning.

If you are moving into your new home already, you may be busy unpacking all of your essentials and not worried about the decorations yet. However, if you really love decorating for the holidays, set aside some of your decorations and decorate your new home minimally. Announce your arrival in the new neighborhood by putting up some lights outside your home. If you notice a trend that the whole neighborhood has white lights, don’t be the only one with colorful lights or no lights at all. It’s a great way to meet your new neighbors as they get curious to see who moved in during the holidays and participated in their neighborhood decorating tradition!

How To Shop For Gifts When In The Middle Of A Move

Who has time for gift shopping when you are in the middle of a move? And do you have a stash of cash for buying gifts? If you are in the process of finalizing the sale of your home, you don’t want to use credit cards or overspend. This can affect your credit, and you will have to answer your mortgage lender for any blemishes in your accounts. If you can’t buy for every person on your list this year, it’s ok. Stick to your immediate family, especially the children. Try giving gift cards as a no-fuss gift for friends, neighbors, teachers, and whoever else you typically buy gifts for.

If you are moving to a new city or state, you will want to explore your new town. Check out your town’s local boutiques and stores. You may find some unique gifts to send back home to your family and friends. It’s also a great way to get to know the local merchants and support your new community.

Tips For Moving During The Holidays

Timing is everything when you are moving during the holidays. Most people do the actual move-out at the end of the month or the beginning of the month. Keep in mind that at the end of December and the beginning of January the banks may close, and all involved parties such as your Realtor and home inspection company may want to take off time during the holidays. If you can time it right to complete the sale of your new home before the big holiday week, that would be beneficial. However, doing the move during that week between Christmas and New Year’s Day is a perfect time to take off work for most people. You may even be able to convince your friends and family to help you move! Make it a holiday-themed moving party! Play Christmas music and serve Christmas cookies and hot chocolate (as well as the typical pizza and beer!) to those who show up to help.

If your move is before or after the holiday week, consider hiring a mover to make things faster and easier for you. Take your time packing but start early so you don’t get overwhelmed or burnout. Try to stay organized by labeling boxes and purging things that you no longer need. Donate gently used items you no longer need to your local Goodwill, Salvation Army, or other local charities. Some charities will even come to pick up the items you are donating.

Remember to take the time to enjoy the holiday season. Focus on what is truly meaningful to you and your family. Rather than emphasizing gifts and traveling, spend time together and enjoy the last moments in your home. When you get to your new home, try to make time out of the hustle and bustle to enjoy some of the holiday traditions, such as baking cookies together. If you are prepared for it, invite your new neighbors over for a meet and greet and serve the cookies. Don’t worry about having your whole house set up and looking perfect. Making holiday memories and being together with family and friends, old or new, is the true magic of the season.

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