What Is the Best Time to Move?

For a smooth move, choose the months of September to April, a weekday, and kickstart your day in the early morning.
What Is the Best Time to Move - Adams Van Lines

Moving is a stressful adventure.

While juggling between tasks, such as completing your moving checklist or deciding whether to hire long-distance moving companies, it is important not to leave the selection of your moving date to the bottom of your priority list.

This seemingly insignificant factor could drastically shape your moving experience.

When is the ideal time to move? The answer depends on various factors such as budget, weather conditions, and personal circumstances.

Let’s delve into the complexities of ‘timing’ the moving process. We’ll outline key considerations and help you identify the best time for your move.

When Is the Best Time to Move: By Seasons
When is the Best Time to Move? A Month by Month Look
When Is the Best Time to Move: By Weeks and Days
When Is the Best Time to Move: By Time of Day
When Should You Move?

When Is the Best Time to Move: By Seasons

Most people tend to move from May through September. However, contrary to popular belief, the best time to move is actually during the off-season, which spans from mid-September through April.

Let’s take a closer look at the advantages and drawbacks of moving during different seasons. This will help you determine the most suitable time for your relocation.

1. Spring

Moving during spring offers several benefits. The weather is generally mild, making it a pleasant time for transitioning to a new place. It’s also an excellent opportunity to start fresh, as many people associate this season with new beginnings.

Additionally, there’s typically less demand for moving companies during spring compared to the busy summer months. By moving in spring, you can avoid the hectic moving season and reserve the summer for settling into your new home.

However, for families with school-aged children, moving before the end of the school year may pose challenges. It can be disruptive for kids to switch schools mid-year, potentially resulting in a rough transition.

2. Summer

Summer is the official season for moving, but it is also the busiest and most expensive one. The weather is generally favorable, and school is out of session, which makes it convenient for families with children. Moving during the summer provides greater flexibility, as you can usually take some time off work to plan and settle into your new home.

However, due to the high demand, hiring a moving company on the exact day or time that is convenient for you can be challenging. Additionally, the risk of overheating during the physical exertion of moving should not be overlooked. If you are considering a summer move, be prepared for the potential drawbacks and plan accordingly.

3. Fall

Fall is an ideal season for moving, offering forgiving weather conditions and less demand for professional movers. With reduced competition, you’ll have more flexibility when scheduling your move. However, late fall may bring rain or even snow, making the moving process more challenging.

Since the majority of people move during the summer, you might be able to secure a better deal on a September move. However, if you live near a university campus, keep in mind that fall brings an influx of students, making apartment hunting more competitive.

Families with school-aged children should also consider the potential impact of missed school days and the adjustment period.

4. Winter

Winter is the most affordable time to move since demand is at its lowest. You’ll have the luxury of choosing your preferred moving date, time, and company. The cost savings can be significant, especially if you are on a tight budget.

However, moving during winter presents its own set of challenges. Snowy conditions, cold weather, or rain can impact the driver’s route and make loading and unloading cargo more difficult.

Bad weather conditions can also interfere with travel plans, causing delays or other complications. Additionally, if you have school-aged children, moving in the middle of the school year can disrupt their learning process and social lives.

When is the Best Time to Move? A Month by Month Look

If your definition of “best” primarily revolves around affordability, the months from late September to April are generally considered the optimal time to move.

During this period, demand for moving services tends to slow down, leading to lower rates and increased availability. If you’re looking for the cheapest ways to move long-distance, moving during these months can be a strategic choice.

On the other hand, many moving professionals consider the peak moving season to occur between Memorial Day and Labor Day weekend. This period, consisting of spring and summer, witnesses over 75% of residential moves.

The primary reason behind this trend is the preference of families with school-aged children to relocate during these months, aiming to avoid disruptions during the academic year. Additionally, weather conditions during spring and summer are generally favorable, making it an appealing time to move.

It’s worth noting that renters, particularly college students, tend to move during the early fall and late spring.

If you plan to move to a larger city with a significant student population, it’s advisable to stay away from early September, as it coincides with the start of the academic year. By avoiding this timeframe, you can potentially minimize competition for housing and ensure a smoother moving experience.

When Is the Best Time to Move: By Weeks and Days

When it comes to selecting the best time to move, certain weeks and days can significantly impact your moving experience.

Firstly, it’s advisable to steer clear of weekends for moving out. While weekends may seem convenient due to the lack of work obligations, they are typically the busiest times for moving.

Instead, consider scheduling your move from Monday through Thursday to ensure a smoother experience. These weekdays often have less traffic on the roads and offer more availability for professional movers, making the entire process more efficient.

If you are hiring a professional moving company, strategically choosing your moving dates can also help you save money. Moving costs tend to increase during the last weekend of every month, as that’s when lease start and end dates commonly overlap.

To avoid the surge in prices, consider planning your move during the second or fourth weeks of the month. These periods are generally more affordable and provide you with greater scheduling options, as demand for moving services tends to be lower.

When Is the Best Time to Move: By Time of Day

You’ve probably heard the saying that the early bird catches the worm, and this concept applies to moving as well. When it comes to selecting the best time of day to move, starting the move early during the day will offer numerous advantages.

Let’s take a closer look at the different times of the day for moving and the considerations associated with each.

1. Morning

Moving during the morning is generally considered the best time to initiate the process. If you hire professional movers between 7 a.m. and 10 a.m., you’ll have ample time to load and unload your belongings at the starting point and destination.

For those considering using a mobile moving-and-storage container, starting the packing process early in the day ensures you’ll have enough daylight. Additionally, by hitting the road early, you can avoid peak traffic hours and potential delays.

During the summer months, moving in the morning can also help you avoid the hottest hours of the day.

2. Afternoon

Early afternoon is another viable time to begin the moving process. Starting early in the afternoon allows you to make progress without feeling pressed for time. However, it’s crucial to ensure that everything is ready for the arrival of the movers or the loading of the truck if you’re taking the DIY route. Being prepared ahead of time helps you maximize efficiency.

If you leave earlier in the afternoon, you may also have the advantage of avoiding rush hour traffic, which can significantly impact travel time. However, it’s important to note that if you’ve booked an afternoon move, a delayed start is possible, as movers may have earlier jobs running longer than expected.

3. Evening

If your schedule throughout the day is occupied, moving in the evening may be a viable option. Some long-distance moving companies even offer after-hours services, accommodating those who require flexibility.

However, it’s essential to consider the time required for your move, as it may extend into the next day. It’s also important to note that certain areas, such as Atlanta, may have laws against moving at night and often require permits for such activities.

Additionally, an evening move requires heightened alertness due to reduced visibility and safety concerns in the absence of natural sunlight.

When Should You Move?

Determining the best time to move ultimately depends on various factors, including your location, schedule, your children’s school, and weather conditions.

However, as a general rule of thumb, the off-season from September through April tends to be ideal, as movers are less in demand during these months. Additionally, scheduling your move on a weekday and aiming to leave early in the day can contribute to a smoother transition.

Consider these factors to make an informed decision that suits your moving needs and ensures a successful relocation.

Adam Palme - Author
Adam Palme

Adam grew up in military family, which meant he moved more than 20 times before he graduated high school. The experience taught him a lot about adaptability (and loading boxes), which he leveraged into a career in the moving and storage industry 7 years ago. He’s been working in sales and customer service management for 20 years, and he uses his own experiences to write content about moving, storage, leadership, and teamwork. Outside of work, Adam enjoys coaching youth football in Miami and enjoying some beach time with his dog. Go Dolphins!

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