10 tips for moving safely in NYC during COVID-19 restrictions
By Najah Ayoub
Despite COVID-19 restrictions remaining in place to some extent across most of the United States, moving is continuing as normally as possible with the addition of health precautions for you and your team of movers.
Moving and Storage companies in the State of New York have been recognized as “Essential Services” since March, which means residential moves have continued to enable people relocating to move in with family, leave dorms, change apartments or cities and move into their holiday homes.
If you need to make a residential move it’s absolutely legal and possible with a few smart adjustments. Take a look at our top tips for moving safely during the COVID-19 lockdown below, and talk to your movers about how they are managing the CDC health guidelines before you book your move.
Piece of Cake Moving has been helping individuals, couples and families move home for many essential reasons including financial stress, precommitted lease or settlement dates, or wanting to be with loved ones until the situation resolves. This is why moving has been considered an “Essential Business” by the New York State Department of Opportunity under the categories of “Logistics” and “Storage” (source: governor.ny.gov).
Piece of Cake Moving has been consistently vigilant about health checks of our movers, the sanitization of our trucks and moving equipment, offices and storage facilities. We have increased the sanitization of our vehicles after every move as well as the end of each day, our movers wear masks and gloves and regularly sanitize their hands, we screen our movers every day to make sure they are doing well physically and mentally and our regular briefings keep them up to date. You can find out more about what we have been doing to protect our customers, community and movers on our moving during COVID 19 FAQ page, which we are updating regularly for our customers.
From our experience there are some steps you can take to make your move a safe one during this period.
Here are our top 10 tips on how to move safely in NYC as COVID-19 restrictions continue:
1. Confirm with your building company that you can book a move in the time frame you are seeking. This applies to both your pick up address and your destination. Once they have both confirmed you can proceed, the normal procedures kick in such as booking the service elevator, finding a mover and arranging your Certificates of Insurance. Moving is an essential service and you have a right to move out of your existing address and into your new address.
2. Have your packing supplies delivered if you don’t want to be out and about buying boxes. Many moving companies will deliver supplies to their customers at a time that suits their schedule, including boxes, tape, packing paper and bubble wrap. For extra precautions, avoid using other people’s boxes in the recycling section of your building to reduce the risk of contamination from unknown sources.
3. Consider using your moving company’s full packing service, where they will pack your items for you, so you do not have to lift a finger. That will save you time during this period if you are working from home or need to manage your move remotely. If you decide to get your home packed, ask your moving company to make sure the movers who are packing wear gloves and masks while they are in your home working. Provide those movers with hand soap and disficant wipes so they can clean as needed while they pack your items. If you are on site, designate a seperate area for you and any housemates to sit while your house is being packed.
4. Getting cabin fever? Consider putting your large items in storage. You may only need your essential furniture items right now like your bed, desk, dining table etc. Other furniture items or boxes with seasonal belongings can go into storage during this period. This will allow you to free up space in your new home while you are managing a remote work or remote school reality for a few months to come.
5. If you have been stockpiling non-perishable foods, make sure you take them into account when packing and determine whether they will move with you or you can safely give them away. As a rule movers will not generally move food items so this is one for you to decide with any other essentials.
6. Ask your movers how they are managing sanitization and social distancing on site when they arrive. For example, once your movers arrive and begin loading or unloading your items you can vacate your apartment or get a take away coffee in the neighbourhood. Confirm your movers will wear masks at all times and if cleaning measures such as hand sanitizers are provided in their trucks. When booking your move you should also ask how many movers will be moving you.
7. Keep at least 6 feet from your movers during the process, wear a face mask and sanitize your hands as needed. You can rely on phone communications to brief them when they arrive and when on route to your new home. Feel free to have your own pen on hand for signing any paperwork if you aren’t provided with an electronic signature option. Of course, if you have any relevant health symptoms before your movers arrive and need to go into isolation, most moving companies offer a fully remote option but ask about any terms and conditions in this scenario.
8. On arrival at your new home, plan to have hand sanitizer or disinfectant wipes handy and unpack your antibacterial soap for the kitchen and bathroom as soon as possible to make it easy for other members of the household to stay vigilant. Encourage family members to wear masks around your team of movers and stay socially distanced until they leave.
9. Avoid touching your face when you sneeze from dust while cleaning or packing. There is no need to wear a mask while you are unpacking your boxes, but dust and allergies can flare up so try to be mindful of rubbing your eyes, touching your mouth or snacking without washing your hands because you’re preoccupied with the task of unpacking a household. Open windows to help fresh air circulate if weather allows.
10. Be generous with cleaning or disinfectant when unpacking items that have been on the ground or otherwise exposed such as in common areas or elevators. We also recommend wearing gloves if using strong chemicals and wiping down exposed items like bed frames and wardrobes before using them.
There can’t be any large housewarmings for a while, but at least you can have a socially distanced reunion with a few friends once you’ve settled in. Be assured, moving during the COVID 19 period is possible, you just need to remain safety vigilant and ensure you choose movers you are committed to observing all the right precautions to protect you, their movers and the rest of the public.
It’s not always possible to wait for the perfect moment to move. If you need to get going, Piece of Cake Moving & Storage is standing by.