People need to move. Leases end, homes are bought and sold, and businesses have to relocate. Although it’s much preferred that people and companies move for positive reasons when the economy is booming, this year has also brought some harsher and more negative circumstances.
The coronavirus pandemic has brought an unfortunate economic downturn, and many individuals and businesses have had to downsize. Many others, though, have been seeking more space—and fresh space—after months of lockdown. Despite the severity of the pandemic, it just hasn’t been feasible for everyone to stay put. Because of this, the moving industry has been deemed an essential service.
Moving during the coronavirus pandemic is an essential service
When you think of essential jobs and services, there are obvious industries that come to mind:
- Emergency, medical, and veterinary
- Home repair and HVAC
- Food and retail
- Car repair and maintenance
- Mail and delivery services
The moving industry might not jump out as an essential service. But sometimes you have no choice but to relocate. And certainly not everyone wants to lug their heavy furniture up and down flights of stairs and into moving trucks! Everyone’s situation is different, and because people need a place to live and businesses need a place to work, moving has been deemed essential.
Are moving companies open during the COVID-19 pandemic?
Short answer: Yes, moving companies are open for business.
While many companies have unfortunately been forced to shut down during the pandemic, most moving companies are still completely functional. Illinois Governor JB Pritzker announced in March 2020 that moving service is essential during the shelter in place order.
Since moving is an essential service—and since their employees are essential workers—the majority of moving businesses are still operational. The best way to confirm who is still open and moving is to call around to see who is fully staffed and who can accommodate your needs.
Why is moving considered an essential service?
Moving is considered essential because it is absolutely necessary for many people and companies. Whether you’re moving for personal preference, family situation, or financial constraints, you have the right to move to a new or different home.
Evictions were put on hold during the pandemic. This was fantastic news for millions of residents who lost their jobs due to COVID-19. However, many people and businesses have still moved in the last few months. Some of them have had to downsize due to financial constraints. Some of them were already planning on moving. And some of them just wanted to relocate.
How has the pandemic affected how moving companies operate?
Just like everyone else in the world, the coronavirus has impacted the moving industry. Moving companies have invested in additional Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and cleaning products for their teams and their clients. They have allocated many resources into cleaning and sanitizing their trucks, blankets, pads, and other moving supplies.
It’s more than worth it to keep everyone safe. As long as PPE is worn and materials are sanitized, everyone can rest assured of a safe and healthy move.
Tips for moving during COVID-19
Moving is always stressful, and the COVID-19 pandemic certainly doesn’t help. Fortunately, there are steps that you and your moving company can take to help ease the anxiety.
Is it safe to move during the pandemic?
As long as you and your moving company are protecting yourselves and each other, it is absolutely safe to move during the pandemic. Please keep in mind that PPE only works to stop the spread of COVID-19 if all parties are wearing it.
Here are a few things that your moving company should do on your moving day:
- All movers must wear PPE. Masks that cover the nose and mouth are particularly important.
- Most movers will wear washable fabric gloves for protection as well as for a better grip on the materials they’re moving. OSHA prohibits gloves that impair grip, so surgical or disposable gloves are not options.
- All moving vehicles should be stocked with hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes.
- Moving companies should be taking their employees’ temperatures before dispatching them to each move. Anyone with a fever must be sent home immediately.
Here are a few things that you can do to prepare for your movers to arrive:
- Just like the movers, you should be wearing PPE.
- Clean and sanitize your home and furniture before the movers arrive. This will ensure that you and your moving team will have the safest experience possible.
- If you or someone in your home is sick, please don’t be present for the move. Send in a healthy friend or family member instead, or simply postpone your move.
- Review a moving checklist to ensure that you’re well-prepared for the move, and have covered all bases.
- Read up on the best way to prep and pack for your moving day.
Remember: everyone involved in the move—including the movers and anyone at your home—should always practice social distancing.
How do I find the best and safest moving company?
The internet is a jungle of information, and it’s so difficult to determine what’s true and what’s a paid advertisement. The best information tends to come from word of mouth. Ask your family members and friends about their moving experiences and whittle down from there.