When is the best time to move?

Illustration of a Mayflower moving truck driving along a road with rolling hills and trees along it - Mayflower®

You’ve decided to move, and now it’s a matter of determining when. Perhaps you don’t have much choice in your move dates because it’s a corporate relocation. Or maybe you’re in no hurry to move, allowing you time to research the most cost-effective and convenient approach. Either way, taking into consideration timing aspects, down to the best time of day to move, can help alleviate stress and in some instances, save you money.

Image of four trees showing the four seasons of the year

Best Season to Move

There are advantages and disadvantages to moving in each season, whether you’re planning a DIY move or hiring a professional moving company, like Mayflower, to do all the heavy lifting for you. The information below is designed to help you weigh the pros and cons and determine when is the best time to move based on your individual needs, timeline and budget.

A long distance move can have its share of challenges for everyone in the family, especially for children transitioning to a different school and navigating unknown territory. Most families with school-aged children prefer not to uproot in the middle of the school year. Waiting to move until the summer can help minimize the disruption children may experience during a move.

In addition to the benefit of moving when schools are not in session, the weather also plays a factor in home sales and subsequent move dates. Selling a home when the weather is nice helps showcase a home’s landscaping and curb appeal. Plus, when the weather is more tolerable, people are more likely to get out and look at prospective houses. And don’t forget about the extra daylight that summer affords. Home sales are usually hotter during the summer and warmer months, which in turn, means more scheduled moves. This is the downside to moving in late spring through the summer months; it’s a simple case of supply and demand. If you opt to move during peak season, you’re likely to pay more for professional moving services and have fewer options for your move date and time.

Graphic with trees showing the season of winter

It’s the dead of winter. To move or not to move?

The answer depends.

Winter moves can be messy and cumbersome, from dicey weather conditions affecting the roads and travel to moving your belongings in/out of trucks along pathways covered in snow, ice or sleet. But if you’re up for the unpredictable challenges that may arise with a winter move, it can pay off with the help of a trusted and reputable moving company. Why? This isn’t their first time around the ice rink. They understand what it takes to make a move successful even under less than ideal conditions.

Moving in the winter requires a great deal of prep, such as making sure loading areas are clear of snowbanks, salting and shoveling walkways/driveways, protecting floors from the wintry outdoor elements and keeping a close eye on the weather. Most professional moving companies can help you navigate these steps, and since winter months are considered off-peak season, moving in the winter is generally less expensive and offers greater flexibility with scheduling.

Bottom line — Moving in the summer is best if you have children in school and want to minimize the disruption. However, if competitive pricing and flexibility with scheduling are at the top of your list, choose the off-season: early spring, late fall, or winter. If you are planning a DIY move, early spring and late fall are your best choices, while extreme weather conditions should be considered when planning a move in the summer or winter.

Best month to move - graphic of calendar with month highlighted

Best Month to Move

With home-selling season peaking in the spring and trickling into the summer, it makes sense that most Americans plan their move between the months of May and September. Consequently, the summer months — June, July, and August — end up carrying the brunt of the moving industry’s load, which means moving and packing services are in higher demand.

Also, moving is hard work, and if you live in states where summer temperatures can get dangerously high or humidity can make it hard to breathe, moving during the summer months may not be the best option. Bottom line — September through April is the best window for moving because moving services are more readily available. If you must move during the summer months, start the process as soon as possible. Most reputable long distance moving companies offer moving checklists and packing tips to help you stay focused, and the sooner you get your move dates on the calendar, the easier it will be to strategize what needs to get done leading up to the big day.

Best week to move - graphic of calendar with week highlighted

Best Week of the Month to Move

Housing leases usually begin and end near the first and last day of the month, which means there is more demand for moving during this time. And to that point, some moving companies may offer discounted rates if you move mid-month. Even if you decide on a DIY move, you may run into availability issues with renting moving equipment and securing vehicles for hauling. Your best bet is to stick to the middle of the month.

Best day of week to move - graphic of calendar with day highlighted

Best Day of the Week to Move

Most people plan their moves when they don’t have to take time off from work or school, so weekends (Friday through Sunday) are in high demand when it comes to hiring professional moving companies. Instead, shoot for a weekday so you can have more wiggle room with scheduling and likely a reduced price tag. Plus, think of the time you’ll have over the weekend to unpack, get settled and meet your new neighbors!    

Best time of day to move - graphic of calendar with clock highlighted

Best Time of Day to Move

Whether you hire professional movers or you’re planning to do it yourself, it’s always a good idea to get started with your move early in the morning. Moving is strenuous physical labor, and the early morning hours help make it a little easier given the cooler temperatures. You’ll also maximize daylight hours if you get started sooner than later. Besides, wouldn’t it be nice to settle into your new digs by sunset?

Ready to start planning your move?