Moving from one climate to another can be exciting. Whether you’re looking forward to year-round cookouts and walks on the beach in warmer climates or colorful autumn leaves and snowy holidays up North, every region offers something inviting.
But while you’re contemplating the new and different activities that await you, don’t forget to spend some time thinking about your wardrobe. The professional movers at Suddath® know from their experience with long distance moving, that planning ahead for your clothing needs is an important part of relocating to a place with a significantly different climate — and for several reasons.
One, why pack and pay to move clothing you know you won’t need? Two, you can donate your used clothing before you move instead of discarding it after you relocate. And, three, you’ll want to arrive in your new surroundings with at least a few comfortable outfits, so you won’t have to add shopping to your to-do list in those busy first days of settling in.
Here are five moving tips to help you plan ahead for your personal climate change:
You probably spent a lot of time looking into the best moving companies, so why not spend a few extra minutes checking into the climate in the area you’re moving to? Many people know whether a place is “hot” or “cold,” but the warm climate of Southern California, for example, is significantly different than that of South Florida. You’ll still need some warm clothing for cool evenings on the West Coast, whereas jacket weather is rarer in the Florida humidity. If long distance moving to an international destination is in your future, travel sites can be a good reference, because they often offer more candid information and practical tips than the local chamber of commerce.
You don’t need to — and probably shouldn’t — buy an entire new wardrobe before your move. Buying new clothes in your new home can be a fun way to get to know the local shops and get in sync with local fashion. But with that said, you’re going to have enough to do in the days immediately following your move without having to add “emergency” shopping to your list because you don’t have enough comfortable clothing. If you’re moving to a warmer climate, choose at least two lightweight outfits — shirts and shorts and a pair of light shoes or sandals — to tide you over. If you’re moving to a colder climate during the winter months, a heavy coat and a good pair of boots are essential. A couple of warm shirts, pants and undergarments will also help. If your local stores don’t carry anything appropriate, try buying online.
Most people know that clothing made of natural fibers, such as cotton and linen, is more “breathable” and therefore more comfortable in warmer temperatures. But if you’re looking for cooler clothing, also pay attention to choosing lighter-weight fabrics, such as poplin and seersucker, rather than heavy twills like those used to make blue jeans. Also, when buying a jacket for a warmer climate, look for one without a lining, which traps heat. Here’s a cold weather example: People often make the mistake of thinking their stylish leather boots will suffice, but unless the boots are lined they probably won’t keep your toes warm, and if they’re worn in ice and snow, the leather is likely to stain and become brittle. Practical boots with rubber bottoms are best.
When you’re satisfied that you have enough appropriate clothing to get you started in your new location, remember to keep at least one outfit accessible in a box that contains items such as toiletries and cooking utensils for your first day in your new home. Mark your box clearly and tell your professional movers to load it last and unload it first, so you’ll have quick access to it. To learn more about packing an essentials box, click here.
The best moving companies don’t want you to pay for more weight than you need to, so why not make a generous gesture to say “goodbye” to your old community? Once you decide which climate-specific clothing you’re not going to take with you — keep in mind that you might want to keep some of it if you plan to travel back to the area — pack it up (or have your professional movers do it for you) and take it to a local charity. Most communities have several to choose from, such as Goodwill or the Salvation Army. Remember, you can donate items other than clothing as well. If you want to get a tax deduction for your donation, you should take a picture of your items and get a receipt from the charity you donate them to. It will be up to you to estimate the “fair market value” of the items.
Like researching the best moving companies, doing a little climate homework on your destination and evaluating your clothing needs can go a long way to helping ensure a smooth move and a happy start in your new home.