Now’s the time to prep for September 1

Katrina Langer
Katrina Langer | 4 min. read

Published on August 11, 2016

Since Buildium is headquartered in Boston, we’re lucky enough to have front row seats for one of the craziest days of the year: September 1.

If you’re from around here or manage properties in the greater Boston area, then you know exactly how crazy it can be.

If you aren’t from around here, here’s what it’s like: On September 1, more than 250,000 students start their new school year at one of the nearly 50 universities, colleges, and technical schools within the great metropolitan area. This includes some of the largest schools in the country, such as Boston University, Boston College, Harvard University, MIT, and Northeastern University.

All that is to say that hundreds of thousands of students (and their parents) descend upon Boston on September 1, ready to move into their apartments and dorms after a summer away from The Hub. And those are just the people moving in: people who already live here are likely to have a September 1 lease-start date, as well, so the curbs are piled with furniture, the traffic is crazy, and at least one moving truck is bound to get stuck under a bridge on Storrow drive.

Some areas of the city are more likely than others to see an influx of lost drivers and amateur movers: Allston-Brighton, Fenway, Mission Hill, Jamaica Plain, and the South End top the list.

If you live here, we have just one recommendation for you. Park your car somewhere secure, and hang out in the air conditioning this September 1. As former Boston students and current residents of the greater metro area will tell you: Don’t even bother going outside.

If you manage properties here, it’s not too late to prepare. You may want to send notices to all of your current renters about how they can prepare for the influx of new people or their own move. Here are some reminders you’ll want to include (these may come in handy no matter where you manage properties):

  1. Moving trucks don’t belong on Storrow Drive. Trucks that are just under 9-ft are in the clear. But in most cases, it’s probably better safe than sorry: moving trucks belong on highways and access roads, not Storrow Drive. Send them examples of some of the most infamous Storrow Drive mistakes, like this one, and this one.
  2. Encourage early preparation. They have to hire a moving truck, get their parking permits, switch their utilities over to their new address, and set up their forwarding address with USPS. And they can do it all ahead of time, which will help you and your new tenants adjust better in September.
  3. Extra trash pickup dates and times. If your properties are in Boston proper, you may benefit from the extra trash pickups the first week in September. But you may also face fines for mattresses, couches, and other furniture left on the curb outside of these dates. Remind residents that they may need to call 1-800-Got-Junk to avoid fines.
  4. Curb couches stay on the curb. Around here, September 1 is commonly referred to as “Allston Christmas” because of the plethora of goods piled on the sidewalks. But those freebies are just not worth it: a bed-bug-infested couch can bring bed bugs into your entire building. And bed bugs will take refuge in almost anything: wood, fabric, electronics, and stuffing.
  5. If they’re not moving, they can stay home. This year, September 1 falls on a Thursday, so people may still have to commute to work. But, moving madness may stretch through the weekend. If people can get out of town or spend the weekend at home (i.e. out of traffic and parking snarls), they may very well want to do that.

How else do you help residents prepare for moving day? Get the conversation started in the comments below.

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Katrina Langer

Katrina is the author of several Buildium ebooks and guides. She holds a B.A. in English from Northeastern University.

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