From selling your current home to settling into a new one, moving is a stressful, time consuming, and costly process. Many people try to save money on their moves by invoking the help of friends and family, or simply trying to handle the packing and relocation of their belongings by themselves. However, regardless of your chosen moving method, the following tips will help you cut your moving costs so you can arrive at your new home with your budget and, hopefully, all of your possessions intact.
- Carefully consider your options for hiring a moving company. Don’t assume that renting a truck and moving yourself will necessarily be less expensive than hiring professional movers. Instead, procure quotes from at least three companies and determine whether you can negotiate their prices. Many moving companies are more flexible with their rates during the middle of the week or month, as well as during slower seasons like fall and winter. However, be sure to ask the companies about any hidden fees, such as those for fuel.
- If you decide to use a moving company, pack your belongings and disassemble furniture yourself. Most movers charge extra for these steps.
- Consider using portable storage units. This option offers the convenience of having professionals safely transport your possessions at a rate that is typically far less than that of traditional moving companies. However, you are responsible for packing the unit before it is picked up by the company and unpacking it upon arrival at the destination.
- If you choose to rent a truck and move yourself, seek out additional opportunities for savings. For example, ask your realtor if their agency has any arrangements with truck rental services that would offer you a discount. Some agencies even have their own vehicles that clients may use at no charge for short-distance moves. Alternatively, if you will need to put some of your belongings in storage, ask the storage company if it offers discounted moving truck rental as part of a package deal.
- Avoid buying boxes. As you pack your belongings, remember that there are numerous sources for free boxes. Ask friends and family if they have any to spare, bring some home from your workplace, or visit a liquor store to see if they are willing to share their extra boxes. Some services also allow you to rent boxes or moving crates and return them after you settle into your new home offering a more environmentally friendly option.
- Use blankets, towels, and other items you already have on hand to pack fragile belongings. Coffee filters, which are soft and inexpensive, also make great packing materials for breakable items. Using these materials will help you save money on pricey bubble wrap. However, be careful when unpacking so that you do not hastily unravel a towel or sheet containing something fragile.
- Pare down your belongings before your move. Some companies base their prices on the weight of the load being transported, so eliminating things you no longer need will help you to lower moving expenses. Even if you are transporting your items by yourself, you will save time and effort by having less. Additionally, selling your unwanted belongings or donating them and claiming a charitable tax deduction could yield an infusion of cash as you move to your new home.