Moving is an exciting time of your life, but it can also be as stressful as it is daunting. The expenses can be high, even if it’s only an inter-state move. Before you enjoy the excitement of starting a new life elsewhere, there’s all the hard work you must do first to enjoy a successful, safe, and cost-efficient move.
This pursuit is reasonable, as no one wants to start a new life in their new location on a negative note. Worse, you wouldn’t want to put yourself in the same situation as others: stuck facing debt after debt because their move was so expensive, on top of accompanying expenses upon arrival like furnishing and remodeling your new home.
Moving on a budget can be a lot more challenging than if you had more money prepared for it, but it’s also not impossible to do. If such is within the books very soon, you’ve come to the right place for insights. Keep reading to learn five tips for moving on a budget!
Create A Budget
Like any other pursuit in your life, you have to start with a budget. Run the numbers and see how much you can allocate for the move. If you’re moving because of your job, check if relocation packages and bonuses are available as some companies offer them. It can help reduce your out-of-pocket expenses for the move.
Whatever your set budget is, stick to it. If you have to go beyond it, ensure to set a ceiling of how much you’ll be comfortable going above the budget. Pay in cash and skip your card. Moving does seem expensive, but it doesn’t always have to be. You can make your budget work well to your advantage when you think well about every expense that comes with moving.
Whenever money goes out of your moving budget, take note of that by having a running balance. This gives you the exact figure of how much you have left to cover other moving-related expenses.
Compare Moving Estimates From Different Movers
Meet with and collect estimates from at least three to five different movers if you can. This way, you’ll be sure to hire a moving company offering affordable moving, packing and loading services.
In doing this, be very specific with your run-down of things to move, so the estimated cost can also be as accurate as possible. Don’t just check the final price when you receive a quote or an estimate from a mover. Go through the inclusions, too, as that’s the only way to know you’re truly getting the most reasonable quotation.
Most of all, don’t skip on the reputation. Be skeptical about movers offering tempting but too low prices, as that should be more than enough to signal your alarm bells. It may cost you more after the move when you’re faced with lost and destroyed belongings after trusting a so-so and dodgy moving company.
Let Go Of Some Belongings
The more you bring with you, the more expensive your move will be. The reason is simple. The more packing supplies, loaders, and moving trucks you’ll need, the bigger the costs you’ll have to pay.
Because you’re on a budget, you may want to consider letting go of some belongings. Only bring with you those things that you have to. There are three ways to let go: throw, give or donate, and sell.
It’s crucial to start as early as possible to prepare for your move. By doing so, you will have enough time to purge each room. Here are some ideas:
- Throw away those things that can’t be used anymore.
- Give some things to friends or family, especially those who you know need them (e.g., old baby things to your pregnant sister-in-law or colleague);
- Donate other things to charity;
- Sell things you know you can still make money from, so you can have more money to bring with you for the move (e.g., selling an old couch to have money to buy a new one for your new home).
Be Resourceful With Packing Materials
Packing materials can be expensive, but did you know that if you’re resourceful enough, you can get them cheaply? You don’t have to buy every box you need if you know where and who to approach for those free boxes.
To start with, here are some tips you may find handy:
- Ask for boxes from friends and family whom you know have some at home (e.g., foreign families who usually receive boxes of goods and gifts from family members abroad);
- Go to supermarkets and department stores, as they may have new delivery of stocks, hence tons of boxes they’ll be happy to be giving away or sell for cents;
- Use the blankets and pillowcases you’ll be bringing with you to wrap other belongings so you won’t have to buy as much bubble wrap;
- Go to newspaper stands, hotels, and other establishments that may have a stock of old newspapers to give or sell at affordable prices.
Consider Moving Off-Season
If your moving date can wait at least a few weeks or months later, perhaps you can consider moving during the off-season. This isn’t a definite date, as you’ll have to check with your local area and where you’re moving to. But, once you get information on when those months are, review your moving schedule. It may cost you less to move in the off-season.
Generally, however, summer is considered the peak season for moving. The reason behind this is for families, kids are off school. It’s also a practical choice given how good the weather is. It comes with its comforts, but if you’re willing to wait it out a bit, the cost savings may be a convincing enough factor.
During the off-season, movers are actively looking for customers to keep their business running. This means they may be more willing to adjust their rates to meet a reasonable enough middle point between you both. It’s better to accept a low but profitable budget than not to have any customers at all.
So, if you’re moving on a budget, move during the off-season. It takes a lot of planning. But it’s certainly doable when you’re with a good moving company.
As you can see, the most important thing about moving on a budget is ample preparation. You can’t rush this or expect to wing it at the last minute. As soon as you’re notified of a potential move, that should also be day one of your preparations.
Keeping costs low is a lot of effort, but once you successfully make it, you’ll realize all that effort is worth it. Your move is now more budget-friendly, leaving you with more cash in the budget to help you start your new life.