– Abby Drexler
Unless you find yourself being a true minimalist, moving can be a long and tedious process. It can be even worse when you have a small moving budget to work with. Instead of dropping a ton of money you don’t have on your moving costs, there are ways to save some money during the process.
Getting organized well before your move is the key to making it less stressful, less hectic and much less expensive. There are many ways homeowners can cut the cost of moving. Some tips are more obvious than others. Below are some of the top tips for saving money and cutting costs associated with moving.
- Compare Moving Yourself Vs. Professional Moving Services
It should not automatically be assumed that moving yourself will you a lot of money. You have to think about the time you will have to invest when you move by yourself. If you plan to hire a professional moving company, get at least two or three quotes to compare. Despite what you may have heard, some moving companies are open to negotiations, especially during slow times of the year. As with other types of service companies, movers have off-seasons where their rates will be less than other times of the year. Consider moving during the winter for the best rates.
- Ditch Unnecessary Possessions
Donating or selling some of your stuff before your move can save you costs associated with moving and bring in extra money. It can also lessen the amount of weight your stuff adds up to. Many moving companies use this metric when estimating your fee. Some local organizations will pick up your unwanted possessions for free. During tax time, you will be able to deduct what you donated if you choose to itemize your deductions on your return.
- Cut Utilities Off Early
If possible, consider shutting off your utilities before your move date. Many utility companies will not prorate your bill if the billing cycle does not match your moving date. If you are able to go a week or two without cable, electric or internet services, you may be able to save yourself a few hundred dollars. These savings can be used for other moving expenses.
- Keep Track Of Expenses For Deductions
While moving, keep track of all of your expenses. Don’t forget to think about the costs of packing supplies, hiring movers, time out of work and even the gas for traveling to your new home. If your move meets a list of specific criteria, you may be able to deduct some of the expenses you paid for. If you work with an accountant, they can help you figure out the best way to save according to the rules set by the IRS.
- Rent A Truck
A great way to save money is to rent a moving truck yourself. Renting a moving truck is much more affordable than paying for a moving service. If you have friends and family that can help you, the process can go very smoothly and quickly. To maximize the cost-effectiveness of renting a moving truck yourself, have all of your belongings ready to be put on the truck when you rent it. Packing and moving by yourself is the best way to save money
- Save Money And Skip The Bubble Wrap
To save money on costly bubble wrap, consider wrapping your delicate and fragile items with things you already have in your home. Towels, extra clothing and bed linens can be great for protecting your valuables during a move.
- Consider Renting Portable Containers
Moving containers have become very popular since their conception. One of the greatest benefits they offer is the ability to take more time packing up and loading your belongings into the container. If you are moving by yourself and not hiring movers, this may be the best option you have. The moving container company will come and drop off the container next to your home so that you may fill it up at your own leisure. When you are done filling it and ready to move, the company will pick it up and transfer it to your new home. You will then be able to unload it at your leisure as well.
- Find Free Or Discount Moving Supplies
If you have a big home with a lot of belongings, you will end up spending a good amount of money purchasing moving supplies. Moving companies typically have their own supplies available to purchase. However, these are typically more expensive than finding your own packing materials elsewhere. Shop around online or locally for bulk packages of boxes and packing tape. If you plan ahead in advance, you may be able to pick up boxes from local stores to add to your supplies. Chances are good that you will still have to buy some packing supplies. However, the more you gather up beforehand, the less you’ll have to spend.
It does not matter whether you were moving down the street or across the country, moving to a new home can be an exciting and expensive adventure. With a little due diligence and planning ahead of time, you will be able to keep your moving expenses and your stress low.
Abby Drexler is a contributing writer and media specialist for SMARTBOX Moving and Storage. She regularly produces content for a variety of real estate and financial blogs.