From doing your homework to doing it yourself, these tips will help you keep moving costs under control
There’s no way around it: moving can be expensive. But getting your stuff from one place to another doesn’t have to break the bank. Here are five ways to save money on your next move.
1. Create a budget
Figuring how much you want (or have) to spend is one of the best ways to help manage your expenses. Your budget should consider everything related to your move, from the movers to packing supplies, storage costs and overnight lodging (if you’re making a long-distance move), and insurance.
2. Do your research
To find the best deal on movers, ask friends and family for recommendations, read online reviews, and be sure to get quotes from at least three places before making any decisions. Also, always ask in advance whether there are any additional fees that could be charged (e.g., for gas or mileage) so there won’t be any moving-day surprises.
3. Source free boxes
Why buy or rent moving boxes when there are so many ways get them for free? Check with grocery stores and big-box retailers, who will often give you larger boxes (left over from product shipments) at no charge; liquor stores are a great source of compact, sturdy boxes to pack small, heavy items; and a quick Google search of “free moving boxes” plus your location will usually yield many options.
4. Do what you can yourself
Do your own packing instead of having a moving company do it for you. As you pack, sort your belongings, and donate or give away what you no longer need or want instead of paying to take it with you. Some moving companies also offer delivery-only services at reduced rates – they’ll get your stuff from points A to B, but you’re responsible for loading and unloading the truck yourself.
5. Choose off-peak periods
Moving between September and May can save you a lot on movers, as demand for their services isn’t as great. Likewise, mid-month moves are cheaper than those in the first or last week of the month, and weekday moves tend to be cheaper than those on the weekend. If your movers charge by the hour, schedule your move outside of rush hour to avoid delays caused by heavy traffic. And regardless of when you’re moving, always book your movers as far in advance as you can – as with airlines, some companies charge a premium for last-minute bookings.
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