Moving home is exciting. It means a fresh start, new scenery, and new opportunities. It can also be very expensive, and you would have already spent a lot of money just preparing for the move. If you’re renting, then you’ve likely had to pay a bond and additional weeks’ worth of rent. If you’re buying, then you’ve got a brand-new mortgage to deal with.
The last thing you need is for the cost of moving to blow out at this point, and turn the big moving experience into a financial nightmare. Thankfully there are a number of things that you can do to help keep costs down.
1) Pack yourself
The single biggest thing that you can do to keep the costs of moving down is to pack everything yourself. You may need to order some packing boxes, which is an expense, but it will be much cheaper than having a removals team do the packing for you. Just make sure that you do some reading about the best way to pack fragile items, as the last thing you’ll want to do is unpack and find that some precious item has broken.
2) Cut down on the amount of stuff that you’re moving
The less you’re moving, the cheaper the removalists will be, as they’ll be able to use a smaller truck or have the move done more quickly, and the less time (and potentially expense) you’ll need to pack it.
The best way to do this is to firstly create a checklist of essential items (here’s a good example of that), as well as precious objects (hobbies and so on) that you can’t imagine going without. Then mark the rest as unnecessary. Those items you could sell in a garage sale (making a bit of money back to help with the move), or donate to a shelter or charity.
You can always buy items again as you need them in your new home, but for the move itself you want to be efficient.
3) Get friends and family involved
It’s a time honored tradition in Australia that friends and family make themselves available to help their people move. Depending on the amount of stuff you have, you can rent a trailer or even a small truck yourself, recruit a team of people to help, and move yourself all for the cost of a pizza and beers (the standard fare when it’s a family/friend favor). Alternatively, if you really do need (or want) the assistance of professional movers, family can still help with packing, cleaning or watching the children or pets for you (rather than putting them in childcare or pet hotels for the packing/moving time period). These are all time and money-saving activities that can really add up.
4) Choose the right time to move
Movers will very their rates depending on how busy they are, and you can expect to pay more during the busy periods. These will generally align with school holidays, and weekends are always in greater demand than weekdays. You might need to sacrifice a shift to move during the week, or take a day’s holiday leave, but the savings could be well and truly worth it.
5) Ask for a fixed rate from the moving company
Try and avoid hiring a moving company that charges an hourly rate. Not only will you have no idea how long the move will take (and therefore how much to budget), but without a cap those costs can become very expensive, very quickly. Instead, ask a range of different moving companies for fixed rate quotes, and then opt for one in the middle. Too cheap and you should be concerned about the quality of service, but the higher end would result in you paying more than you should. Hitting the “sweet spot” and having the rates agreed at ahead of time is the best way to factor the cost of removalists into your moving budget.
6) Work out a food strategy as you’re packing and moving
One area where costs tend to accumulate quickly is one that a lot of people never consider: when your kitchen is in a state of complete disarray with boxes everywhere and half your equipment is packed, you’re not going to be able to cook very effectively. Likewise, on the day of the move you’re unlikely to be in a mood to cook at the end of it, and it can take a few days to unpack and get the new kitchen in order. Many people end up ordering takeaway or eating out every day through the moving process, and that can become very expensive. Working out an alternative can save you a lot of money.
As you can see, most of the money-saving tips for moving have to do with planning ahead. The more prepared you are, and the more clear you can make the budget, the better you will be able to control the expenses and ensure that you can enjoy the move and your new home with some money to spare.
We hope you found this blog post on 6 Ways You Can Slash The Cost Of Moving Home useful. Be sure to check out our post on What is the Average Cost to Move a 3 Bedroom House Locally? for more great tips!