happy couple surround by boxes depicts move on a budget

As we all know, moving can get expensive quickly. It always seems like you have more stuff than you first calculated for in your budget. According to the American Moving and Storage Association, it costs an average of $2,300 (4 movers at $200 an hour) for the average local or in-state move and more than $4,300 for the average out-of-state move (a distance of 1,225 miles). These costs are based on moving household items that weigh 7,400 pounds.

Moving doesn’t have to leave you feeling like there’s a hole in your pocket. Here are tips on how you can cut back on costs and move on a budget.

Clean out your stuff

It is best to go through your stuff and get rid of anything that you no longer need before you move to save on moving costs. Otherwise, there is no point in moving stuff that you will get rid of at your new place. If you are plan on completing a do-it-yourself move, fewer possessions make it easier to do. You can also sell your purged possessions and use the profit for your moving costs, or you can donate the items to charity and save the receipts to use for a tax deduction. Go through each room with three boxes – one to donate, one to recycle and one for stuff to throw away.  If you haven’t used the item in two years, you don’t need it. Easier said than done, I know!

Compare competitive moving company prices

To ensure that you get the most competitive deal, shop around between moving companies in the area. “Don’t settle for the first offer you get from a moving company,” says John Egan, editor-in-chief of the SelfStorage.com Moving Blog. “It’s best to get written bids from at least three moving companies whose representatives have visited your home.” Egan also suggests using competing quotes to negotiate lower pricing of package costs, extra services from the movers or even a few days of free storage. Even if you are planning a DIY move, ask about specials and negotiate some sort of discount when renting a truck or trailer.

Reuse packing materials

Find a friend who has moved recently and use their boxes! Or find a business that gets a lot of packages and reuse the boxes and packing material.  With Amazon and other ecommerce shops delivering to our homes almost daily, there are plenty of boxes and packing material on hand.  Consider asking the grocery store or your local liquor store to save boxes for you. Don’t forget to use your suitcases to pack items.  Also, use your sheets, towels and other linens. They are great to protect and cushion and don’t cost you anything.

Check for affiliation discounts

Certain memberships with companies such as AAA or AARP, qualify you for discounts on moving costs. There are other types of discounts if you are a member of a credit union, the American Legion, a labor union, U.S. military personnel or a veteran. Also check to see if your place of employment offers any discounts for employers when moving.

Consider a hybrid move

When you move on a budget, you aren’t necessarily restricted to DIY strategies. Consider a hybrid move, which is a combination of a DIY move and a professional service moving company.  You are responsible for packing your own boxes and renting the moving truck. The professional movers load them for you in the truck, unload them at your destination and even unpack the boxes in your desired room for you.

This is a great option to eliminate some of the stress of a DIY move. It doesn’t take as long with the help of professionals, it isn’t as strenuous, and is not as pricey as a full-service move.

There are several types of hybrid moves. You can hire help for whatever task you need help with the most and do what you can on your own to save more money when you have a tight moving budget. When you get creative, there are many ways to cut back on moving costs.

Consider the date

The time of year you move affects the price!  Makes sense, right?  Moving at the end of the month is more expensive, since that is when leases typically end. Consider moving mid month or mid week.  Moving right before the school year is also more expensive, consider moving between October and April instead.  You could save 20 to 30 percent in these “off months.”

My move has a plethora of other tips – visit them here www.mymove.com/moving/guides/moving-cheap/

What other tips do you have for those looking to move on a budget? Please share in the comments.


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