Written by Financial Coach Jon Maroni
In the last four years, my wife and I have moved four times. Two of those moves have been short, moving less than 1000 feet. The other two including moving to the East Coast and back, over 5,000 miles total! Whether you're moving down the block or across the country, moving costs can add up, but today we're sharing some simple tips we discovered that can help you save money on your next move.
- Pack your stuff yourself.
Local movers generally charge $25 per hour, per mover. If your company sends 3 movers to pack and move your apartment and it takes them 5 hours to do it, your bill will be $375. For long-distance moves expect to pay about $.70 per pound of stuff moved every 1,000 miles. Moving out of a 1-bedroom apartment (approximate weight of stuff: 2200-3200 lbs., distance to new home: 1000 miles) should cost around $1500-$2200. Get some friends together, fork over the money for pizza and soda and organize a moving party.
- Rent a truck yourself.
Choosing which moving truck company to rent from depends on the distance of your move. For short distance moves, we recommend U-Haul, since they have the largest inventory of trucks and drop off locations. For long-distance moves, Penske stands above the rest. They are affordable and maintain the newest and most dependable fleet of rental trucks. We personally used Penske trucks for our moves to and from the East Coast and had great success. Book your reservation in advance and look for coupon codes to keep the cost of your rental truck low.
- Snag free boxes for your move.
Free boxes can be found in a variety of places. Some of the best places to find free moving boxes include liquor stores, grocery stores, office supply stores, and your neighbors or co-workers. For our last move, I let the credit union know I needed boxes and got more boxes than I could ever use. If you plan enough in advance you should have no problem finding enough free boxes for your move.
- Move during a non-peak moving season.
70% of all moves take place between Memorial Day and Labor Day, if you move outside of that window your costs will be cheaper. It comes down to simple supply and demand, more of everything you need will be available in off moving season. Moving in late fall, winter or early spring are your best bets.
- Have a Yard Sale right before your move.
Everything has value, you just have to find the person who wants it. If you are getting rid of a bunch of your old stuff, try to turn it into cash. A yard sale can be a great way to offset your moving costs and put some coin in your pocket.
Want more advice about the best financial practices? Meet with one of our Certified Financial Coaches for FREE today!