If you're planning a move in the near future, no doubt you've worked your budget over more than a few times. Moving budgets are among the most likely to inflate with surprise costs and in-between living expenses, but your budget doesn't have to. Today, we're diving into tips on how to plan a short or long-distance move in a way that can save money on boxes, movers, restaurant stops, and everything in between.
Timing is Everything
Getting a new house lined up exactly on time with handing over your old house is tricky business, but it can be done. The more precisely you manage this hand-off, the more money you can potentially save. A clean hand-off can save you on personal storage, hotel rooms, and even truck time because you will be ready to make one swift transfer from one home to the next.
Do everything you can to make sure that you don't have to stay or store your things for any amount of time between moving out and moving in.
Reclaimed Packing Materials
You can buy new boxes and packing materials for $50 to $250 depending on the size of your house. Or you could start collecting boxes, cardboard, and packing paper now before the move. There are all sorts of free sources of boxes and packing material that can save you a pretty penny on pre-moving costs.
Grocery stores and other retail locations often have boxes they will happily share for free if you ask the staff near the end of the day. You can reclaim some flattened boxes from recycling bins, snag paper boxes from your work, and there is no end to the sources of paper to crumple between dishes.
Ask Friends to Help, Vehicles and All
When you have friends, family, and a local pizza place, there is no need to pay for the cost of movers. Movers usually help with breaking down furniture, moving heavy or delicate items, and loading up the truck. With friends, you can take care of all of that yourself without the steadily inflating cost of a mover's inspection, mover hours, and then the tip afterward.
Instead, you only provide the 'tip.' Most friends and family who pitch in for a move are happy enough sharing a pizza party at the end of the day as a reward for their efforts. Just be sure to label your boxes and furniture parts clearly.
Plan Your Road Trip Carefully
Road trips are notorious for inflating costs as you stop for unexpected hotel nights or restaurant dinners. These stops feel necessary and the expenses stack up. But they don't have to.
With careful planning, you can calculate and budget for every expense on the road. Pack snacks and picnic lunches from groceries to save yourself money on convenience stores and restaurant stops. Plan your hotel stops along the way or even pack camping gear for a warm summer move so. This way, you always know when and where each stop will occur and how much it will cost from your pre-calculated budget.
Make Sure the House is Ready
Another great way to save on moving costs is to reduce delays at the other end. Your next home should be ready for you by the time the truck is packed up, with the utilities on and the refrigerator running. If you are able to get into the house on arrival, you can set up a palette and won't need an in-town hotel stay. Having the refrigerator ready means you can immediately start planning your meals in a budget-friendly way. Which takes us to our last point.
Start With a Grocery Trip
Once you're in the new house, head out to the grocery store and pick up a few essentials. Sandwich fixings or a few boxes of mac and cheese will save you from the temptation of ordering expensive takeout on that first night. Plus, you get a chance to explore your new kitchen and decide how you want to set it up even before the moving truck arrives.
Moving is often an expensive process for a family on a budget, but your move doesn't have to be. With careful planning and smart budgeting decisions, you can save on packing material, movers, road trip expenses, and even the traditional takeout splurge. For more smart financial tips for everyday events, contact us today!