Moving and on a tight budget? Here are 10 ways to save money, whether you’re moving across town or across the nation.
1. Pack up your things and move them yourself.
Hiring a moving company to move your things for you can cost a lot of money. Sure, you’ll save time and your back may be happier if you hire a mover, but your wallet will definitely be thinner. If you’ll lose money by taking time off work, be sure to plan packing and moving around your work schedule.
2. Move in the off-season.
Everything is more expensive in the summer. The price of gas goes up, rental rates spike and moving vans up their fees. If possible, move in the fall, winter or spring and be sure to plan a mid-week moving day, if you can take the time off work.
3. Don’t move things you don’t need.
If you’ve got a room full (or a house full) of things you don’t use and don’t need, get rid of them before you move. Carting things around with you that you don’t use is a huge waste of money.
4. Clean out the fridge.
This means eat what’s in it, though, of course, you’ll want to clean it thoroughly before you head over to the new apartment as well. Any food that you don’t use before you move will go to waste and that will be money lost. Though you can take canned goods with you, the cost of moving them, unless you’re just going across town, can be a great deal more than the cost of replacing them.
5. Get rid of plants.
Plants don’t often survive a move very well, and if you’re going to a new city a significant distance away, they may just be taking up weight and space. In many cases, it’s less expensive to replace plants at your new place than it is to bring them with you.
6. Use found boxes.
Sure, you can go to your local storage center and buy a box of boxes to pack all of your things in, but that can be an expensive way to move. Instead, try asking for boxes at book stores, grocery stores and hardware stores. Most of these places recycle their boxes anyway, so it shouldn’t be a problem for them to let you have a few.
7. Use found packing supplies.
There’s no reason why you need to use rolls of bubble wrap or paper towels to pack up your breakables. Start collecting newspapers, either your own, or from your neighbors, coffee shops or libraries. If you ask nicely, many businesses are happy to give you something they’d just be recycling anyway.
8. Have a garage sale.
If you’ve got a bunch of things you don’t need, consider selling some of them at a garage sale. You may be able to pick up some extra money to help you with your move.
9. Sell large or expensive items over Craigslist.
If you’ve got something big and heavy that you don’t use anymore, such as an exercise machine or a couch, consider selling it over craigslist. You won’t get back what you paid for it, but if it’s in good condition, you’ll be able to get something for it.
Know how much your move is going to cost (before, during and after) well before it’s time and plan accordingly. Though this may not help you save, it will help you wind up with enough money at the end of the move to buy your friends the pizza they deserve after helping you cart all of your belongings to your new apartment.
Do you have any tips for how to keep moving costs down? Share them here or on Facebook!