Summer is an extremely popular time to get exercise. Many people avoid moving in the other months because their children are at school and don't want to disrupt the school season. After school closes in May or June, people start their journey to their new home and city. Another reason people move often in summer is because it's much more comfortable to move around in cold, rain, snow or ice! Whether you're moving across town or across the country, here are a few tips to save money when moving.
Think about when to move
As mentioned earlier, most people move either in late spring, summer, or early fall. And based on the laws of supply and demand, if all other things stay the same, it's likely that moving will cost more than moving in the off-season. If you have children whose school hours you don't want to interrupt, you may not have a choice about what time of year to move.
Even if you move during the main moving season, you can save money by not moving on the weekend. Again, it's weekends when a lot of people are moving, so many moving companies charge more for a weekend move. If you have the flexibility to do so, consider moving during the week. If you hire a professional moving company, ask them if they offer a discount if you move during the week.
Don't move everything you have
Once you've figured out when to move, it's time to figure out WHAT you're moving. No matter how much stuff you think you have, you actually have a lot more. It's amazing how much you accumulate over the years. Make sure you carefully measure the dimensions of your new home to see what will fit. Sell, donate or give away anything that doesn't fit. The sooner you start the process, the better off you will be.
Having the flexibility to start moving a few weeks or months before your move gives you the time to sell things that you don't want to take away. If you can't do a garage or yard sale yourself, you may have a friend or family member who has one. See if you can sell some of your items for either a commission or a fixed price. If you put it off until the last minute, you'll likely be giving things away for free or, worse, paying someone to haul it away.
Whether you are moving within your same city or to a new city will have an impact on how much you have to get rid of. When moving long distances, you are limited to anything that is shipped or loaded onto the truck. For shorter moves, you can make several trips. Whether you move to a smaller or larger location also plays a big role. In any case, it is a good idea to cut down as much as possible.
Save money when packing consumables
There are a few ways you can save money when packing materials such as cardboard boxes. The best way to save money is to get cardboard boxes from someone who moved a week or two before you did. You will likely be happy when someone takes away your boxes. Unless you just know someone who has just moved, there aren't many places where you can reliably get free moving boxes for free. One option can be Uhaul – although their boxes aren't free, they will buy back any boxes that you don't use. That way, you don't have to worry about overpaying for cardboard boxes.
Pack it (or move it) yourself
Another great way to save money when moving is to move things around yourself. Now is a good time to seek these favors for help from your friends, family, and your church. The feasibility of a move depends, of course, on your specific situation. Where you move to, how much you have to move and how many people you can call, are decisive factors in whether moving yourself is even possible.
Even if you hire a moving company, you can save money by packing yourself. Most moving companies pack things for you, but it definitely drives up costs. Remember that if you package things yourself, you may be responsible for any items damaged during the move.
The bottom line
Moving can be a stressful time, so how much you want to focus on saving money or your time will depend on your own specific situation. If you can be flexible, try to move around during the week and / or the off-season. The next important thing to save money when moving is to start early and downsize your property as much as possible. The sooner you start, the more time you have to sell the things that you can't take away. If you find someone who moved just before you, ask if they have moving boxes you can use, and pack and move as much as you can yourself to save money on the move.
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Dan Miller (63 posts)
Dan Miller is a freelance writer and founder of PointsWithACrew.com, a website that helps families travel for free / cheaply. His home base is in Cincinnati, but he tries to travel the world as much as possible with his wife and 6 children.