Simple and Easy Ways to Reduce Moving Costs
There’s a good reason why the home moving process is almost always described as stressful and expensive, and that reason is that it actually is stressful and expensive.
While that combination is not very promising for anyone who’s getting ready to move out, the good news – understand the light at the end of the tunnel – is that there are many  ways to reduce moving costs.
And when used smartly, those 20 tips for cutting moving costs and expenses will make all the difference in the world for people moving on a tight budget.
Are you ready to learn how to reduce your moving costs?
Hire an affordable moving company
Without a doubt, hiring a low-cost mover is one of the best ways to trim moving costs. Ultimately, no two professional moving companies charge the same for their services, so it’s a matter of comparing at least 3 different price quotes to choose the one that agrees to your budget.
It’s always a bonus to find a cheap mover but be mindful that sometimes lower rates can indicate poor service as well. And even though it’s obvious that you’re moving on a budget, it’s even more obvious that you still need high-quality relocation services.
Get several in-home estimates
The second tip on how to cut costs when moving is to have the price of your move estimated professionally. Prices can vary greatly among moving companies, so you must ask for several in-home estimates carried out by relocation experts right in your own home.
Do not accept cost estimates done over the phone or via e-mail. Why? Moving cost estimates that are not performed on-site and in person cannot be accurate enough for possible cost reduction.
To get the best relocation deal possible, compare the moving quotes you receive: price + services + terms and conditions.
Set up a personal moving budget
How to save money on a long-distance move? One good way to do just that is to monitor and control your expenses in a way that will let you step up and apply the necessary fix if a task suddenly requires more money for its completion than originally planned.
Based on the typical moving costs, create a home moving budget to help you stay within your limits and lower your moving costs even more. Your newly-created budget will serve as an invaluable moving costs checklist, providing you with valuable information regarding the moving company expenses (moving cost estimate, additional services, moving insurance, extra charges, and fees) or the self-moving expenses (truck rental costs, moving equipment, packing supplies, hidden DIY costs).
Equally important when budgeting for a move is to know for sure that you have saved enough money to cover the future moving expenses – failure to do so will turn your upcoming move into a true financial challenge.
Negotiate a better price with your movers
It’s important to keep in mind that no moving company rates are set in stone, which also means that you can try and negotiate a better deal with your movers. Even if you are not particularly proud of your negotiation skills, you should still try to negotiate a lower price with your moving company.
Don’t forget to ask your moving company for special deals or current discounts. After all, any way you can lower your moving costs is more than welcome.
Here are some good tips for negotiating a moving company price:
- Most of the time, top-rated moving companies would prefer to get your moving job by giving you a better deal than to see you go to one of their competitors. Whenever possible, use this tactical move to your advantage.
- After you’ve compared the price quotes of various professional moving companies, contact the mover that you have selected and try to negotiate a better price. Tell them that you do want to use their moving services but you have been offered a lower price by another mover. Inform them of the lowest bid and ask them directly if they will be willing to price-match it or even go lower than that. Remember: you’ve got nothing to lose here.
- Serious moving companies will try to keep and win customers by providing more flexibility both in pricing and conditions. The idea is to reach a mutually beneficial agreement with your mover, which may also mean some minor compromises on your part as well – if that is a viable option, of course.
- If your mover is not willing to reduce the price, then it’s a good idea to try again the next day. First of all, your persistence will be a sign that you are a serious customer, and secondly, the movers in question may have changed their minds in the meantime. Besides, there’s always a chance that you resume the price negotiations with another more “flexible” moving company representative.
Create a Moving Schedule
A moving schedule is a great way to stay organized during the stressful process of relocating. It can help you stay on top of everything you need to do as well as eliminate unnecessary or last minute purchases. You can create your own schedule on paper or simply jot tasks down in a calendar. Keep it somewhere your entire family will notice it so they can stay involved in the process. A typical moving schedule may include packing specific items on certain days, completing a living room on another and other details unique to your specific needs.
Ship Your Belongings
If you don’t have a great deal of possessions and are about to make a long-distance move, look into shipping some or all of your belongings, particularly if you plan to fly out to your new home or aren’t comfortable driving a rental truck across the country.
Shipping rates through the United States Postal Service – particularly its media mail and parcel post services – are reasonable and may cost less than a truck rental or hiring a long-distance moving company. The post office’s site at USPS.com is very easy to use, and guides you step-by-step in measuring, weighing, and determining postage costs for your packages. You can even arrange for free or low-cost pickup of your packages through the website, saving you a trip to the post office.
If shipping your items, only use brand new cardboard boxes. While old boxes can work well for short-distance moves, they can prove to be too flimsy for long-distance transit. Don’t take any chances, and protect your belongings with new, sturdy boxes.
What are moving containers?
Think of moving containers like the moving truck—minus the actual truck. You pack your belongings and move them into the container, and then a company transports the container(s) to your new home. When they arrive, you unload everything. If needed, you can also use your container(s) as a temporary storage option.
Moving containers vs. moving trucks
Two factors differentiate containers and moving trucks: cost and convenience. In some situations, containers are actually less expensive than moving trucks, but moving containers are almost always more convenient than moving trucks.
We’ve identified five ways moving containers can save you money and stress:
- You don’t have to drive.
- You save money over long distances.
- You can save money through price matching.
- You can save money using lower quality containers.
- You can use containers as portable storage.