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How to Save Money (& Lower Stress) When Moving

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How to Save Money (& Lower Stress) When Moving

Survey after survey finds that moving is one of life’s most stressful events, partly because so many decisions are to be made.

One of the most important decisions is how to move your worldly possessions affordably and safely. Should you hire a moving company to take care of everything? Perhaps you should lower expenses by renting a vehicle and taking care of it yourself. You have many options to think about.

We’ll share expert tips concerning moving van insurance, finding boxes, enlisting help, and more to help the process go smoothly for each method.

Hiring a Moving Company Versus Doing It Yourself

There are benefits to both options, and you’ll have to consider your financial situation and time availability to decide which is best for you.

Benefits of Hiring Movers

The most convenient way to move is to hire someone else to do the work for you. You can find movers to do whatever you need. For example, if you want to box everything up, you can find movers to load your boxes into a moving truck and unload them at your new home.

If you don’t want to lift a finger, you can hire movers to pack up your kitchen cabinets, closets, and whatever else you need.

Reputable movers should have insurance, so if one or more of your items become damaged, they can cover the replacement cost.

Hiring movers is the way to go if you’re looking for an easy move. But, unfortunately, it’s also the most expensive option.

If your job moves you, they’ll usually pay for movers, and it’s probably worth taking advantage of that offer. But, then, you’ll have enough other things to worry about.

Benefits of Moving Things Yourself

When you pack up your belongings, you’ll come across many items that you forgot you had. You can downsize and get rid of things you don’t use and use things you have lost and missed.

When you pack your items, you can take special care of sentimental items full of childhood nostalgia and fragile items that a moving company wouldn’t be as careful with.

Packing, transporting, and unpacking items on your own is a lot of work, but it doesn’t cost anything, so it’s a great way to save money.

Renting a Moving Van Versus Using Your Car

When deciding between renting a van and using your car, you have a few things to think about to help you make the right choice.

How Far You’re Moving Makes a Difference

How far are you moving? If you’re going a couple of blocks away, making many trips won’t be as time-consuming as if you’re moving 30 miles away or more. For example, if you pack things in a moving van, you can make one trip, but if you pack things in a car, you’ll probably have to make 25 trips or more.

Furniture Doesn’t Always Fit in Cars

If your vehicle is a pickup truck, you can probably figure out how to transport your furniture to your new house. But if you have a coupe, no matter how comfortable your couch is, it will not fit in your back seat. So, if your furniture won’t fit, you can’t depend on using your car, and you’ll have to rent a moving van or borrow a truck or trailer.

Costs of Renting a Moving Truck

For trips across town, renting a Uhaul truck is surprisingly inexpensive and one of the best uses of money if you don’t have access to a trailer. But be sure to have your insurance figured out.

Insurance Costs Related to Renting a Truck

The moving truck rental company will likely offer you an insurance plan. Since you’re only renting the truck for a day or two, it’s often worth purchasing their insurance plan because moving is stressful enough, and added insurance can provide peace of mind.

Borrowing a Trailer Versus Using Your Car or Renting a Truck

Borrowing from friends can get messy. There’s a chance you could damage the trailer. Friends may feel obligated to lend you their trailer when they don’t want to. And you never know if your friend may change their minds midway through the move and decide they need their trailer as soon as possible, leaving you without a reliable way to move your belongings.

If your parents or siblings have a trailer, you can borrow it without as much to worry about, but if you borrow it from a friend, be sure to thank them and buy them a substantial gift card.

Using your own car isn’t usually a good option unless you’re not moving furniture or have a truck.

Renting a moving truck is the best way to get reliable moving transportation, and you won’t have to worry about impacting friendships.

Tips for Saving Money When Moving

Moving can be surprisingly expensive, but with these tips, you can save and invest that money into just the right upgrades in your new house.

Tip #1 – Get Moving Boxes for Free

If you haven’t moved for a while, you may be shocked by how expensive moving boxes can be at retail locations. You could easily spend four dollars a box and need 100 boxes. Instead, search online garage sales for people giving away moving boxes.

There are always other people who have recently moved and would appreciate you taking their piles of boxes, so they don’t have to deal with them.

Additionally, ask at your local grocery stores and liquor stores. Produce boxes and liquor boxes are very sturdy and make excellent moving boxes.

Tip #2 – Utilize Friends to Help You Move

Ask friends to help you move. If you don’t want to spend the money on movers, don’t think the only alternative is to do everything yourself. It can be too much. Instead, spend the month before your moving day packing your boxes and ask your friends to come and help you quickly load up, transport, and unload.

While helping you move might not be considered an adventurous and unique activity, it will almost certainly build your bond with your friends. Just be sure to return the favor when your friends need help moving in the future.

Tip #3 – Compare Movers’ Costs

If you decide to hire movers, compare their charges. Ask friends and family for their recommendations as well. While price is crucial, it’s not worth paying less and ending up with half your things broken. You want to find the sweet spot in price and reputation.

Tip #4 – Use a Moving Pod

Another option that may be cheaper than renting a moving truck is renting a moving pod. You can have it dropped off at your old house, fill it, and move it to your new home.

Even though moving can be stressful and expensive, if you plan and find ways to save money, you can avoid some of the associated anxiety and costs.

Melanie Musson writes and researches the auto insurance comparison site, She’s passionate about helping others find the right insurance policy to protect their current and future financial stability.