Planning a move is hard work, especially if you’re trying to do so on a tight budget. Add on that it’s cross country and you have quite the challenge on your hands. Finding ways to save, however, isn’t impossible. There are several strategies you can undertake to help make your upcoming long-distance move more cost effective.
Below, we’ll explore a few of the top tactics which could reduce costs and help make your interstate move more affordable.
Pack Fewer Boxes for a Lower Cost
Often, long-distance movers charge by the weight or volume of items being moved. As such, it makes sense to eliminate belongings that no longer have any use for your household. From old kids toys to outdated clothing, removing what you can from the equation is a great way to decrease costs. Even if you’re not planning to use professional movers, decluttering beforehand and packing wisely is one of the surest strategies for an easier move.
It’s best to give yourself plenty of time well before moving day to declutter. That way, you can properly recycle or donate unwanted items rather than letting them end up in a landfill. Another possibility is to host a garage sale. Not only could this clear away junk that hasn’t been touched in years, but it might help you make a little extra cash to add to your moving budget.
Source Your Moving Supplies Strategically
One common method for moving house on a budget is to gather used packing supplies. It could be from a friend or relative who just moved or you can visit local businesses who may have extra boxes on hand for free. You could also store shipping boxes from home deliveries leading up to the move to supplement your packing needs.
Another thrifty option is to use your blankets, towels and other linens as padding for packing instead of bubble wrap or peanuts. While well-made materials from a moving or rental truck company are recommended, this approach could save you money and cut back on the waste generated by your move. If you want the reliability of supplies from the experts, however, consider opting for rentable boxes or buying in bulk to limit the expense.
Book Your Move at the Optimal Time
The months of May through September are peak moving season for moving companies. If possible, you should avoid this time period to help decrease the cost of your move. What’s more, movers may be more willing to provide a further discount if you move during the “off-season,” such as in late fall or early spring. Scheduling for a weekday instead of the weekend could also result in a lower price.
Depending on the moving company, there may be other discounts you can capitalize on throughout the year. When calling around and checking prices, be sure to ask about AAA, military or other possible price reductions you are qualified to receive. There might also be package deals for bundling more than one service offered by the company. With luck, you may be able to stack such discounts for deeper savings.
Map Out an Efficient Route
Moving across the country or just a few states over takes time and planning. If moving yourself, it pays to efficiently map out your route. This means looking ahead for any construction, road closures or other potential slowdowns. It may also entail researching any tolls along the way. Doing this helps ensure you’re on the most optimal route possible.
Along the same lines is scouting out hotels or motels with affordable rates. While you may think just driving until you spot a good place to rest is easiest, doing so could end up adding extra stress and costs onto your trip. You can even look ahead to find the cheapest gas prices along your route with a mobile app.
Although minimizing expenses is worthwhile, it’s important to keep in mind that moving is an adventure. As you organize and oversee your upcoming move, try not to let the finances overshadow the excitement that comes with moving to a new home.
Author bio: Scott Dorrell is the owner of Interstate Moving Pros, an interstate moving broker that services the lower 48 states. He has a Bachelor of Science in Finance and Economics from Indiana University Kelley School of Business. At Interstate Moving Pros, Dorrell focuses on taking special care and consideration for all clients and their belongings during their move.