By Keith Loria
Whether you plan to pack up and move your belongings on your own or hire a moving company to do all the heavy lifting, one thing’s for certain: moving isn’t cheap.
A good moving company will cost thousands of dollars, and that number is likely to increase if you hire them to pack everything as well. Or, if you don’t have a new home yet and need to store everything in the meantime, the cost for the moving company to store everything can get pricey.
Therefore, it’s important to compare moving companies ahead of time in order to find the best rate. Be sure to look for hidden fees (distance, gas and size requirements) and factor in tips and tolls.
Since many moving companies base the price on weight, taking small, heavy items and packing them away in your car can help you save on the final cost. You may also want to consider holding a garage sale prior to the move in order to get rid of items you don’t want or need. This will keep you from moving things that are going to end up being thrown out or stored in the garage at your new destination.
Boxes are also a lot more money than many people realize. Small- and medium-sized boxes can run a few dollars a piece and larger, garment-sized boxes are nearly double that. While boxes can be found everywhere, take the time to go to your local grocery store or bookstore and ask if they have any to spare. Almost all do and will tell you the best times to come pick them up.
Another great idea is to go to freecycle.com or Craigslist and do a search for moving supplies. Many people who have recently moved will give away their boxes, peanuts and even bubble wrap for free—all you have to do is go pick up the supplies. Not only does this save them from having to tear down the boxes and dispose of them, it’ll also get you closer to your move.
You’ll also need to buy tape, bubble wrap and other protective coverings and packaging material. Buying in bulk will not only save you money, but will also ensure that you don’t run out.
If you don’t have too much stuff and you’re not going too far, you can save a great deal of money by renting your own U-Haul and gathering a group of friends to help you move. While it may cost you a little extra in pizza and beer, the money saved will be well worth it.