Real Estate

Moving Costs: 6 Ways to Control Moving Expenses

Many people are amazed at the costs of moving their home. To avoid an unpleasant shock to your financial system, use these six ways to take control of the costs involved. They can lead you to change the goods you take, the services you buy, and even the date you move.

  1. Be realistic
  • Do not underestimate the size of the load: consider everybody your belongings, including the contents of the attic and basement and your car and boat.
  • Consider everybody Costs include selling the house, redecorating the new house and changing services, moving services, insurance, storage, your travel, and especially your own time and energy.
  • Control takes time. Get an early start or be prepared to pay for help managing the move.
  • reduce load
    • The size of the load is the most important factor in the costs of packaging, loading, transportation, storage, insurance and your own efforts, even if you do it yourself.
    • The amount of junk that people pay to move often amazes moving companies. Everybody has some. Use a critical eye to get rid of yours.
    • Why carry things you don’t use? If you haven’t used it in the last two years, you probably don’t need it. Leave that clutter behind and simplify your life!
    • If your major appliances are old, new ones would save energy and money in operation. Why pay to take them with you?
    • You will probably redecorate your new home. Don’t take furniture that will be thrown away anyway when it doesn’t fit your new style.
    • Don’t bring your surfboard when you move from California to Saskatchewan. Don’t take shop equipment home with you when you move into an apartment. Leave behind any activity gear or clothing that doesn’t suit your new lifestyle.
    • A garage sale, eBay, or donations to charity are all good ways to ensure that assets you no longer need find good uses.
  • choose the best time
    • Moving companies and moving trucks have times of greatest demand: weekends, summer school vacations and winter vacations. At these peaks, costs are higher, moving companies and trucks are harder to come by, and time constraints can degrade the quality of work done.
    • Schedule your closing dates for move-in flexibility and minimize temporary storage. I once scheduled both buy and sell to close on the same date; final legal paperwork revealed a potential lien that took days to resolve and denied access to my new home, nearly doubling the cost and effort of my move.
    • Find out everything that needs to be done and give yourself enough time.
    • The best time for this move may be never. When considering real estate and redecorating costs, my wife and I decided not to downsize before we retired, because we expected to move in retirement anyway.
  • consider doing it yourself
    • You can save real money on moving services by packing less expensive materials, loading and unloading the truck or container yourself, driving the load in a rented truck, or using self-storage.
    • OBJECTIVE, to be realistic. Doing it yourself requires a lot of time, effort and knowledge. There may be complications due to your inexperience, as well as unexpected costs. It takes physical work, and you may not be as fit and strong as you think. Is the money savings really that good and is it worth the other costs?
  • buy wisely
    • If you hire moving services, evaluate companies using word of mouth and other information, get two or three written quotes in person, make sure they cover everything to be moved, and look carefully to judge the quality of the company.
    • If you rent equipment, look for competitive prices and make sure you know the terms and flexibility of the contract. Can you extend the time if necessary?
    • If you buy or search for packaging materials, don’t skimp on protection. Get double wall boxes with lids, in sizes appropriate for the contents. Use enough padding for breakables and don’t overcrowd breakables.
  • Tracking and claiming expenses
    • Some out-of-pocket moving expenses can probably be claimed against income for tax purposes, Yes duly validated.
    • Find out what is deductible and get receipts or other documentation for all those costs.

    Using these six strategies, you are sure to get good value for your time and money. You will also be happier, with a well-managed move and without unpleasant surprises.

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