A few years ago we made a move to Colorado. Things moved really quickly, but I put together a moving checklist since it was the largest move we’d ever made. Along the way, I discovered there are a number of unexpected costs that can add up and completely blow the budget if you aren’t careful.
If you’ve never made a big move before here are a few things you may need to factor into the budget as well as a few ways to save on the unexpected expenses.
First a word of advice . . .
When you’re making a long distance relocation, use an experienced mover. It’s really tempting to use the first option you see, but it’s important to use a household moving company that specializes in interstate moving, like Allied Van Lines. There are special stipulations when you’re moving to a different state, and an inexperienced mover can end up costing more.
Now, onto the unexpected moving expenses and how to handle them.
Packing Supplies Outside of Boxes
We all know that we need to stock up on moving boxes. But it’s easy to overlook all the other packing supplies like tape, packing paper, bubble wrap, labels, sharpies, etc. All said and done, I spent around $100 on packing supplies for the move to Colorado, but I took a few extra steps to save money.
How to Save Money on Packing Supplies:
Start gathering supplies as soon as possible. Look for deals on packing supplies and take advantage of them whenever you can. You can also save on packing paper and bubble wrap by using towels, sheets, and clothing to pad boxes.
An unfortunate side effect of moving everything you own is things can get damaged, lost or stolen along the way. But that’s what we have insurance for, right? Federal law mandates that interstate movers must provide either full value protection or released value protection. Released value protection is included in the moving costs, but the coverage is only $0.60 per pound. That means you’d only receive $7.20 for your 12-pound flat screen if it gets broken on the moving truck.
How to Save Money on Insurance:
Check to see what kind of moving coverage is already included in your home insurance or renters insurance policy. Look specifically for trip transit insurance that covers items while they’re being transported. Also see what kind of additional liability coverage is provided by the moving company, if any.
From there you can decide the minimal amount of extra coverage that will be needed. If you want to save money, it may be cheaper to get additional coverage (called rider or floater coverage) for high priced items only.
Sometimes it isn’t possible to move everything from one location to the next and short-term storage is needed. Renting a storage unit can really add up, but it may be the only option if you have.
How to Save Money on Storage:
First and foremost, downsize your stuff so you can get as small of a storage unit as possible. The rates will go up significantly as the storage unit size increases. Also, try to limit the items in the unit to things to that aren’t susceptible to heat, cold and moisture. That way you can get a cheaper unit that doesn’t require climate control. Don’t forget to also ask your moving company if they offer short-term storage. They may be willing to give you a discount if you add storage on top of moving services.
Utility/Service Set Up
Moving to a new home means you’ll have to establish utilities, phone service, cable and internet all over again. This can come with additional fees such as a service transfer fee, installation deposit, cancellation fee or account setup fee. You have to have utilities, but luckily there are a few ways to reduce the cost of setting up new services.
How to Save Money on Utility/Service Set Up:
Some utility companies will allow you to bypass deposits if you can provide a statement from your current provider that shows you’ve consistently paid on time for a year or more. Some service providers may also be willing to cover your cancellation fee if you switch from a competitor.
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