If you just bought your first home, congratulations! Being a first-time homebuyer is a great step in investing for your future. But, while you’ve scraped your every last cent into your down payment and closing costs, there is one last cost you needn’t forget: moving expenses. Moving costs can be as inexpensive or costly as you make them. If you want budget and save on your move, these 5 tips should help you.
This tip is pretty simple and makes incredible sense. If you want to save money while moving, do it yourself. Send a group text, tweet or other message out to all of your friends asking for help on the day of your move with the promise that you’ll be forever indebted to them when they need help moving anything. If that doesn’t work, promise beer and pizza and future parties at your new place. Pester enough and you’ll get some help.
2) Don’t pay for boxes or other packing materials
Boxes are incredibly expensive for what they are and what happens to them after a move (i.e., they get dumped). Never pay for boxes and instead, stalk your favorite stores asking them for their boxes. If you can get a good relationship with someone who works there daily, they’ll put the boxes aside for you to pick up. Start doing this well before your move, as it can be a long process. Similarly, don’t buy stuffing materials either. Instead, use what you already have. Rather than pack a box of linens, use your linens and clothing to wrap important and breakable items. Both items have to get there anyway and you just saved yourself an expense. If all else fails, you are sure to find newspaper and flyers around for free.
3) Move slowly
While this may sound counter-productive, extend your move over a longer period (this only applies if you aren’t paying rent on the other end). In this way, you may be able to elicit more help from friends where you can ask them to just help you move “a few boxes” rather than participate in a giant move.
4) Consider buying new
Some furniture just does not move well, either because it is not made well, is heavy or awkward. Consider ditching (selling or donating) this type of furniture and buying new. Many stores offer free delivery and you won’t have to pay for the cost of moving this type of furniture. If it is something you can live without, don’t even bother replacing it.
5) Negotiate for the best rates
If you absolutely must avail yourself of the services of a moving company, ensure that you shop around for the best rates and then negotiate them even further down. But, make sure your company is a part of the Better Business Bureau, so you don’t negotiate for a rate and don’t get the work done. Read over the fine print of the contract carefully.