Moving, taxes, and the sun rising are all inevitable—and 2 out of 3 can cost you a lot of money. Generally, everyone moves at least once in their life, so most know the hefty expenses associated with this life event. Movers, moving supplies, travel, the list goes on.
Luckily, there are a few ways that can make your next move less of a burden to your budget. We called in the experts from a premier NYC moving company for the best money-saving tips.
1. Get the Best Price
Moving is a time strain, so it may be tempting to get the ball rolling by jumping on with the first moving company that quotes you. However, by doing so, you could be paying a lot more than you need to be.
If you have decided on professional movers, then you should be opting to get a minimum of 3 separate quotes. The good news is that getting quotes is simpler than ever with many companies offering instant quotes through their website. These will give you a good idea of how much money you are going to shell out and what services are included with that fee. But once you find the best price, you aren’t done yet.
Here are some key questions that can help you save even more.
“Do you offer price match?” If you find a company you like, but they didn’t have the cheapest quote, check if they price match. Many companies will price match or at least offer some sort of price reduction. Of course, it is never a good idea to automatically go with the cheapest option just because it is the cheapest. Do your research and make sure that you are working with someone you can trust with all your valuables and fragile belongings. Movers with a national reputation and a plethora of experience such as Mayflower are able to do this.
“Do you offer discount storage?” If you have storage needs, now is the time to ask about moving bundles. Usually a reduced storage rate is offered if the same company handles your move.
“How much can I save by moving off-peak?” If you can, schedule your move on a weekday or during winter months as these are considered “off-peak” by moving companies. Since there is less demand for these time slots, they are often offered at reduced rates.
2. Check Membership Discounts
Sometimes the best discounts are already in your wallet in the form of membership cards. Be sure to check your subscriptions to see what they can offer you.
Auto Clubs: If you subscribe to the American Automobile Association (AAA) or a similar service, check to see what discounts they offer. Auto clubs often partner with other companies to offer everything from reduced rate full-service moves to discounted moving supplies. You can also find truck rental savings and storage deals here as well.
Educational Institutions: You probably paid a small fortune for post-secondary, so let them save you money for once. Check your institution’s website to see what deals you can scoop up. Many colleges and universities offer alumni an array of discounts, and this may include moving-related services.
3. Lessen the Load
The less stuff you have, the less moving truck space you will need and the less labor-intensive your move will be. In turn, decluttering your home will make your move both faster and cheaper.
Key places to start shedding weight:
Books: They’re bulky, heavy, and quite the pain to move. Scan your shelves to see if any titles can be donated. Embarking on a long-distance move? If you have a lot of books, consider sending them in flat rate boxes through USPS or a similar service—this is usually cheaper than piling them in a moving truck.
Furniture: Thinking of purging some furniture? Now is the time. Cheap furniture, such as IKEA pieces, are not worth the hassle or cost to move. Look through your setup to see what you can donate, sell, or toss.
Odds & Ends: Even the small stuff adds up. Be sure to scour closets, drawers, andother storage nooks for anything you can purge. If you don’t need it and haven’t used it in the past 2 years, it is usually time to part ways.
Want extreme results? Try the Junk Snowball Method.
4. Put it on Credit
This may seem like an odd one, but charging your move to a credit card can actually save you some money—but only if it is a cash-back credit card.
Generally, buying a new house is not the time to be applying for additional lines of credit outside a mortgage. But if you already have one of these in your wallet, then put it to good use. You may only get a couple percent back, but with moving being such a large expense, it adds up. Just be mindful of interest to assess if this tip is right for you. Ideally, you want to pay the card off before interest occurs, but we realize that isn’t possible for everyone. If you question your ability to pay the card off immediately, you may want to skip this option.
Related: Making Money While You Spend Money
5. Safeguard Against Damages
When damages happen during a move, it means extra money has to be spent on replacing the damaged items or repairing them. If you are going with professional movers, all you have to do is ensure that they have moving insurance that covers these mishaps, or purchase coverage separately.
However, if you are tackling the move on your own, there are a few things you can do to safeguard your belongings.
Boxes: If you are trying to save money on your move, you may be thinking about going to your local liquor store or an online marketplace to get some free empty boxes. While neither of those are bad ideas, just be mindful of what you pack in them. They aren’t as strong as moving boxes and even used moving boxes are weaker than new ones. So, while these are useable for light items, just be sure to get some new moving boxes for anything heavy or fragile.
Furniture: Furniture can cost a lot to repair or replace, so prevention is the cheaper measure. Wrap furniture susceptible to damage in a moving blanket and then secure with a few layers of industrial stretch wrap. Both are available at most hardware stores or moving companies that sell supplies.
Saving money on moving boils down to research and planning. By taking the time to find the best accommodations and doing some prep work, you can not only have a move that leaves more money in your pocket, but one that is more organized, efficient, and less stressful.