How to Create a Moving Budget: Tips and Tricks

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Moving can be budget-friendly with some careful planning and a solid plan. The prices for moving services can vary depending on your city, but estimates are readily available in most locations. With estimates from local companies, you can create a realistic moving budget that you can customize to fit your trip.

Determine How Much to Spend

The first step in creating a moving budget is to decide how much you can spend, including miscellaneous items like food. If you are traveling long distance, such as to another state, consider using a cooler packed with snacks and water to cut food costs during the trip.

Include the cost of a hotel room if you need to overnight along the route, and add the estimated cost of fuel for the trip. You can find gas prices for each state along the route online to ensure your estimate is close to the actual cost of fuel.

Compare Costs

If you are hiring a moving company, take the time to compare estimates from several companies in the local area. Most moving companies offer free estimates. If you plan on packing and moving in a rental van, you should also compare the rental costs. Rental costs include a per-mile charge.

You can slightly overestimate the number of miles to account for stops along the route when determining the overall cost per mile. Ask the rental company if you need insurance during the move, and include the cost of insurance in your estimate if it is required.

Packing Costs

To save on the cost of moving, consider packing your home yourself. When you pack your own personal items, all you need is cardboard boxes, packing tape and a marker. Some moving companies sell boxes. You can also find free boxes by asking local shops for their discarded boxes. To save time, pack all must-have items in the same box, and carry that box along with you in your vehicle.

In some cases, hiring professional movers is worth the additional cost. Professional movers ensure each item is carefully packed, and can finish the work while to attend to other obligations. You can compare the time saving value to the cost of hiring professional movers to decide whether the service is worth the fee.

Storage and Miscellaneous Fees

Miscellaneous fees include the cost of renting a storage unit if you can’t take all your belongings and insurance for valuable items during the move. Make a list of the items that you need to move, and add the cost of each item to your estimate. With a little planning and a good idea of the costs of each item, you can create an accurate budget for your move.