Blog November 26, 2021

Creating a Moving Budget Doesn’t Have to Be Terrifying – All You Need Are Some Tips

Posted in How-to
Lucy Lucas

Born and raised in Miami Lucy is a content writer with a love of moving and packing. She is an expert at making sure everything fits into her suitcase.

Unfortunately, relocation isn’t the cheapest endeavor, and as such, it requires a moving budget that will help you keep track of your expenses and keep them at bay simultaneously. We’ve prepared the best guide to help you calculate the relocation expenses while ensuring they are the lowest they can be. So let’s see which expenses can be cut, which services should be paid for, and what the best way to create a moving-out budget is!

Consider the Relocation Costs Multiple Months Ahead of the Move

If you are about to be moving state to state, you’ll have to take into account each and every possible expense that can arise during this process. And what’s even more important is that you’ll have to do it on time. This means anticipating the obvious, the inevitable, as well as the unexpected and the unforeseen. It’s important to do it as early as possible into your relocation process since a bunch of decisions you’ll have to make will rely on what kind of finances you have at your disposal. So, take your pen and paper, and let’s get started.

How Much Money Do People Generally Save Up for Moving Interstate?

No two moves are alike, and that’s why there’s no one amount of cash that’ll work for multiple moves. The expenses will vary on account of how big (and heavy) your house inventory is, how far away you’re relocating to, do you plan on hiring state-to-state movers, and for what services.

But also, things like do you have a truck, what relocation insurance you plan on getting, and whether you’ll be renting a storage unit at any point of the process. So, basically, if you are about to move to another state, expect this adventure to cost you anywhere from $2,000 to $6,000 approximately, although statistics show that most people will have the approximate cost of $4,000.

A girl holding a bunch of dollar bills
Planning a move requires asking yourself a bunch of financial questions and doing it on time

Proper Budgeting Is Key to Any Relocation Process, So Don’t Eyeball Your Expenses Even if It’s a Last-Minute Move

We know that the last thing you want to do amidst the move-out anxiety is to create another list (wasn’t the relocation to-do checklist enough, you might ask?), but it’s really crucial that you do. The worst relocation mistake you can make in awaiting your suburb move is eyeballing your expenses.

If you decide to wing it, you’ll end up spending a lot more than you would if you had a handle on all the expenses you are experiencing. Organizing a move to a T is really important, even if it’s a last-minute move. So, to start your financial plan, purchase a binder, and let’s get to budgeting.

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Proper Budgeting and Financial Planning Starts By Creating a Moving Budget Checklist

As mentioned before, your relocation expenses will depend on how you structure your efficient move. So, the first of the steps in creating a budget for moving out is figuring out how you’ll go about the process. The easiest way to get a rough idea of how many numbers your receipt will have is to call up a relocation company and request a free quote.

It’s always a good idea to call up multiple companies and request quotes you can compare. Additionally, we recommend pondering the following activities and tabling their expenses to ensure you’re on your merry way to a successful and affordable move:

  • Cleaning costs – Do you plan on hiring a cleaning agency to help with the move-out and move-in cleaning, or will you clean the apartment yourself? If you decide on a DIY clean, what supplies and solutions will you have to buy? Consider all these questions on time.
  • Packaging supplies – Are you going to buy fresh boxes and tape, or do you have some free containers you can reuse? Can you afford more expensive packaging materials like packaging paper and bubble wrap, or will free alternatives like towels and socks work well enough to keep your fragile items safe?
  • Loading equipment – If you don’t plan on hiring state-to-state movers, will you have the required equipment, such as dolly and blankets? If not, will you have to buy/rent them, or can a friend or family member lend them to you?
  • Truck rental – Once again, if you don’t plan on hiring professional movers, how will you transport the load? Do you have a relocation truck at your disposal, or will you need to rent one?
  • Storage unit – If you are about to move to a smaller apartment, you will need to put some items into a storage space. Depending on how many things you have and how large they are (as well as for how long they’ll be sitting in the unit), you should anticipate the costs of the storage.
  • Vehicle shipping – Whether you hire a mover or not, you’ll still have to ship your car if you are relocating to another state. So, find a vehicle mover that provides car shipping services, and consider all the conditions of the service.

Other Than These Large Costs, The Mandatory Steps to Creating a Budget Require Taking Smaller Expenses Into Consideration as Well

The answer to the question of how to make a moving budget is a strangely complex one, as it often requires a person to be somewhat of a witch or a sorcerer. Yes, you’ve read that correctly. That is because you have to think of every possible unforeseen circumstance and human need if you don’t want to end up having to spend hundreds of dollars you didn’t allocate or anticipate. So, make sure you include the following on your budget plan for moving out:

  • The food expenses – In the midst of the relocation stress, people too often forget that they have to eat while they move. That means budgeting the cost of eating out and buying coffee. Unfortunately, once you pack your dishes, it will be difficult to prepare food on your own. So consider how much take-out will be, and plan that you’ll have to eat out for at least three days.
  • Baby/pet-sitting services – If you are about to move with a dog, or if you’re about to move to one of the best cities in the US to raise a family, you’ll have to factor in baby-/pet-sitting services for the days of the move. These lovely curious beings are a true gift to have around, but you’ll surely reduce move-out anxiety about either of them getting into any danger by leaving them with a designated adult. If you’re looking for the cheapest way to move out, it would be better to leave them with a friend or family member so consider this option too.
  • Tips for movers – If you decide to hire professionals, keep in mind that it’s customary to provide them with tips and some types of refreshments while they work. This could include water bottles, tea, coffee, and some types of snacks or sandwiches.
  • Interstate moving surcharges – Depending on the company you hire, there may be some additional charges, such as fuel charges, parking fees, heavy items surcharges, and even elevator fees. In the free quote you get from a company, you’ll have most of these sketched out, but do ask the sales assistant if some of these could potentially arise. Additionally, consider the season you’re relocating inside off since it may bring up extra surcharges to your process.
  • DIY relocation problems – A lot of people consider professional relocation costs only to conclude that it would be cheaper to go through a DIY move. While this could be true, the downside of the aforementioned approach is that too often, that may introduce new problems. So, weigh out the pros and cons thoroughly before you decide one way is better than the other.

Create an Emergency Fund Just in Case Something Goes Wrong

Whether it’s realizing too late that there are items movers won’t move or having to obtain some last-minute materials and equipment, it’s always good to have a small fund for unforeseen expenses (no matter how much you’ve already factored in the unexpected). Although this can be difficult if you don’t have cash set aside, it’s a requirement if you don’t want to end up having to borrow from friends or family. The ideal emergency fund should have at least two months worth of rent and utility bills saved up and a bit of extra money for living costs just in case.

calculating expenses
Don't think you'll use up all your savings just because you allocated them - planning requires thinking in advance and organizing for the worst-case scenario

The Best Way to Save Up on Packing and Moving Services Is By Doing a Declutter Prior to the Move

If, after you’ve obtained your relocation quote, all of this is still looking a bit too much for your wallet, the best relocation tip we can give you is to cut down your packaging checklist. If you decide to pay for packing services, this will mean the professionals have fewer things to pack, which will ensure a smaller price for your move.

And that means deciding which of your items are too shabby or non-essential for you to continue to use. A lot of our home inventories are made up of things we don’t need. Just a tiny portion is made up of relocation essentials and things we use often. So, don’t hoard. A new address is a new chapter of life, and that requires making spaces for all the new adventure will bring.

Those Wondering How to Move on a Budget Should Consider Selling Decluttered Items Rather Than Placing Them in Storage

Not only can a declutter get you to pay less to the relocation company providing moving services, but it can get you to earn a few extra bucks. Yes, you’ve read that right – you can actually make money while you move, and here’s how you’ll do it: as soon as you figure out what to get rid of, you should pile up all these items in the corner of your room.

Better yet, make multiple piles – one full of items to recycle or throw away and another full of things that can still be used. These, you can go on to sell online or throw a yard sale as the big finale of the season of your life you spend on this address. And voila – you’ve killed multiple birds with one stone just like that. For more tips on how to create a successful garage sale, check out this video:

Relocation Isn’t Cheap, But It’s Always Worth It

The thing is, you’ll have to spend money on your move, whether you like it or not. But, we are sure you have a strong and valid reason for deciding to move and go on this costly adventure. And while spending so much of your hard-earned money can be devastating and stressful at times, it’s important to have this perspective in mind.

However tough the going gets, remembering that you are either relocating for love, becoming an independent person or finally getting the home of your dreams will weigh out this cost-benefit analysis for you. And while you may have to pay a hard-earned buck to become the person you want to be, the important thing is that you will.

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