From Moving Expenses to Packing Costs: What to Consider for Your Next Move
Whether you have just purchased a new home or are going to be renting a new apartment, moving expenses are likely at the top of your mind. Many factors will need to be considered as you narrow down your options for moving and make a decision as to whether you will be hiring a moving company or doing it yourself, in part based on such factors as the quality of care for your property, the proximity of your move, and the overall cost of the process.
Doing It Yourself
If you are dealing with a short move, doing it yourself will probably be a better option than hiring a moving company in terms of moving expenses and other factors. Depending on how much property you own, you may want to investigate renting a van or truck. Different companies offer different deals on truck rental, so do some research before making a final decision to keep your moving expenses in line. Bear in mind that in some areas, certain times of year may be busier than others. If you know ahead of time that you are going to be moving at, for example, the beginning of the summer when many college students will also be moving, you should book the truck or van as soon as possible.
In addition, if you are going to be moving yourself rather than hiring a moving company, you will need to pack your own items carefully. You can cut down on moving expenses by getting boxes from local businesses for free, or you can purchase sturdy boxes at a variety of stores. You will also need packing material, whether you reuse old newspapers or buy packing peanuts or bubble wrap. In the end, nobody will take as good care of your things as you will, and moving yourself will likely save you a great deal of money. But this option is not ideal in many instances, and hiring a moving company may be better.
Hiring a Moving Company
If you are moving a long distance or simply don’t have the time or energy to move yourself, then you will likely be interested in hiring a moving company. There are many things to consider when you are first researching moving companies so that you do not overspend on moving expenses but also so that your property is not harmed, damaged, or lost.
First, find out how the company will bill for its services so you can budget your moving expenses. Some companies bill by the hour, while others bill for the project. Be careful if you are hiring a moving company that bills by the hour, because they may go more slowly than you would like, or if they bill by the project, because they may speed through the process carelessly.
Next in the process of hiring a moving company, research the company’s reputation. Look online to see if there are reviews of the company. Find out if they are reputable and honest. If a friend has used the company before, ask about his or her experience, and make sure you check with the Better Business Bureau as well. Before hiring a moving company, you can also interview the mover and ask for a quote or estimate at that time. Then you can compare both prices and service – remember, even if you want to cut down on moving expenses, the lowest price is not necessarily going to be the best deal.
Before you finalize the hiring of a moving company, get all offers in writing. And when you have picked a mover to use, make sure you get a signed contract before anything goes on the truck. The contract should include information on all relevant moving expenses – mileage, insurance, and any policies about payment. Find out if you will be charged extra if the move takes longer than was estimated. Keep in mind that insurance is extremely important, as it can give you some protection in case your things get broken, stolen, or lost. This is one of the extra moving expenses that is worthwhile.
Whether you decided on hiring a moving company or are moving yourself, the next step is to work on packing your things for the big day. Make sure you use boxes that are sturdy, and reinforce them with tape. Label everything clearly, including not only the contents of the box but also where in the new house or apartment the items should go – kitchen, bathroom, living room, and so on.
It is extremely important that you pack everything carefully to minimize breakage, one of the moving expenses many people do not consider. Use bubble wrap around delicate items, or stuff boxes with newspaper. You can also use towels or sheets to protect fragile things such as dishes or glasses. Your boxes are going to be jostled in a truck and handled by several people, so you want to make sure everything reaches its final destination safely.
Finally, reduce your load as much as possible. Take a look at everything you own, and then pare it down. The less you have to move the easier it will be and – if you went with hiring a moving company – you can keep your moving expenses down as well. Hold a yard sale or visit your nearest charity shop. Moving is a great time to start fresh!
Moving yourself and your things to a new home or apartment doesn’t have to be complicated. Take the time to research the best way to handle the process so that you can best manage your moving expenses. If you are hiring a moving company, make sure you get everything in writing and that you are not overcharged for anything and that there are no hidden fees. If you are doing it yourself, plan ahead and think about all of your moving expenses. This way you can eliminate some of the stress associated with moving, save some money, and settle happily into your new abode without additional worry.
About the Author
Neil A. Terc is the president of YourKasa.com, a feature-rich, online real estate property listings service that offers listings from realtors and from houses for sale by owner. A successful salesman and self-taught real estate professional, Neil put his experience to work over the last seven years, successfully purchasing and selling or leasing a multitude of properties. He created YourKasa.com to help home buyers and sellers overcome some of the common challenges that are faced during the process. To learn more, please visit www.yourkasa.com.