For many homeowners, a DIY job can be an excellent way to fix up a property on a budget. After all, since the construction industry eliminated more than 40% of its workforce from 2006 to 2011, the costs of labor have gone up and contractor availability can be hard to come by. But how do you stick to your bottom line (without succumbing to stress or throwing out your back) when it comes time to move to a new home? Since 33% of renters move every year, you'll need to keep costs low if you plan on relocating in the near future. Here are just a few ways to save some cash on your next move.
Purge Prior to Packing
The typical American home has three bedrooms and around 1,800 square feet, but that doesn't mean you have all the space you want to house the belongings you've been collecting for years. And even if you have the room, you might not want to pay to bring it all with you. That's why it's a good idea to get rid of the items you don't need now, before you have to incur the costs of moving them. Whether you have a yard sale, donate items to a local charity, or sell them on a popular online platform, you should make an effort to purge and earn some money (either from a direct sale or from a tax deduction) at the same time.
Move on a Weekday
Of course, it's way more convenient to move on the weekend. That's why Fridays are the busiest days within the moving industry. In fact, 19.45% of all moves that took place in 2016 happened on Fridays. Although you can't always be flexible due to work schedules or other considerations, moving during the week can pay off (literally). When the demand is lower, you'll be in a position to get a better price on movers and moving trucks. If you really want to save some cash, consider moving during the winter rather than in the summer. It may not be nearly as pleasant, but it's just one day -- and an expensive one, at that, if you're married to the idea of moving when it's warm and when you have no other commitments.
Apply For Your Change of Address in Advance
A lot of people forget this step altogether, which can cause problems with your mail and even result in redirection fees. But preparing ahead of time and informing the U.S. Post Office about your plans can definitely help you cut costs. You can submit your address change request early and specify the date that USPS should start forwarding your mail. You'll still continue to get mail at your old address until that date, but the request submission will trigger the post office to send you a packet with coupons for moving-related businesses and other retailers. That can allow you to save quite a bit during this process and even after your move-in day, should you need to furnish your home with new items or pick up some last-minute essentials.
Stock Up on Free Boxes
Don't overpay for moving supplies. In many cases, you may be able to get them for free (or for close to it). Liquor stores and other local businesses will probably have a ton of boxes they can give you for no money at all. And instead of paying for wardrobe boxes, wrap your clothing in trash bags or buy some plastic containers you can keep and reuse in the future. You can also find packing tape and markers at dollar or discount stores, which can save you quite a bit when you have a lot to pack. Keep in mind that it's all about easy, effective transport. Your packing materials don't need to look beautiful; they just need to protect your items and get them safely to your new home. Stick to the cheapest options you can get that won't fall apart on you.
Hire For the Big Stuff and DIY the Rest
A lot of renters and homeowners wonder whether hiring movers or renting a truck will be most cost-efficient. Often, the answer is: a little of column A and a little of column B. Because movers will typically charge by the hour or by the room, it will behoove you to hire them for only the items you can't transport or move on your own. That means it's probably a good idea to hire movers for your big furniture and large appliances. If you can move the majority of your other belongings, you may want to consider packing up your own cars with the rest. If you have a friend or relative with a large truck or van who's willing to loan you the vehicle or help out with your move, that can make costs even more affordable.
Let's face it: preparing for a move is never going to be a breeze. But it's probably easier than you think to save money during this stressful process. If you follow the tips outlined above, you can keep your spending in check next time you move house.