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Costs add up easily, whether you are moving locally or across the country. According to The American Moving and Storage Association, it would cost you about $2,300 to move within the same state, and the price could go as high as $4,300 if the move is interstate. No wonder, saving on moving costs is at the top-of-mind of everyone planning to relocate between two homes.

How to Save on Moving Costs

When planning for your move, be sure to give yourself enough time to work on some strategies to help you save on costs.

1. Create a Moving Spending Budget

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Don’t just think that your moving budget begins and ends with your stuff being hauled and moved by your moving service. Your budget must include all pre-hauling expenses such as storage boxes, packing supplies, as well as packing services that you might want to hire. Likewise, add more to this budget for unforeseen expenses that may come up until the moving process has been completed.

2. Look For a Low-Cost Moving Company

Create a list of what you need to achieve during your moving process, and use this list to look for and compare prices of relocation services based on those needs. For each cost estimates that you receive from movers that you have shortlisted, make sure that the costs are clearly broken down one by one, and look anywhere in the quote where you could still bargain for a discount, if not eliminated.

3. Negotiate for a Better Deal

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According to North Dallas Moving and Storage, when it comes to pricing, moving companies are more flexible than you might think. Since the price you will pay is a high-value business to them, you will be surprised that they are very much willing to negotiate.

When you have narrowed down your choices to two or three, this is when you begin to negotiate for the best price. Let them all know that your final selection would now be based on the best price you could get. Then, let them price-match each other until you get the best deal for your money.

4. Schedule Your Move at the Right Time

Unless your plan to move is strictly time-bound or urgent, then it is best to schedule it during an off-peak season when prices for relocation services drop significantly by 20% to 30%. Summer is the busiest season in the moving industry. And if you must book a mover’s service weeks or even months ahead, it will give you more room for price negotiation. When your moving plans are urgent and fall during this season, try to book their service during the weekdays.

If you’re moving to Hawaii, there are a few things you need to know in order to keep your costs down. First, check with your current home insurance provider to see if they offer any discounts for moving to Hawaii. Many do! Secondly, get quotes from multiple moving companies and compare their rates. Moving can be expensive, but it doesn’t have to be if you’re smart about it. Finally, consider doing some of the packings and unpacking yourself. This can save you a lot of money on labor costs. By following these tips, you can keep your cost to move to Hawaii down and enjoy your new life in paradise!

5. Use Free Boxes and Other Packing Materials

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Boxes are important in packing your stuff, but you don’t really need to buy brand new. Your local retailers, such as liquor stores, supermarkets, or bookstores, have boxes that they collapse and discard for recycling. Simply approach them and ask to take some.

As for covers for your fragile stuff, you may consider using towels, blankets, and bedsheets to protect them. Your small and thin clothes may also work as box fillers instead of stuffing your boxes with loose sheets of paper.

6. You Pay for Everything You Bring Along

When you understand that you pay for the transportation of every item you bring along, then you might consider it wise to purge your stuff as you prepare to pack them for moving. Sort the belongings that you don’t really need as donations or giveaways, so you won’t feel bad having to leave them behind. If some of your items are good enough to resell, then do so to raise more cash to pay off your moving costs.

7. Pack Your Items by Yourself

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Packing your items by yourself allows you to sort your stuff. But be sure to do this strategically as you might find yourself dragging the task by overthinking which ones to bring along and which to leave behind. If it is necessary that you hire help to pack your stuff, pack your valuable or fragile items by yourself while leaving the rest to the pacing services.

8. Do a Self- Move

You will significantly save on cost if you decide to perform a self-move. With the right personal connections to help you out, a self-move is possible and easy, especially with short-distance relocations. Unless it’s not practical to coordinate help from close friends or family, then opt to consider booking a professional service instead.

Important Things You Need to Know About Moving Services

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Moving services is one type of service you don’t normally deal with frequently; to some, it is just a one-time deal. Because of this, you might not always know how to do business with them properly.

Here are a few of the important things you need to know when dealing with moving services:

Your Mover May Just Be a Broker

If you’re dealing with a broker, ask upfront who is moving your items. Research both companies and make sure you have direct access to the company moving your things.

The Movers May Not Provide Enough Insurance

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The law mandates that movers should offer you the option of purchasing standard insurance coverage. Insurance coverage by most movers is based on weight and not the value of items. Make sure your items are fully protected by buying additional insurance.

Some Damage Claims May Not Be Accepted

Avoid the hassle of damage claims not being accepted by movers when you file for them weeks after the move has been completed. Do this by opening your boxes quickly after a move so you could see right away if there is any damage in your stuff.

Mark your boxes that store your fragile items during packing, and unload them first after the move so you could focus on inspecting them, instead of opening all boxes.

Don’t Pay Until Everything Has Been Unloaded

Coordinate with the mover whoever you have personally assigned to be in charge of inventory from loading and unloading. Then, have a point person from the mover to counter check this list. Do not pay nor sign any receiving document until all your items are completely unloaded.

Trying to weigh the pros and cons of saving huge amounts of money in moving expenses can be quite tricky. When your valuable items are at stake, booking for the cheapest service may not always be the best option, unless you are dealing with a professional mover that has years of proven record of trustworthy experience.