Is there anyone out there who enjoys the process of moving? I love a new place, a fresh start, bla bla bla, but the actual moving? Not the best part for sure. Plus, it can become very expensive very quickly! Cody and I have done our fair share of moving ourselves, and we like to help out friends as well whenever possible. Here are a few things we’ve learned along the way to help make a move more affordable!
First, the Purge
Before you pack everything you own into boxes, take a good hard look. Dig through the things you maybe haven’t even opened from the last move. If you haven’t needed it until now, and it’s not sentimental, it’s probably not going to get used at the new place either. Now is a great time to make sure you aren’t bringing a bunch of unnecessary or duplicate things into a new space! Take the time to actually go through your things and pare down before you haul it to a new space. You won’t want to do it as you unpack, so the sooner the better!
I know, nobody wants to help their friends move… But actually, we’ve found that people are much more willing to help than you would expect! The key here is to be prepared and let them know exactly when and where you are asking for help. If you need help boxing up the kitchen, ask a friend to just sit and chat with you as you pack! It’s a great time to catch up and talk, or throw on a few episodes of Friends and just pack for an hour or two!
When it comes to the day of the move, again the trick here is to be prepared. Have things boxed up, wrapped, lined up etc. before anyone shows up. If you have things that should get packed first (think, furniture or other bulky or heavy items), get them as close to the door as you can! When people arrive, they can simply start at the door and work their way through the place carrying boxes as they go. This takes all of the extra time waiting for direction out, and speeds up the process for everyone!
Find Free Boxes
Cody and I haven’t paid for boxes for any of our moves, and we intend to keep it that way! Check Craigslist or neighborhood apps or groups for used moving boxes. People will literally give them away, and all you need then is tape! Pro tip: get the good stuff, not an off-brand or discount tape. A good strip of quality tape holds up much better than 3 runs of sub-par packing tape.
Another great spot for free boxes: the liquor store. Walk into the store and ask if they have boxes, don’t just look out back by the dumpsters. Almost all stores have piles of these in the back room that they LOVE to get rid of. And liquor boxes are no joke! They’re built to hold heavy weight, fragile items, and stack in tall piles. That’s exactly what you need for moving! Especially a few good wine boxes (with the cardboard dividers). Those are perfect for all those glasses in the kitchen, bowls, utensils, jars of olive oil, etc. Super versatile, and free!
If you aren’t moving far, try overlapping your dates a bit (2 or 3 days has been great for us). Take a day to clean and prep the new space, taking a couple loads of things in your cars each time you head over. Borrow a truck or SUV if you don’t have one for a few trips of the larger things, and take the rest as you can throughout the days! If you load the car up the night before, then unload it on the way to work, you can head right back after, unpack, and still have time for a few more trips before bed!
Limit the Rentals
If you have a larger home or big furniture items, there’s a good chance you’ll need to rent something. Be as strategic as you can in this area, and remember that you have other vehicles you can fill too. If you have your own cars, vehicles of people helping you, AND a rental truck, you might not need a huge trailer. Think about the largest items you have and work your way down. Be sure to pack those items first, them fill the space with smaller and smaller items. If you plan this well, you likely can get away with only renting a truck or trailer for a single day, which cuts costs!
What are your tips for a cost-effective move? What things are worth the money or not for you? Let us know!