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Moving Budget Checklist | How to Plan for Relocation Costs

According to the AMSA, over 37 million Americans move each year. The average cost of an out-of-state move is over $4,300. That’s more than 7% of the median household’s annual income, as reported by the Census Bureau. Numerous costs are involved with a household move, and you’ll want to make sure you plan for all of them. Use this handy checklist to budget for your relocation costs.

Moving Services

Your relocation service is likely to be your most significant expense. The cost of this line item will vary depending on how much assistance you need with your move. You can select anything from a full-service moving company to a do-it-yourself approach. A full-service company, like Apple Moving, can:

  • Pack your household goods in your old house
  • Load your belongings onto a clean, well-maintained truck or trailer
  • Transport your goods
  • Unload your goods from the vehicle
  • Unpack your things into your new home

You don’t have to use all these services, however. You can save money by packing up your goods yourself, or by unpacking them, or both. You can also hire movers to pack and load without hiring them to transport. Decide what level of service you desire and budget accordingly.

If you aren’t using a full-service relocation service, you can hire movers by the hour to pack, load, unload, and unpack. You may want to save money by doing the packing and unpacking yourself, but it is still helpful to have movers to do the heavy lifting.

Packing Supplies

You won’t need to buy packing supplies with full-service movers, but if you want to save money, you can pack your things yourself. You’ll need:

  • High-quality moving boxes
  • Moving blankets to protect furniture from damage
  • Cords and rope for securing items
  • Moving tape
  • Bubble wrap and packing paper

You can save money on packing supplies by finding free moving boxes or using other household items, like towels, blankets, and t-shirts to cushion breakables instead of bubble wrap.

Personal Travel Costs

Even if you are using a moving company that supplies the truck, you’ll still need to budget for your travel costs. If you are traveling by plane or train to your new home, make sure you include the following items in your relocation budget:

  • Transportation to and from the airport or train station
  • Airfare or train fare
  • Baggage fees
  • Meals consumed during your journey

If you are driving yourself, you need to budget for:

  • Gas
  • Meals consumed during your road trip
  • An oil change or car tune-up (if it’s a long-distance trip)
  • Hotels (if it’s a multi-day drive)

Vehicle Transportation Costs

Don’t forget the cost of getting your vehicles to your new location. One of the cheapest options may be to drive your car, motorcycle, or SUV yourself because that way you can combine your travel costs and your vehicle transportation costs into one.

However, some people have more vehicles than they can drive, or they don’t have time to drive their cars across several states. In this case, you will need to plan for a vehicle relocation service, which might include shipping your non-moving vehicle or hiring someone to drive it to your new home for you.

Utility Hookups

One of the expenses of moving is the cost of hooking up the utilities to your new home. Be sure to budget for any one-time gas, electricity, water, cable, or Internet set-up fees or required deposits.

Deposit or Home Owner’s Fees

If you are moving to a rental property, be sure to include the cost of the deposit in your moving budget checklist. According to Nolo, in most states, security deposits are limited to one or two month’s rent. If you are buying a house or condo, include your first payment of condo fees or HOA fees in your budget.

License, Registration, and Inspection Fees

If you move to a new state, you’ll have to register your vehicle(s) and update your driver’s license, so include these fees in your budget. You may also have to pay for an inspection of your car before you can get it registered, as inspection requirements vary from state to state.

By thinking through your moving expenses ahead of time, you can stick to your moving budget and avoid spending a fortune on your relocation. As you plan your move, let Apple Moving help you check affordable moving services off your list! Austin’s best moving company also has locations across the country and offers competitively-priced interstate relocations. To get started with a free moving quote, please call us or fill out the convenient quote form, and an agent will get back to you.

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