Whether it’s across the street or across the country, moving is a huge pain. Most of my time and energy lately has been overtaken by my plans to relocate to a bigger apartment.
I was lucky enough, however, to find a fantastic new apartment complex that’s perfectly located near my full-time job. The whole process has been pretty smooth, and while many expenses are unavoidable, there are plenty of ways to keep costs down – by planning ahead – that will make your move quick and easy.
Change your address asap. As soon as you find out your new address, head over to USPS.com and update your mailing address. You can even specify what day you want the mail forwarding to take effect. Getting your address changed asap, is very important because:
- The longer you wait, the more likely you are to forget
- You could miss important letters and packages
- It’s one less thing you have to worry about on moving day
- You get special discounts and coupons when using the USPS moving kit
Clean, organize and pack in advance. The more you can get done before moving day arrives, the better prepared and less stressed you will be. Hiring professional movers can save you a lot of time and headache, but that’s only if you have the money to pay them. Whether you do everything yourself or hire professionals, you will save a lot of money and effort, by getting everything cleaned, organized and packed away in advance.
Make extra cash and donate items to charity. As I was going through the stuff in my apartment, I noticed some of it was actually pretty valuable – at least to make a little money by reselling it. Once you’ve sorted through all your belongings, you can decide whether you want to sell or donate anything you don’t need anymore. This is a great way to make some extra cash or donate to a worthy cause while getting rid of non-essentials.
When in doubt, throw it out. That’s my motto in life. Once you’ve cleaned, organized and sold/donated your stuff, it’s time to trash anything else. Because the less you own, the less you will have to haul on moving day. This makes it easier on both you and your budget, since you won’t have to spend as much money paying professionals (or your friends) to help move all your belongings.
Use colored labels for each box. Moving can get chaotic very quickly, so you want to make it as easy as possible on yourself. I like to use color coded labels, for each box based on the location in my house. For example; kitchen items/boxes get a red label, bathroom boxes get a blue, and etc. You could also use colored packing tape, or colored markers. It doesn’t really matter what system you use, just as long as you clearly mark the boxes so they will be easily identified.
Quick Tip: When disassembling your electronics, appliances and gadgets, try using bread clip tabs, binder clips or twist ties (all tips from Pinterest), to keep your cords and other equipment organized.
Find moving boxes on the cheap. One of the ways I like to get free boxes, is by collecting them over time. I have no problem asking my friends, family and co-workers if they have any packing materials or extra boxes for me to use. I also save the boxes from orders I make online that get delivered to my house. Here are some other ideas:
- Find free or cheap boxes from individuals on Craigslist
- Ask your local liquor store or grocery store
- Gather packing materials from the local recycling center
- Try large restaurants or fast food places
Transfer and move utilities ahead of time. Some companies will charge a setup or transfer fee to move your utilities. By planning ahead you can be sure to budget for these extra moving costs, which will help you save money. This is also a good time to reevaluate your subscription services, to see if you need to keep paying for them. With online subscriptions like Nexflix and Hulu Plus, there’s no hassle for moving your TV or cable service and it’s much cheaper.
Are you planning to move anytime soon? How do you make the process easier and more efficient come moving day?
Photo Credit: Robert S. Donovan