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Moving is stressful. Even the most serene people have at least one or two epic meltdowns during the moving process when they insist that they just want to chuck everything into the trash and start completely over. There are a lot of reasons that moving can be stressful and upsetting. One of those is the sheer expense involved in moving all of your stuff from one location to another. Thankfully, there are things you can do to both reduce and offset some of that expense.

Hire Movers

Wait, what? If you’re trying to save money on a move, wouldn’t you do everything yourself? Not necessarily! Hiring professional movers to transport your belongings from one home to another is often cheaper than doing everything on your own, say the experts at North American moving services. One-way trips cost more at the outset (though return trips can also rack up the fuel expenses) when you do the driving. Whether or not you fill up the whole van doesn’t matter for DiY. With professional movers, you are often charged for the amount of space your belongings take up instead of the size of the truck. Plus, the amount of time and energy you’ll save by letting the pros do the lifting and loading (and the reverse process) is definitely worth whatever you pay to not have to do it yourself.

Downsize

Obviously, when you move, you are going to get rid of some of your belongings. As you go through your current home, you’re likely to find lots of things you had completely forgotten about that you have either used up or no longer use at all. It is important, though, to go beyond just tossing the trash. Evaluate everything in your home. Do you use everything at least once a year? Does that thing have a lot of sentimental value? If the answer to both of those answers is no, you can get rid of whatever it is and save yourself some packing space. And, as we mentioned, the less space you need, the cheaper your move will be.

Another benefit to dramatic downsizing is that it will make it easier to move into a smaller home. Smaller homes are cheaper to buy and rent, cheaper to heat and cool, cheaper to maintain, etc. This is another method for reducing the overall cost of your move.

Selling Your Stuff

This is where we start to talk about offsetting the costs involved in moving. Instead of just throwing away the items you aren’t going to pack, sell them! Sell them online or to consignment shops. Have a yard sale (people will buy anything at a yard sale). And then, once you’ve sold everything you can, offer what’s left up in trade for what you need to make your move easier like boxes, packing help, etc. There are a lot of great sites out there, like Rooster, that let you make contact with people who need the things you’re giving away. Then, after you’ve gotten rid of everything you can, donate whatever hasn’t been claimed to your local thrift shop. Make sure you get a receipt because that donation will likely be tax deductible!

Use Free Stuff

We touched on this already with our advice to offer items you’re shedding as trade for help with various parts of your moving process. There are other ways you can get what you need for free. For example, most retail shops are happy to give the boxes in which they receive their merchandise to people who need them. Instead of buying newspaper or packing paper, grab a stack of your local free weeklies and penny savers and use those. Or, better yet, use your own clothing and linens.

Use the Internet

This isn’t so much about the costs of the physical move itself as it is about learning about and adjusting to your new environment. It can get expensive to make several trips to a new city to scout housing and to show your kids around. This is where the Internet comes in handy. You can use it to scour your new town for information about neighborhoods, schools, etc. Look up rentals and properties for sale. If you have friends in your new town or city, send them to look at these places as your proxy. Take your kids on virtual tours of their new schools, set them up with some local e-pals so they’ll have friends when they get there. Use the internet for as much planning as possible!

The point is: moving is almost never fun. That does not mean, however, that it has to cost you your savings! Use these tips to dramatically reduce your moving costs!

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