Moving Costs 101: Cheapest Way to Move Across the Country

Moving from one end of town to the other can be expensive if you’re not careful. But what happens if you’re moving across the country? Is there any way to keep your expenses under control?

The answer is yes! At Addition Financial, we’re committed to helping our members navigate the twists and turns of life. In doing that, we’ve come up with some money-saving tips to help you reduce your moving costs and make that big move without busting through your budget.

Purge Your Belongings Early

Your moving costs are directly related to how many belongings you’re moving. The less you have, the less you’ll pay. Even if you’re doing a DIY move, fewer belongings can mean a smaller trailer or lower shipping costs.

Doing a purge of your belongings will help you cull out the stuff you don’t need and identify what you need to bring with you. You can donate or sell whatever you’re not bringing to help you offset your expenses.

Consider a DIY Move

If you’re not bringing furniture on your cross-country move, you can save a ton of money by moving your own stuff using your car and a trailer. Alternatively, if you’ve got a friend who’s willing to make the drive with you, you could drive your car and a friend could drive a rental truck – or vice versa.

You might be bringing only a few things that can fit in your car without a trailer. If you think you can do the move yourself without hiring professional movers, it can help you keep your moving costs very low. You’ll need to factor in gas and a few overnight stays, but you can still save a lot of money this way.

Get a AAA Membership

A DIY move involves time and some expenses that we mentioned already – gas, hotel stays and meals on the road. While buying a AAA membership is an expense, it’s one that can cut your moving costs if you use it wisely.

AAA offers discounts on hotel and motel rooms, meals and other travel-related expenses to members. You’ll also get 24/7 roadside assistance – a must for a cross-country move – and they even provide discounts on things like car insurance.

If you do buy a membership, plan out your stops ahead of time to make sure you take advantage of discounts. Not all hotels along an interstate will offer discounts, but many will. The same goes for restaurants and gas stations.

Rent a Moving Pod

There might be reasons that you don’t want to do a totally DIY move. Maybe you don’t have a car yet and you’re planning on buying one once you’re settled into your new place. Maybe you just don’t like the idea of being alone on the interstate.

Fortunately, there’s more than one way to save money on a cross-country move. One option is to rent a moving pod. It’s a portable storage container that’s delivered to you. You pack your belongings into it. The company that owns the pod comes to pick it up and moves it across the country on a truck with other pods.

The benefit of this method is that it’s way cheaper than hiring a moving company. Depending on what you’re bringing, you may be able to get the move done for as little as $1,500. (That’s a bargain for a cross-country move!)

Ship Your Belongings

This next way of reducing moving costs won’t help if you’ve got lots of furniture to move, but if you’ve mostly got clothes and books, it can be a huge money-saver. The idea? Pack your belongings and ship them via the US Postal Service, UPS or FedEx.

The benefit of this option is that your stuff will be delivered to your door at the other end if you time it right. For example, if you’re flying to your new home, you can easily get there before any shipments arrive. Best of all? The USPS has media rates you can use for books. They’ll take a bit longer to get there than if you sent them via Priority Mail, but you’ll save money.

Time Your Move for Savings

Moving during the summer is always going to be expensive because families with kids like to move while school is out. The same is true for the tail end of any month. However, if you’re willing to bring a little flexibility into the mix, you can save money on your moving costs.

For example, can you move in the middle of the month? Can your move wait until school has started? Asking these questions ahead of time – and comparing prices – can help you get the best possible deal for your big move.

Moving across the country is a big deal, but that doesn’t mean you need a big budget to do it. The tips we’ve included here can help you cut your moving costs, so you have more to spend when you arrive in your new home!

Click here to learn how Addition Financial’s checking accounts can help you navigate your move with ease.

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