Moving Budget Guide

Budgeting for Your Move

Moving certainly taps your bank account. How much depends on a number of factors: whether your employer is helping with the cost, how much ‘stuff’ you have, and how far you are moving.
To get an idea of how much your move will cost, start calling service providers for estimates and list your expenses, which may include:


  • Home Repairs ___________
  • Cleaning supplies/services ___________
  • Rental expenses new city ___________
  • Application fees ___________
  • First and last month’s rent ___________
  • Damage/security deposit ___________
  • Pet deposit ___________
  • Utility deposits ___________
  • Storage unit rental ___________


  • Professional moving services or truck rental ____________
  • Moving supplies ____________
  • Food and beverage for volunteers ____________
  • Tips for professional movers/Gifts for volunteers ____________

Moving Travel

  • Airline Tickets __________
  • Fuel __________
  • Tolls __________
  • Meals __________
  • Hotels __________


If you don’t have the money saved, start saving as soon as you can. Other potential sources of money include:

  • Income from the sale of your spare car, furniture, or other belongings (hold a garage or yard sale).
  • The cleaning/damage deposit on your current rental and any utility deposits. You probably won’t be reimbursed until AFTER your move, though, so you’ll need to pay moving expenses up front some other way.
  • Your employer: payout for vacation time not taken.

Moving without breaking the bank You can save money on your move by following these suggestions.

Saving on moving supplies

  • Obtain boxes in the cheapest way possible.
  • Ask a friend or colleague who has recently moved to give or sell you their boxes.
  • Check the classified ads; people sometimes sell all their moving boxes for a flat rate.
  • Ask your local grocery or department store for their empty boxes.
  • Borrow a tape dispenser instead of buying one.
  • Instead of buying bubble wrap, crumple newspaper, plain unused newsprint, or tissue paper to pad breakables.
  • Shop around for the cheapest deal on packing tape and other supplies.
  • Instead of renting padding blankets from the truck rental company, use your own blankets, linens, and area rugs for padding. But bear in mind that you may have to launder them when you arrive, which is an expense itself.

Saving on labor

  • If you use professional movers, consider a “you pack, we drive” arrangement, in which you pack boxes, and the moving company loads, moves, and unloads your belongings.
  • Call around and compare moving cost estimates.
  • If you can live without all your stuff for a while at your new or old location, moving companies sometimes give significant cost reductions if they can short-term-store and consolidate your moving items with other customers’ items.
  • If you move yourself, round up “volunteers” to help you load and clean on moving day. It’s still customary to reward them with moving-day food and beverages (and maybe a small cash gift). You may also have to “volunteer” to help them move some day. But you may still save some money compared to hiring professionals.
  • Save on child and pet care. Ask family or friends to watch your young children and pets on moving day.

More Moving Tips and Guides

Browse through our assortment of moving guides. Our moving guides provide you with useful information that will benefit you during your moving experience. To see one of our moving guides go ahead and choose one from the list below.