10% off packing materials when you book – Use code HAPPY23

10% off packing materials when you book – Use code HAPPY23

budgeting for the move

Budgeting for Your Move: Hidden Costs to Watch Out For

Manny Sahmbi June 30, 2024

Updated: July 9th, 2024

Moving home is exciting but stressful, amazing but difficult, worth the effort but a lot of effort indeed. One of the best tips we can offer after years of moving people and businesses is creating a clear budget (and sticking to it!).

It’s easy to plan for certain things, although there’s a whole host of hidden costs involved when moving that are very easy to miss until it’s too late… This article from our expert moving team is a top level look at some of the lesser known items you should include in your budget. In a nutshell, these are the areas we cover:

  1. Planning & Initial Costs
  2. Hidden Costs of Packing Materials
  3. Insurance & Liability
  4. Storage Fees
  5. Travel Expenses

Take a look and reach out if you have any questions we haven’t already answered, we’re always happy to talk!

1. Planning and Initial Costs

Moving Company Fees

Moving company fees can vary based on several factors. Typically, you can expect to pay a basic charge, which serves as the starting point for your moving quote. This base rate often depends on the size of your move, whether it’s a small apartment or a larger home, and the distance traveled. Understanding which type of moving van fits your move can help estimate costs more accurately.

Additionally, moving companies may apply additional fees based on the weight of your belongings, the distance to be traveled, or any complexities involved in the move, such as navigating stairs or handling delicate items. These additional charges ensure that the moving company can cover the extra resources and effort required for your specific relocation needs.

For a breakdown of removals fees with Happy2Move, take a look at our pricing

DIY Moving Costs

Another option when moving home is doing-it-yourself. This can be a cost-effective solution in certain scenarios, although it’s important to note that it often comes to more than you’d expect. You need to budget for renting your own van, paying for the fuel, purchasing moving supplies/materials, and lastly taking the time off from work.

Zoopla released their Top tips for a stress-free DIY move a few months ago. The main takeaways are as follows:

  • Make sure you have all the packaging materials you need, from good brown tape to decent boxes
  • Approach packing with efficiency and intelligence, starting with the least used rooms and items
  • Be sure to book the right size van and sort out parking suspensions and permits well ahead of moving day.

2. Hidden Costs of Packing Materials

Packing materials warrant their own section in this article as there’s more to them than people think, it’s important to recognise the costs associated. They cater to different types of items, from compact boxes suitable for home moves to robust tape essential for larger-scale commercial relocations. To see our full range of packing materials visit the Happy2Move Box Shop.

Speciality Boxes

Specialty boxes are key for protecting specific types of items during a move. Wardrobe boxes, for instance, are designed to transport hanging clothes directly from your closet to the new location, reducing the need for folding and packing garments separately. Dish and glassware boxes come with dividers and extra padding to prevent fragile items from shifting and breaking during transit.

While these boxes offer added protection, they often come at a higher cost compared to standard moving boxes, so it’s important to budget accordingly based on the quantity and type of items you need to pack. Packing items like this in standard cardboard boxes is of course an option too, although with the stresses moving, why add the risk of breaking items to the mix?

Additional Protective Materials

In addition to specialty boxes, investing in additional protective materials is crucial for ensuring the safety of your belongings. Furniture blankets provide cushioning and protection against scratches and dents for large items like sofas and tables. Stretch wrap is useful for securing furniture drawers and doors in place to prevent them from opening during the move.

These materials not only safeguard your furniture and fragile items but also contribute to the overall cost of your move. Properly estimating the amount needed based on the size and quantity of items will help you avoid overbuying and reduce leftover materials after the move. Expert moving services can often provide these materials.

Overbuying and Leftover Materials

Accurately estimating the amount of packing materials required can be challenging but is essential for managing costs. Overbuying can lead to unnecessary expenses and leftover materials that may not be easily reusable or returnable. To estimate accurately, assess the quantity and size of items you plan to pack. 

We are working on a storage and packing calculator, which will both help estimate costs for this. If you end up miscalculating then consider any of the following:

  • Return them
  • Freecycle
  • Green bin
  • Donate

Reallymoving detailed each of these in an article, take a look!

3. Insurance and Liability

Basic Coverage Provided

Moving companies typically offer limited liability coverage based on weight, which might not fully protect valuable or sentimental items. It’s important to note that Happy2Move provides comprehensive insurance for all items, ensuring thorough coverage and peace of mind.

Handling a move independently means taking on the responsibility of arranging insurance yourself, which can add complexity and potential risks. Choosing a trusted moving company like Happy2Move simplifies the process and guarantees comprehensive protection.

Additional Insurance

Considerfull value protection, where you can declare the total value of your goods for more comprehensive coverage. Alternatively, explore third-party insurance policies tailored to your needs for added peace of mind.

4. Storage Fees

Depending on your circumstances, temporary or ongoing storage may be a part of your move. Whether you’ve downsized your home or office and need extra storage, or you’re facing a gap between moves without storage options, it’s important to budget for these extra costs.

Happy2Move offers a variety of storage solutions to keep you covered.

Temporary Storage during Transit

During your move, temporary storage can be essential if there’s a delay in the transition between your old and new residence or office. This interim solution ensures your belongings remain safe and secure until they can be transported to their final destination. However, it’s important to consider the cost implications of potential delays, as prolonged storage periods may incur additional fees.

Happy2Move provides reliable temporary storage options, offering peace of mind during uncertain times in your relocation process.

Long-term Storage

For those needing extended storage solutions, long-term storage options are available with Happy2Move. Monthly rental fees are typically based on the size and duration of storage required, ensuring flexibility to meet varying storage needs.

Additionally, facilities may charge for security features and climate control to maintain optimal conditions for your belongings. These fees ensure that your items are protected from theft, damage, and environmental factors, providing reassurance throughout their storage period.

5. Travel Expenses

Another commonly overlooked part of the moving experience is the hidden fees accrued by traveling between your old home and new home (or office). To avoid any financial surprises, ensure you factor in the following:

Fuel and Toll Charges

For long-distance moves, fuel costs and toll charges can significantly impact your overall moving budget. Fuel expenses depend on the distance traveled and the fuel efficiency of your vehicle. Toll charges vary depending on the highways and bridges used during your journey. Planning your route and estimating these costs beforehand can help you budget more effectively for your move.

Meals and Accommodation

During multi-day relocations, consider the costs of meals and accommodation for yourself and your moving crew. Overnight stays may be necessary, especially for long-distance moves or when the journey spans multiple days. Budgeting for meals and accommodation ensures that everyone remains well-rested and fueled throughout the relocation process.

Car Transport

If you need to transport vehicles as part of your move, consider the costs involved. Car transport services vary depending on the distance, type of vehicle, and preferred shipping method (open carrier or enclosed transport). Factor in these costs when planning your move to ensure your vehicles arrive safely at your new destination. Moving companies provide the vehicles as part of the service, taking one headache away.

Effective Budgeting to Reduce the Cost of Moving

Getting Accurate Quotes

When seeking moving quotes, provide comprehensive information about your move to ensure accuracy. Details such as the size of your home or office, the number of items to be moved, and any special requirements can affect the cost estimate. This helps in avoiding surprises and ensures you get an estimate that reflects your specific needs.

Decluttering Before the Move

Before packing, consider decluttering by selling or donating items you no longer need. This reduces the volume of items to be moved, potentially lowering moving costs and streamlining the moving process.

Scheduling Efficiently

Optimise your moving schedule by avoiding peak times, especially in busy cities like London or New York City. Moving during off-peak seasons or mid-week can often result in lower costs and smoother logistics.

Negotiating Discounts

Don’t hesitate to ask moving companies for discounts or promotions. Being flexible with your moving dates or sharing a truck with other moves can sometimes qualify you for reduced rates. For example, Happy2Move currently offers a 10% discount with the code Happy23.

Research Tax Deductions

For commercial moves, moving expenses may be tax-deductible as a business expense. Consult with a tax professional to explore potential deductions based on your specific circumstances, ensuring you maximise tax benefits associated with your relocation.

Looking For a Budget Friendly Moving Company?

Reach out today to request a detailed quote tailored to your specific needs. Our team at Happy2Move is here to answer any questions and ensure your move is stress-free and cost-effective. Let’s make your move a success—get started now and experience the difference with Happy2Move!

Summarised FAQs For Quick Reference

How exactly do I budget for a move?

Budgeting for your move involves several critical steps. Start by listing all potential moving costs such as hiring a mover, purchasing packing materials, and any hidden costs to consider. Additionally, factor in utility deposits, home insurance, and even the possibility of a security deposit for a new rental home. Creating a detailed moving budget will help you avoid financial surprises and manage the costs associated with moving effectively.

What are some other hidden costs when moving home?

Extra hidden costs include utility connection fees, cleaning costs for the old home, and transportation costs for pets. 

How can I make my move house more cost-effective?

To make your move house more cost-effective, consider selling or donating unnecessary items, and schedule your move during off-peak times. 

Should I hire professional movers or do it myself?

Hiring professional movers can offer a stress-free and smooth moving experience especially for long-distance moves or if you have many belongings. 

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