Between hiring movers, using a moving truck, commissioning a realtor, buying packing materials, and paying title companies to close on your new house — moving can exhaust your wallet.
I should know because I’ve moved my family 15 times in 10 years.
This last move, we finally got smart and did every trick in the book to save money. We ended up saving $7,761!
Here are five things we did to save money while moving:
1. I asked both the selling agent and buying agent to take a lower fee, and saved $6,475.
The housing market was HOT and our house was primed to sell. Our realtor was just starting her business and was more interested in future referrals, so she agreed to take a 1.5% selling fee instead of 3%.
She went the extra mile and also promised to ask the buying agent to take a 2% commission fee, instead of 3%.
Instead of watching $12,950 of our home equity go straight to real estate agent fees, we cut that in half, paying a total of 3% (not 6%), and saved $6,475.
2. I got all my packing materials for free and saved $710.
Did you know there are at least 27 ways to get free moving boxes?
When Move.com estimated that my modest family of four would need $710 in packing supplies, I got to work on scrounging up free boxes instead.
I didn’t buy a single box, then paid it forward (and got them out of my house) by posting them in the “Free” section on Craigslist after we unpacked. I stacked the boxes in my driveway, and within a few hours, the boxes were gone, and someone else was enjoying free packaging.
3. I rented a discounted Penske truck from Home Depot and saved $26.
Home Depot’s Penske moving trucks are cheaper to rent than U-Haul.
I found out I could get 10% off for reserving my one-way truck online at HomeDepot.com (plus another 10% with my AAA membership), which saved me an instant $26.
For example, I used a 26′ truck to move from Boise, Idaho to Portland, Oregon. My Home Depot (Penske) truck came in at $146.70 with unlimited mileage (including a $16.30 online booking discount and a 10% AAA discount). I would have paid $173 for the same trip in the same size U-Haul truck.
4. I held a garage sale (I even sold my stockpile) and made $250 in one morning.
I made sure to follow KCL’s suggestions for selling my stockpile before adding those items to my garage sale. The effort was worth it. Within four hours, I’d made $250 and had a lot less junk to move.
5. I donated my garage sale leftovers to Goodwill for another $300 in tax deductions.
After my garage sale was over, instead of sticking everything back in my garage, I hauled it to Goodwill and turned in my $300 donation receipt as a tax deduction.