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Follow this Template to Create a Moving Expenses Budget

IBISWorld reports that the moving industry grosses over $18 billion a year. That means people are spending a whole lot of money on moving! But how are they spending that money? Moving involves a variety of expenses that you might not think of right away. Use this convenient template to budget moving expenses for your next move.

Supplies for Packing

The only reason you wouldn’t include this item in your budget template is if you plan to hire a full-service moving company. If you do, the moving company will supply packing supplies as part of the overall price of the service.

If, however, you plan to pack up any or all your things, be sure to include this line item in your budget. Here are ten packing supplies that are a “must have”:

  1. Cardboard moving boxes that are of high quality
  2. Moving crates or containers
  3. Bubble wrap for fragile items
  4. Packing paper to separate items and pad empty spaces in boxes
  5. Moving blankets to wrap furniture, pianos, electronics, and other large items
  6. Packing peanuts to protect dishes and other such breakables
  7. Ropes and bungee cords to secure things in place and prevent them from sliding and being damaged
  8. Several rolls of moving tape (do not substitute other cheaper forms of tape)
  9. Permanent black markers for labeling boxes
  10. Garment boxes for clothing items you do not wish to become folded or wrinkled in transit
  11. Movers’ wrap to help secure moving blankets and drawers in place

Keep in mind; you can save money by finding free moving boxes or using items you already have, like towels and t-shirts, to cushion your breakables.

Moving Service, Movers or Truck Rental

The most expensive moving service you can purchase is the “full service” variety. A full-service relocation company will save you a lot of time. They pack up your household goods for you at your old house, loading them onto the truck they provide, transport your belongings to your new home, and then unload the items from the vehicle. A full-service moving service will even unpack everything for you, break down the boxes, and haul them away.

If you don’t want to splurge for the whole kit and caboodle, however, you can still hire movers to make the loading and unloading easier and faster. Even if you are moving in a rented truck or your vehicle(s), you can pay cheap movers an hourly fee to help you pack, load, and unload. Most moving companies charge $95 or more per hour, depending on the number of helpers you need. If you plan to drive a rented truck rather than using a truck service, you’ll need to include that item in the budget as well. Shop around for multiple quotes and don’t forget to add the estimated cost of gasoline and insurance to your total truck rental cost.

Alternatively, you may want to rent a portable storage container. With this option, you do the packing and loading, and the company transports the pod to your new home. It’s like a hybrid of a traditional moving company and a DIY move.

Individual and Family Travel

In addition to moving your stuff, you’ll have to move yourself and your family. Be sure to include the following travel costs:

  • Airfare, baggage fees, and transportation to and from the airport if you are flying
  • Train fare, baggage fees, and transportation to and from the train station if you are moving by train
  • Cost of gasoline if you are driving your vehicle
  • Cost of meals consumed while moving to your new home, whether on the road, at the airport, or at the train station
  • Cost of overnight lodging (hotels or motels) if your move will take more than one day
  • Cost of an oil change if you are driving your vehicle and expect to put several hundred miles on it

Vehicle Transportation

Unless you are driving all your cars yourself to your new home, you’ll have to pay to have them moved. There are multiple ways you can transport your vehicle:

  • Rent a car trailer to attach to another vehicle.
  • Pay someone to drive the car to your new destination. If a friend wants a road trip vacation, you might be able to get your vehicle moved for just the price of gas.
  • Ship your car via train or trailer using a vehicle shipping service.

Rental Deposit, Condo Fee, or HOA Fee

You’ll need to budget for your rental deposit at your new apartment, or your condo or HOA fee if you are buying a home in an association. The average condo fee in the U.S. is $200 a month, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, but this can vary widely from state to state and city to city. HOA fees tend to be lower and wider ranging, but they’re still important to include in your budget. HOA fees are on the rise nationwide, and averaged $331 a year in 2015, according to the popular real estate website Trulia.

If you are renting an apartment, you’ll need to put down a security deposit. You can expect to pay no more than once or twice the monthly rent for a deposit on an unfurnished apartment, though in some states limits are higher or there are no limits. Nolo has a list of deposit limits by state, but obviously, you’ll have to check with your landlord for the precise amount.

Utility Services

Moving requires you to hook up new utilities at your new home. There are often one-time hook-up fees involved, and in some cases, if your credit is poor, you will also have to pay a deposit. Include in your budget hook-up fees for electricity and gas, water and sewer, Internet, and telephone (if you plan to have a landline), and cable television.

Updated Registration and Driver’s License

If you are moving to another state, you will need to register your vehicles in your new state and get a state driver’s license, typically within 30 to 90 days of arrival. Car registration and driver’s licenses always come with fees, so be sure to include these in your budget. You may also need to include the cost of a safety and emissions inspection for your vehicle, which may be required before registration.

Keeping these expenses in mind will help you keep your moving budget in check. For long distance movers quotes, contact Great Guys ( today! Get estimates from up to four licensed, insured moving companies, so you can make an informed decision about the best way to move your things.


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