How to Save Money When You Move

Updated: Mar 3

Moving can be exciting, it can be exhausting, and it most definitely can be stressful, but it doesn’t have to break the bank.

Young woman packing before moving out

Here are some tips that can potentially save you money during your big move.

Complimentary Packing Supplies

It’s never too early in the moving process to start collecting items that could potentially be used as packing supplies.

Here are a few ideas on where to track down some items:

ISO (In Search Of) Posts

Moving Boxes with Dolly and Packaging Bubbles

This is a great way to find packing supplies locally. Find a community Facebook page or website that caters to people in your area who are either looking for free stuff or trying to unload stuff they no longer need. Create a post such as: “ISO moving boxes and packaging supplies.” You might find someone who has recently moved into your area that still has all their recently used packaging materials. Remember to also look through other posts to see if anybody is trying to get rid of towels, blankets, or other soft padding materials that can be used for wrapping large furniture or other valuable items.

Ask Friends and Colleagues

With the world of online shopping, it’s almost a guarantee that friends and colleagues have a few Amazon boxes with the giant bubble wrap sitting around for you to use. Ask them early on in your moving preparation so they will hopefully remember to keep the boxes and packaging for you the next time they get a delivery.

Grocery Stores

Paper or Plastic? Both. Grocery stores basically have an endless supply of paper and plastic bags. Plastic bags can be used to organize and pad smaller items, and paper bags can be crinkled up and used as packaging. Some stores will also have unwanted boxes, so make sure to ask. Please remember to recycle or pass along bags and boxes once you’re done using them.

Sell or Donate Unwanted Items

This is a great time to downsize, especially if you find items that haven’t been taken out of their original boxes from when you originally moved into your current home (we’re all guilty). It’s also a plus if you plan to hire a moving service or rent a truck because your load will be smaller and lighter.

QUICK TIP: Measure your new place to make sure that the furniture you’re planning on moving will fit.

Here are some ways to make some extra cash off those unwanted items or items that won’t work in your new place:

Items Displayed On A Table At A Garage Sale

Garage Sale

Make sure to advertise your sale with a few garage sale signs in your neighborhood. You can also list your garage sale on sites such as Yard Sale Search and Garage Sale Finder to generate more foot traffic.

Local Listings

If you don’t feel like setting up and hosting a garage sale, you can list your items for sale on sites such as Craiglist and selling apps such as OfferUp and VarageSale. Just remember to always be careful when meeting up to sell your items.


If you have items that you simply can’t sell, or you just want to pass along items you no longer use, you can always donate your items. Even though you don’t make money upfront, you might be able to write off your donations during tax season, so make sure to get an itemized receipt of your donations.

Move During Offseason

Movers Unloading Boxes Off The Back Of A Moving Truck

The peak of moving season is generally May through September, but the market starts heating up in early spring. You can generally get lower moving rates outside of the peak season, so be sure to shop around and do your research, and don’t be afraid to ask for a lower rate because they’re looking for any kind of business during their slow periods. The same goes for rental trucks if you plan on moving the items yourself.

QUICK TIP: This is another area where you can use the power of crowds and ask for moving service recommendations on Facebook.

A Few Extra Ideas:

  • Attempt to get the transfer fee dropped by your cable and Internet provider. It might take a lengthy phone call and a few threats to change services, but it’ll be worth saving the extra money.

  • Throw a packing party. Some moving companies charge to pack the items for you, but this could get pricey. Instead, invite friends and family over to have a packing party. Get some food and drinks and have a fun time packing up embarrassing items with those closest to you. It’s also a great way to spend time with people you might not see as often after you make your move.

  • If you’re moving for work, make sure to ask your company if they’ll pay for some or all your moving costs. If not, then make sure to keep receipts and consult a tax specialist come tax season to see if you can deduct moving expenses for work.

We hope these moving tips help you save a few extra bucks during your move.

If you're still looking for a place, need help financing your new home, or have general questions about the homebuying process, please feel free to Contact Us.

Opinions expressed are solely my own and do not express the views of my employer.

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