Need to move but don’t want to go broke?
I’ve got you covered. Read on for some of my favorite tips for how to move easily and save a couple bucks!
#1 Free boxes!
Check the local liquor stores! A friend of mine used to work at a liquor store in the area, and said people would come in all the time asking if they had any extra boxes. They give them out for free, and the boxes are usually great quality – strong enough to hold all those heavy liquor bottles!
Ask your friends and family! Some people really underestimate this resource. If you have any friends or family that have moved at all ever, it’s not unlikely that they may have some old boxes stashed in their garage that they would love to give you. They may even know where else to go to get some.
Large retailers are another great resource, a lady I once helped move told us that she’d gone to her local Walmart to get some banana boxes for her books. She liked them because they’re really sturdy. However, they had no lids and they were open partly on the bottom, so be careful with that, but retailers have all kinds of boxes and it’s definitely worth a shot.
These are just a few of the ways you can get your hands on some free moving boxes. There are many more! Here are a few more ideas to get you started:
- https://www.uhaul.com/Exchange/ (just search ‘free’!)
- Offices (empty paper boxes are great for this)
- Your local recycling drop off point
- Grocery Stores
- Facebook Marketplace
- Office supply stores
#2 Use household items as boxes
So you managed to snag all the free boxes in the area but still need some more storage? This next tip saved my butt in college. (I severely underestimated the amount of junk I needed to remove from my apartment – oops.)
If you have any organizer bins or stools that double as home storage, why not use it as a box? Suitcases and dresser drawers are great for this! You may not even have to dig the stuff out of it, which could save a significant amount of time and distraction.
Consider though, that if you use an item that is already somewhat heavy, you may want to fill it with lighter things like pillows or stuffed animals, rather than books or other heavy items that could make it difficult to move.
#3 Schedule a donation pick-up for free, or sell your stuff!
If you’ve been purging your home of unnecessary items before the move (which I highly recommend by the way) then you may find yourself with a pile of stuff in the corner that you don’t know what to do with. There are plenty of donation drop-off locations like Goodwill for example, that will take your stuff off your hands for free.
If you don’t want to spend the time or gas to get your stuff to donation spot though, there are several organizations out there that will come and pick it up for free! And don’t forget, listing the items online free on a site like Craigslist is always another option if you have time.
Alternatively, you could try to earn some extra cash to cover the moving cost by selling some of your stuff online or at a garage sale. Facebook Market, Craigslist, and eBay are some of the most popular ways for people to list their stuff on the web. Check them out!
#4 Don’t accept the first quote you receive!
When you’re in a rush to get your stuff out the door, it can be tempting to buy the services of the first moving company to answer the phone. But if you take the time to research your options, you could save yourself a lot of time and headache.
First, consider whether you even need a moving company to help you. Would you be able to do it just as quickly by enlisting the help of a few friends and their moms’ mini vans? If so, taking that option could just save you a ton of money.
If you do need professional assistance, it is always a good idea to check out your options before making any costly decisions. If you go with the first company you see, you could end up overpaying big time! One rule I have for myself is to always get at least three bids from different companies before deciding.
But be careful not to just look at prices, you could end up choosing the cheapest option and end up with damaged or even missing belongings from a low cost but disreputable company. I recommend checking for customer reviews online or asking around for local recommendations. Keep your stuff and and your money safe!
#5 Choose a mid-week, mid-month move date
This is a great tip if you do decide to hire movers. Most often, people prefer to move at the beginning or end of a month when their leases are up, and on weekends when they don’t have to work. If you can manage to move in the middle of the month or week (or both!) you could see way cheaper moving prices than in those peak weeks.
#6 Save donation receipts for tax season
Say you do decide to get rid of some stuff and donate it to your favorite local charity or second chance shop, your benefits don’t end there! If you can keep those donation receipts until tax season they could amount to some serious tax write offs. Yay – more money back!