It’s not an easy decision to move across the country. And if you want to make it even harder, try moving coast-to-coast. You’ll need a lot of time and money for that project. To help you prepare, here are some things to consider before making the big leap.
1. Budget for the big expenses
Just because you have a budget in mind doesn’t mean you’ll stick with it. How many people stick to their New Year’s resolutions? Don’t beat yourself up if your budget gets blown away. You’re moving across the country – of course; some extra expenses will crop up! But on top of new furniture, utilities and rent, there are a few other things you should set aside money for before you move.
2. Be sure to research utility costs
Utility costs can vary between states and even cities within a state. If gas and electricity are going to be high where you want to move, plan accordingly when setting your budget. Look at average monthly utility bills based on your region and use that as a guide.
3. Avoid surprises by using an itemized moving quote
If you want to avoid any extra costs when moving, it’s best not to get blindsided. Using an online moving cost calculator or creating your own budget estimate can help give you a realistic sense of what the total cost will be when looking for the best coast to coast moving companies. With this information in hand, you’ll know if you need to come up with some extra cash.
4. Keep tabs on hidden expenses
Be sure to account for all the things that often come with a move — such as fees for cleaning and painting, appliance disposal charges, locksmiths, even new landscaping supplies. And don’t forget about those last-minute impulse buys — you can never have too much packing paper or bubble wrap!
5. Don’t trust a low estimate from a moving company.
When figuring out how much money to set aside for your move, don’t just rely on the information provided by your mover. Different movers may charge different rates based on their size, weight of items, and other factors. Instead, choose three competitively-priced companies for estimates (or get multiple estimates) and go over the list of charges when looking for the best coast to coast moving companies.
6. Consider residential vs. commercial moves
Whether you plan to move across town or across the country, there are two ways to do it — either a residential or commercial move. Residential moving companies generally charge less for moves, but it may take longer to complete your relocation since you’re dealing with individual movers and smaller crews. On the other hand, a commercial mover has more manpower and can get your move done more quickly – but their rates tend to be higher.
7. Don’t let the fear of high shipping costs stop you from moving
You should keep in mind that a nationwide move will likely be much cheaper than staying put for years at a time over the long run. Just make sure you understand all the charges involved and have extra money set aside if things get out of control.
8. Plan on paying an exit fee when moving out-of-state
And you won’t need to break into a new bank account either – many movers will accept payments with debit or credit cards.
9. Get yourself a moving truck if possible.
If you have the space for it, moving vans and moving trucks are an ideal way to save money on your move by doing much of the heavy lifting yourself. Loading up some rental equipment can also help speed things along once you get where you’re going, too. Keep in mind that there are limits on how much furniture (and other belongings) you can place inside a U-Haul truck, so be sure to check their website for details if renting one as part of your move plan.
10. Leave ample time for packing ahead of your move
You don’t want to be in a situation where you are waiting for certain items to arrive before you can start packing up. Make sure you’re prepared with plenty of time and supplies so that your move goes smoothly even under the tightest deadline pressure!
Planning a move can be difficult, but with some careful planning and research, you should be able to find the right balance between cost of living and convenience. Moving costs vary depending on where in the country you’re moving from or to; sometimes, it’s easier (and cheaper) just to stay put for now rather than uprooting your whole life at once. Either way, make sure to account for all your expenses before making a decision!