8 Best Moving Tips for an Easier and Cheaper Move

8 Best Moving Tips for an Easier and Cheaper Move Expand options

Whether you’re relocating your family to your first home, a new apartment, or all the way across the country, moving to a new home is always a significant and life-changing event. It’s an exciting prospect, but moving homes can also feel very overwhelming due to all the planning, packing, and logistics that are involved, so it’s helpful to come armed with moving tips. Many people dread the thought of moving because of the potential hassles and expenses that it brings.

With the right strategies and organization techniques, moving tips can make the process more manageable. By following our moving tips, you can simplify the process, reduce stress, and even save some money along the way. Make sure you keep these moving tips in mind in the months, weeks, and days leading up to your transition.

1. Plan As Far Ahead As Possible

This may sound obvious to most people, but believe us: your success depends heavily on how well you plan. Without proper planning, moving can quickly turn into a chaotic and overwhelming mess. For that reason (and many others), it’s wise to create a highly detailed timeline for your move to help you stay organized and ensure that tasks are completed on schedule. This way, you can prioritize essential tasks at the most appropriate times and minimize the risk of last-minute rushes.

We recommend that you start planning for your move at least eight to twelve weeks in advance, but if you have the wiggle room, consider starting your plan even earlier than that. Whether you’re a Microsoft Excel pro or a paper and notepad person, create a detailed timeline of all the must-do tasks. Here are just a few milestones to help you get started:

12-8 weeks out:

• Set a budget for your move.
• Research moving companies near you and start gathering in-person estimates.
• Research local schools for your kids.

7-4 weeks out:

• Begin the packing process gradually
• Sell or donate possessions
• Update memberships
• Review insurance policies

3-1 weeks out:

• Service the car
• Arrange for temporary housing for your kids (if needed)
• Transfer your utilities
• Transfer prescriptions
• Clean your old home

Trust us: it’s better to over-prepare for your moving day than to under-prepare for it. By initiating the planning process early, you’ll be able to get super organized and make informed choices that will contribute to a successful transition to your new home.

2. Consider the Pros and Cons of DIY vs. Professional Movers

If you’re trying to move as cheaply as possible, you may be thinking of doing everything yourself and not hiring professional movers to help you out. However, both options have their advantages and disadvantages, so it’s important to weigh your options carefully.

It’s true that a DIY move can offer significant cost savings compared to hiring professional movers. If you have access to a suitable vehicle (or a few), like a truck or van, or if you’re willing to rent a moving truck, container, or trailer, you can save on the fees charged by professional moving companies. However, this places all of the moving stresses on you, which means extra work for you and your family. Plus, when you account for other expenses like packing materials, truck rental fees, gas, and the time you need to take off work, the cost savings of a DIY move can shrink.

On the other hand, hiring professional movers can provide unparalleled convenience and peace of mind. Experienced movers have the expertise to handle fragile and heavy items with care, reducing the risk of damage, and they will do all the heavy lifting for you. Full-service moving companies can also provide packing materials and handle the packing and unpacking processes, saving you time and stress. The higher price point is obviously the primary drawback with movers.

In some cases, it’s worth considering a 50/50 move, where you strike a balance between DIY and professional help. For instance, you could handle some aspects of the move, such as packing your belongings, while leaving the transportation and heavy lifting to a professional moving company. This approach can serve as a more affordable middle ground, offering both cost savings and the expertise of professionals.

Regardless of the approach you choose, it’s essential to think carefully about your budget and adhere to it. Evaluate your unique circumstances, including the distance of the move, the complexity of your belongings, and the resources at your disposal, to determine which option aligns best with your needs and preferences.

3. Get Multiple Quotes from Movers

If you are really trying to save money during a move, then you absolutely must get multiple quotes from a handful of professional moving companies. This will help you compare prices and services to ensure you’re getting the most affordable and reliable option for your needs.

If you’re pressed for time and can’t set up in-person estimates with multiple movers, you may consider using online free tools, like MovingGuru, that can gather multiple estimates for you. These tools can save you time and effort by eliminating the need to reach out to each mover individually. However, be wary of these online tools as they may prefer specific companies over others, and they may not be entirely accurate because they are basing the quotes on a handful of details. If possible, do your own research and gather multiple quotes from movers near you instead; in-person estimates will always be more accurate than anything you find online.

Moving tips: choose the right size boxes.

4. Pack Smart

Packing is a fundamental component to ensure a smooth and organized move. If you rush the process or use the wrong materials, you risk creating headaches for yourself on your big day and when you’re unpacking later on. So, make sure you keep these smart moving tips in mind:

Choose the Right Boxes

It’s best to use sturdy cardboard boxes in various sizes to accommodate different items. Specialized boxes like wardrobe boxes for clothing or dish pack boxes for fragile kitchenware help safeguard your belongings during transit.

Pack Securely

Wrap delicate items in bubble wrap or packing paper to provide cushioning and minimize the risk of damage during transit. To make your move more eco-friendly, consider using towels, blankets, or items of clothing that won’t be damaged during the packing and unpacking process. And don’t forget to seal boxes tightly with packing tape.

Label Boxes

Make the unpacking process smoother by clearly labeling each box with its contents and the room it belongs to. This will help you quickly locate specific items.

Utilize Color-Coded Labels

Color-coded organization can be a game-changer for any moving process. For example, you could use red labels for essential items that need to be unpacked first, or green labels for boxes designated for the kitchen.

Stay Organized with a Numbered List of Boxes

The aforementioned moving tips can work very well for any move. However, you can improve your organization even more by numbering all of your boxes and creating a separate document to track what’s in each box, which room it belongs to, and what’s in each one. This way, you’ll know if a box is missing, and if you’re looking for something when unpacking, you’ll know exactly which box it’s in.

5. Utilize Free Packing Materials

Everyone knows that moving can be a huge expense, but you can drastically cut down on costs by utilizing free boxes and other materials. Just remember to make sure these boxes are sturdy and durable before using them. Here are a handful of places where you can find cheap or even free packaging materials.

Retail stores

These businesses are constantly receiving shipments in sturdy and reusable cardboard boxes. Stop by local supermarkets, liquor stores, or department stores and ask if they have any empty boxes that they’re willing to give away for free.

Friends and family

Reach out to people within your network, like friends or family members, who may have recently moved. They may have unused boxes or packing materials that they’re willing to share or get rid of entirely.

Online platforms

Websites like Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace have tons of listings every day for free moving boxes.

Recycling plant

Visit your local recycling plant or center and ask if they have any extra boxes or packing materials available. They often receive large quantities of boxes that they need to dispose of and may be willing to give them away for free.

Utilize other boxes and materials

In your home, you definitely have clear storage bins, suitcases, or other types of containers hidden away in your closets, attic, and crawlspace. If possible, use these containers to pack up your things. If you’re not moving too far, you may also consider using old reusable grocery bags as well. Just keep in mind that these bags have low weight limits and should be reserved for items that can be damaged or do not need to be securely packed.

6. Have a Plan for Moving Day

Your big day will be here sooner than you think, and as we said earlier, it’s in your best interest to be over-prepared. To make moving day easier, faster, and more streamlined, be sure to:

• Have everything packed up the day before
• Pack a cooler with water bottles and quick snacks to keep up your strength
Have a plan for your kids and pets
Make a clear path for your movers
Have a to-go bag ready with all your essentials (e.g., toiletries, clothing, first aid kit, paper dishes, etc.)
Take pictures of your empty apartment or your utility meters

7. Minimize Food and Perishable Items

The less food that you have to move on your big day, the better. By the time that moving day comes around, your pantry should be nearly empty.

Before moving day, try to consume or donate any perishable food items such as fruits, vegetables, dairy products, and frozen goods. Consider donating unopened non-perishable items to local food banks or charitable organizations. This not only helps those in need but also reduces the number of items you need to pack and transport.

You can then use coolers or insulated bags with ice packs to keep any remaining perishable items at the correct temperature during the move.

8. Triple-Check All The Details

Don’t just double-check your inventory list or your moving timeline: triple-check it! When you verify that all the details are correct again and again, you’ll gain peace of mind about your belongings and your strategy, and you’ll be able to avoid potential losses or mix-ups during the moving process.

Things like last-minute errands, phone calls from work, or forgotten closets still loaded with items will completely derail your process on your moving day, and add extra costs to your big day. So do your best to get ahead of the curve, plan way in advance, and triple-check your moving to-do list.

Be Smart About Your Relocation Strategy

Moving doesn’t have to be a stressful and expensive experience. Follow these eight fundamental moving tips to make your move easier, cheaper, and even more enjoyable.

And don’t forget to take breaks and celebrate your progress along the way. Happy moving!


Nellia Melnyk is a seasoned professional in the moving, packaging, and storage industry. She specializes in efficient relocations, innovative packing techniques, and maximizing storage solutions. Through her guest posts, Nellia shares her expertise in helping individuals and businesses navigate the complexities of moving and storage for a smooth transition and exceptional customer satisfaction. 

Clutter is more than just storage.

To find out how you can declutter in your life, talk to one of our space experts. We’ll get you started with the right storage plan for you.

Get A Quote

close overlay

Your inbox is about to get more organized.

Get handy organizational tips and space-saving hacks delivered straight to your inbox.

Or Call us anytime +1 844-218-9657

We'll be in touch soon.

Generally it takes 3 to 5 days for our team lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Duis iaculis vel magna tristique amet iaculis:

Doh! We're not serving that area (yet).

We'll let you know when we come your way.