The Cheapskate’s Guide to Moving Cross-Country

The Cheapskate’s Guide to Moving Cross-Country

Moving across the country is a big undertaking.

The average cross-country move ranges between $2,600 to $6,700 CAD, depending on the size of your household and how far you are moving, in addition to other factors. Luckily, there are a lot of ways that you can cut down your costs when planning your nationwide move.

If you don’t have a moving budget yet, or you aren’t sure how to make one, you might still be in the dark about a lot of the potential expenses involved. That’s okay, too. Whether you are ready to hire movers and go or just getting started on planning a big move, these tips can help anyone looking to save some cash.

Tip #1: Have a Flexible Moving Date

If at all possible, try to be flexible about when your move actually takes place. We understand that most people have a certain window of when they need to be in their new place. You might even be under a deadline because you are moving for work. However, there is still a little wiggle room in most moves to take advantage of this money-saving tip.

Summer is the most expensive time to move cross-country in Canada. Families move in the summer months, not only because the weather is nice, but because the kids are out of school and it gives them time to get settled in the new place before the next school year starts.

High demand means higher prices for moving services. If you can move during the fall or winter, you’ll save a substantial amount by moving out-of-season.

Another aspect of this is the actual day that you move. Weekends cost more, again, due to the increased demand for weekend moves. If you can move during the week, you will cut your costs significantly. When comparison shopping for moving rates online, make sure you check a few different dates to get the best prices.

Tip #2: Purge

Most Canadian moving services base their rates on the weight of the load for a full-service cross-country move. Therefore, if you have less stuff, you will have a lower moving bill. Get rid of as much as you can before you move.

It’s always best to start planning a cross-country move early. This will allow you time to sort through your household and see what you absolutely need to take along. If you have a lot of larger items, or specialty items like pianos or large freezers, you might pay more to move them.

While you’re getting rid of anything you don’t need, consider the value of selling items and replacing them later versus paying to have them moved. In some cases, it might be more financially beneficial for you to just get new stuff when you arrive. This is not the case for everyone, though.

Finally, if you don’t have anything to get rid of, or simply don’t want to deal with the hassle of replacing things you already own, that’s fine too. There are plenty of other ways to save money on your move across Canada.

Tip #3: Compare Moving Quotes

Not all moving companies are the same, and neither are their rates. Get estimates from multiple long distance moving companies in Canada. You can even use a third-party moving services site to obtain multiple quotes at once. This is also useful because it saves you the hassle of vetting companies yourself.

Third-party comparison sites and moving services portals only work with reputable, trusted moving companies and services. If you get quotes here, you can trust that any company you choose will give you the service that you deserve.

Another tip here: don’t just compare the bottom line cost on the moving quote. You have to look at all of the aspects involved, including how much they charge by weight, what services are included in the move, and so forth. A company might seem to have a really cheap quote, but it might require you to pay extra charges for services that are already included in other quotes that you get.

Tip #4: Get to Work!

Having a hands-off move is a dream come true for most people. However, if you’re on a budget or simply aren’t willing to spend a small fortune on your nationwide move, you might have to consider getting your hands dirty. You don’t have to do it all yourself, but you certainly can if you want.

What most people don’t realize about moving services is that they come in all shapes and sizes. You can pick and choose from a variety of services and extras offered by a moving company, even if a full-service move isn’t in your budget. Take advantage of this by considering where you are willing to chip in to save a few bucks. Here are some examples:

  • DIY Moving: You can find a moving truck rental that offers one-way service to almost all areas of Canada. Renting a truck and moving yourself means you are only paying the cost of the rental and gas to get you there. This is going to give your budget a definite boost. To save even more, consider packing only what fits in your car or renting a small trailer to haul to your new place.
  • Hybrid Moving: This is where you employ any combination of services from a moving company with your own hard work to get the best balance of assistance and affordability. For example, if you can help with packing and loading, you might be able to get lower labor rates. Maybe you want the movers to do everything on this end, but when you arrive, you will be able to unload yourself to save some money. Regardless, you can do whatever suits you.
  • Container Moves: These are increasingly popular because they offer a unique balance of affordability and less work on the end of the homeowner. You can find storage companies that will drop a container at your home, let you load it on your time, and then pick it up and move it to your desired location on your request. Instead of paying for a full moving crew, you’re paying for the container rental and a driver to transport, drop off, and pick up the pod.

The Bottom Line

When you use a third-party moving services portal, you can usually get a lot of assistance in the planning and budgeting process. Take advantage of this and other resources to save money and create your perfectly cheap cross-country move.

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Moving Tip

  • Get rid of the junk! Get rid of anything you don’t need or want, it will make packing that much easier and save you money.The more stuff you have will increase the time and or weight of the move and will cost you more money!
  • Do not move jewelry, money, coin collections, etc. Keep these items in your possession.
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