Moving costs – What to Expect and How to Save Money

Story Highlights
  • 1) The average price of moving
  • 2) How are moving costs calculated?
  • 3) Additional moving costs
  • 4) How to save money when moving

In between all the excitement of moving, one thing people often forget to include in their budget is moving costs. Moving costs are by no means cheap and they can get quite pricey.

Several factors come into play when the moving company calculates the bill and it might be more than you bargained for. With all the costs associated with buying a house, it is easy to misjudge the amount you need to spend on moving.

However, with careful planning and research, this is a pitfall you can avoid. Here is a complete guide on moving costs, what to expect, and how to save money. 

1) The average price of moving

Unfortunately, there is no set price when it comes to moving costs. The moving company you choose will determine their own fees and this will differ depending on the specifics of the relocation.

What is a guarantee, however, is that distance plays a huge role in calculating moving costs. This ranges anywhere from R1000 to R50 000 because moving companies charge by the hour. So the further your new home is, the more you are going to pay. And with the petrol price fluctuating, these prices are always subject to change.

Now, you must be wondering: if these are the estimated costs, how do they calculate them? Let’s have a look at the factors that influence moving costs. 

Related Reading: Buying & Moving into Your Own Place

2) How are moving costs calculated?

Many factors have an impact on the amount you will pay for moving. Apart from the distance between the two homes, here are four more factors that moving companies take into account:

  • The volume of your possessions: The more things you have to move, the higher your bill will be, especially if you own fragile items or antiques that need to be handled with care. Moving companies might need to have more staff helping you during the move or they might even need another van. 
  • Ease of access: If it is difficult for the moving company to park their van in the street or get into your house, they might charge you extra. If you live in an apartment on the top floor, all those stairs will definitely cost you!
  • The time of the week: If you are moving over a weekend, the bill will be higher because it is regarded as peak time. This is mainly because most people move when they have free time and when they are not at work. The demand, and by default the moving costs, is also higher. 
  • Insurance: Whilst insurance is still optional, it is highly recommended. The moving company will provide you with different insurance plans that they will add to your bill. With the awful state of South African roads and the increasing hijacking rate, it is easy for your belongings to get damaged or stolen. Without insurance, you will have zero financial compensation. 

Related Reading: Helpful Advice to Consider When Moving

3) Additional moving costs

The above-mentioned is a standard list of factors that moving companies will consider when quoting you on the move. There are other additional services that you could make use of. These services will make the move smoother but it will also increase the moving costs.

An example of this is disassembly and assembly services. The moving companies will assemble and disassemble any furniture you might have at an extra cost.

Another popular service is storage. Perhaps your new home doesn’t have as much space as the previous one. Moving companies then store your belongings at a monthly fee.

Some moving companies also offer packing and cleaning services. This is a great service to make use of if you don’t have time during the week to prep for the big move. 

Up until this point, we’ve discussed how much moving costs. However, there are several ways that you can save money during the relocation, too. 

See also: Home Improvement Projects to Tackle Before Moving Into a New House

4) How to save money when moving

Before you decide on a moving company, compare quotes from different companies. This will help you get the bang for your buck. You can then choose to move via your current home insurance at no extra cost to the moving company and your possessions will still be safely insured.

After you have decided on a moving company, plan the move. Declutter your home before the move. This will minimize the volume that the moving company has to load and transport. Once you have thrown out everything you don’t need anymore, do your own packing. Label and colour code the boxes neatly, and make sure that they are sealed tightly.

Then, plan a date for the big move. If you can, take off from work during the week. This way you miss the weekend peak times. When the movers arrive, help them carry as many things to the truck as you can. This will minimize the amount of staff needed for the move and you save some extra cash.

Alternatively, if you have friends and family members with vans and extra time, ask them to help you move and cut the moving company out completely. 

Final thoughts

Even though some moving costs are unavoidable, there are small things you can do to save money. The most important thing is that you do enough research, compare quotes, and choose a reputable moving company. 

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