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10 money-saving tips for moving house

Moving to a new home is an exciting experience, but if you’re not careful it can quickly become a real money drainer.

From the type of removalists you use to the day of the week you move on, your choices can end up saving you money when you move house. Here are some ways to move and save at the same time:

1. BYO moving boxes

Brand new packing boxes can be pricey. Instead of buying brand new boxes, look to buy used boxes on Gumtree. Better still, get them for free by collecting used boxes from local grocery stores. Depending on how much stuff you have to move, you could end up saving up on box costs.

2. Shop around

Before connecting your utilities at your new place, it pays to shop around for energy providers. Different companies have different offers and plans that suit different types of households, so do your research to save money on your bills. Same goes for removalists, carpet cleaners, locksmiths and all the other professionals that can help when moving out. 

3. Plan a mid-week move

With most people working or studying Monday to Friday, the weekend is the most expensive time to move house as the demand for removalists is high. If you’re in a position to move mid-week instead, then you may save money on reduced rates for some removalists.

4. Use people power

Instead of hiring removalists, borrow or hire a van and get your friends and family to help you pack and unpack. If you don’t have many willing friends, then try the Airtasker website to find people willing to help you move for a fee that is often far less than what professional movers charge per hour.

5. Consider back-loading

If you’re moving interstate, then consider removalists that backload. Back-loading involves filling a van with items belonging to multiple movers, and while it can take longer for your items to arrive, back-loading is a much more affordable option and can end up saving you hundreds of dollars on your move.

6. Cull your collection

The more you have to move, the more it will cost you, so be very ruthless when culling your belongings. If you have stacks of clothes you never wear, then donate them to charity before you move to your new home. If you are holding onto boxes of old magazines that you never open, get rid of them. If you’ve got lots of things to cull, then have a yard sale and make money by selling your old stuff. By moving less, you’ll not only help save money on your move, you’ll also save time packing and unpacking, and have more space in your new pad.

7. Be organised before moving day

If you’re hiring a van or removalists, you will pay for every minute you have the van or removalists. This means that every minute wasted packing boxes or wrapping up items in bubble wrap will cost you money. Plan ahead and be organised by having everything packed and ready to go the night before your move, then all you’ll need to do is load your stuff into the van – not waste time fussing with last minute packing.

8. Don some rubber gloves

If you’re on a budget and moving out of a rented home, you’ll need to ensure it’s clean in order to get your bond back. Many renters choose to hire professional cleaners, but at $30 or more an hour, professional cleaning can be costly. Choose to spend a day cleaning the place yourself and you’ll save money on cleaning fees.

9. Prepaid credit card

You may need to make some home appliance and furniture purchases on a credit card. If you don’t currently have one, pick up a prepaid Everyday Mastercard®1 for those transactions where cash payment isn’t an option.

10. If you value it, insure it

While home and contents insurance2 may not be high on your priorities list, not including insurance within your budget could be a costly mistake. Think of the upfront cost involved in replacing your flat screen television, laptop, iPad, smartphone and Xbox. This would easily run into the thousands before considering other items that could be stolen or damaged. Home and contents insurance ensures that a terrible event like a home robbery, natural disaster or fire doesn’t lead to financial ruin. Keep your hard earned money safe with insurance – your future self will thank you for it.

1 Mastercard Prepaid Management Services Australia Pty Ltd (ABN 47 145 452 044, AFSL 386837) arranges for the issue of the Australia Post Everyday Mastercard in conjunction with the issuer, Heritage Bank Limited (ABN 32 087 652 024, AFSL 240984). Australian Postal Corporation (ABN 28 864 970 579, AR No. 338646), the card distributor, acts as an Authorised Representative of Australia Post Services Pty Ltd (ABN 67 002 599 340, AFSL 457551). You should consider the Australia Post Everyday Mastercard Product Disclosure Statement (PDF 598kB) and Financial Services Guide (PDF 180kB) before deciding to acquire the product. Any advice does not take into account your personal needs, financial circumstances or objectives and you should consider if it is appropriate for you. Mastercard® is a registered trademark, and the circles design is a trademark of Mastercard International Incorporated.

2 Australian Postal Corporation ABN 28 864 970 579 (AR No. 338646) "APC" is the distributor of Australia Post Gold Home and Contents Insurance and acts as an Authorised Representative of Australia Post Services Pty Ltd ABN 67 002 599 340 (AFSL No. 457551) "APS". Because APC or APS don't know your financial needs, we can't advise if this insurance will suit you. You should consider your needs and read the Financial Services Guide (PDF 124kb) (FSG), Product Disclosure Statement (PDS), Key Facts Sheet (Home) and Key Facts Sheet (Contents) before making a decision to buy this insurance. Auto and General Services ABN 61 003 617 909 (AFSL 241411) "AGS" arranges the insurance on behalf of Auto & General Insurance Company Ltd ABN 42 111 5 86 353 (AFSL No. 285 571) "AGIC", the issuer of the policy. AGS pays APC a commission which is a percentage of your premium. Neither APC nor APS accept liability or guarantee payment of any claim or benefit in respect of the AGIC's products.