After spending a fortune buying my dream home, the budget I had left for my household goods move was limited. Since most moving companies charge by the hour and size of the crew, I followed four simple steps to increase the efficiency of my moving crew and save on my moving cost and hassle.
1. I Asked Three Moving Companies for an In-House Quote
I asked three moving companies for a visual estimate (rather than a generic phone evaluation, which is based on the number of rooms and square feet of the property). This in-home, free service is offered by most moving companies and ensures that your household goods move estimate will be more accurate. My highest quote came in at $2,100. The lowest, from a family-owned moving company, came in at $1,650, saving me $450, a 21 percent discount on my moving costs.
2. I Packaged My Household Goods Myself
I ordered moving boxes in bulk online, paying an average of $1.50 a box. I then packaged my household goods myself and stacked the boxes in the garage. I used towels, sheets and clothing to wrap any fragile items rather than spend additional money on bulky packaging materials. After the move I was able to make a family member very happy when I gave him the boxes for his upcoming household goods move.
3. I Labeled the Rooms and Corresponding Boxes
To save on the moving crew’s time, I labeled each box with its destination in the new house. “Living room” or “dining room” were easily identified by the movers, but for the bedrooms I labeled each box with a number. I then hung numbers on the bedroom doors. The four-man crew of movers could deposit boxes throughout the house at lightning speed without having to ask me where to go.
4. I Disassembled and Reassembled Big Furniture Myself
Moving companies will gladly disassemble your dining room table, bed frames or desks. However, to save on the mover’s time (and hence my moving costs), I disassembled these items myself beforehand. Where applicable, I taped the Alan wrench and the screws to the base of the table or desk. I also taped the legs together to keep them from getting damaged or lost.
1. Padding: moving companies will use blankets, free of charge, to protectively wrap such household goods as your sofas, paintings or appliances.
2. Lunch: to keep my hard-working moving crew energized, I ordered two pizzas for their lunch. Using a coupon, I spent $17. And the four-man crew were very grateful and worked that much faster.
3. Cash for tip: I made sure I had cash on me to tip the moving crew when the day was done.
By comparing costs between moving companies, I was able to save over 20 percent on my household goods move. Then by packaging my household goods myself and making the most of the movers time, I was able to keep the move true to the estimate.