So you’re moving to a new home, what do you need to get done?
The planning and coordination involved with moving can certainly overwhelm but as long as you take the process one step at a time, you will be settling into your new home and relaxing quickly. This list is comprehensive but will cover everything you’ll need to consider for your moving day. Soon enough, you’ll be able to cruise through your moving day without having to panic.
Before you start to pack, take the time to plan your moving day to make it as stress-free as possible. Let’s face it, moving is stressful. We’re here to help you figure out exactly what you should be doing before, during, and even after your move. Moving all your belongings from one place to another is hard, and so is relocating your life in general. But, let’s not forget that moving to a new place is an exciting time! With some guidance and this guide to your upcoming move, you’ll be sure to have everything done between now and the big day, leaving you plenty of time to celebrate.
Where to Start Once you know that you are moving, take a walkthrough of your current home and organize a list of all the pieces of furniture and/or decor that you plan to sell or donate. When you are doing this, determine which things in your home you can really live without. Either drop them off to a donation center or work on selling them. If you have things in your home that you use seasonally, consider using a full-service storage service to safe keep your belongings.
No one has to tell you that moving can put a serious dent in your finances. Create a budget for moving expenses. We know you want to hire professional movers with that new sectional and that wine fridge, but priorities, right? If you’re buying a home, you’ll pay a down payment and have to hand over your checkbook to cover closing costs, inspections, and homeowners insurance. Renters need to cover a deposit and one or two months' rent up front, plus a pet deposit if applicable. As if this isn’t enough, you’ll have a lot of moving expenses to cover too. Make sure you budget for everything to ensure you don't come up short on finances when you really need them.
Then, work on decluttering your home in problem areas like closets, offices, and utility rooms. When you go through your things, keep it simple: if the item in question is something you enjoy having, or if you use it regularly, keep it. If you haven’t used the item in the last 3 years, or if you don’t plan on using it anytime soon, then it has to go. Keep in mind that every item you get rid of is one less item you have to pack and move with you.
Next, you’ll want to put in research towards which moving company is right for you. Take advantage of online review sites like Yelp, Angie’s List, and Google Reviews. Once you have a list of 3-4 moving companies, pick up the phone and make some calls for direct quotes. Try to schedule your moving day for a weekday and closer towards the middle of the month. Most moving companies will charge more for moving at the end of the month and especially on the weekend. The cost alone is not the sole deciding factor. Take advantage of the phone call to ask the company about insurance, liability, and the details of their service.
When you start packing, begin with collecting as much packing material as possible. Save yourself the hassle of making multiple trips by picking up more materials than required; boxes, packing tape, padded blankets, scissors, and trash bags are a must. Start with packing away the fragile items first. Then, pack heavier items into rolling luggage that can be hauled behind you instead of carried. Don’t risk getting costly valuables like laptops, jewelry, and tablets lost during the move; instead, carry these items with you in a bag during moving day.
For the rest of your items, pack them according to the room that they’ll end up in at your new home. Stick labels onto each box so you know exactly where the box goes on moving day. If possible, take the labels once step further by listing the items within the box on the label. This way, if you’re not unpacking everything at once, you won’t have to sift through three boxes marked “kitchen” just to find your soup ladle.
Do not forget to complete a change-of-address form with the postal service and notify your utility services. Also, contact all of your subscription services to remind them of the change of address. Make sure you are receiving all of your bills at your new home.
Finally, take the time to clean your empty home to make it ready for moving out. Pay extra attention the surface area that was covered by furniture because dirt collects the most under areas that are not easily reached. If you are short on time, look into hiring a professional cleaning service to put your mind at ease.
How to calculate your local moving cost
Bear in mind that local movers in Canada charge by the hour. Therefore, you will be charged based on the overall duration of the local move, the number of movers working on your move, and the add-on moving services requested by you.
How much does it cost to hire local movers in Canada? Here are some average moving costs that should help you get a better idea about what to expect price-wise:
1-bedroom apartment. When moving out of a 1-bedroom apartment, you should expect to pay approximately $600-$800 for 2 movers working on your local move for 4-6 hours.
3-bedroom home. When moving out of a 3-bedroom apartment, you should expect to pay approximately $1,100-$1,500 for 3 movers working on your local move for 8-10 hours.
Extra movers. Each extra moving team member should cost you extra $35-$40 per hour - a seemingly extra expense but additional hands will also help complete the move faster, thus potentially bringing down the final moving price.
Packing. The cost of packing - the most common additional service offered by Canadian moving companies - will depend on the sheer number and nature of the things to be wrapped up for better protection on the road. Expect to pay anywhere between $600 and $900 for having your 1-bedroom packed professionally, with the cost of the required packing materials included in the mover’s price.
Peak season. In general, moving companies’ rates increase during the high moving season when most people choose to move thanks to the nice weather. Also, weekends and holidays are always busier because of the extra free time off work. The average cost of Canadian movers is usually increased by around $100 at the beginning and end of each month, on weekends, and during national holidays.
Fuel surcharge. The fuel surcharge is approximately $40 for local moves in Canada.
Major factors that will affect your moving cost
You should already be familiar with some of the principal factors that will affect your home moving cost. Let’s review them again so that you understand better how your money will be spent, and whether or not you can do something about it in order to save some money before, during, and after the move.
Size of the move. The more items you choose to move with you, the higher the cost of moving will be. Do consider getting rid of anything you don’t need anymore to bring down the price.
Specialty items. Any specialty items that you own and want to take with you will make the move more complicated and… more expensive. For example, moving a piano will require professional piano moving services. The same is also true when moving antique furniture, a hot tub, a pool table, a grandfather clock, or a heavy safe.
Extra moving services. Each additional moving service will cost you extra, so it’s important to think about which services you need and which ones you don’t really need. For instance, if you can pack up your things by yourself, then you should do it to save money.
Move distance. This cost formation factor cannot be manipulated in any way - the move distance between the two homes will remain a constant no matter what you do.
Packing materials. Packing supplies, especially moving boxes, will be one of the biggest moving expenses you’ll have to deal with. So, getting hold of free moving boxes is always a good idea.
Move-out date. The date you choose as your move-out date can greatly affect the moving cost. A house move during the peak season or during the weekend tends to be more expensive than an off-season move that falls on a weekday.
Liability coverage. When using professional moving services, you must consider getting some sort of protection for your valuable items. The best moving companies in the country offer different levels of protection, from Basic Release Value Protection (not recommended) to Full Value Protection (recommended).
Moving company. Different moving companies offer different moving rates and some tend to charge more for the same type and quality of service. Don’t skip the step of comparing movers and picking the mover that offers quality services at affordable prices.
Extra fees and charges. Hidden and uncommon fees and charges will increase the cost of moving when you least expect it: an elevator fee, a long carry fee, a charge for handling bulky items, an express delivery fee, an extra stops charge, a travel fee, and so on.
Ways to reduce moving costs
Looking for ways to reduce the cost of moving? What a great idea! Remember that you don’t really need to pay more money than you absolutely need on your next more.
FIND an affordable mover. That’s easier said than done but definitely possible. Use our online moving cost calculator to get accurate estimates from top-rated moving companies, then compare the quotes carefully to pick a low-cost mover.
REQUEST in-home estimates. The best way to have your moving cost estimated accurately is to ask movers to visit your home in person. Stay away from cost estimates done over the phone or via e-mail as they won’t be precise enough for your needs.
NEGOTIATE with your movers. Movers’ rates are not set in stone so try to negotiate a better deal with your movers. Ask for ongoing promotions or price discounts you can take advantage of.
PICK a good move-out date. Moving during the off-peak moving season should mean a lower moving cost for you. Also, choosing to move out on a weekday in the middle of a month should give you an extra discount from the moving price.
BOOK your move right away. Once you’ve picked a good moving company, book their services ASAP for a chance to get a discount from the moving price for early booking.
GET proper insurance. How do you cut moving costs by purchasing a better level of protection for your valuables? You’d be glad you did get Full Value Protection if something bad happened during the move.
SET a budget. Create a moving budget to supervise your moving expenses and stay in control of your finances.
FOLLOW a moving checklist. That’s easy - save money by saving valuable time because time is money. Create and follow a MOVING CHECKLIST to organize your time perfectly.
DECLUTTER your home. One of the best ways to cut moving costs is to move as few items to the new home as possible. And in order to do that, you need to inventory your entire house and declutter it without delay.
SELL your unwanted stuff. What better way to help your moving budget than to sell the things you won’t ever need again, online or at a moving sale, and pocket the cash?
GET free moving boxes. Get moving boxes without paying for them to keep your moving costs to a minimum.
USE free packing supplies. Instead of packing paper and bubble wrap, use soft protective materials that you already have in your home and are taking with you anyway.
CONSIDER a DIY move. When moving locally without any specialty items and you know you can rely on your friends, then organizing a self-move becomes a viable option.
ASK friends for help. Save money from having to pay for professional moving labor. How? Ask your good friends to give you a hand with packing and all the heavy lifting on Moving day.
MAKE no mistakes. Costly moving mistakes could rob you of the chance to keep moving costs and expenses to a minimum, so don’t make any.
AVOID property damage. The estimated moving cost can increase drastically in the case of property damage. Use proper moving equipment, dress appropriately, and get enough helpers to avoid trouble.