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November 9, 2021

How to Set a Moving Budget

So you are all ready to start the moving process. You have picked out your new home or apartment and are ready to get the ball rolling.  

Now comes the fun part: actually moving.

Numerous expenses come with moving, and it can start to add up before long. Paying movers, finding and purchasing boxes and other packing materials, and many other expenses come with moving. Moving also requires a significant amount of time and effort - the point is, moving is a costly process in both time and money.  

When moving, you want to be sure that you are correctly planning the entire process. But, how do you go about doing that? Firstly, you want to be educated on how best to go about moving.  

We have compiled some excellent ways to set a budget so you can move with confidence.  

Create a Moving Budget

One of the most important things to keep in mind when creating your moving budget is forethought. The more time you put into constructing your moving budget, the more you can make alterations to save money.  

If you are looking to create a moving budget for your move, here are some steps you can take to ensure you do so intelligently and efficiently.  

Moving Budget Template

A moving budget template lets you lay out all of your expenses and see how much the total will be. The template will enable you to pick out areas where you can save money.  

While software like Google Sheets or Excel Sheets, you can also do it on a piece of paper. Whether you decide to write out your template or create it in software, doing so will make creating a budget easier.

Here are is how you go about creating a moving budget template:  

  • Create categories at the top of your page, such as category, estimated cost, and actual cost.
  • Create categories along the first column like Moving Fees, Moving Insurance, Packing Service Packing Materials, or any other costs you may have.  
  • Fill in your expected costs and the actual cost once you have been charged for each section.  
  • Add up the cost for both the expected costs and actual cost.
  • Add 5% as a Contingency plan for the expected cost, then add it to your total, so you know you have enough for the actual price.  
  • Add up all of the expenses for the actual price, so you know how much it ended up costing you.  

Also, keep track of all of the quotes, receipts, and other moving documents you receive. This will ensure that you stay organized, so you have all of the documents related to your move handy and keep your moving budget template as accurate as possible.

Create a Detailed Inventory

Start by deciding what you are taking with you to your new home. Go room to room and create a detailed list of everything you plan on taking and everything that won’t be coming along. With an exhaustive list, you will have a good idea of how much money you will spend on hiring movers and packing materials. Having an inventory can also prevent you from leaving anything behind.

Determine How Much Hiring Movers Will Cost

Hiring movers can end up saving you time and money, especially if you are moving a long distance. By providing your detailed inventory to movers, they can quote you on how much the move will cost. These quotes are determined by the weight and distance of the move.  

Movers also have a base rate that is the same regardless of the size and distance of your move.  

Some moving companies also have the option for moving insurance which provides coverage for your belongings if they are damaged during the move. If you are planning on getting insurance, you should also factor that into your budget.    

If you are thinking about hiring movers, you may be interested in our ‘Why hire a full service moving company? Pros & cons’ article.  

Packing Materials

When choosing packing materials, go for quality over quantity. Poorly constructed boxes can break down throughout the move and end up damaging some of your belongings. On top of boxes, you will also need tape, labels, and possibly furniture covers.

Once you have a good idea of how much packing materials you will need, you can incorporate them into your budget.  

If you want to get a good idea of how many boxes you may need, give our ‘How many boxes do I need for a move?’ article a read.  


Fuel is also something to consider when planning your moving budget. Chances are, you will be driving to your new house and back to your old one numerous times throughout the process. Be sure to consider the number of trips you will need to take so you can modify your budget accordingly.  

Additional Service Costs

Moving requires extra help from outside sources to make the process as smooth as possible. Realtor and cleaning/repair fees, on top of your mortgage down payment and rental deposits, are all costs to consider when creating your moving budget.  

These are some fantastic ways to plan your budget while moving.  

One of the biggest takeaways from this article is to plan ahead and research, research research. The more knowledge you have and how prepared you are will drastically shape how easy your move will go.

After going through this article, you should have a good idea of how to formulate your own moving budget.  

To learn more about how best to move into your new home, check out our ‘Guide to Moving, Packing, and Storage’ article.  

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