How to Create a Moving Budget

If you are planning a move, one of the first things you need to do is create a moving budget. Many people don’t feel they have the time or energy to set one up. However, not preparing yourself financially is likely to cost you more in the long run. Whether you choose to utilize new technology like software programs such as Microsoft Word or Excel or opt to go old school and use a bookkeeper’s record book and a calculator, creating a budget is an important part of moving.

Moving company expenses.

If you’re hiring a moving company to help you move, you need to think about the costs associated with it. It likely will involve fees such as labor and fuel charges. Make sure to get quotes from different companies and add them to your budget – even the most expensive quote. You may also want to pay for additional insurance and think about if you have any extra services you need to pay for, such as moving a very heavy item like a piano. If you plan to have the company pack for you too, remember to jot down the cost.

Moving yourself.

If you aren’t utilizing help from movers, you still need to budget the costs that come along with moving yourself. Include the rates for truck rental and any mileage and gas – these things can add up quickly. Before you purchase any insurance, call your credit card company to see if you’re covered under their service. Add the cost for any extra equipment the rental agency won’t provide, such as a dolly or loading ramp.

Traveling to the new home.

If you’re moving a car, you need to add in the costs for maintenance fees and fuel. Remember that any lodging you’ll need along the moving route will cost you too. You’ll obviously have to eat during the travel to the new home. So, add in costs for snacks and drinks for every person. If you need child or pet care during this time, these fees should also be included.

Packing and storage fees.

It’s hard to know how much packing supplies you’ll need, but it’s best to add in an approximate amount. There are fees for boxes, bubble wrap, labels, tape and markers. You’ll also have to pay a storage company and spend on insurance for the goods.

Selling your home or moving from a rental.

When you move, you have to pay lawyer and title fees, commission for selling your home, inspections and appraisals, advertising and cleaning and repairs.

Buying or renting your new home.

As you go through the exciting time of purchasing a new home, there are some costs that come along with the process. You’ll need to add in fees for the lawyer, title search, survey, inspection and appraisal, and insurance. Consider also the costs associated with redecorating your new home – everything from paint to flooring to rugs to lamps. You’ll have property taxes to pay, too. If you’re in an apartment, you’ll have a rental deposit, damage deposit, and if applicable, a pet deposit.


Now that you have created a moving budget, it’s a good idea to come up with ways you can save money during your move. The costs associated with relocating can add up quickly, so don’t be afraid to scale back where possible to make your move more affordable.