Scheduling your move during the off-season is typically the cheapest way to move. Avoid moving in May, June, July, August or September, when moving company rates are typically much higher. If you’re moving across the country, research how the moving companies in your city charge. You might save money if you hire flat-rate movers instead of hourly movers.
Of course, you can save money moving if you DIY by renting a moving truck or moving pods. However, be sure to weigh the pros and cons of moving all of your belongings and valuables by yourself. Factor in the cost of a moving truck (including fuel), the cost of moving equipment, the labor involved and the time it will take to complete your move by yourself.
Full-service moving companies can help take the stress out of moving by supplying a moving truck and handling your entire move from start to finish. These professional movers can also provide packing services, materials and supplies. Full-service movers also load your belongings into the truck, drive it to your new home, unload the truck and (in some cases) offer to help you unpack your belongings. If you're interested in hiring full-service movers, compare the top-rated movers near you and ask for estimates.
It’s recommended that you tip your movers individually around $4 to $5 per hour. For example, if a team of four movers spends a half-day (four hours) on your move, tip each mover $20. Or, some people tip 5% to 10% of their total bill for small moves and 15% to 20% for larger moves.
If you’re moving across state lines, you may hire different crews to load and unload your goods. In that case, divide the tips between both crews. It’s also a good rule of thumb to add a bit extra for tipping movers if you have special circumstances that have made the move harder, like a spiral staircase or an exceptionally heavy sofa.
Your homeowners or renters insurance policy may or may not protect your belongings if they get lost or damaged during a move. If you’re moving valuable items, or if you’re moving a great distance, it could be a good idea to invest in moving insurance.
Interstate movers are required to offer you full value protection and released value protection to help reimburse you in case of damage or loss. If you’re moving within your state, check with your state’s consumer affairs agency to see if your state has rules and requirements regarding moving insurance and valuation coverage.