Moving home is a costly business.
So, anywhere you can make a few savings will really help your bank balance as you start your life in a new property.
Here, we’ll list a whole host of things you can do to save the pennies when moving home…
The cost of moving house
It’s estimated the average cost of a house move in the UK is just under £7,000, according to Which?.
That’s a huge amount of money on top of your property’s purchase price.
But there are plenty of steps you can take to bring that cost down.
Moving house tips: How you can save money
1. Remove clutter
By getting rid of things you no longer need, you can cut down on the cost of removals.
Firstly, if you’re planning to hire a removals firm, you may be able to reduce the size of the lorry you need by de-cluttering your home of larger items.
And secondly, if you’re hiring a company to do your packing, getting rid of smaller items can cut down on the number of boxes you need and subsequently the amount of time the packers need to complete the job.
The best thing though? By selling some of the things you don’t need, you could make some money to help pay your removals costs.
2. Shop around for removals
Spend some time looking online for removals companies near you and check out their reviews.
Once you have a shortlist of potential companies, contact them and get some quotes for your move.
By shopping around and quoting the other prices you have, you’ll be able to get the best deal possible on your removals and save yourself some money.
3. Pack up your home yourself
While hiring a company to pack your property up ready for your move can save you a lot of work and stress, it will cost you money.
By doing your own packing, you can save a substantial sum.
4. Move home without a removals firm
Persuade some friends to help you with your move and hire a van to save money on removals costs.
Shop around for a good deal on van hire and once you have your vehicle, make sure you fill it up at the cheapest petrol station in your area.
5. Be clever when it comes to packing
Supermarkets, more often than not, have lots of boxes they’re keen to get rid of, while other movers often post on social media offering boxes.
Also, make sure you use everything you already have to pack items into – that could include laundry baskets, bins and suitcases, all of which are great for moving lots of belongings between properties.
You can also use towels, dishcloths and bedding to wrap around fragile items, while old newspaper is a much more cost-effective option compared with bubble-wrap.
6. Eat yourself empty
Run down your stocks of food and drink in the lead up to your move.
Moving a fridge full of food, or cupboards bursting with tins, can quickly add to your load and your costs if you’re hiring a removals company.
7. Pack with care
Broken items during a move can be costly.
If you’re hiring a removals company, ensure they have adequate insurance to cover any breakage that occurs during the moving process.
And if you’re moving yourself into your new home, make sure you pack everything properly and safely to avoid damage to items between properties.
8. Time is money
Preparation is key for any successful house move.
So, make sure everything is planned in advance and you’re able to stick to agreed timings with your removals company.
It’s likely you’ll be charged extra if your move takes longer, so ensure you:
• Finish any packing in good time
• Disconnected washing machines, dishwashers and all electrical items
• Have your solicitor primed to stick to completion timescales
• Have all paperwork you need to complete on time
• Have arranged parking and access for the removals team, both at your old home and your new one
9. Shop around for insurance
One cost you’ll have to absorb when moving is insurance for your new home and your belongings.
A good removals company will have adequate insurance to protect your items during the move, but if you’re moving yourself, shop around for a policy that covers your things. You’ll also need to arrange buildings and contents insurance cover for your new home, so again, make sure you shop around and use price comparison websites to get the best possible deal.
10. Clean your property yourself
Cleaning your home before your buyers move in is essential.
But you don’t need to spend big on a professional cleaning company to do a proper job when selling your home.
Pull on those rubber gloves and get stuck in yourself, giving your former home a really good, deep clean ready for its new owners.
You don’t have to spend big on cleaning products, either.
Mix together some bicarbonate of soda and water to make a superb paste that cleans your oven, while making a spray of water and white wine vinegar to clean down surfaces.
11. Save some money on childcare
While moving to a new home is equally as exciting for your children as it is for you, kids can get bored during the moving process.
So, often it’s best to arrange childcare while the move is happening.
Try to find a friend or family member to take care of the little ones, though, rather than spending out on expensive childcare.
If you can find someone to take care of your pets, too, rather than sending them off to a kennel or cattery, that will also save you some vital pennies.
12. Switch energy suppliers from day one
Moving is a busy time and there’s lots for you to think about.
That can mean switching energy companies at your new home is the last thing on your mind.
However, you don’t need to stay with the previous owner’s suppliers and the sooner you switch, the sooner you’ll start saving.
Also remember to take meter readings as soon as you move in, so you’re not paying for energy used by the property’s previous inhabitants.
13. Tell everyone your new address
Before you move, compile a spreadsheet of everyone who needs to know your new address.
That could include:
• The electoral roll
• Your employer
• Your bank
• Your car lease company
• Your car insurance company
• The local council
• Energy suppliers
• Mobile phone company
You could set up a redirection account with Royal Mail, but this will cost you money.
So, the more prepared and thorough you can be when it comes to your change of address, the less need for such a service.
What is the cheapest day to move?
The most popular day to move home is a Friday or over a weekend.
So, this is when removals companies are at their busiest and, as such, the days when they are less busy usually result in cheaper deals being offered.
Can you move house during lockdown?
Under the current coronavirus lockdown restrictions early in 2021, you can still move home.
Estate agents are still trading during the lockdown and removals companies are still able to carry out moves with social distancing precautions in place.
Being organised and well prepared is crucial when buying a new home and moving.
Part of that preparation is having key documents to hand throughout the process – our comprehensive guide lists all the documents you’ll need when moving home.
If you’re a first-time buyer looking to get on the ladder in 2021, meanwhile, you’ll need to know about stamp duty – we’ve outlined everything you need to know right here.