Over the past 2 years I’ve moved twice, and I’m planning to move again this summer. This means once I move yet again this year I’ll have lived in 4 different places since 2012. I didn’t plan on moving this much and I’m certainly not a fan of the whole moving process, but I moved so many times in order to save money and that was reason enough for me.
It’s safe to say I’ve made moving to save money a habit (not intentionally of course). It’s definitely not for everyone and I haven’t done any drastic cross country moves so I can’t speak on that. But if you’re interested in cutting your living expenses by moving, there are several factors to consider.
Packing is Tedious
Whether you have a lot of stuff or not let’s face it, packing sucks. You have to get super organized, throw things away, find various-sized boxes, and try to avoid the temptation of unpacking an item you need before the move. When I’m planning a move, I usually create a packing schedule so I can tackle one area of my home at a time and not get overwhelmed with the whole packing process. But boy is this my most dreaded part of the moving process.
Packing always makes me feel unsettled and anxious, as if I’m a wanderer with no personal belongings. It’s uncomfortable to say the least, and whenever I move I make it my priority to unpack as much as I can within the first 48 hours and settle in.
Moving Can be Expensive/Time Consuming
Moving can be quite expensive when you weigh out all the factors like the distance you have to move, renting a truck, hiring people to help you, a security deposit (if you rent) or closing costs (if you own) and so on. Even when you’re moving to save money you could very well be spending a great deal of money on any of these. Planning a move and deciding where you are going to stay can be quite time consuming as well.
Before I moved into my current apartment back in September, I was about to lose it trying to find a place to stay. I knew I could find something cheaper than what I was currently paying, but every landlord was either super rushed wanting me to move in the following weekend or didn’t have units available until several weeks after my move out deadline. I didn’t have the money to throw down a security deposit and two months’ rent instantly during the busy summer moving season (wasn’t a saving pro just yet) so I missed out on a lot of good apartments.
It was really time consuming trying to find something reasonable and available during my time frame and I spent a lot of days stalking my current landlord’s online list of available units and refreshing the page constantly. At long last, I found a nice sized, comfortable two-bedroom apartment that ended up saving me $400/month in rent and a total of $4,400 throughout my 11-month lease. I would not have been able to jump start my savings and aggressively pay off my debt so effectively if I didn’t move last September.
Related: How I’m Saving Money on Moving
Assess Your Situation, Make Sure the Pros Outweigh and Cons
When you’re moving to save money it’s important to assess your situation thoroughly to determine if your move will be worth it not only financially but in every other aspect of your life. You don’t want to move and be miserable and dislike your neighborhood or encounter bad neighbors so it’s important to research your desired area. Since last time I moved it was only down the street, I didn’t really have to worry about adjusting to a new neighborhood.
This time I plan on moving closer to my job and my mother and siblings and I’m pretty familiar with the area. I already have an idea of which apartment I’d like to move to and how much I’d be paying. In this case, I won’t be moving to pay cheaper rent because my rent is already remarkably low. I’ll be moving because the pros outweigh the cons and I’ll be saving in other areas that are very important to me.
I’ll definitely miss my friends and the small town atmosphere where I live and the cost of living is very low. But by moving:
- I’ll be closer to my job so I can cut fuel costs and preserve my car without having to put it on the interstate every day
- By being only 20 minutes from my job I won’t have to get tied down by my commute and I can improve my work-life balance
- I’ll also be able to eliminate child care completely because my mom will be able to pick my son up from all-day kindergarten and help him get started on his homework
- My future home will also be in a prime location with easy access to public transportation if I need it, different/better grocery store options, tons of free entertainment and more.
As a parent it’s so important to have a strong support system and overall, I’ll be grateful to have my family close. So when I think about all these factors and additional savings it definitely makes packing and organizing the move seem worth it.
Home Can Be Anywhere
Moving so much these past few years has taught me that a house is simply a house until you make it a home. As long as I have my family and my creative DIY touch we can create a cozy home literally anywhere. At the end of the day it’s the atmosphere you create and experiences you have that make your house a home.
Right now I’m not really focused on having the best of the best when it comes to housing. I may not have a dishwasher, washer and dryer, or vaulted ceilings in my apartment and those things aren’t important to me right now. What’s important to me is a clean, comfortable and safe place where I can build a home without struggling to afford it. I have to keep my expenses low and put my money elsewhere for now but I’m almost certain we will slow down on the moving for a few years once we settle into this place.
Have you ever moved to save money? How did you weigh out the pros and cons of moving? Did you think it was worth it?
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