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6 ways to save money on moving expenses

Save money on moving expenses.

Save Money on Moving Expenses

Are you moving soon? Scared of how much your moving expenses are going to be?

Moving expenses can be a big chunk of your relocation cost, but thankfully, there are many ways that you can save on these costs. Here are 7 of them.

1. Purge, purge, purge

Of course, the less you have to move, the less expensive your moving costs are going to be. Therefore, it’s very important that you go through every single item in your home and get rid of everything you no longer wish to keep. Be ruthless. If you haven’t touched it in over a year, you probably won’t touch it again. Let it go.

Sell as much as you can (this will pay for your moving expenses!), but don’t hold on to those items for very long. If they don’t sell in a few weeks, donate them.

2. Move during off-season

Moving companies and truck rental services are often extremely busy during the summer months since most families tend to move when children are on summer vacation. High demand for trucks means high prices for you, so if you can, move during the fall and winter (spring is okay, too, but not as inexpensive as fall and winter).

If possible, it’s also a really good idea to move on a weekday, since most people want to move on the weekend. If you can move on a weekday, you are more likely to get a moving truck – and a discount.

3. Pack everything yourself

Paying to have someone else pack up your stuff is going to cost you quite a bit of money. On top of that, it’s risky to let strangers go through everything in your home. Do yourself a favor and pack your belongings yourself. Enlist help from friends and family if you need it.

Don’t pay for boxes either. You can always find free moving boxes. Ask your local grocery stores and check online classifieds to see if they have any boxes that you can take off their hands. Buying boxes from a store or a moving company is never a good idea if you are trying to save money on moving expenses.

4. Use what you have instead of buying packing materials

Bubble wrap is expensive. Instead of spending money on this costly stuff, wrap your fragile items with things that you already have at home – things that need to get packed up themselves anyway.

Clothing, towels, and blankets make the perfect packing materials – and they’re free!

5. Move yourself

Instead of hiring a moving company, rent a moving truck and do the moving yourself (bonus points if you already have your own truck, or can borrow one for free!). Ask your family and friends if they can help and offer them a free dinner when everything is done (inexpensive pizza, of course).

Do your research before renting a moving truck, as not all companies are created equal. Check prices and references for as many moving truck companies as you can find (in my own experience, I have found U-Haul to be the best, but your experience may vary).

6. Keep track of your moving expenses

If you have moved to a new home to carry on your own business or to be employed, you can deduct eligible moving expenses from the employment or self-employment income you earn at your new location.

If you moved to study courses as a student in full-time attendance at a university, college, or other educational institution that offers courses at a post-secondary level, you may also qualify to claim eligible moving expenses.

Visit the CRA website for more information.

Moving doesn’t have to be costly. You just have to be a bit resourceful and it is definitely possible to slash your moving expenses. These money-saving tips are just an example of a few ways that you can save. I’m sure there are plenty more tips and tricks that will keep your moving costs low.

How do you save money on moving costs?


  1. Louise

    The Dollarama near me has small rolls of that packing clingy wrap for $1. During my last move I used it to hold rugs rolled up and to hold blankets wrapped around mirrors, picture frames, furniture, etc (I know you could use tape, but this way there is no sticky residue). Anytime I didn’t want to use sticky tape on a surface I used the cling wrap. Costco also has mega rolls, but I was moving a 1 bedroom apartment.

    • Olivia

      What a fabulous idea! I think you are referring to the roll of “shrink wrap” that stores use for their shipments. Thanks to you, now I know where to buy it.

  2. StephanieS

    Just thought I’d offer an opinion on spending money to move!
    When I moved cities a couple of years ago, I hired reputable movers and packers. Two packers came in and properly packed my entire 3 bedroom home, basement, and garage in *one* day! I took my valuables, packed a suitcase for my family, and basically showed up at my new home to meet the truck and the movers. You can live your life (almost) normally right up to packing day.
    Now, it was almost $1000 for the packing service. But I sold all those fantastic moving boxes and wardrobes on Kijiji for $100.
    The service is pricey, but for me it was so worth it. And they labelled the boxes and put everything in the same room it came from.
    Best move ever.

  3. Jan

    Some things are just worth paying for- packing and moving is at the top of my list. It’s insured, too…something you don’t get when you pack yourself.

  4. Kris

    A great source for boxes is the liquor store. When I was in university, I got some from there and they lasted me through many, many moves (fold flat and store until the next move). Liquor boxes are made to hold heavy glass bottles, so they are very sturdy and an ideal size: have you ever over-filled a large box then realized you couldn’t lift it???

    Newspaper is great packing material (though it can transfer ink to some items…): for weeks before we move, I save my ad-bags and ask everyone I know to save theirs as well as their daily or weekly papers for me too.

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