Across the US, the average cost of moving out for a local household relocation is $1,250—though that figure jumps up to $4,890 if you’re moving out of state.
Of course, that price tag can vary depending on the logistics of your move: the more you’re transferring, the higher the costs of moving out! Worse, these costs can spike if you forget to calculate a few essential hidden costs into your budget.
Ultimately, moving is never a cheap business, but there are a few unexpected bills you should prepare for, just in case. Here are 7 hidden costs of moving out to keep in mind.
1. Not Getting Your Security Deposit Back
If you’re moving out of a rental property, you may be factoring your returned security deposit into your budget calculations. However, this isn’t always a smart move, as renters don’t always realize how much damage they’ve done to a space until the rooms are bare. Holes in walls scrapes on floors, and unsightly stains can mean your landlord lowers or even fails to return your initial deposit.
Worse, some landlords go to great lengths to find reasons not to return this fee—leaving you with the nasty surprise of fewer funds than you thought you’d have.
It’s also worth noting that your landlord may not return your security deposit in a timely manner, so it’s a good idea not to plan on this money when considering your move.
2. Buying Your Own Packing Supplies
If you’re cutting costs by taking care of the packing yourself, you may have forgotten to consider something essential: packing supplies.
Boxes, bubble wrap, and tape can add up, especially if you’re packing away belongings from a larger property. Things get even more expensive if you’re considering purchasing reusable plastic containers that will continue to serve you for the long-term once you’re in your new home.
There are several ways to save on packing supplies, from sourcing free boxes to visiting the dollar store for materials, but it’s a good idea to at least keep this cost in mind while planning.
3. Paying for Good Movers
During your initial budgeting, you may have factored in the costs of low-cost movers in your city. However, as moving day approaches, it may dawn on you that trying to save money by leaving your beloved belongings in the hands of a cheap service could lead to costly damage.
Sometimes, paying a little extra money for peace of mind can be for the best, as your valuables and sensitive possessions will thank you for it!
4. Paying Extra Moving Fees
If your movers will have to navigate stairs to move your belongings, you’ll have to let them know ahead of time. In most cases, the company will require you to pay a separate fee in addition to your initial quote. Some companies also charge for the use of an elevator, though this isn’t as common.
In addition, most companies will charge you extra for large or bulky items, like a piano, billiard table, or roomy wardrobe. Let your movers know about these items in advance so you can factor the added cost into your budget.
For particularly expensive or valuable items, like wall artwork or fragile sculptures, vases, or other home décor items, you may want to reach out to professionals who are trained to handle this sort of move. These companies will charge extra, but they’ll take care to wrap your valuable belongings as they should be stored instead of simply tossing them into cardboard boxes.
One more fee to consider is an overnight fee, which will appear on your bill if your movers need to hold onto your things after hours. These fees can crop up if your packing and boxing happen too late in the day for movers to relocate your belongings to your new property.
Last but not least, don’t forget the cost of a tip to your movers, who will be doing a great deal of heavy lifting on your behalf!
5. Cleaning Your Property
Cleaning your property is a must—for both the property you’re moving into and the one you’re moving out of.
If you have extra time, it’s possible to do this yourself, though the task can be grueling. You’ll need to have plenty of cleaning supplies and tools on hand, and it will mean tackling everything from window cleaning to bath scrubbing to a deep clean of the major appliances.
For obvious reasons, many movers opt for a professional house cleaning instead, even though this adds to the final moving price tag. The average move out cleaning cost can vary based on the size of your home, the hourly rate, and the types of items or spaces you want to be cleaned, but you can expect to pay upwards of $150-250 for the service.
6. Storing Your Belongings
The logistics of moving can be a nightmare, and if you can’t move in on schedule, you might have to find somewhere to store your belongings. This can mean renting a storage unit, to the tune of $75-200 per month, depending on how much space you’ll need.
7. Paying for a Hotel Stay
Larger moves especially moving out of state, can be difficult to schedule. These moves often demand a night in a hotel for a relocation that doesn’t happen in a single day. This cost of moving out can rise, of course, if unexpected issues make it impossible for you to move into your new home right away, so make sure to leave a little wiggle room for the worst-case scenario.
Budget for These Hidden Costs of Moving Out
The last thing any mover wants is unexpected fees affecting their bottom line. The relocation process is stressful enough without shelling out a few hundred extra for surprise costs! Considering these hidden costs of moving out is a great way to ensure that your move goes smoothly, leaving you free to unpack at leisure and enjoy your new space.
For more of the crucial life tips, you need to know, check out our other posts!