Moving from one home to another is a big job that few of us enjoy. The process requires a lot of work. It also can cost a considerable amount of money. Here are 7 tips that can help you minimize the expense of moving your parents to a smaller home or an assisted living facility:
1. Plan your space
Don’t spend money moving items that won’t fit in the new space, only to pay someone to move them again. You can create a simple floor plan drawing that approximates the space into which your parents will move. (This is one of the many things we help our clients do.)
2. Purge BEFORE you pack
The less to take with you, the less you pay to have moved. Even if your parents are not moving out of their home, but instead are re-purposing their current house to better suit a senior lifestyle, de-cluttering is a good idea.
3. Request moving during off hours
Movers typically move people on weekends. If you can be flexible and move mid-week, you could get savings on your moving costs by as much as 30%. According to the MoversCorp.com movers’ guide, the least expensive month to move is January, because that’s the coldest month. Moving during the summer will cost the most. Also, because most people who rent an apartment or house move in at the beginning of a month, moving mid-month should be less expensive.
4. Move valuables / collectibles yourself
If you think you would be safe with them, move these items yourself and save the extra time the movers have to spend packing and padding valuables for the move. Be sure to use cartons designed specially for artwork, as well as sufficient padding inside and outside the container to absorb shocks. To prevent dropping boxes, use a dolly or hand truck to transport the cartons to and from your vehicle. If you decide to let professionals handle your valuables, be sure to acquire sufficient insurance to cover any damage that could occur. Even though insurance will add to your moving expenses, it costs less than having to replace the item in a worst-case scenario.
5. Insist on 3 quotes (with references)
Shop around. You may be surprised at how different pricing can be from company to company. Also check online reviews of movers you’re considering hiring. People tend to post online reviews much more frequently when they’ve had a bad experience, so you may not be able to find any movers without any negative reviews. However if a moving company has a lot of bad reviews, that can be an indication you might want to avoid hiring them.
6. Coordinate utility and service shut offs
Often lots of money can be saved just by planning ahead and collecting all of the ongoing charges or deposits the old location has, including utilities, trash, HOA fees, cable TV/Internet, etc. Call ahead to let them know what your last day is and to find out if you are due any sort of refund. You may also need to coordinate activating some of these services at your parent’s new home. Even if you don’t save any money, avoiding the hassle of no service at the new location saves you from the stress of no electricity or heat.
7. Hire a Senior Move Manager
Not only can an experienced professional save you headaches and a lot of time, their knowledge and relationships may save you money in the long run. Mistakes are costly. Trusting someone who coordinates these moves for seniors every day can provide peace of mind, which is priceless. For more information about the many benefits of working with a pro to help move your parents, read our article Understanding the Benefits of a Senior Real Estate Specialist®.
Harmony is ready to help. Give us a call when you are ready for us to orchestrate your senior move.