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How To Reduce Moving Costs & Move for Free

Estimated reading time: 6 minutes

Moving to a new home can be big undertaking. But your next move could be your easiest and most affordable yet with a little bit of planning and organization. Here are 8 moving tips on how to reduce moving costs and plan like a pro, including one from Mr. Cooper on how to move for free.

1. Schedule professional movers during low demand times

“How much should I budget for moving costs?” might be one of the first questions that comes to mind as you preparing to move. The cost of your move ultimately depends on the distance. Houzz.com averages a local move at $1,500 and a long-distance move at $5,000.  Planning a time to move when demand is low can potentially lower your costs. According to moving.com, Monday–Thursday and mid-month days are usually when demand is lowest and moving companies will have lower rates. To reduce moving costs even more, they suggest timing a move for the fall or winter.

2. Search for free programs like Zero Dollar Move

Search for free offers and moving incentives that are available, from free supplies to discounted movers. With Mr. Cooper’s Zero Dollar Move, for example, we cover the costs of a local move. Buy a new home with Mr. Cooper and we’ll pay for your move (up to 50 miles) if you are Pre-Approved by August 31, 2023 and close by September 30, 2023.* Find out if Zero Dollar Move is available in your area!

3. Declutter and sell what you don’t need

Moving provides a great opportunity for decluttering (learn more in our decluttering blog). Get rid of any unwanted or worn-out items to save space and time by decreasing how much you have to move. Before you begin packing, take an inventory of your belongings and highlight anything that is broken, duplicated, unused, or unwanted. Determine if anything you’ve decided to part with can be sold or donated. This reduces how much is thrown away and may give you some extra cash. When you arrive at your new home, it’s a good plan to only have items you want or need.

4. Collect free boxes/supplies

Here’s one of the best-known tips on how to reduce moving costs. Before you start buying boxes, think about how you can save on moving costs using free or donated resources. Many businesses such as liquor and bookstores have lots of durable boxes on hand. Neighbor.com discusses other helpful places to find free supplies such as Facebook Community Groups and pet stores.

Moving can take a lot of supplies. Put together a list of what you’ll need such as boxes of various sizes, packing material such as newspaper or bubble wrap, packing tape, labels, etc.

5. Use existing items as packing supplies

Here’s a creative take on how to reduce moving costs: use your clothing or blankets—anything that reduces impact—as packing material. Wrap them around fragile items to keep them padded during the move. Save space and money while moving by finding multiple purposes for your belongings. In the end, finding ways to reduce your moving expenses can free up some money for other homebuying expenses.

6. Organize for your move

Staying organized while moving can be easier than you may expect. It can also help in reducing moving costs like taking a day off from work or having to pay an extra day’s rent while you move out. Start by creating a master to-do list to help you and your family stay organized and on schedule. Write down each task and make sure to note any important dates and deadlines. Be as detailed as possible and include information you need to accomplish each task.

Create a labeling system to make your packing and unpacking experience an organized breeze. Have clear and descriptive labels to help you stay organized while packing up the truck, unpacking, or looking for something specific. One way to do this is by writing the room, category, and contents on each box. Lastly, make sure that each box is identifiable from all sides, so no matter how you stack them, you’ll know what’s inside.

7. Create a packing plan

Packing plans help ensure you organize and pack boxes in the way that makes the most sense for you. For example, if you are moving to a home with a similar layout and number of rooms, it may make sense to pack one room at a time. On the other hand, organizing your belongings and packing by category may make more sense if your new home is very different from the last.

8. Start packing early

Once you’ve got your plan in place, it’s never too early to start the packing process. Start by packing up items you don’t use often, such as décor or seasonal pieces. Then, find an out-of-the-way place to store your packed boxes. Take baby steps, and if you have a few extra minutes, pack up one drawer or shelf. Anything you do ahead of time will help streamline the process during crunch time.

Need to get moving on your home loan, too? Get in touch with one of our Mortgage Professionals who can help you get the right loan for you! Or, apply online.

*Zero Dollar Move Terms and Conditions

Zero Dollar Moves (“ZDM”) not available in all zip codes and are for local moves only – a single local address within 50 miles of the zip code of the existing property address on file with Mr. Cooper. To qualify for a ZDM (or electronic gift card if move cannot be provided), customers must prequalify for a new Mr. Cooper purchase loan by August 31, 2023 and the loan must close by September 30, 2023. One incentive per loan. Move must occur after closing of the new Mr. Cooper mortgage loan.

ZDM are arranged and provided by Bellhop, Inc. or its subsidiaries/affiliates (“Bellhop”). ZDM are subject to Bellhop’s Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Customer must agree to Bellhop’s Terms of Service, Privacy Policy and any additional terms required by Bellhop.  Mr. Cooper is not responsible or liable to customers for any conduct of Bellhop, its agents, or personnel.

ZDM includes a minimum of two movers and a moving van to move and transport from origin to destination. Certain services not included in ZDM, including but not limited to packing, packing materials, appliance disconnect/reconnect, furniture disassembly/assembly, live plant moving, hazardous materials moving, moving heavy or oversized items (safes, pianos, and more), additional stops, and additional personal property insurance. The cost and availability of these items varies by market. Contact Bellhop for specific details and costs. Customer is responsible for accurately estimating the volume of items to move so that appropriate number of vans and movers are assigned to the move. If volume is underestimated, move may be delayed, and customer may incur additional costs.

You are not required to use ZDM to obtain a mortgage from Mr. Cooper.

ZDM may require a minimum of a 7 to 21 days’ notice to Bellhop (depending upon the market and time of year) prior to move. If adequate notice is not provided, Bellhop may decline service and customer waives rights to this offer.

Zero Dollar Moves are not available in all areas. No substitutions.  Terms and conditions of offer move may change at any time at the sole discretion of Mr. Cooper or Bellhop. The Zero Dollar Move program may be terminated at any time.

Gift cards will be fulfilled electronically by Tremendous.com, a third-party vendor.