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Calculating the cost of cross country moves

Calculating the costs of moving your possessions – and your entire life – across the country can be a tricky task. Staying on a budget with so many moving parts is not easy. This article helps to demystify some of the hidden costs of moving home, and how to get around them.


Getting started with your planning

The first place to start with planning your move is to decide how much outside help you need – and can afford. Professional moving firms take much of the stress out of the process but obviously come at a price. There are companies out there that will work with your budget as best as they can. For example, could be a good place to start.

The advantages it offers are numerous and can be especially useful if you have a lot of large or valuable items to move. Online moving quotes can vary considerably, but getting some key information together will allow you to compare apples with apples.


Calculating the cost

Your decision will be based on what you can afford. A moving cost calculator is based mainly on how far you need to travel, with prices ranging from just over $2,000 for local trips to around $4,500 for longer-distance requirements.

The cost of moving is not just about dollar value. You also need to factor in whether you will really have time to pack everything and move it yourself. If you will need to arrange for childcare while you do it, will that negate the cost savings you would make on using professional cross-country moving companies?

You will also need to know how to pack delicate possessions, and source the right packaging materials to do so. Ask yourself whether you are physically able to lift heavier items alone and whether it is safe to do so.


What will your cost be?

An accurate moving cost calculator should factor in how far you need to travel, the weight and volume of your possessions when you are moving (weekday/weekend, peak summer season, etc.), and any extra services you may need. These can include packaging materials and whether you want your moving firm to assist you with packing and unpacking before and after the journey.

Full-service moves will assist you on every step of your journey. Depending on how valuable your time is and your other costs such as childminding or pet sitters, you will need to factor in what you can afford to do on your own.

The next step is to obtain some online moving quotes. Do this by searching for reputable moving firms with good user reviews you can look at.


Getting the best price

Once you have shortlisted some options, the next step is to decide which cross-country moving companies you are going to choose. The best estimates should give you a detailed breakdown of the costs and variables you could be subjected to.

Any additional charges should be clearly laid out so that you can plan accordingly. These charges can be anything from slightly more possessions than planned to any unexpected delays at either end of the journey. These small details are important because cross-country moving companies always weigh your items, and overruns can prove costly if not planned carefully in advance.