5 Weird Ways to Save Money When Moving

Ways to save money when moving

Americans move a lot, and all that moving around can get expensive. Besides selling most or all of your possessions before you move, there are other ways to save money when moving, a few of which you may think are weird…but they can work.

Why chose weird ways to save money to move?

You are probably already familiar with these suggestions, such as getting boxes from stores rather than buying boxes, saving newspapers to use as packing material, and renting a moving truck yourself rather than hiring a professional mover. Naturally, your moving needs will depend on your circumstances, such as distance you are moving, amount of items you need to take, and whether you have vehicles to move a long distance, among other factors.

This article assumes you are looking for more unconventional ways to save cash when moving. Although some readers will find these suggestions weird, others may simply think they are sensible ideas but not so strange. If they save you money, then that’s all that matters.

Repurpose packing materials: There’s no need to buy packing materials if you have sheets, blankets, towels, pillows, plastic bags, and clothes. They can be used to safeguard all your breakables. Newspaper is good too, but the print can come off on porcelain or other collectibles, so use other packing materials for these items. So put a sock over your lightbulbs, dress your dinnerware in sheets, and get packing!

Pack everything: By this I mean if something is hollow, pack something in it. If it’s empty, fill it. For example:

  • Pots: put small kitchen items in them, such as utensils, pot holders, measuring spoons, or small glasses or plates wrapped in kitchen towels
  • Purses: pack small purses and wallets inside larger purses, or use purses to pack underwear
  • Shoes: Put small plastic bags of jewelry, socks, cosmetics, or other small items inside shoes
  • Planters: Nest them (with packing material in between) and then fill the last one with more items to be packed
  • Pillowcases: perfect for those fragile items, including porcelain, glass vases, and even lightbulbs: place the object(s) between two small pillows and place inside a pillowcase

Going my way? Do you know someone who is traveling to the city or town you are moving to and who is willing to transport some items for you, perhaps in exchange for something you no longer want or need? (Hint: College students may be one source.)


Do you have friends or family who will be visiting you shortly after your move who are willing to bring items you don’t need immediately after arriving at your new residence? Other options are to use Craigslist to look for anyone who may be willing to transport items for you in exchange for items or a fee. (This may be risky, so it’s best to get references.)

Check the free and cheap market: Why spend money and effort to move items you can pick up for free or cheap later? Although there are things you will definitely want to move, other items may not be worth the hassle.

Therefore, ask yourself this question: What’s the “free and cheap market” like in the place to which you are moving? The free and cheap market includes Craigslist, Freecycle, and the number of available thrift stores and flea markets in the area. Many towns and cities have lots of postings on their Craigslist (both free and for sale) and Freecycle sites, and you can get virtually anything you may need by using these sites. (I speak from experience, having done this in three different parts of the US.)

You can check out the activity on these websites at any time before you move, and what you see may influence you to forego moving many items you can pick up later for little to nothing. Areas that have lots of thrift stores and/or flea markets also offer lots of possibilities to pick up items on the cheap.

Hold a swap moving party: Invite family and friends and let them know the purpose of the party. You can use such an occasion to accomplish any of the following: help you use up food items you don’t want to move (e.g., frozen foods, foods soon to expire), ask your friends to help you pack and/or clean up your home or apartment, offer everyone items you want to give away, enlist any additional help you may need. If you let everyone know what you hope to accomplish ahead of time, it gives them time to, for example, make arrangements to move items for you or offer to take items to a donation place for you. Moving takes a village!

Also Read: Moving in minimalist style

Finally, please, please, please find homes for the items you decide not to take with you. If you don’t sell them, donate them to a local charity, give them to friends, recycle them (check with your local recycle providers for their requirements), list them for free on Craigslist or Freecycle, or put them out on the curb with a “FREE” sign. Along with saving money while moving, you can also help move items you don’t need into new homes!

Also Read: How To Save Money on Food: Use Garbage
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Image: Pixabay