If you’ve ever moved, you know how time-consuming, energy-consuming, and straight-up costly it can be. So what if you’re moving across Canada, or across any country for that matter? Whether you’re moving for school, a job, or family, the task is daunting but not impossible. In fact, if you know what to look for, you can do this without breaking the bank and starting your new life in debt.
If money is no object and you can hire full-service movers, or your company will pay for your move, congrats! If not, here’s what you should look out for. But first…
How Much Do You Really Love That Second-Hand Couch You Bought Five Years Ago?
The subheader is long, but we’re trying to make a point. If you’re on a budget, save yourself (and your money!) by doing a great purge of your stuff. If you have no idea where to start, well, there’s a reason Marie Kondo is so popular. She’s the “tidying expert,” and her whole premise revolves around the idea that less is more. There isn’t a better time to start tidying up your life than right before a big move.
Here’s the reality: it may actually cost you more to ship your big ticket items across the country than to buy them new (or second-hand when you arrive). Figure out what are the absolute must-haves and say goodbye to the rest.
Make Craigslist & Kijiji Your New Best Friend
You’ve determined your love-its and leave-its, but don’t toss what you don’t want in the garbage. Moving across Canada does cost some money, so a great way to give new life to your old possessions while making some extra cash is by selling them on Craigslist or Kijiji. Or, if the neighbourhood permits, you could go old-school and have yourself a good old-fashioned yard sale.
If you’ve got a few weeks to prepare for your move, get ads up for your biggest items as soon as possible. You’ll give potential buyers lots of time to find them, check them out, and pick them up, and you’ll likely get maximum dollar for them. If time isn’t on your side, however, go as low as you can, and people will be flocking to your door.
Road Trip, Anyone?
To get your belongings from one coast to the other, the cheapest options would be to either rent a moving truck or a portable moving container. Both require you to pack your own things, but if you’re not averse to long-haul road trips, consider renting a moving truck from companies like U-Haul or Budget. This is the ultimate do-it-yourself move, and you can save a lot of money. If you’re not up to the drive, though, a portable moving container is a handy way to pack your stuff in one place without having to do all the rest.
Can We Postpone Our Move-In Date to, Say, Mid-Month?
This may come as a surprise, but when you move may make a difference to your overall moving costs. Don’t move during peak times, like the beginning or the end of the month, between May and September (who wants to move in winter, right?), or on the weekends.
If You Help Me Move, I’ll Buy You Dinner
It sounds obvious, but when you can, ask for help from friends and family. Moving across Canada on your own is a sure-fire way to lose your mind. There are other people’s schedules to consider, but even if they come in shifts, you’ll save yourself time, money, and you might even have a good time! You may need to bribe them with pizza and beer, though.
But be sure to stay safe. If there’s anything that might be too dangerous to do yourselves, it might be time for professional help.
Hi, I Need Help. Professional Help.
You don’t need to hire full-service movers for help. Try looking for labour-only options that will load and unload, and sometimes even pack and unpack all your furniture and belongings. The money you spend on this may save you a nervous breakdown, and at the very least, a ton of stress when you get to your new home.
But don’t take the cheapest offer on the table! Make sure to do your research — lots of research! — before signing a contract with any company.
Moving to Vancouver Island from outside the province? Pemberton Holmes Property Management can help. Our property managers have the expertise to not only help you find your next rental home but help you get here in one piece. Head over to our residential listings and start the application process today.