Simplifying Your Life

Five Unexpected Moving Expenses To Make Sure You Plan For

by Candice Lopez

It's no secret that moving can be expensive. Even if you're just moving across town, you need to either hire a moving company or rent a truck. Then, there's the cost of a security deposit on your new place, plus the costs related to redecorating and furnishing the home. Sadly, many people end up financially "in over their heads" during the moving process, in part because they forget to plan for certain expenses. Here are five often-unexpected moving expenses to ensure you account for.

Utility start-up fees.

In some areas, utility companies require you to put down a deposit before they'll start service on your new home. In other areas, you may have to pre-pay for a month's worth of electricity rather than paying after the fact. If the home you're moving into has propane or oil heating, you'll also need to pay to have the tank filled up. Call the utility companies that service your new area well in advance of the move and ask exactly how much it will cost you to start an account. This way, you can plan and set the money aside rather than being forced to go without power for a week!

It may also be helpful to get a copy of the last year's utility bills from the current resident of the home you're moving into. This way, you can more accurately estimate how much you'll pay for utilities each month.

Ordering delivery while your kitchen is still being set up.

During the first week or so in your new home, chances are you won't be doing much cooking. Having food delivered is fast and convenient, since you can eat and then get back to unpacking. Just make sure you budget for those delivery meals because they add up quickly. If you find that a week's worth of deliver dinner is just not in your budget, plan ahead by purchasing ingredients for some no-cook meals like:

  • Chicken salads (use canned, precooked chicken)
  • Cold cut sandwiches
  • Pasta salads (use precooked pasta from your grocery store's prepared foods section)

Re-registering your car.

If you're moving across state lines, you'll need to pay a fee to re-register your car in the new state. Different states have different laws regarding how soon you must do this after you move. Contact your new state's Department of Motor Vehicles to find out exactly what the cost will be and how soon you need to re-register. Act promptly; in most states there is a late fee if you wait more than a month or two.

A new driver's license.

In some states, you can keep driving with your "old" state's driver's license until it expires, and only then will you need to pay for one in the new state. In other states, you'll be required to switch your license over as soon as you move and re-register your car. There is generally a small fee involved with obtaining a driver's license in a new state. You new state's DMV can provide you with specific details.

Increased insurance costs.

Your car insurance and homeowners (or renters) insurance costs may go up or down when you move to a new town. Contact your insurance companies well in advance of your move and give them your new address. They should be able to give you a pretty accurate quote. This gives you time to shop around with several other companies to see who offers the best rate. The company that has the best rate in your current home may not be the one with the best prices in your new town.

Don't let these often-forgotten moving costs send you into financial mayhem! For more costs that movers often forget, talk to your moving company. They've helped many people move and can tell you about previous customers' experiences so you don't make the same mistake.