How to Pay for Your Move

Pay in cash, with a credit card, or get a personal loan. Find out which payment option is best for you!

From hiring movers and purchasing insurance, to buying boxes and renting a truck, moving can be downright expensive.

Thankfully, there are a number of ways to pay for your move:

While credit cards are convenient, interest charges can add up quickly if balances aren’t paid down each month.

Each option has its pros and cons, and what’s right for you will depend on things like your salary, family situation, credit history, and age.

That said…

Moving cost calculators are great resources for those trying to decide which payment method makes the most sense for them.

Insider’s Tip: Regardless of how you pay for your move, moving cost checklists are handy tools for tracking expenses and keeping them as low as possible.

Cash – The Best Option for Savers

PROS –
  • No interest or monthly payments
  • Moving discounts
  • Peace of mind
CONS –
  • Saving takes time
  • Requires financial responsibility
  • You’ll have to cut back on spending and live frugally

Debt gets a bad wrap, and for good reason.

Sometimes it’s a necessary evil, but for those who have ample time before their move date, saving and paying with cash is a great way to avoid the debt trap – and some movers offer cash discounts.

But be warned –

It may require tedious budgeting, modest living, and just saying no to weekend getaways, $6 mocha lattes, and retail therapy excursions.

But there’s a bright side too.

Once you’ve paid the movers you can get on with your new life without being reminded how much it cost when you get your credit card statement every month.

Did You Know?

It sounds crazy, but to attract new residents some cities, towns, and states will actually pay you to move there. Restrictions apply, but in some cases incentives top $10,000.

Credit Cards – Perfect for Those Who Pay Off Their Balances Every Month

PROS –
  • Fast
  • Convenient
  • Buy now, pay later
  • Cash back and rewards programs
CONS –
  • High-interest rates
  • Compound interest adds up
  • Late or missed payments can harm your credit

Credit cards almost always have higher interest rates than personal loans, and for those who can only make minimum payments, they’re lousy choices.

However, if you’re able to pay off your balance each month, credit cards are like having access to interest-free money. Not to mention, if your credit card company has a great rewards program, a high-value expense like moving can earn you points quick!

“Hey deadbeat!”

No not you… it’s what credit card companies call customers to don’t carry over balances from month to month.

And not because they’re financially irresponsible, but because by paying their card balance off every month they avoid compound interest charges, which are the credit card company’s bread and butter.

Consider This –

For new customers, some credit cards feature very low (or 0%) introductory interest rates that may last anywhere from a few months to more than a year. But after they expire, remaining balances may be subject to huge rate increases – sometimes of 30% or more.

Personal Loans – For Those with Good Credit

PROS –
  • Lower interest rates than credit cards
  • Fixed repayment schedule
  • Relatively quick turnaround time
  • Can help diversify your credit history
CONS –
  • Finding and comparing loan options is time consuming
  • High penalties for late or missed payments
  • May need to put up collateral

All told, whether you’re moving across town or to the other side of the country, moving can cost thousands of dollars.

Though most families know they’re moving months in advance, it still usually isn’t enough time to save enough to pay with cash.

But even if your savings account is a little light, if you have good credit and a solid track record of financial discipline, a personal loan may be the way to go.

On the downside, shopping around for low-interest rates and favorable terms can take weeks, but savvy consumers can often find good deals.

In many respects, low-interest personal loans are much better options than credit cards, but they often get overlooked because the latter is much more convenient – even if you’ll end up paying extra in the long run.

Insider’s Tip:

In many instances, your employer will cover some or all of your relocation costs. Just remember that relocation packages need to be addressed before committing to a new position.

Consider Moving Container Companies

In the past, there were pretty much two choices when it came to moving –

But that’s no longer the case.

For example, moving container companies offer hybrid services that are often more affordable and flexible than what you’ll get with full-service and DIY moves.

Not only that, but they may be less susceptible to seasonal availability and price increases.

You won’t have to drive a big truck or pay for pricey fuel either, and you can use containers whether you’re moving or just need storage.

See other cheap ways to move out of state

Conclusion

Saving money is important.

Especially these days when family finances are strained to the limit due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

That said, using the cheapest movers often causes more problems than it solves.

In fact, reasonably priced, pre-vetted movers with verified customer reviews are almost always better options.

Before moving, you’ll also want to ask yourself –

Is It Cheaper to Move Your Furniture or To Buy New?

Remember the old adage –

“Out with the old, in with the new.”

In most instances, downsizing and embracing minimalism makes good sense.

And always keep an eye out for moving discounts – they’re relatively common and apply to people from all walks of life.

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