CNBC (July 2016) – Summer is the most popular time of year to move and that means many millennials are packing their bags. In fact, 44 percent of those young people say they plan to pull up stakes within the next year, according to Rent.com. Relocating for a job was the top reason millennials move, the apartment search website said. Moving for love was a distant second.
"Typically they go where the work is," said Dick Power, certified financial planner and founder of Power Plans. Millennials will jump on the opportunity to improve their skill sets and up their paycheck, he said, "so it's very common they will change jobs half a dozen times for a career." But moving from one location to another can be a huge hassle, not to mention a hit to your wallet.
Here are some tips to make your move a little easier financially and physically:
Start by mapping out your expenses in advance — it may cost more than you think. About 15 percent of consumers said they went into debt as a result of moving costs, according to Our Town America, a direct mail company that targets recent movers.
The average cost of an intrastate move is $1,170; interstate moves average $5,630, according to the American Moving & Storage Association. (That's based on the average weight of belongings of 7,500 pounds.) Although for millennials with less stuff, the cost would be lower, according to Michael Keaton, a spokesman for AMSA.
For do-it-yourselfers, sites like Moving.com have a packing calculator to determine what size moving truck you will need, in addition to packing supplies. Although the cost varies by location, renting a 15-foot moving truck will set you back about $30 a day plus $2.49 a mile. Securing a truck that is too large will waste money on gas and rental fees, not to mention that the bigger it is, the harder it can be to navigate.
The cost of boxes also adds up quickly, particularly if they are specialty ones. Average-size packing boxes cost about $2 each but hanging-garment boxes are four times as much. Instead, try pulling a large garbage bag over multiple items hanging in your closet and tie a string around the tops of the hangers to keep them together. U-Haul, for example, also offers a box exchange where customers can pick up free used boxes before their move.
If you are relocating for work and your employer doesn't cover the moving costs, you may able to write off some of those expenses, including traveling to a new location or transporting your furniture. The rule generally applies if you work full time and your new workplace is at least 50 miles away from your old home.
Your regular renter's insurance may cover your move, but double-check to make sure. If not, ask your insurance provider if you can purchase a rider on your base policy. You can also generally purchase insurance through your mover.
"It isn't inexpensive because of the likelihood of loss or damage can be pretty high," Power said, but it may be worth the peace of mind.
Then, organize everything. Start by sorting your possessions into take, store, toss and donate. Then eliminate the things you won't need in your new spot. It'll save you time, money and a headache unpacking.
Before you start packing, photograph your belongings to help remember where things go. If you like the way you decorated or hung pictures, that will make it simpler to replicate in your new home. The same goes for electronics. Taking a picture of how the cords are arranged will make it easier to put back together.
As you pack, label all of the boxes with the rooms they go in. If you know that you'll need to get to some items right away, like bedding or the coffee maker, label those boxes as important and put them where they are easily accessible so they can be unpacked first.
Finally, pack an essentials bag for your moving day with water, your basic toiletries, prescription medications and, of course, hand tools. Chances are, you're going to end up needing the hammer or screwdriver at some point along the way.
To read the story on CNBC.com, click here.
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Brittany is the head of Our Town America’s corporate marketing department. She specializes in digital and print media, social media, and public relations.