I have hired moving companies to relocate our household across town, across state and across the country. No more, though. Ten years ago, it cost us $3000 to have a 3-bedroom household moved 1000 miles from Florida to Maryland. Four years ago, it cost us $1200 to move that same household just 80 miles from Maryland to Virginia. Now I have found a better way. A way that saves a whole lot of money while still hiring out the hard work of loading and unloading. Here is how that works.
A moving company provides a truck to move stuff and a crew to load it, move it and unload it. For that bundled service, moving companies charge big bucks. But there is another much less expensive way. Rent the truck. Hire the loaders separately. Drive the truck yourself. And keep the savings in your pocket. Here are the numbers on how that worked for me on my most recent 100-mile household move.
I rented a 20-foot truck from U-Haul. That cost $40 for a 12-hour day, $28 for insurance, and $154 for driving 220 miles. I picked up the truck at my new city and drove it 100 miles to the house I was leaving. There I met a 2-man loading crew that I had hired over the internet through movinghelp.com. Those guys loaded the truck in 3 hours for $150. Then I drove the truck to my new home. There I met a second 2-man crew that unloaded the truck in 2 hours for $100. (Hiring different crews to load and unload saved the $125 it would have cost to have the loading crew follow me to my new house to unload.) All that was left to do was for me to return the truck to U-Haul.
Adding the $75 cost of gasoline to the other expenses I have listed, this 100-mile move cost me a grand total of $547. That is less than half of the $1200 I paid 3 years earlier for essentially the same job. (And I reused the boxes I had saved from a previous move, so I had no out-of-pocket for that.) Playing the frugal game* again -- to win.
* Playing the Frugal Game is Fun!