Twenty-seven Tips to Cut 25% from the Cost of Hiring a Mover in Steamboat Springs
I think you’ll agree with me when I say that the moving industry has a reputation for adding up costs and making it hard to understand how to save money.
But it doesn’t have to be that hard if you are ready to move and want to hire a mover in Steamboat Springs.
How can you cut the costs of hiring a mover in Steamboat Springs?
Make Lists to Plan Where You Can Save Money
Tip 1: Write down all the steps involved in the moving process.
Staying organized will save you time and money in the long-run. And knowing your dates will help you negotiate with your mover.
- What dates do you need to be out of your current home?
- When do you take possession of your new home?
- When will you have the buyer of your place give you a list of what they want to keep?
- What are you giving away?
- Most importantly, what are you taking?
If you have a good handle on these questions your mover will see you as organized and thoughtful and will look for ways to work with you.
Tip 2: Keep a record of home improvement costs, realtor fees etc.
You will incur many costs when you move. Some examples are:
- What did you pay the handyman to fix?
- What fees are you paying your realtor?
- Have you rented tools or vehicles to make your move happen?
- What materials, boxes, tape and other containers have you purchased?
Each of these costs add up and depending on your tax rate could help save on your tax bill.
Tip 3: Carefully choose your shut-down dates
Know when you can shut off your different utilities to avoid being billed an extra month. This can save hundreds of dollars in fees and utilities paid for that are not used.
Find out who will prorate bills and who won’t.
And explain to your mover your deadlines. The mover is there to help you plan an successful move. Taking these costs into consideration helps movers contribute to your plan.
Know How Your Mover in Steamboat Springs Operates to Negotiate 10% Off Your Bill
Tip 4: Know how a mover in Steamboat Springs charges.
Each mover will charge in a slightly different way and it is hard to compare apples to apples if you are getting different quotes. The common methods are to charge by the hour, charge by weight/volume or charge a fixed price.
Don’t call and ask for a quote to move. Start by simply asking “How do you charge?!
To start asking a mover in Steamboat Springs about how they charge here is a short list:
Call and ask.
Tip 5: Pick the Mover in Steamboat Springs You Like and Negotiate
“Call and get three quotes” works for companies with purchasing departments, and it it may work for buying the exact same commodity on Amazon.com, but when each company charges a different way there may be hidden fees and ways to calculate costs that makes one company an apple and the other an orange.
Get initial quotes not to get your final price, but to find out which company you like better. Listen to your gut about:
- Are they polite?
- Do they call you back?
- Do they give you helpful information?
- Are they rated well?
When you feel you have found the right company, it is time to start negotiating.
Tip 6: Negotiate the details, Not The Total Price
If a company gives you a quote for a move it is never effective to say “can you do better on that price?” You will sound like someone who wants something for nothing. If the moving company gives you any concession on an approach like that they will give you something small that will not save you a lot of money.
What should you do?
Negotiate the small stuff. A move quote will have several components to include
- Loading and unload labor
- Drive time costs for movers (ie labor for sitting in a truck)
- Truck and Equipment Fees
- Accessorial (additional) fees
All of these lead to a total price. And all have some bit of profit embedded in them, meaning each can be discounted.
Consider these approaches:
“Will you for no reason just give me a lower overall price?” Boo! You are offering nothing!
“If I pack my stuff in equally sized boxes making it easier for your movers to load can you consider helping me with a discounted load labor price?” Yeah! You are trading being helpful for a consideration. Very doable.
“Your mileage costs are high, you should lower them!” Boo! Gas costs are gas costs. And you are just demanding lower prices.
“You are charging a fee for long carry. What can I do to make it easier for your crew and get that fee waived?” Yeah! You are offering to do something to make the move easier and accessorial fees can be discounted.
You get the idea. The negotiation is an exchange.
If you work with your mover in Steamboat Springs to give them some consideration in return for a lowered price on an element of the mover you are working together to help each other. That is a win-win for everybody!
And the power version of that technique is….
Tip 7: If your moving date is flexible, trade date flexibility for a lowering of price.
I can’t emphasize this one enough.
Movers are looking to use their crews and trucks as much as possible. As demand fluctuates there will be times when there are more moves than trucks and crews, and there are days when some trucks and crews that have no work. The mover in Steamboat Springs will want to use crews on those days and welcome a potential move. If you help them solve that problem, they will discount the price.
It is not hard to figure out the days where EVERYONE wants to move.
Think about it. If you NEED to move on the Sunday that is the last day of the month where everyone in Steamboat has their lease come due, the mover in Steamboat Springs with whom you are negotiating will have a LOT of people wanting that same date. Hardball them and demand that date, and they will simply tell you no.
Find another date the mover has less demand, offer to move on that date and ask for a discount.
If you are flexible on timing, DON’T GIVE THAT AWAY. Trade it for a lower price.
Negotiating Power Move: Call your mover and ask for a quote and give your preferred date. Stick to that date in the initial discussions. Once you have the date and price, ask “If I was able to rearrange my schedule to a date that works better for you, what date would that be and could you look at discounting some fees or somehow helping with the price?”
Note, you are not demanding a lower price. You are saying “If I help with your scheduling problem will you help with the costs?”
If a mover does not respond to this positively, you may have picked the wrong mover. Every sharp, professional mover knows when they have free capacity and will negotiate with you.
Try it. It the dates are outside your flexible range or the discount too small, you can always so “No, I will stick with my preferred date.”
Tip 8: If you need storage, shop for a combo deal — a moving company that offers storage.
There are no shortage of storage facilities in Steamboat Springs. Here is a short list:
Each of these are organized so you lift you stuff yourself and deliver it to the storage, or you pay a moving company to bring it to storage.
When you pay someone to bring your goods to the storage facility, you pay them to load from your home and unload into storage. Never pay someone to just get it to storage. Pay them to get it where you want it to go eventually.
That is why moving companies who have storage can give you price breaks. They are making money on the storage too. Ask for a consideration in the same spirit as we discussed above.
Negotiation Power Move: “If I give you my storage how can you work with me on price of the moving?”
“Get Rid of Stuff” Turbocharged Ideas to reduce your bill by 10%
Tip 9: Know your donation locations.
As loading and unloading your goods is a large driver of your your costs, reducing the amount of things you move is the most controllable way to reduce your budget.
Cut the amount of things you could being by 20% and you will for sure reduce your total bill by at least 10%.
Here are places in Steamboat Springs where you can donate goods:
Ask your mover to add one of these locations for drop off of goods for donation.
Tip 10: If it does not fit in your new home, don’t move it.
Measure the dimensions of your new place to make sure that your furniture will fit. Ensure it fits in the doorways, down the steps and into the rooms.
If not, donate it.
Give it away to a friend.
Go to Craigslist > High Rockies > For Sale > Furniture and sell it.
A move where you have to leave items in the garage because the don’t fit in the house is a big waste of money, time and effort. Plan a little ahead of time so you don’t get caught with oversized furnishings in your garage.
Tip 11: If it does not match with your new decor, do not move it.
We live in a mountain community and our decorating style matches our environment. As decoration we enjoy log beds, western statues and mounted moose heads.
These things don’t really match the environment if you are moving to St. Louis.
As movers we often hear people say, “I know it won’t work to have this where I’m going, I’ll figure it out when I get there.”
That is effectively punting the ball down the field, procrastinating and just putting things until later. Which is ok when you aren’t paying per pound to ship things that you aren’t sure you can use.
In this case, putting things off costs you big money.
Won’t match your new pad? Donate or sell it.
Tip 12: If you need to move your appliances & electronics, consider their age, size and color.
Technology now moves so fast that replacements for our appliances and electronics are inexpensive and often perform more effectively.
Have that old box TV?
Consider replacing it at your destination.
Wash machine an ugly yellow?
Consider donating it and starting over.
Tip 13: Weight equals money, don’t move your gym weights or it will cost you money
Don’t move heavy weights or fitness equipment if you don’t use them. Weights are literally weight and weight costs money on a move. It is, by design, the least efficient thing to move.
Here is a weight set on Amazon for $179. That set will cost about $50 to load and unload in a move. The more miles you are traveling your tariff (charge) is by weight by mile. Depending on your mover, a trip half way across the country could mean you are paying more to transport that weight set then buying a new one.
Four “Sweat Equity” Ideas Than Can Save 5% On Your Budget
Tip 14: When packing, nest smaller items inside of larger items to save money on moving boxes.
And it is safer as the more densely packed your items are the less they move around. This gives less damage and saves money on boxes.
Tip 15: Use your own blankets, linens and rags as packing materials.
A typical home needs 40 – 80 blankets to move so your blankets may contribute some to the effot. However, using your blankets and linens as filler material is an excellent way to protect goods inside boxes.
The best part?
You don’t need a box to carry your linens, they are filler in other boxes. Lampshades are perfect items to protect with linens.
Newsprint a mover will sell you to fill your boxes is around $1 a lb. That’s about $2 a box. Use a blanket or piece of linen to pad an item in a box and save an extra box?
$2 per avoided box back in your pocket.
Tip 16: Pack yourself.
The only difference between a professional packer and amateur is time. ANYONE can pack items in boxes, even breakables. It just takes a bit more time if you have not done it before.
There are many YouTube videos explaining how to pack various household items. Here are some very professional examples of packing tips and some homegrown examples:
Every packing and loading configuration you can imagine is on YouTube. Pick the ones that seem easy or interesting to you.
Every item you pack has saved you money.
Let’s say a professional packer can pack twice as fast as you can. If you spend two hours packing items you care about very carefully that is about one hour of packer time and labor.
That is $50 back in your pocket. Buy yourself something nice. You’ve earned it!
Tip 17: Sell your lightly used boxes when you’re finished with them
People like yourself who are just beginning the move cycle will be looking for boxes. Recycle your boxes by putting them up for sale:
Craigslist for High Rockies in “for sale > garage sale” section
You may not recoup a lot of money, but you are avoiding storing those used boxes and helping recycle a bit.
Twelve Additional Ideas to Squeeze Another 1% From the Budget
If you have applied many of the larger items above, you can find 25% potential savings from your move. Now you can squeeze ANOTHER percent with these ideas:
Tip 18: Host a yard sale
Not a bad idea if you want to sell your goods for pennies on the dollar to bargain hunters. Here is a guide to having a successful garage sale.
Tip 19: Look for free moving boxes in unexpected places
Getting free boxes can be attractive, but beware as different sized boxes can sag or collapse if the box “spines” are not aligned. You do want your boxes to protect your belongings. Here are places to find free boxes.
Tip 20: If you’re driving a long distance, stay overnight with friends or family members along the way.
Called “couchsurfing,” you can stay for a day or two. But not too long! Here are fifteen tips for being a great couchsurfing guest.
Tip 21: Purchase a digital services bundle (phone, internet and cable) all in one.
You will need to shop your local provider. Follow this Consumer Reports guide to buying a digital services bundle.
Tip 22: Find out if your homeowners insurance can be applied to your new home or if you get a rebate
Homeowners insurance is as boring a topic as which bubble wrap to buy, but it can be a source of savings. The summary is to start this research when you have made an offer on a new home.
Tip 23: Ask a friend or family member to watch the dog for the day, rather than putting them in doggy daycare.
The is likely a small savings but this post says it could be $18 to $36 a day for dog care.
Tip 24: Move in the winter, the middle of the week, or the middle of the month.
This is related to the timing technique above, and if you can control it there is a peak season for moving. Moving in off peak times saves you money. This is a “1%” idea because it is more usual you can’t control your timing.
Tip 25: Purchase lightly used boxes
Even moving companies have used boxes. Ask if you can use them. Also, you can find recycled boxes online.
Tip 26: Find a neighbor having a garage sale, and see if they’ll sell your items for a flat fee or on a commission basis.
If you don’t want to have your own yard sale, find a neighbor and offer them a cut!
Tip 27: Ask a friend or family member to babysit the kids instead of hiring a sitter.
Here is a babysitter calculator that you can use to determine how much you would have spent on that sitter if you would not have had that friend or family member do the sitting for you!
There you have it. Twenty-seven tips to help you squeeze you budget downward as much as possible.
We will see you on move day!