The Hidden Costs Behind Relocation

By Jeff


How hard can moving from one house to another really be? All you really need to do is pack your stuff, drive to your new house, and unpack, right?

Wrong. Moving is rarely a walk in the park. Hidden fees, unanticipated costs, and lack of planning can lead to blown budgets and massive headaches. The fact is, moving is a chore. Did you factor in the cost of living in your new city? Or the fact that the hourly moving rate you just agreed to might cover only two movers instead of three?

There are a lot of questions to answer when you move. Here are 3 big ticket items to help keep your next move running smoothly.

Physical Moving Costs

This is the easy one – how long will you need that moving truck and what’s the rental rate? Be careful to communicate clearly with the moving company. Cheap labor may be appealing at first, but if you expect 6 workers and they send 2, it’s going to take 3 times longer and you’ll blow through the budget you allocated, and then some.

Make sure to plan carefully so that you don’t end up in no man’s land; if you leave your old home and your new one isn’t ready, you’ll need last minute accommodations, and that can get pricy!


You’ll certainly want to factor in the costs of listing your home and the search for your new residence. Many people will opt to rent a house for the first year in their new city to acclimate. Be aware that security deposits, pet deposits, cleaning fees, and more can all add to the total cost. For example, when leaving your old residence, make sure you and the landlord see eye-to-eye on the state of the apartment so that you aren’t surprised with a bill down the road.


They might not all be that big, but they can certainly add up to make a sizable dent in your budget. Look out for utilities; they can bill you retroactively at your previous address. One-time fees and deposits, like an internet connection fee, will start eating at your budget. To help avoid these, make sure you cancel service to your residence in time for your move, and make sure to tally up bills that haven’t been sent yet, and bills you’ll incur when you get where you’re going.

If this seems like a little too much and you’re starting to rethink moving, then you’re in luck. There are companies that are simplifying this process for individuals and helping to reduce the costs on both families and businesses hoping to migrate their employees. A relocation program will take care of everything from moving your sofa to calculating the cost of living in your new city so that you will know what income you need to live comfortably. If you’re considering moving for your job, it might be worth asking them to hire a relocation agency. If not, make sure that you are personally aware of the costs before saying “yes” to the big move.  

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