If you didn't catch the announcement on Instagram or Facebook, we are moving back to Pittsburgh! We are extremely excited about moving back to the place and people that feel like home for us. But the actual process of moving is hard. There are so many little details that go into it- selling a house, buying a house, where to stay in between because closing can take time. The worst part, for us, has been figuring out where to store our stuff. Plus, just the thought of even packing up and moving our stuff, just to unpack it soon again is exhausting. To top it off, moving across states can get expensive.
But that worst part, the part that has seemed like an endless process in the past, is becoming lighter and lighter. Packing all our stuff can be really monotonous when we have a lot of stuff. But we have been slowly getting rid of stuff and decluttering for a couple of months now.
We have pared down our things in most areas of our home to what feels essential. In other areas, we are still in the process. So the packing part actually has become less intimidating.
But even with less stuff, we were still going to have to move and store a lot of big furniture, and using a pod to do this was going to cost us over a thousand dollars. We were willing to do it out of convenience as we didn't know where we'd live next. We had a nice big bedroom furniture set, couches, dining room furniture, desks, Gemma's furniture, large shelves. All of this furniture filled a four bedroom house, and we were probably going to need it to fill our next one. I didn't really think there was an option to save money on moving costs with all of our furniture we were bringing with us.
But then, we found a house.
We decided to majorly downsize. With this decision, we started to think about ways we could make moving easier and cheaper.
We are moving from a four bedroom home with large living spaces and large bedrooms to a two bedroom home with smaller rooms and living spaces. The cost of living we are moving to is lower, so that wasn't our reason to downsize. In fact, I don't think we had it in our mind to downsize. But then we realized that the space we use in our current home is much less than the size of the actual home.
Even as our family grows, we want to keep everyone close and use the same spaces. We don't want the opportunity for future teenagers to escape into their rooms far away from everyone else. We want play spaces to be a part of living spaces and living spaces to be work spaces and eating spaces to be spaces where we communicate and grow together.
So with our decision to downsize, came ways to save money on moving costs. We didn't need a large pod, we are bringing only essential things and will be able to store them with family. But downsizing hasn't been the only thing that is helping us save money. We are being intentional in our moving process to make it easier and more affordable so we can put money into our new home and make it a space we really love.
Here are some decisions we've made that are helping us save money on moving costs and create a less stressful move overall. I hope these tips will help you make your future move easier and cheaper as well.
I've already talked about this and why we are downsizing, but I hope that if you are moving now or in the future, you'll think about this option, too. Think about the fact that kids can share rooms. Though you may be making more money, is it really necessary to have more space and buy a larger, more expensive home? Downsizing might not be for everyone, but I believe a smaller home means less cleaning to keep up with, more time spent with the people you live with, and actually using all of the space you are paying money for with your mortgage each month. Not only does downsizing mean we will spend less money each month, but it means we will bring less with us on our move and therefore spend less on moving costs.
2. Get rid of everything that you don't love or that isn't necessary
Because the moving pod and storage would cost over a thousand dollars, we started thinking about how to have less stuff to move and store. We got rid of any extra furniture or shelving that wasn't necessary, but then we started thinking about anything else in our home that we didn't love or that wouldn't quite fit in our new home. Our bedroom furniture was the first to go, and then we began to think about how impractical our couch is for living with kids and dogs. We re evaluated every piece of large furniture in our home and decided to get rid of most of it.
3. Sell large furniture items
We are selling most of our larger items, like our bedroom furniture and sofa, so that we will have money to put towards new items. This might sound like we would lose money, but first of all, our items we are selling are newer and in great condition, they just won't fit well or practically in our new space. Second, we already know what we will replace them with, and the replacement items are within the budget of what we are making on our current furniture. We actually will have extra money since we won't be buying a huge bedroom furniture set for our new home.
Obviously, selling your items could cost you money in the long run. This step is only a good move if you know you won't need the items in your future home, or want to replace them with something that will be at a similar cost to what you can sell them for.
4. Continually re evaluate what you will bring and what you will leave behind
We have gone back and forth about keeping our dining room table. We've decided that the large shelving unit in our living room really won't fit in our new home. We've continually gone down the list of what we are bringing and tried to knock off more items. We won't be replacing all of the items in our new home since we are downsizing so much, so it isn't costing us anything to get rid of more things, but rather saving us a lot of money and work.
Through these steps, we've went from having a pod and storage reserved for over a thousand dollars, to a smaller moving truck and storing our things in family homes or an inexpensive, small storage unit for 300 dollars or less. We are saving a ton of money that we can then put into making our new home the space that we want it to be.
Minimalism has made the moving process so much easier. Though it has taken a lot of thought, in the end, we will be spending much less money, and have a home with only the items we need, new, inexpensive furniture that fit our space better, and all around less work and stress.
I'd love to hear about ways that you have made moving easier in the past or plan to in the future!
Want to know more about how minimalism can make your mom-life (or any life) easier?