What are the hidden costs of moving house?

Which statement about moving to another home have you heard more often:

Moving is stressful or Moving is expensive?

And do you think one is truer than the other?

Interestingly enough, your answer can’t possibly be wrong simply because residential moves are notorious for being stressful AND expensive at the same time. But add a number of unpredictable circumstances and surprising costs while relocating across the country to a new home in an unfamiliar city, and things suddenly seem overwhelmingly complicated.

To make things a bit clearer for you, let’s shed some light on the hidden costs of moving so that you are much better prepared for what’s coming your way (that is, your final relocation bill).

Take a look at the following checklist of typical hidden costs when moving house:

Additional insurance

Purchasing additional insurance is optional so you may forget to even consider your insurance options as hidden costs when moving out. You do get basic moving valuation from your moving company but at 60 cents per pound per item, its coverage is more than basic – it’s practically nothing.

If you value your household items and wish to guarantee their safe transportation, think about purchasing extra protection (also known as Full Value Protection) either through your mover or from a third party insurer. Because you just never know.

SEE ALSO: Should I get moving insurance?


Packing can hardly be ever forgotten during the moving preparations, so it doesn’t usually fall in the category of hidden costs of moving out of home. However, the required packing materials are a considerable expense that can be overlooked due to the larger number of things to think about before moving day.

If you have hired a full service moving company, then they will take care of the packing job for you (including custom crating if needed), so you don’t have to worry about finding the necessary packing supplies. Review the packing costs in your estimate and discuss them with your selected cross country mover.

Express delivery charge

As the name of the fee suggests, this type of hidden costs of moving long distance is charged if you want to receive your belongings in a very tight delivery window – that is, to have an express delivery. This hidden expenditure usually applies for long distance moves where affordable cross country movers are trying to keep the moving costs reasonable by consolidating several shipments if the space of the moving truck allows it.

If you wish your delivery to be fast and the delivery date to be guaranteed, then share this wish your company but expect to be charged extra for the exclusive use of the moving vehicle. In simple words, you’ll probably have to pay an express delivery fee.

Fee for handling bulky items

Our list of the hidden costs of relocation continues with the typical fees and charges in a residential move that are not usually taken into consideration. If you own a number of oversized and heavy items for moving, then your moving company can charge you with a special fee for handling bulky items. A piano, a pool table, a hot tub, large furniture pieces, and heavy household appliances are all good examples for bulky items found in your home.

Make sure you have discussed the fate of all these specialty items with your mover and that you are familiar with the costs associated with their relocation.

Temporary storage fee

If your new home is not ready for normal occupation yet at the time of the move (renovation or repair works, unexpected problems, finalization of the sale, etc.), you may choose to have your packed belongings stored in a specialized storage facility while still in your reputable mover’s possession. In which case, of course, you will be charged a storage fee.

As you might suspect, the longer your household items are kept in storage, the higher the storage fee will be. Therefore, make an effort to shorten that storage period as much as possible.

SEE ALSO: How to pack for storage?

Flight charge

If your hired laborers are forced to go up and down numerous flights of stairs while carrying heavy stuff, then you should expect to pay a flight charge. This charge is usually calculated per flights of stairs, but in some rare cases the price can be formed on the number of steps basis.

If your residential building has an elevator and you make the necessary arrangements to reserve it in advance, you can easily avoid paying this kind of hidden moving fees.

Cancellation fee

Nothing in life is 100% guaranteed and when it comes to the overly complicated process of moving out, that statement seems truer than ever. If a sudden change of plans forces you to move your relocation reservation to another more convenient date or cancel the residential move altogether, then there’s a high chance that you end up paying a cancellation fee to your moving company.

Make sure you are familiar with your moving partner’s cancellation policy and terms or else you run the risk of losing your moving deposit if you try to cancel your move shortly before moving day.

Extra stops fee

Our checklist of the hidden costs of moving out includes the extra stops fee as well – a bit uncommon but still possible charge for making your moving company stop for additional pick-ups or drop-offs along the set relocation route. Share your plans for such extra stops along the way with your top rated cross country mover so that together you can work out the best course of action and be prepared for the extra expense.

Travel fee

Travel fees are typical for local moves where you get billed for the moving labor by the hour. Your local moving company is likely to factor in the time their team needs on moving day to reach your home from their head office, and then calculate it as one extra hour of labor or more depending on the specific distance.

Again, speak with your chosen relocation partner whether they intend to include a travel fee in your final bill and if yes, negotiate its exact price beforehand to avoid unpleasant surprises.

SEE ALSO: How much do local movers cost?

Hoisting fee

Speaking of less common hidden costs of moving home, here’s another good example. If some of your bulky furniture pieces and household appliances won’t fit through the doors of your home or won’t go through excessively narrow staircases or hallways, your moving company can offer you special hoisting (rigging) services to get your problematic belongings out safely and without inflicting any property damage.

Be mindful that such hoisting services can be rather expensive due to the necessity of specialized equipment and moving expertise, so be 100% positive that you want to move the bulky pieces in question to your new home.

Call now for a cost estimate:

Available online: 2 moving consultants

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *