Expenses add up fast when you’re relocating cross-country. Saving money where you can and spending it smart where you have to is a bit like playing a real-life game of chess. Each decision you make will have a positive or negative impact on the total cost of the move.

But don’t wait till your in the midst of your relocation efforts and you feel like time is playing weird tricks on you and you’re all hemmed in with too few options, none of them likely to save you money.

Here is some helpful information to help you know what to expect and how to minimize the costs of your long-distance move:

Adding Up The Costs Of DIY Moving

Here are the major expenses of moving your property to a new state:

  1. Truck rental, which goes on a per day and per mile basis. Depending on how large of a moving truck you rent and from which company, expect to pay $500, $1,000, or more. Be sure you clean the truck thoroughly before returning it so you don't’ get hit with a cleaning fee.
  2. Truck rental insurance could cost you, say, another $150. But it’s well worth it. You are traveling long distance over unfamiliar terrain with a truck laden down with your household possessions. Don’t risk being liable for any damages.Cost Long Distance Move
  3. Gasoline is a major expense. If you’re moving 1,000 miles, you could use 150 gallons of gas at $3 per gallon. That’s almost $500. Helpful tip: return the moving truck with a full tank or you could be charged an extra “fill up fee” later.
  4. Various travel expenses. Don’t forget about tolls, snacks along the way, hotel stays, restaurant bills, and miscellaneous travel expenses that could easily add up to several hundred dollars.
  5. Finally, consider shipping your car instead of towing it if you don’t have a second driver to follow the moving truck. If you’re wondering what is the average cost to ship a car, know that auto shipping is safer and more convenient.

Thus, a DIY move across the country could easily cost $2,000 to $3,000, though there’s no way to calculate an exact figure since there are so many variables that make everyone’s move different.

What About Professional Moving Services?

On average, if you are moving 1,000 miles from your current location, you would probably pay $1,500 to $2,500 for professional moving services for an apartment and $3,500 to $4,500 for help moving the contents of a medium-sized home.

It will depend on how large and how many trucks you fill, how many man hours of labor are involved, the distance to be traversed, and the shipment weight. The cost also varies based on whether you include packing/unpacking, furniture assembly, use of a storage unit, or other special add-on services. The more you do yourself, the more you will save.

With thousands of dollars on the line, there is plenty of room to find ways to save. The bottom line is: plan ahead and do what you can yourself to reduce the cost of a long distance move as much as possible.