Minneapolis Moving on a Budget

Whether you’re moving to Minneapolis from another city or state or moving locally in Minneapolis, there are plenty of ways you can make your move more affordable. Read on for advice from our expert Minneapolis movers on how to make a plan that keeps you on budget, and be sure to check out our Minneapolis Moving Guide if you’re coming from out of town and want to know more about your great new city.


Last-minute decisions may leave you with fewer choices than you would have had if you had planned ahead.

If, for example, you’re planning to hire local movers in Minneapolis, you’ll want to get moving quotes and reserve your moving date well in advance. If you wait, you may be stuck with the only mover that’s available on the date you need to move and may miss out on less expensive options or options that provide greater value. While it’s not a budget issue, if you’re doing a DIY move, you’ll also want to get your move on the calendars of any friends or family members who can help.


You might think that the choice between moving yourself and hiring a Minneapolis mover would be a no-brainer, but there’s a lot to consider first, such as:

  • You may not save quite as much money as you’d expect with a DIY move, depending on the size of the truck you need and how far you’re moving. Remember to factor in expenses such as your own time away from work, liability coverage and gas prices, since a truck with a heavy load won’t offer much in the way of fuel efficiency.
  • A do-it-yourself move takes a lot of time and puts physical stress on you and your helpers.
  • Hiring a professional Minneapolis moving company can relieve you of more than just lifting heavy furniture: Pro movers know how to safely pack every type of item (which can greatly reduce the chance of losses due to breakage), how to efficiently load and unload trucks, offer storage services if some unexpected event keeps you from moving into your new address right away, and, perhaps most importantly, save you hours and hours of time.

One more type of move you may want to work up a budget for is a container move. This involves having a container brought to your home, which you’ll then load yourself. The container company will transport the container to your new address, where you’ll unload it.

No matter which moving method you choose, it’s smart to get multiple quotes from several companies to make sure you get a great price and the services you need.


This is simple, but important: Fewer items to box up, store, or have a Minneapolis moving company handle mean lower costs. Read our decluttering and downsizing tips.

Set up an area where you can sort items by whether they will be kept and packed, donated, sold, or taken to the curb. If you donate, be sure to get a receipt in case your donation is tax-deductible. If you’re selling, do it as soon as possible so that you’re not dealing with hosting a yard sale or meeting buyers all over town while you’re in the middle of your move.


The timing of your move can help you save money. Although many people move according to when they will start a new job, when their lease ends, or when the school year starts or ends, others have more flexibility with their moving schedule.

If you can, avoid moving during the summer months, which are the busiest for Minneapolis movers, and the busiest time for renting a truck. Prices are often lower in the off-season.


Did you know that hiring a full-service Minneapolis moving company doesn’t necessarily mean you have to buy every service it offers? Larger moving companies often have a menu of standalone services that allow you to choose just the services you want. These may include:

Moving companies that offer a flexible service mix may also have a dedicated move coordinator who can guide you through every step of the moving process, from providing a moving quote to having your belongings unpacked in your new home.


You may want to buy specialty boxes for certain items, such as banker’s boxes for your files, but otherwise, look for sources of free boxes. Considering how many people are shopping online and having boxed orders delivered every few days, free boxes may be surprisingly easy to find.

If you haven’t already started collecting boxes, ask friends, family, coworkers, and neighbors if they have any or if they’ll start saving them for you. You can also check social media and online marketplaces (Facebook and Craigslist come to mind)—plenty of people who’ve just moved are happy to have you take their pile of empty boxes off their hands for free. Lastly, stop by big-box membership stores in the area to see if they give away boxes.


Some delicate or fragile items may need layers of bubble wrap and/or paper to protect them, but most items won’t. Look around you for packing supplies that you may not realize you already have. Bath and kitchen towels, socks, and t-shirts can be used to wrap or cushion all types of items that need some protection, and don’t forget to use any original packaging that you may hung onto, such as packaging for electronics.

Another source of free packing supplies is your own shopping trips: If your move isn’t imminent, start keeping paper and plastic bags from your shopping trips.


Do you have any skills or items that you’d be willing to trade someone for their help with your move? That could mean bartering for the use of a truck or your friends’ labor. Think creatively here and ask friends for their ideas on fair and equal trades.


The days around a move are busy, so it will be tempting to grab food on the go for most of your meals. Instead of blowing a portion of your budget on takeout sushi and pizza deliveries, take a weekend sometime prior to your move to prep meals for the freezer. A few hours spent making simple breakfasts, lunches, and dinners can help your budget stay on track, and you’ll probably eat healthier, too.


This is easy to overlook in the chaos of getting ready for a local move but transferring your utilities at the right time can save you some money. Unless there’s a need to have services overlap, arrange to have the utilities in the home you’re leaving cut off at about the same time you’re having them turned on at your new address so that you’re not paying for services you aren’t using in either location.

Here’s a related tip: Make sure the utility company is clear about any installation or transfer fees. If there are some, they may be negotiable, so it’s worth asking about.


In addition to potentially tax-deductible donations, you may be able to deduct some moving expenses if your move is related to a new job location. You should check with your tax preparer or accountant to confirm this since you may need to meet certain criteria, such as having a new workplace that’s a certain number of miles from your former location or working full-time for a certain number of weeks during the year right after your move.

If you are moving because of a job change and don’t deduct moving expenses, check with your employer about being reimbursed.


Moving can be exciting, and it’s normal to want to get your new home looking good as soon as possible. Before you rush out to raid your local Target or fill up an online shopping cart, though, take a moment (or several) first to consider the bigger picture.

For example, it may take some time before all the costs you incurred with your move to be billed or hit your credit card, and there may be some spending you forgot about. In the days right around or after your move, buy just what you need to get set up. You may find that after being in your new space for a while that you don’t really have ample room for that pricey piece of art or need that trendy yellow sofa.


The keys to a move that won’t make you regret that you ever decided to relocate in the first place are (1) planning thoroughly and well ahead of time (our moving checklist can help) and (2) working with reputable companies, whether they’re renting you a truck, providing labor, or providing a full-service, end-to-end move.

Take the time to check that any companies you choose to work with are properly licensed and insured and have an excellent track record of customer service.  

If you’re getting ready to move to Minneapolis or making a local move within the city, get in touch with our moving experts. We offer free, no-obligation moving quotes and walkthroughs via mobile device or in your home, and there’s never any fine print or hidden fees. Our move coordinators are ready now to create a custom mix of services that can save you money, time, and hassle on your upcoming move.