How to move when you have absolutely no money…This is the exact statement I looked up when we first found out we had to move. We had 3 months to look for a place to live pay our monthly bills at our current residence while saving money to move into a new place. How to move when you absolutely have no money?
How are you to move when you absolutely have no money? Some places want first last and security that could be about 3000. Then you have to factor in water, electricity and the internet. Don’t forget a rental truck if you want to do it in one swoop. It could easily be another 1000 on top of getting the green light the place is yours to move into.
How to move when you have absolutely no money
It’s a valid question. However, the answers can vary by situation. Everyone’s situation is different. Only you really know what you can afford, where the cheaper places maybe for rent in your area or the houses for sale if you are going that route.
We are going to focus more on renting a home. The only thing I can do is give you practical moving tips that may seem a little generic, but they are the truth. We are doing these exact steps right now in our situation.
Assuming you have a job or some form of money coming in
What I love to do since I love lists and charts. I calculated our bills and roughly what the paychecks would be. Knowing that Mike’s check varies from as low as 700 to as much as 1200 depending on how much work his company has. I create a budget based on the lowest amount. So if for the whole month he made 700 a week we would have 2800 dollars.
I then wrote down everything we would need for basic necessities. I mean the bare minimum. So I could see how much we could realistically save in however many months we would be moving in. I didn’t want to set ourselves up for failure if we found a house we KNOW we would NEVER be able to afford.
Monthly income- 2800
If we lived with just the minimum amount of money he made we would we could find a place in 4 or 5 months.
I then create a budget for the really good weeks.
Monthly income- 4800
With this amount of money, we could move in 2 months. Don’t look at this number and think “Oh, you could move with that amount”. However, you also have to factor in any deposits that may be needed to turn on the electric and the water. Plus the fee for renting a moving truck. You may be eating out the first few nights because you are still unpacking everything and are tired.
If you really want it
If moving is something you really want to do then you need to sacrifice now, so you can live better later.
I also recommend moving around tax time. Get that extra money to help with the moving costs. Since I worked for 8 months of this year I am getting an income tax refund for the amount of 1-month rent at our new place. I am not spending it on anything besides paying 1 months rent. Now we are 1 month ahead.
Once you are ready to move and follow these tips to help you move.
Don’t wait till the last minute to pack.
Do not buy packing materials or boxes.
Please whatever you do… DO NOT BUY BOXES. It may take a little bit of effort and work, but you can get boxes for free. I found shit tons of boxes on Facebook marketplace, offer-up, and craigslist. I have even gone to Walmart when I know they just got a truck in and they are stocking and asked them for their boxes right in the middle of the aisle.
In a couple of towns over from us which is a 20-minute drive, they have a recycling center for newspapers. We take a drive over there a pick up as much newspaper as we would need to pack our valuables. I have also asked friends and family to save me their newspapers when they are done with them. For packing materials, we only bought the tape. We bought 3 rolls and I have packed up 90% of my house with 1 roll.
We are using all of our blankets and sheets to cover furniture while moving to prevent scuffing. No need to pack the blankets and sheets in a box when you can easily use them to cover your big furniture. Once you are done using them just toss them in the washer.
Packing with no money
The biggest tip I can give when moving is to pack by room. This has saved me so much time, because everything I want in my living room, bedroom, or bathroom. It is already in there. Pack up what’s in there label the box and boom it’s ready to be put in your new home.
I did two things while I was packing by room. I would declutter anything you do not want to take with you. I went through all my make up in the bathroom and got rid of things I didn’t use. I found things that Mikayla got for Christmas years ago that she never opened. I posted those things that could be worth some money to Facebook and Offerup. You might as well try and make some money while your packing.
Leave one box in each room
I also left one box in each room of things we use on a daily basis. I put it all in one spot so on moving day I can tape up the box or grab the plastic bin and toss it into my car. You will also want these things when you first move in.
After I was done packing one full room in my house I made that my moving box room. Poor Mikayla got the shitty end of the stick on this one. Since we only have her on the weekends her room became the home of box mountain.
Every box that I packed after her room was put in there, plus our stuff that we put in storage. That freed up some other money in our budget. We got a storage unit back in November and found out 2 days before Christmas we had to move. So in January we moved everything back home and freed up that 45 bucks.
Looking for a new place
When looking for a new place remember to fall back on your budget and how much you think you can afford and if an area is cheaper than where you are living. We spent an afternoon driving around our area looking for homes for rent. Our budget was no more than 900 if we were staying in the Pasco area.
The more we thought about it though the more we realized if we could reduce our gas budget we could put that towards more rent. Mike works an hour from our home and is putting 100 miles on the car daily. We fill up on gas 2 to 3 times a week and do oil changes more frequently because of that. We decided to look in the Tampa area to use less gas and mileage. Which means fewer oil changes per year.
In reducing the gas budget from 300 to 120, filling up only once a week could add 180 to our rent budget. Making 1080 we could afford. Pushing it we decided 1200 would be our max budget for rent. Things would have been a little easier if I didn’t quit my job back in August, but once I get a job in Tampa that won’t be pushing our budget. Right now we can make it work by being frugal.
Where to look when moving?
We started looking on craigslist and Facebook marketplace. Use these with caution. There are many scammers on there posting things for rent that are not. If we found a house that we liked on Facebook or craigslist, we would look the house up on Zillow to see if it was actually for rent. 80% of the time it wasn’t. If the house was close we would just drive by to see if they had a sign.
Mike’s mother and stepfather are realtors. They told us to stay away from Zillow for renting because of the fees that come with inquiring about a house on there. We always try and look for rentals by owner. They are few and far between, but they still exist. You just have to look.
Don’t be afraid to ask for time
While Mike was working he found a home for rent down the street from his job. It was also for rent by the owner. One day he took me to the house and the lady next door happened to be the mother of the owner of the home. She ended up showing us the house and I fell in love. Mike and I did whatever we had to to make sure we got this house.
After talking with the owner and showing them all of Mike’s paycheck stubs we asked if we gave them 1800 dollars right now would you hold it for us till February 1st. She said she would speak with her husband and get back to us. Well, guys, they wanted to rent it and she really liked us so they did. They took a deposit and they gave us until 1/25 to have the rest of the money and we can move on that day.
So don’t feel bad for asking for time. If you only have a certain amount of money saved ask them. The worse thing they can say is no. Sometimes they will say yes if they see you are a good person in a shitty situation and want to rent to genuinely nice people.
Call the utility companies
Now that we have the home on lockdown it was time to find out about the deposits for the electric and water. I first called my electric company and asked how much I paid for my deposit at my current home. I have lived here for almost 4 years and couldn’t remember. They told me I paid 340 and when I am canceling they will take my last bill out of my deposit and send me a check for the remainder. SCORE!
I didn’t know what to expect from the water company because our landlord now paid for the water. However, I buckled down and called the electric and water company for our area in Tampa. I was told by the electric company for our new address the deposit would be 284 with an activation fee of 28.
My first thought okay not too bad and then he replied it will come on your first bill. I could have cried, I did not have to put a deposit down right away. The same went for the water company, a deposit for 155, and an activation fee of 30, which will come on our first bill.
Then I called Frontier for our internet to see if we could transfer from one house to another and they told us, yes and it didn’t cost anything to do so.
If that’s not a win, win, win… I don’t know what is then! Everything was falling into place.
Don’t get discouraged
Moving is not easy. It takes some time and patience. If you work hard and hustle your ass off you can make it work with not having a lot of money. I know my situation will be different from yours and this isn’t a concrete set in stone way on how to move with absolutely no money.
However, I do hope I have given you ways to come up with a plan to move when you think it is impossible when you have no money. You just have to work hard and make some sacrifices, because it’s not a permanent situation. You just need to sacrifice until you get back on your feet. I do hope everything works out for you and your moving journey.
Please let me know in the comments if you have any tips to help with how to move with absolutely no money.
Until next time, have a great day!