Whether you are buying your first home, renting or looking to make a tree change, it can be both an exciting and overwhelming time. Especially when we tend to focus so much time on finding the right home, moving costs and budgeting become more of an afterthought.
We’ve created this guide to help make sure you cover everything you need to when looking to make your next move.
What costs are involved in moving house?
To figure out the total cost of moving house really depends on your individual circumstances, the most common costs involved include:
Moving your belongings
There are a few options when it comes to figuring out how you are going to move your furniture and belongings. First and the most obvious would be to hire a removalist team, this is usually also the easiest option but can also be quite expensive with the average cost ranging from $300 - $3,000 depending on the service they would be providing, the amount of belongings they would need to move and the location.
If you are looking to hire a removalist, you should check what the service includes. The standard service provided usually includes:
- Safely loading your belongings onto their truck or van
- Transporting your belongings to the new property
- Unloading your belongings into the designated rooms in the new house
Extra services that might mean additional costs usually include:
- Providing packing materials such as boxes, bubble wrap, protecting materials and tape
- Packing and unpacking for you
- Setting up the furniture and appliances for you
- Moving your belongings interstate
- Cleaning the home you are vacating
There are other options if you don’t want to hire a removalists to do the job or if you are looking to save money. You could reach out to family or friends to see if they are willing to help you with your move, and hire a truck or van to get the job done. Do your research as there are many affordable hire companies that can make the job easier.
Connecting and transferring your utilities
These costs are generally unavoidable but it’s important to note that whilst some real-estate agents and companies may offer to connect your utilities for you, it can be more costly in the end. It’s important to do your research, if you already have utilities connected under your name at your current residence, contact the companies to find out how much it would cost to transfer them to your new place and potentially see if you can get any special offers by staying loyal to them and to save on costs.
If this is your first home, do you research and make sure you are comparing apples for apples, there can also be some great offers out there especially around End of Financial Year for new customers. It’s also a good idea to check to see what bundle options are out there, this could potentially save you money in the long run.
Utility costs include:
The final and probably most tedious part of moving includes cleaning the home you are vacating and doing a quick clean of the home you are moving into.
If you are renting, a bond clean is a legal requirement and in your tenancy agreement, it could also affect how much of your bond you will be getting back as the landlord and realestate agent will do an inspection before releasing your bond.
You could outsource this to a professional cleaning company, there are many companies out there that specialist in rental bond cleans and usually cost around $40+ per hour, depending on the size of the house, what needs to be cleaned and the location.
If you are looking to save costs, consider bribing your friends and family to help you clean the property in exchange for taking them out to a nice meal at the end of the day.
A quick go to list to help make sure you cover all areas include:
- Cupboards - inside and out, including doors and hinges
- Cleaning appliances - oven inside and out, stove and rangehood, fridge, microwave etc.
- Clean windows inside and out, window sills, tracks and door frames
- Sweep vacuum and wash all floors including carpets - you can look to hire a professional carpet cleaner or hire a machine.
- Clean bathroom walls, tiles and ceiling making sure it’s mold free
- Dust and clean skirting boards
- Clean walls if there are marks on the walls - sugar soap works wonders for this job
- Mow lawns and pull out any garden weeds, trim plans and hedges
- Remove all rubbish from the property
- Clean blinds and curtains
Your real-estate agent will also provide you with a list of everything that needs to be cleaned before moving, it’s also a good idea to refer back to your moving in report.
Moving can be a big job and the last thing you really think about is getting food! You should consider budgeting for takeaway or uber eats the first couple nights you are in your new place. After the first couple days, you will most likely need to do a big shop and stock up on pantry and fridge items.
What costs are the upfront costs if you are renting?
When looking to move to a new rental property, these are the upfront costs you need to be aware of:
- Bond Deposit: A bond is the money you pay at the start of your rental agreement as a security. Typically equivalent to one month's (4 weeks) rent. It’s important to note that a bond is not compulsory but most landlords and agents do ask for one. You should check your rights as a tenant before proceeding with a bond deposit. A helpful resource is the tenants.org.au website.
- Rent in advance: This is a payment in addition to the bond deposit to secure your tenancy in an overwhelming rental market. Usually requires 2 weeks rent.
- General moving costs and property basics: If you are moving out of home for the first time, you will need to spend on furniture, white goods and removalists. Ensure you factor these into your budget.
What costs are the upfront costs if you are buying a home?
A total breakdown of costs can be found in our home buying costs guide. But generally include:
- Deposit: Typically equivalent to a percentage of the property's purchase price, and is paid to the seller to secure the property.
- Legal fees: Legal and Conveyancing fees are the costs associated with hiring a conveyancer or solicitor to assist with the purchase of a property in Australia.
- Stamp duty: A tax levied on the property purchase, and the amount varies depending on the property's value and location.
- Mortgage Fees: Mortgage fees are the costs associated with taking out a home loan to finance the purchase of a property in Australia.
- Building and pest inspection fees: A building inspection and pest inspection is strongly recommended when purchasing a property, this can help you avoid any nasty and costly repairs down the road.
- Lenders Mortgage Insurance: Lender's mortgage insurance (LMI) is a type of insurance that protects the lender in the event that the borrower defaults on the home loan.
- Mortgage Insurance: Mortgage protection insurance is a type of optional insurance that’s designed to protect one of your most precious assets, your home.
- General moving costs and property basics: Again, if you are moving out of home for the first time, you will need to budget for furniture, white goods and removalists.
Top tips to reduce your moving costs:
Moving expenses can really add up, but there are ways you can save costs including:
- Moving your belonging and furniture yourself and asking friends and family to help you.
- Declutter and potentially start selling items you will no longer need weeks before you move
- Do you research on your utility providers, as mentioned before, there can be some great bundle deals out there.
- Looking for new furniture? Consider buying second hand off facebook marketplace or gumtree
- Research your expenses and plan out your budget so you have something to stay on track and avoid any unexpected expenses.
Ready to buy? Fixed or variable. We are here to help.
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*The information contained in this article is intended to be of a general nature only. It has been prepared without taking into account any person’s objectives, financial situation or needs. Before acting on this information, Joust recommends that you consider whether it is appropriate for your circumstances. Joust recommends that you seek independent legal, financial and taxation advice before acting on any information in this article.