Over the years, I have moved to various states several times either for the company I was working for or most recently I relocated because I got married to my husband!! Yeah!! All the reasons were great but each move had its own set of financial decisions that I had to make. Moving can be one of the most stressful projects an individual or family will undertake. Therefore it’s imperative that you count the costs of your move beforehand.
Unless the company you’re working for is paying for your move, one of the questions, you will have to ask yourself is what will the move cost me? You will have to decide if you will move your belongings yourself or hire professional movers. If you decide to move them yourself, you can consider options for portable moving and storage with companies such as PODS or ABF U-Pack ReloCube and various others. You may even consider options like U-Haul. With these options, you will have to coordinate moving your belongings into the container or moving vehicle You will need moving blankets, shrink wrap, various box sizes, tape and a variety of other moving supplies for a successful move. You can ask friends to fill your moving container(s)/truck or hire some helping hands through apps like Thumbtack or TaskRabbit. If you don’t have a lot of items to move but it’s too much for your one-way plane flight to your new location, then you can consider a Freight company like Greyhound or Fedex. With the freight companies, be sure to ask what are the best containers to ship your items securely and damage free. Remember to take care of your boxes and moving materials as you may be able to redeem them for some money with apps like OfferUp, NextDoor, even Facebook.
Another cost to consider when moving is relocating your vehicle. Are you going to drive your car to your new location or are you going to ship it? If you drive it then some of the costs you’ll need to consider is gas expense, wear and tear on your car, your time, food and lodging costs. If you ship your vehicle then you will want to get quotes from various car relocators. In my most recent move, I used a service called Mr. Carshipper. This company has access to a bank of car relocation companies and will help you schedule. It always a good idea to get quotes from at least 2 service providers to make sure you’re getting a competitive price.
An additional consideration to make when moving is your present and future housing. If you live in an apartment, what are the requirements to get the security deposit back? If you own your home are you going to rent it or sell it? Unless you are extremely familiar with your new location, I recommend renting temporarily to get a feel for the neighborhood, schools, proximity to work, etc. Otherwise, you will run the risk of being committed to a mortgage you have doubts about. IF you rent, your landlord my require a security deposit. If you buy, you’ll need to calculate the down payment and any other fees for your new home purchase.
Furthermore, check all your subscriptions for portability to your new location. Fortunately, subscriptions to services like Amazon Prime and Netflix are portable. However, subscriptions to your gym, your cable company, WiFi, etc. may not be. Be sure to cancel any services you know you won’t be using at your new location as that can save you lots of money.
Lastly, review the requirements for getting a new driver’s license and car registration. Many state cost vary. This is a fee you will have to pay if you are moving permanently so its good to know and budget for how much you will pay. In my most recent move to Florida the driver’s license and car registration combined was over $400.
Moving to a new city or state is an exciting time but it can also by a stressful time. Eliminating the unknowns about your financial obligations can help you feel more comfortable about your move. I hope you found these ideas useful. If you’ve moved recently or have moved several times what advice would you give in additional to these suggestions?
As a little girl, I used to "play" school with my two younger sisters. Being the oldest, I always played the coveted role of the teacher. Over the years, I realized not only did I enjoy "playing" that role, but that educating others is a real passion. I am truly thankful to use my passion to teach financial literacy to others. I have launched the first of many courses to help aid in promoting financial literacy. My new complimentary mini-course is offered through Your Story Financial Academy! This course entitled, "Don't Put ALL Your Money in One Bucket!", will help you prioritize your financial goals. Often people focus on their short term and long term goals, but rarely do I hear of their mid-term financial goals. We will discover why each category of goals plays an important role in the overall financial process. It will take you less than an hour to complete. Happy Learning!
When it comes to financial planning you may think that you have to wait until you retire to start traveling. Well, I know that the reality is we want to travel now. We want to enjoy experiences while we are young, healthy and able. We don’t want to wait until retirement to start traveling to places we have always desired to go. As a financial advisor, I am well aware of this reality and understand that it doesn’t have to be a guilty pleasure that goes against preparing for your future financial goals. In this post, I am going to share how you can do both save and travel. I will provide 12 tips on traveling financially guilt free.
There is nothing like taking a trip, enjoying the resort, cruise ship, excursions and the food to come back home to a credit card bill to pay for the vacation. Ugh!
My first tip is to write out your financial goals and travel goals. You can do this on paper, in your journal, your calendar, or a dedicated place in your phone. Make sure you can refer to it quickly and easily as a reminder of what you’re preparing to achieve financially. I am a big proponent of S.M.A.R.T Goals. I’m sure you’ve heard of this acronym. It stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Timebound. Write it down and after you write it down tell someone. When you tell someone about your goal, you activate accountability which gets you closer to achievement.
My next tip is to have an emergency fund. You may have heard that the foundation to any financial plan is an emergency fund. So you need this before you can have a guilt free travel fund. An emergency fund has many names such as a rainy day fund, a “giving me options” fund, a “guilt free travel” fund, or you can name it whatever you want. The key to this is when something unexpected happens like the A/C going out in your car, an unexpected bill, or you need a new appliance in your home, you will be able to eliminate the worry of money from the equation. You are making the best out of an unexpected situation because you planned. You are now able to travel without worrying about the unexpected.
Another tip is to set up a system for automatic savings that align with your goals. When you have a solid foundation and habit of saving in place you will be more confident in your financial decisions. Use tools like automatic savings apps (Digit, USAA Text Savings Tool, Bank of America Keep the Change Program, etc.) or setting up automatic savings from payroll to your bank. Make savings convenient and fruitful. Compartmentalize your finances by aligning the accounts with your savings goals, i.e. Emergency fund, vacation fund, or a foodie fund. By making saving painless, easy and convenient you’ll have more confidence when participating in what you enjoy.
Next tip be open to the not so typical vacations. If you are in the infancy stage of building your emergency fund then you can opt for a staycation. Staycations are vacations that you can take by staying at home or near where you live. I live in Orlando and before that I lived in Phoenix so taking a staycation is very convenient since I live in a tourist destination city. But if you are not in a “touristy” area, I am willing to bet that there’s so many fantastic things happening near you. For example, I grew up in Columbus, OH. Although, it’s a neat city, I wouldn’t call it a tourist destination. Yet, there are festivals, museums, restaurants, spas, etc that you may ignore because you live and work there. It’s an opportunity to appreciate what’s going on right under your nose, in your own backyard. Also, be willing to travel an hour or two to enjoy something new and exciting near you. So be creative and you’ll be proud of your resourcefulness. TripAdvisor is a great resource for finding local gems.
Another idea, especially, if you have flexibility in your work schedule is to take advantage of last minute travel deals. Sites like Expedia, Orbitz, Southwest airlines, Hotwire, Groupon, etc. are great resources. As with anything you buy, be sure to do your due diligence and check the reputation of these offerings. Additionally, the more flexible you are with your travel dates the lower the potential price of your airline ticket.
Also, sign up for hotel rewards programs. Some of these programs will give you points if you decide not to have housekeeping for the duration of your hotel stay. Depending on what you are willing to sacrifice you may find the reward valuable in exchange.
Choose to take a vacation opposite the peak season. For example, you may want to take a trip to the Caribbean. According to Frommers, prices may drop in the Caribbean between mid-April to mid-December. If you decide on this strategy of travel, then be sure to understand the typical weather patterns for that time of year. The lower prices usually coincide with less than ideal weather and could impede safety.
Next, if you travel a lot for work. Be sure to enroll in airline mileage programs. Although some of those programs can be restrictive with black out dates, using the points in exchange for a free or discounted flight is a great way to save money.
For those who travel for work frequently, you may be able to extend your business trip to include personal travel. Depending on your employer, there’s a possibility your flight and hotel will be offset by your business travel and all you have to pay for is the personal portion of your trip.
Although, I have never stayed at an airbnb, as of the writing of this article, I have friends who swear by it. They, especially, love the price and the “homey” feel as compared to your run of the mill hotel stay. I, recently, read an article on airbnb advantages. I like the fact that the airbnb property can offer more authenticity and give you a more feel for how the locals live in your destination. Personally, when I travel, I learn so much more from the locals and it makes my trip more genuine than the typical “touristy” vacation.
Food is always a big expense when traveling. Whether you decide to stay with a friend, rent an airbnb or reserve a hotel with a kitchenette, you can save some major bucks by cooking. Besides, it can be a healthier option than the restaurant food. If you’re with a group of friends, plan your meals and who is going to cook and wash the dishes. You can create some great memories that way!
If you’re a Facebook user, you can find an FB page entitled One Bag and You’re Out! I enjoy watching the videos and posts because you can get many ideas on how to cut your luggage needs for travel. Remember, bags don’t fly free with all airlines and if you can minimize your luggage and your clothing purchases for travel, you’ll be able to save money. I highly recommend watching a few episodes if you’re need of some inspiration and motivation for packing.
Finally, I’m well aware that your financial story needs to include the activities that you enjoy, like traveling. Why shouldn’t it? When I read an article stating that Americans left 52% of unused vacation time on the table in 2017, I realized that this is an unwise financial decision. Not only are Americans leaving hard earned vacation days on the table but they’re leaving money on the table. You need to take advantage of your work benefits. It’s both a wise decision financially and personally. Besides your 70 year old self, will thank you for the wonderful memories you created.
What tips would you add to this list? Feel free to share them with me on Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter!
Need more help with prioritizing your goals? Schedule a Free 30 Minute Introductory Meeting with Shehara L Wooten.
Hello!! My name is Shehara L. Wooten. Since my name is unique and rare, many are unfamiliar with how it is pronounced. I will offer my assistance, it is pronounced "Sha-Hair-Rah".