Congrats! You've made the decision to move. Well, maybe not yet, but if you've made is this far on the blog, you're definitely thinking about it. No matter the stance, you're welcome here. So listen up, cause you're about to get the DL on how much it ACTUALLY costs to make the move across the country. Smash those piggy banks people, you're gonna need it.
Now, this post is in no way intended to scare you. Sure, you may be feeling a sense of serious sticker shock when you see the final number - but this is intended to prepare you for whats to come. Let's dive in.
Moving Truck: Of course you could forgo the moving truck completely and buy errthang new-new (or used on craigslist, LetGo or Facebook Marketplace) but I'm here to tell you about my experience in which we packed it all up and shipped it out. Luckily you have some options depending on what's best for you:
Shipping Your Car: Most transplants I've talked to drove their car out here with a parent or a friend who then flew back. If you prefer and have the means to do that, awesome! Go for it. BUT, in my opinion, if you choose to do this way, you should really be in it for the adventure, not to save a buck. Mitch and I both wanted to bring our cars out, so driving separately across country sounded awful and frankly, unsafe. Shipping each car cost us $1,200, a painful number and by far the most expensive "package" I've sent out. I also wasn't able to take time off work because of a huge event I had coming up. When you add up the costs of gas (esp. if you have a low MPG car), hotel accommodations, food on the road, etc. you're most likely getting uncomfortably close to that $1,200 number. Not to mention, you're putting up to 2,000 miles on your car and might need new tires by the time you arrive to the Golden State. Like I said, if you choose to drive that's great, just be in it mostly for the adventure.
Home Sweet Home: Application Fees for each apartment you apply to can run you around $40 each. Once you are approved for an apartment, you can expect to pay first month's rent, security deposit, and last month's rent. Any pets? That can cost you an added deposit as well. Let's set this number at $3,100 (completely depends on your rental budget).
Decorating your Apartment: So you may or may not be a complete psycho like me, but I put a lot of love into my apartment. Some major things like a TV and couches came in the moving truck, but as I look around my living room in decor alone and quickly tally up everything I see, we are surpassing $1,000. And trust me, I only shop Target, HomeGoods, cheap local shops, and Anthropologie clearance (even that is a splurge.) And tomorrow I will be heading back to a Nursery to take home the $115 floor plant I had my eyes on to fill the void between my TV and the hallway. What I'm saying here is - it adds up.
Moving Truck: $3,300
Shipping a car + flight: $1,400
New Apartment: $3,100
Apartment Decor: $1000+
Grand Total: $8,700-$9,000
If someone had showed me this number before moving, it would have scared the crap out of me and I may have started to reconsider. But, this is your life. This move is absolutely priceless and now that I'm here, I would have given every penny I own to experience this. Sure, my bank account has been low over these past few months, but I know it will bounce back over time, and when I look back I won't remember how much money I spent, I'll remember the amazing change I was brave enough to do.
What will you look back on?
Disclaimer: This estimate was based entirely off of my experience moving from Connecticut. This is intended to be used only as a guide and a rough estimate of how much you can expect to pay for these services/products. In other words, if you go into debt don't come runnin' to me.