The last time I moved was 14 years ago and it was 20 minutes from where I was living at the time. I was wholly unprepared for moving…halfway across the country…with a family of six.
Where did we go wrong??
- We didn’t plan to pay for two houses for an extended period. We were remodeling our house in preparation to sell it and we didn’t expect the remodel to take so long. My husband is an experienced remodeler but so many factors messed up the timeline. It took more than a week to drive me from San Diego to Texas and get settled then hubby had to drive back home. He also had to spend more time with the kids since I wasn’t there. The remodel moved very slowly. We are covering two household expenses for 3 months. That’s a cool $20K. Add on the costs of remodeling and our checking account is on E. Hold on a minute while I cough up some blood. Emergency fund? What’s that? We haven’t gone into debt but that’s simply because I work every waking moment and we built a buffer in anticipation of the move…thank all that is holy.
- We waited too long to sell things. We sold the obvious first: couches, tables, chairs. What we forgot about until the 11th hour? All the crap (excuse my French) in the attic and garage. We could have made a pretty penny on camping gear, tools, etc. but we had to get rid of it in 24 hours as we panic cleaned out the house for sale. We would have put it at fire sale prices on Facebook Marketplace but we didn’t have time to even do that which meant Goodwill got a huge load of expensive gear. At least we can write some of it off?
- We sold stuff we shouldn’t have sold. Our motto, ‘We’ll buy it when we get there’ seemed like a good idea…until we realized that our dining table, refrigerator, deep freezer, and chair would have been less expensive to move. Everyone told us, ‘Sell EVERYTHING! Buy off Craigslist when you get there’. Those people are dumb. We have a trailer. We should have planned the move better. Fortunately we caught some of the stuff before we sold it and packed it for the move.
- We packed too little the first trip. We bought a trailer for moving since rental moving trucks are only $3K less than buying a cargo trailer. The problem? We thought we’d have TONS of room…and we did…on the first trip. 40% was packed on the first trip. 87% was packed on the second trip. Math doesn’t add up? Yeah, I know. It’s called moving math. Be prepared.
- We had no idea how much gas would cost. You’d think that we would be better at this since we spent a good portion of the last year on the road with a travel trailer. The difference is, travel trailers are super aerodynamic. Cargo trailers? Heck no. It’s like traveling with a parachute behind you. We stopped every hour for gas.
Regrets? I have a few…but man, I LOVE Texas.