How Much Will it Cost to Move Into a New Home?

Cardboard boxes on front porch of new house
Mint Images / Getty Images

Moving is not only stressful, but it can be an expensive proposition. It's not only the cost of purchasing boxes, hiring a moving van, and purchasing or renting a new home, but also the costs you need to pay to get settled in. If you set a moving budget before you began the transition, make sure to include the costs of setting up your new place.

Moving Items vs. Buying New

When you're planning your move and are getting rid of stuff, consider how much an item is used, what it's value is (both monetarily and personally), and how much it will cost to move or replace it. For instance, that old pull-out sofa that you've never used for an overnight guest might cost more to move than if you bought a new couch that doesn't pull out. Do the math first.

Setting up Utilities

When you start up a new utility service, you will likely have to fork over a connection or administrative fee. Companies often charge between $30 to $100 to set up a service. If possible, look for multiple services in one package, such as cable, Internet and digital phone, as this saves you from paying a fee for each service.

New Home Decor

When you move to a new place, you often end up purchasing drapes or rugs because the items that might've suited or fit your old home just don't work in your new one. This sometimes applies to plants as well. As plants are difficult to move, and because you can't always determine how much natural light you'll have in your new home, you may need to leave them behind with a caring friend or neighbor and start all over again at your new place.

Sometimes, it isn't until you arrive at your new place that you're able to assess your needs. It is difficult to determine your needs before you actually arrive. Add in the purchase of a few extra lamps, based on one per room. This will cover any rooms that do not have overhead lights and will ensure you're prepared for this extra cost.

New Appliances

Other items you may need to purchase are appliances that you left behind. These bigger ticket items may already be included in your move costs, but if they're not, make sure you add them on. These are items that you usually can't do without, at least not for any great length of time. Tack their costs on up front to ensure you have the funds to purchase them shortly after you arrive.

Stocking the Kitchen Pantry

Remember when you were packing up your kitchen and you thought it was best to leave all those spices behind? Well, now they'll have to be replaced. If you have to replace them, you can count on spending between $2 and $5 apiece, depending on the quality and quantity. Until you do replace them, your dinners may be a little bland. 

You can also plan on adding another $100 to $200 to your weekly grocery bill, just to fill up those empty cupboards and to get back to a well-stocked pantry. Of course, you can build this slowly, starting with essentials such as some basic spices, pasta, canned tomatoes and beans, and canned soups. Still, plan on spending extra money for the next few grocery runs. The same can be said for the refrigerator. Milk, juice, eggs, cheese, fruit, and veggies all add to the weekly tab.

Other Household Items

Laundry soap, dish soap, cleaning supplies, and simple items such as light bulbs also add to the weekly bill. With this in mind, you should calculate an extra $50 to $75 just to replace these necessities.

Look at each room in your house and determine any items you might need to make it functional. Note items such as garbage bins, shower caddies, extra storage units, wastebaskets, and toilet paper.

Car Costs

If you've moved to a new state, the first thing you'll need to do is have your car registered and licensed in that state. Sometimes, this will include paying for an inspection and, depending on how old your vehicle is, there can be items that need to be fixed before it can pass. This is difficult to predetermine, so add a 15 percent contingency to cover any additional costs.

The United States Postal Service site provides links to motor vehicles licensing and registration information for most states. State websites will provide fees, regulations, and steps you need to take to get your vehicle registered. While you're at your new state's website, check out the fees to obtain a new driver license.