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We talk a lot about budgeting and finding the best mortgage rate when it comes to buying a home, but when it comes to actually uprooting your life, packing your belongings, and moving into a new abode, other expenses need to be considered as well.

According to our research, the cost of getting ready to move comes in at about $1,648. This number considers the cost of packing supplies from boxes to protective coverings for your furniture, cleaning supplies, and a one-day moving truck rental. Notably, the bulk of moving preparation costs come from miscellaneous living expenses.

As you know, moving to a new residence is not easy and the packing/unpacking period can span days – even weeks. Therefore, as you’re settling into your new home, it’s normal to incur living expenses such as travel costs while running errands or ordering takeout for the family if you don’t have the time or set-up to cook your meals. And though the process can be simplified by hiring professional packers and movers, using these services comes with a hefty price tag.

We also calculated the cost of hiring a service to pack the contents of a fully-furnished three-bedroom, two-storey home, with 80-100 boxes worth of possessions to another home 40km away. The study found that a professional packing service in the Greater Toronto Area costs $2,069, while hiring professional movers costs $2,793 on average. Mover’s insurance was also included in these costs. For a further breakdown of the costs, check out our infographic below.

Hidden costs of moving

The money involved in buying a home is more than just the purchase price, the down payment, and your monthly mortgage payment. Likewise, the price in moving to a new home is more than packing boxes and calling on a moving truck. It’s important to bear other costs in mind, which may not always be so clear cut. That’s why also urges you to consider the following, so you – and your budget – are not caught unprepared: 

Costs to move specialty items

Heavy, large, fragile pieces like statues, pianos or marble furniture may require specialty movers at premium rates.

Tips/incentives for movers

If you’re recruiting friends to help you move, it’s always a good idea to tip your movers or at least provide them with a meal and a few drinks to keep them going!

Temporary lodging/storage

If the closing dates on your old and new home don’t match up, you may be required to find temporary accommodations for you and your family until your new home is ready. You’ll also have to find storage space for all your furniture and belongings in the meantime.

Lost wages for time spent moving

Moving can be time-consuming, so missing a few days of work is expected. But not all people have the option to use paid vacation days and may lose out on income for those days missed.

Bridge mortgage

If you’ve purchased your new home before selling your old one, you may be stuck without a down payment for the new home because it’s tied up in equity. A bridge mortgage is a short-term loan that helps borrowers in this type of situation.

Utility connection fees

You may need to request certain services to be transferred to your new home like your phone, Internet and cable service. You may also need to contact the hydro company to get your connection turned on. These companies may charge labour fees when sending a rep out to your new home.

New furnishings

Lastly, your new home may need new furniture, appliances, lighting and window coverings!

Changes in auto/home/tenant insurance premiums

When you change addresses, you are required to tell your insurer as this may lead to a change in your premium.  While your car insurance rate is determined by things like your driving record, insurance history, and the make and model of your vehicle, it could also go up or down depending on where you live and the claims history in your new neighbourhood. This is why moving is one of those key times when it’s important to shop around, because the insurer who offered you the best rate at your old home may no longer offer you the best rate at your new address.


The RATESDOTCA editorial team are experienced writers focused on sharing stories and bringing you the latest news in insurance and personal finance. Our goal is to provide Canadians with the information and resources they need to make better insurance and financial decisions.

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