Moving is never an easy process, it’s also not a very cheap process either. According to a report done by Worldwide ERC, the average household moving costs are $12,230. These numbers are for full-service, professional movers, many people opt to move themselves by renting U-haul trucks. Even if you hire professionals, there are ways to cut costs through tax breaks, research, and packing up the small stuff before the movers arrive. The busiest time to move is from April to October, where moving can cost about 25 percent more. Here are a few ways in which you can save on your move.

1. Unload what you don’t need

The weight of your entire load is factored into your cost when moving long distances. By getting rid of things you don’t need or want anymore, you’ll be able to save money. If you have furniture or other big items, there are hauling services that will come take it away for you. Also, make sure the furniture you do own will fit in your next home. You don’t want to be paying to have furniture moved that you won’t use.

2. Timing it right

Schedule your move for the middle of the week in the middle of the month. Most people move on the first of the month or the end of the month. As the movers get busier, the more expensive they will be.

3. Save on boxes

You can buy used or recycled boxes to pack up your smaller items. The less time the movers have to spend packing the less it’s going to cost. If the boxes are still in good condition by the end of the move you can often times, sell them back to that moving company.

4. Research the movers

Contact more than one moving company for estimates, experts suggest at least three different companies. To get the most accurate estimate have the company come out and give you an in-home estimate. This way the movers understand what they will be working with and you’re not surprised with a price increase. Also, research each company to make sure they have their licenses and are equipped with the proper insurance.

5. Plan ahead

By ordering colored tape and labels, you’ll be able to reduce the overall time it takes to move. Also, you can reduce the move time even further if you draw a map of where each room is for the movers.