Moving cheaply – tips & tricks to save costs when moving in Germany


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Whether on your own, with a moving company or student helpers: The costs of a move in Germany depends on many factors. Find out how you can reduce the moving costs

There are several ways to save on costs and still move to a new apartment comfortably and stress-free in Germany. Here you will find helpful tips on how you can reduce your moving costs in Germany.

What you should think about when moving in Germany

  • Good preparation and early planning help to reduce the costs of moving.
  • Don’t be fooled by cheap deals with moving companies .
  • Even if you move on your own , costs can arise, for example for transport and packaging material.
  • Private and professional relocation costs are tax-deductible.
moving costs

6 Tips & tricks with which you can reduce costs when moving in Germany

For a move that should be relaxed and as inexpensive as possible, good preparation is most important. The choice of a moving company or the decision to move on your own naturally make up the majority of the cost issue. But there are a few other factors that you can use to reduce moving costs.

1. Plan early

The earlier you compare offers, the sooner you have a chance of favorable terms. This applies to the rental of a van or for moving companies. Often more is charged for short-term inquiries. Last changes to services, such as a change of date, can result in additional costs if planning is late.

2. Clearing out

Whether moving company or on your own – moving is cheaper and more relaxed, the less furniture and objects you have. You can sell the old things on the Internet, for example , or donate them to charitable organizations .

3. Electricity, internet and telephone

Try to observe the notice period here in order to avoid double costs when moving. Before you sign a new contract, it is worth comparing providers.

  • Electricity providers
  • Gas providers
  • DSL providers

4. Avoid double costs

Choose the moving date so that you don’t have to pay double rent .

5. The right moving date

During the week, outside the holiday season and in the middle of the month , moving (by moving companies) is usually cheaper.

6. Cosmetic repairs

Try to do repairs like painting the apartment yourself. It’s always cheaper than hiring craftsmen.

moving costs

Can you move cheaply with a moving company in Germany?

Hiring a moving company in Germany is a relaxed, but also an expensive option for moving. But here, too, there are ways to lower the price.

Compare offers

Moving companies do not have prescribed prices, so the price range between offers is wide. Compare the companies early on and get different offers . So you can find the best value for money. It is often worthwhile to agree on a fixed price. This benefits you in terms of travel time if the transport company is stuck in traffic for a long time. 

However, don’t be fooled by cheap deals. In particular, from package deals for which you have not specified the volume of the move, the transport route or the date. Since these factors have a significant impact on the price, the lump sum cannot be correct and you will have to pay more. This also casts doubt on the seriousness of such companies.

Take on work yourself

The more work you do for the company, the cheaper it will be. For example, choose a partial move instead of a complete move. You take over the packing of all objects that then only have to be transported. You can also assemble the furniture and, for example, the kitchen in the new apartment.

This is how you avoid surcharges. However, you should discuss the activities that you take on with the moving company.

moving costs

Doing your own move – cheap but less convenient?

Moving on your own is the cheapest option. There are no costs for moving helpers, drivers and transport. At the same time, this type of move is also the most stressful, because you have to organize everything yourself, book moving vehicles and get materials. Here, too, there are costs that you must not forget.

The transporter

You can also use your and friends’ cars to transport your furniture for short distances. Weigh what is more worthwhile for you: Longer journeys and frequent trips back and forth result in higher fuel costs. It may be worth renting a van here that you only have to drive once. If you take care of it early, you have a better chance of getting cheap prices. You can borrow cheaply, especially on weekdays.

Additional things to transport

It is best if you transport all the furniture yourself. But some pieces of furniture are too bulky for that. Here you have the opportunity to book additional loads. Moving companies offer this service cheaply. They take your furniture with you as part of a larger transport order . However, the date and place must match your ideas. The company thus avoids empty trips and the service becomes more profitable for you due to full utilization.

When packing all items in an apartment, some costs for moving boxes and packing materials can pile up. Usually you count one moving box per cubic meter. To avoid these costs, you can, for example, ask about old boxes and cardboard boxes in the fruit shop. Items that cannot break are easy to wrap in sheets and blankets. You can also borrow moving boxes. These are reusable, so it’s better for the environment. You can simply pick up the boxes at one of the specified stations, transport your items and then bring them back to the station.

The advantage of moving on your own: You save costs for the moving helpers. Ask your friends and acquaintances early on who can help you. Alternatively, you can search for movers on auction portals or for student helpers on the internet. Make sure that third-party removal helpers are insured. Even if it costs, enough drinks and snacks should be available for all helpers, this will make your move more relaxed and successful. As a thank you, you can also provide a crate of beer or something similar.

With the city you can get an official No-Parking Sign for the day of the move. However, it is often enough to inform the neighbors about your move so that a parking space near the apartment is reserved for your van on the day of the move.

moving costs

Deduct moving costs from tax

You can deduct your moving costs through your tax returns in 2 ways:

  • As addiotional moving costs which are deducted from your taxes
  • As private moving costs which are includes as household services 

Here, 20% of a maximum of 20,000 euros, i.e. 4,000 euros, is possible. For this, however, you need an invoice and the receipt of the transferred invoice amount. Professional relocation costs can be claimed in full as income- related expenses. The reasons for this include: shorter commute to work, change of job, better working conditions or returning from abroad.


There are costs for each type of move. Moving on your own is probably the cheapest option. However, you have to organize and plan everything yourself. A moving company offers less stress and more comfort at higher costs. In the end, you have to decide for yourself how high your budget is and how much you can take on yourself. With the various tips and tax breaks, you can still find a good price and move cheaply and comfortably.

Expaturm aims to help educate Expats in Germany on key issues that they will have to deal with while living in Germany by providing everything you need to know about Banking, Healthcare, Lifestyle, and Housing in Germany


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