No One Told Me How Expensive Moving Is

And this 1700 mile road trip is only the beginning.

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Buying a home is an expensive venture, and I thought I’d prepared myself for all possible fees that would be necessary — immediate repairs, paying for storage, hiring a professional to help me move my big-ass couch down nine floors — but nothing prepared me for the cost of renting a U-Haul.

My husband and I bought our big, beautiful 1996 Suburban to, in part, move all of my shit from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to San Antonio, Texas. Our original plan was to just rent a U-Haul trailer and stick it to the back. But when we actually surveyed all the shit in my apartment — three bookcases, a four-poster bed, that aforementioned big-ass couch — it became pretty clear that we were going to have to opt for a box truck for all the big stuff, and then we’d use the Suburban to move the things I didn’t want to immediately stick into storage. Stuff like my collection of out-of-print books and my summer clothes.


Okay. Cool. We priced out a box truck, and it didn’t look terrible. Just over $2,000. Not great, but it was entirely doable… especially because it wasn’t really like we had a choice.

And then we realized we were going to have to move about five days earlier than planned because I needed to be home for an appointment I’d totally forgotten about. Cue the frantic rearranging of plans… and the realization that there’s a $500 surcharge to rent our specific U-Haul truck on a weekend.


Here enters one of those moments where I truly understand that I come from a fairly privileged background, because for me, this was annoying and meant I’d have to be budgeting a little more aggressively than usual for the next few weeks. But for a lot of people who work regular, full-time jobs, where the weekend is their only option to move, that extra cost is a big, painful deal. And that sucks.

And as I write this, I realize I’ve forgotten to factor in the cost of gas.