Financial Aid Programs to Help Make your Move More Affordable
Moving can be costly. From boxes to tape, security deposits to professional movers, the costs of moving can quickly add up and the final bill may very well be higher than anticipated. For some, these costs are a tolerable, one-time expense. For many others, however, the costs of moving can be a significant financial strain. Especially now, due to the Covid-19 pandemic’s devastating effect on economies worldwide, many individuals are finding themselves in unprecedentedly difficult financial situations and the cost of moving - often ranging in the thousands of dollars - can be overwhelming. The good news is that, for low-income individuals and/or families, there are many resources, at the national, state and community level, designed to help those who find themselves in these difficult situations.
Identifying the program that’s right for you and applying will take time and often patience. Do you need help paying rent or utilities or do you need help with the cost of a professional move? Or maybe you need help in more than one area. Whatever program you decide is right for you, you will need to make sure you meet the eligibility requirements and are prepared to prove it. For most program applications, you will need to show proof of income so make sure you have all your documents ready. Pay attention to the specific requirements of each application as many programs will require other documentation as well.
Also, keep in mind that the various assistance programs might differ in how they structure their assistance. In terms of covering rent or utilities, some programs might give you a direct grant while others will pay the landlord directly. In helping to cover the costs of a professional move, some programs might provide cash aid and let you choose how to handle your move while other programs will give you a list of local in-network movers to choose from.
When given the choice, choose All Jersey Moving & Storage for a professional move at a fair price. We understand that moving can be costly and we pride ourselves on our competitive prices and honest relationship with customers. If, however, you don’t have a choice as to which movers to hire, make sure you research your given options well. Get quotes and compare them, and read online reviews to make an informed decision before hiring a moving company.
Finally, don’t stress if you haven’t planned out your move. There are numerous financial aid programs specifically intended to help you deal with a last-minute move due to an emergency or extenuating circumstance.
To help kick-start your research, check out the extensive list of financial assistance programs, charities and organizations below. We’ve included general information, eligibility criteria and “how to apply” information to help you get started.
Low Income Moving Assistance Programs
Charities and Nonprofits that Help with Moving Assistance
2-1-1 is the best place to start. A hotline phone number that will direct you to relevant community resources within the USA and Canada, 2-1-1- makes it simple to access the programs that are right for you. Instead of trying to comb through different websites and applications yourself (which can get dizzying and confusing!), start with calling 2-1-1 or visiting their website, at www.211.org. A trained operator will connect you with the organizations and programs that can help you with moving costs.
Eligibility and Application information: 2-1-1 is a free and confidential service available to anyone. Your trained 2-1-1 operator will direct you to the programs in your area that are applicable and available to you and will help you with all the necessary application information, including phone numbers, emails and links to applications.
- Salvation Army
The Salvation Army is one of the oldest and most universally recognized charity organizations. They provide all kinds of assistance and services for those in need, including cash aid for low-income families who need help with housing expenses. As part of their moving-related programs, The Salvation Army offers assistance with things like rental arrears, case management and even moving costs.
Eligibility and Application information: Each branch of The Salvation
Army offers community-specific programs. To find the nearest branch that can help you with moving expenses, visit The Salvation Army’s Contact and Location Finder Page. Then, give that branch a call to discuss the services you need and how to apply for them. Or, give them a call at 1-800-SAL-ARMY.
- Catholic Charities USA
Catholic Charities USA is a religiously-affiliated organization that focuses on alleviating poverty within the United States. As part of their goal to eliminate homelessness, Catholic Charities USA can assist with moving expenses when those expenses stand between low-income individuals or families and stable, long-term housing. Like The Salvation Army, Catholic Charities USA offers financial assistance for moving through grants.
Eligibility and Application information: Those experiencing homelessness or - due to income - are at risk of experiencing homelesness are eligible. Catholic Charities USA has many branches nation-wide, so start by locating the one nearest you. Visit their Find Help page to find out how to reach your local branch and see what services would be most beneficial to you. Or, give them a call at 703-549-1390.
- Modest Needs
A not-for-profit corporation, Modest Needs was founded with the unique goal of providing short-term financial aid to individuals and families living just above poverty level and experiencing temporary crisis. People in these circumstances, while not qualifying for conventional government assistance, are still not financially secure and are constantly living on the threshold of financial instability. To aid individuals and families in such circumstances, Modest Needs offers what they call a “Self-Sufficiency Grant.” This grant is intended to help individuals or households deal with either unexpected/emergency expenses or monthly bills that are suddenly unaffordable because of a documentable extenuating circumstance that occurred within the past year. If you have experienced a temporary crisis or extenuating circumstance that requires you to move, you may qualify for Modest Needs Self Sufficiency Grant.
Eligibility and Application information: Modest Needs recommends reading through their comprehensive FAQ section first to see if you meet eligibility requirements. You’ll then need to create an account in order to fill out their application. If you have any questions that aren’t addressed by the FAQ portion of their website, visit their contact page to access their email directory. There you will find the specific contact information for the department or individual who can help you. Modest Needs can also be reached at (844) 667-3776, however, due to Covid-19 workplace restrictions, Modest Needs employees are working remotely and can be reached more readily via email.
Government Assistance Programs
- Emergency Solutions Grant
This grant is offered by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), a branch of the United States Government. The ESG program concentrates much of its funding on the prevention of homelessness and on the rapid rehousing of individuals and families who have experienced a housing crisis and/or homelessness. ESG funds can provide for a variety of housing related expenses, including rental assistance, credit repair, security or utility deposits and moving cost assistance.
Eligibility and Application information: You and/or your family must be either currently homeless or at immediate risk of homelessness. Since HUD funding is administered at the state level, you should check if your state offers assistance through the ESG program by searching the HUDS Homelessness Assistance page. Choose your state in the drop down menu. You will then be directed to a list of cities and from there, you will be able to find contact information for local agencies who can assist you in determining if you are eligible for the ESG grant and in applying for it.
- FEMA Disaster Assistance
The Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA) is an agency of the United States Department of Homeland Security. Through their Disaster Assistance program, they provide funding to help those who have either lost their home or suffered damage to it due to a natural disaster. This program offers extensive help to survivors, including home repairs, temporary housing, and aid with moving and storage expenses.
Eligibility and Application information: FEMA Disaster Assistance offers varied assistance programs for those affected by natural disaster, each with their own eligibility requirements. Oftentimes, a house inspection will be conducted to assess the damage to determine funding eligibility. For more information and to apply, visit DisasterAssistance.gov.
- IRS Moving Expenses Deduction
The IRS Moving Expenses Deduction is an indirect way to save on moving costs. Although it is not a direct grant, it is still a great way to ultimately save money on your move. However, this deduction is currently reserved for military members only.
Eligibility and Application information: Any low-income military member who spends on a move within one year of active duty is eligible. Visit the Can I Deduct My Moving Expenses? page on the IRS website for more information. Make sure to keep track of all moving expenses and to save your receipts. When it comes time to fill out your federal tax return, having all that information organized and accessible will make the process easier.
Other Places to Look for Moving Assistance
- Ask your local religious institution.
Oftentimes, religious institutions have many programs in place to help community members in need. Although they may not be able to directly help you finance a professional move, they may have a volunteering program in place that you can benefit from. Especially if you’re not moving very far, simply having more man power to help you move might be able to get the job done.
- Try asking your employer.
If you’re relocating because of a new job, ask your new employer whether the company has any moving compensation programs in place. Oftentimes, relocation assistance is something a new employer will be happy to help with either by giving you the money up front or by reimbursing you. Have that conversation with your new employer early on to make sure you are clear on their policy. Moving can be costly - even a little bit of help can go a long way.
When You Can, Choose All Jersey Moving & Storage
Moving is no small expense. Whether you knew about your upcoming move or it is due to unforeseen circumstances and whether you’re moving across town or across state, the various costs of moving can add up. Thankfully, there are many government programs and organizations that can help offset these expenses.
These programs can offer help with many different aspects of moving, including things like rental costs, utility bills and tenant-landlord mediation. Many programs (such as the ones listed above) will assist you with the actual moving expenses. Depending on the financial assistance program, you will either be given a choice of in-network movers to choose from or you will be able to choose your own moving company. When given the choice, choose All Jersey Moving & Storage.
Serving the community, state and country since 1992, All Jersey Moving & Storage has decades of experience in local and long distance moves. We are one of fewer than twenty moving and storage services companies in New Jersey who have earned the “Circle of Excellence” designation from the New Jersey Warehousemen and Movers Association. This designation is awarded to a moving company that goes above and beyond the industry standard. We value our relationship with clients and strive to deliver exceptional service at fair prices. We have many satisfied clients who value our honesty and professionalism.
For movers that can’t be beat at price or at service, call All Jersey Moving & Storage today for your complimentary, no-obligation consultation.