Why I Took Out a Personal Loan to Finance My Move

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Our team at Student Loan Hero works hard to find and recommend products and services that we believe are of high quality and will make a positive impact in your life. We sometimes earn a sales commission or advertising fee when recommending various products and services to you. Similar to when you are being sold any product or service, be sure to read the fine print understand what you are buying, and consult a licensed professional if you have any concerns. Student Loan Hero is not a lender or investment advisor. We are not involved in the loan approval or investment process, nor do we make credit or investment related decisions. The rates and terms listed on our website are estimates and are subject to change at any time. Please do your homework and let us know if you have any questions or concerns.

loans for moving expenses

When I decided to move from Pennsylvania to Florida to escape the snow, I created a moving budget. Even though I intended to handle most of the move myself, including packing and driving the truck, I was shocked to discover that it would cost over $10,000. That was far more than I expected, so I started exploring using personal loans for moving expenses.

Although I had an emergency fund, I was hesitant to touch that money in case I needed it for a crisis. Instead, I took out a loan. That turned out to be the right choice for me, but it isn’t for everyone. Here’s what to consider before you apply for a loan.

Calculating your moving costs

The biggest mistake I made was underestimating some of my expenses. Before you decide whether to use a personal loan for your moving costs, make sure you account for all the expenses you’ll face, which could include:

  • Hiring movers
  • Renting a truck
  • Buying moving supplies
  • Transferring your vehicle
  • Paying for storage and lodging
  • Renting a new apartment

4 times using personal loans for moving expenses is smart

With all the moving expenses you’ll face, taking out a personal loan can help you cover costs. Doing so can be a good idea in the following situations.

1. You’re moving for a job with a higher salary

If you’re moving for a new job and it offers a higher salary, you’re more likely to be able to afford your payments.

A major hotel in Orlando offered my husband a job in its culinary department. Since I was freelancing at the time, the move didn’t affect my income, but it did boost his salary. That change made it easier to pay off the debt quickly.

2. You can comfortably afford the payments

If you’re just starting out, you might be on a shoestring budget each month. If that’s the case, a personal loan could stretch your resources too thin.

Ideally, you should be able to easily afford your payments. When I estimated my personal loan costs, I made sure the payments were well within our budget and that we had breathing room in case of any emergencies.

3. You don’t have other obligations

My husband and I agreed that we’d move only if we got rid of our other debt, such as our credit card balance and student loans. We wanted our personal loan to be our only debt so we wouldn’t be overburdened or raise our debt-to-income ratio too much.

If you don’t have other forms of debt or have only small balances, you’ll be able to manage your payments more easily and get out of debt sooner.

4. You have a plan to pay it off

When you apply for a loan, it’s important to have a plan to pay it off. Otherwise, taking out more debt can exacerbate your current issues.

For my husband and me, our plan involved cutting our expenses and earning extra money with side hustles. All the additional income we earned went directly to our personal loan balance, which helped us pay it off two years ahead of schedule.

Downsides of personal loans

Although a personal loan was a lifesaver for me, it’s important to carefully consider your options. There are some downsides you should keep in mind.

Low-interest personal loan lenders exist, but they reserve their lowest rates for people with excellent credit and stable incomes. If your credit score isn’t great, lenders might offer you only high-interest loans. In fact, you could get hit with an interest rate as high as 35.00%.

A high-interest loan can add thousands to the cost of your loan. For example, if you took out a five-year, $10,000 loan and qualified for a 35.00% interest rate, you’d repay a total of $21,294. You’d pay double what you originally borrowed because of the interest rate.

Applying for a personal loan

If you’re planning to move, make sure you’re prepared for all the associated costs. If you need to borrow money to pay for it, compare offers from multiple personal loan lenders to ensure you get the best deal. Shopping around can make using personal loans for moving expenses a smarter choice.

Interested in a personal loan?

Here are the top personal loan lenders of 2018!
LenderRates (APR)Loan Amount 
1 Includes AutoPay discount. Important Disclosures for SoFi.

SoFi Disclosures

  1. Personal LoansFixed rates from 5.950% APR to 14.490% APR (with AutoPay). Variable rates from 5.825% APR to 14.365% APR (with AutoPay). SoFi rate ranges are current as of May 3, 2018, and are subject to change without notice. Not all rates and amounts available in all states. See Personal Loan eligibility details. Not all applicants qualify for the lowest rate. If approved for a loan, to qualify for the lowest rate, you must have a responsible financial history and meet other conditions. Your actual rate will be within the range of rates listed above and will depend on a variety of factors, including evaluation of your credit worthiness, years of professional experience, income and other factors. See APR examples and terms. Interest rates on variable rate loans are capped at 14.95%. Lowest variable rate of 5.825% APR assu[mes current 1-month LIBOR rate of 1.90% plus 4.175% margin minus 0.25% AutoPay discount. For the SoFi variable rate loan, the 1-month LIBOR index will adjust monthly and the loan payment will be re-amortized and may change monthly. APRs for variable rate loans may increase after origination if the LIBOR index increases. The SoFi 0.25% AutoPay interest rate reduction requires you to agree to make monthly principal and interest payments by an automatic monthly deduction from a savings or checking account. The benefit will discontinue and be lost for periods in which you do not pay by automatic deduction from a savings or checking account.
  2. Terms and Conditions Apply: SOFI RESERVES THE RIGHT TO MODIFY OR DISCONTINUE PRODUCTS AND BENEFITS AT ANY TIME WITHOUT NOTICE. To qualify, a borrower must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident in an eligible state and meet SoFi’s underwriting requirements. Not all borrowers receive the lowest rate. To qualify for the lowest rate, you must have a responsible financial history and meet other conditions. If approved, your actual rate will be within the range of rates listed above and will depend on a variety of factors, including term of loan, a responsible financial history, years of experience, income and other factors. Rates and Terms are subject to change at anytime without notice and are subject to state restrictions. SoFi refinance loans are private loans and do not have the same repayment options that the federal loan program offers such as Income Based Repayment or Income Contingent Repayment or PAYE. Licensed by the Department of Business Oversight under the California Financing Law License No. 6054612. SoFi loans are originated by SoFi Lending Corp., NMLS # 1121636. (www.nmlsconsumeraccess.org)

2 Important Disclosures for Citizens Bank.

Citizens Bank Disclosures

  1. Personal Loan Rate Disclosure: Fixed interest rates range from 4.99% – 16.24% (4.99% – 16.24% APR) based on applicable terms. Lowest rates shown are for eligible applicants, require a 3-year repayment term, and include our Loyalty and Automatic Payment Discounts of 0.25 percentage points each, as outlined in the Loyalty Discount and Automatic Payment Discount disclosures. Subject to additional terms and conditions, and rates are subject to change at any time without notice. Such changes will only apply to applications taken after the effective date of change.
  2. Loyalty Discount: The borrower will be eligible for a 0.25 percentage point interest rate reduction on their loan if the borrower has a qualifying account in existence with us at the time the borrower has submitted a completed application authorizing us to review their credit request for the loan. The following are qualifying accounts: any checking account, savings account, money market account, certificate of deposit, automobile loan, home equity loan, home equity line of credit, mortgage, credit card account, student loans or other personal loans owned by Citizens Bank, N.A. Please note, our checking and savings account options are only available in the following states: CT, DE, MA, MI, NH, NJ, NY, OH, PA, RI and VT. This discount will be reflected in the interest rate and Annual Percentage Rate (APR) disclosed in the Truth-In-Lending Disclosure that will be provided to the borrower once the loan is approved. Limit of one Loyalty Discount per loan, and discount will not be applied to prior loans. The Loyalty Discount will remain in effect for the life of the loan.
  3. Automatic Payment Discount: Borrowers will be eligible to receive a 0.25 percentage point interest rate reduction on their Citizens Bank Personal Loan during such time as payments are required to be made and our loan servicer is authorized to automatically deduct payments each month from any bank account the borrower designates. If our loan servicer is unable to successfully withdraw the automatic deductions from the designated account two or more times within any 12-month period, the borrower will no longer be eligible for this discount.

* Important Disclosures for Upgrade Bank


Upgrade Bank Disclosures


  • Your loan terms are not guaranteed and are subject to our verification and review process. You may be asked to provide additional documents to enable us to verify your income and your identity. This rate includes an Autopay APR reduction of 0.5%. By enrolling in Autopay your payments will be automatically deducted from you bank account. Selecting Autopay is optional. Annual Percentage Rate is inclusive of a loan origination fee, which is deducted from the loan proceeds. Late payments or subsequent charges and fees may increase the cost of your fixed rate loan. All loans made by WebBank, member FDIC. Please refer to Upgrade’s Terms of Use and Borrower Agreement for all terms, conditions and requirements.
  • Accept your loan offer and your funds will be sent to your bank via ACH within one (1) business day of clearing necessary verifications. Availability of the funds is dependent on how quickly your bank processes this transaction. From the time of approval, funds should be available within four (4) business days.

7.73% - 29.99%$1,000 - $50,000
Check rate nowon SLH's secure site
5.83% - 14.74%1$5,000 - $100,000
Check rate nowon SLH's secure site
5.96% - 35.97%*$1,000 - $50,000Visit Upgrade
8.00% - 25.00%$5,000 - $35,000
Check rate nowon SLH's secure site
4.99% - 29.99%$10,000 - $35,000Visit FreedomPlus
4.99% - 16.24%2$5,000 - $50,000Visit Citizens
15.49% - 34.49%$2,000 - $25,000Visit LendingPoint
5.99% - 35.89%$1,000 - $40,000Visit LendingClub
5.49% - 18.24%$5,000 - $75,000Visit Earnest
9.95% - 35.99%$2,000 - $35,000Visit Avant
Our team at Student Loan Hero works hard to find and recommend products and services that we believe are of high quality and will make a positive impact in your life. We sometimes earn a sales commission or advertising fee when recommending various products and services to you. Similar to when you are being sold any product or service, be sure to read the fine print understand what you are buying, and consult a licensed professional if you have any concerns. Student Loan Hero is not a lender or investment advisor. We are not involved in the loan approval or investment process, nor do we make credit or investment related decisions. The rates and terms listed on our website are estimates and are subject to change at any time. Please do your homework and let us know if you have any questions or concerns.