Moving companies provide a range of services to help you physically move out of one residence and move into a new place. But moving companies can do so much more than just haul your belongings across town in a truck. The national average for moving company prices ($250-$350 per hour) reflects the range of services provided. Here are examples of all the ways moving companies can help:
- Packing: Moving companies can pack your belongings for you. They typically charge a flat rate for both the box and the labor to pack the box. The more time-consuming the belongings are to pack, the higher the cost per box. For example, books could be $5 per box, linens $10 per box, and fine china and glassware $18 per box.
- Specialty moving: Safely move a baby grand piano, a oversize aquarium, or other specialty items with the help of pro movers.
- Storage: Many moving companies can store your belongings while you wait for a new home to be remodeled or closing of your new home to be finalized. If you’re moving long-distance, they often provide short-term storage free for a specific length of time, and a set rate after that (such as $60 per square cubic foot of storage space used).
- Long-distance moves: No need to rent a trailer and move your things; a long-distance moving company can haul your belongings across the country for you. Typically they charge by the cubic foot for moves, with prices based on your destination.
- Unpacking: Moving companies can even unpack your belongings for you after they have moved them. This is not as common, and will definitely increase the price, but can be helpful if you’re not able to tackle this task yourself.
When you’re ready to make a major move, it’s time to research moving companies’ prices. A moving company may charge on average anywhere between $25 and $100 per hour, per worker, for moving services. The price will vary with regional labor rates, local cost to do business, and the level of service the movers are providing. Nationally, the average hourly rate for a moving company is $250-$350 per hour. This price includes a range of pricing, from all-in service with four or more movers on site to standard hourly rates for one or two movers. Other factors that affect moving companies’ prices are packing, stairs (or elevators), and distance. For a full-service move, you pay movers to pack your belongings for you. You may pay for the cost of the moving boxes and an hourly rate per worker, and there may be additional charges for packing fragile items. Stairs will also add to your moving prices. Lifting and carrying boxes and furniture up and down stairs takes more time and creates more physical labor for the workers. Moving companies may charge flat rates for flights of stairs, such as $50-$70 per flight. A moving company may also charge a one-time fee for moving things via elevator, such as $75-$100. If parking is not accessible in front of your home or apartment building, there may also be an additional fee for the added distance to carry your belongings to the truck.
Long-distance movers transport your belongings across the country for you. No more renting a trailer and road-tripping from state to state with your entire house hitched to your bumper. Long-distance movers make the move happen so you can fly to your new home, suitcase in hand, and wait for your furniture to arrive. Nationally, the average price range for long-distance movers is $1,490-$2,230. The distance you are moving and the number of cubic feet the movers have to transport will both affect cost. Another factor in long-distance moving costs is whether you choose to pay for an exclusive move or a consolidated move.
In an exclusive move, which is more expensive, your belongings are the only cargo on the moving truck. The movers travel directly to your new house and deliver your belongings on a scheduled day. A consolidated move is more affordable because the movers transport your belongings along with those of other people, saving them time and gas — which means you save money. The downside is that your belongings typically arrive with a two-week delivery window rather than on a prescheduled day. Read reviews to make sure you can trust the company with your possessions to ensure a peaceful moving process.
Professional movers can handle the hard work of moving your one-bedroom apartment across the country for you. You can determine what your move will cost by learning the rate your movers charge per cubic foot and how they factor distance into the total cost. Cross-country movers typically charge based on your belongings rather than apartment size because that determines how much work they will have to do. For example, a studio apartment that is crammed full of things will take more work and moving truck space than the contents of a three-bedroom apartment with very little furniture.
Cross-country movers may also have varying rates, depending on where in the country you are moving. For example, a company may charge $5 per cubic foot for consolidated moves along the East Coast and $6 per cubic foot for consolidated moves from the East Coast to the central states or the West Coast. A one-bedroom apartment costs approximately $1,500 to move across the country.
Moving furniture is hard work and potentially dangerous unless you’re properly equipped. For anyone not ready to handle their heavy oak armoire alone, professional furniture movers can safely and efficiently move your items to another room in your house or across town as needed. The national average cost to hire heavy furniture movers is $150-$200 per hour. This rate could include multiple furniture movers working as a team to move items such as beds, armoires, billiards tables, pianos, shelves, tables, entertainment centers and more. Hourly rates can vary by region. If your furniture movers have arrived on time, done a great job, kept your home and belongings protected from scratches and dings, and completed the move as planned, a tip will be greatly appreciated. Moving companies suggest approximately 10 percent of the total bill as gratuity for those doing local moving jobs, which is also a good guideline for tipping heavy furniture movers. If the total bill for heavy moving was $100 and two workers were onsite, consider giving them $10 total, or $5 each for a job well done.