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How Much Does a Local Move Cost?

How much does it cost?

Planning a moving budget can be quite the task. Between non-binding estimates, false advertising and hidden costs, most customers find themselves utterly confused and end up spending way more than they initially planned to. So just how much does it cost to move locally? We got real prices from real movers and the results are in.

Our Method

We contacted various moving companies with an example Move Plan for an average one-bedroom apartment containing 390 cubic feet of furniture, without stairs. We got guaranteed prices for a local move in different cities nationwide, as well as average prices for moving homes ranging in size from studio to 4 bedrooms locally in NYC. All rates are for regular moving, without additional services like packing, crating, storage and so on.

Cost of Moving Locally

So we contacted some professional movers across the country and got guaranteed prices for our example move plan (one bedroom with 390 cubic feet of household goods). Here they are, from cheapest to steepest- moving prices by city:

We got into some more detail with NYC movers, and asked them to quote local moves for various home sizes- the table below shows average prices based on volume:

Home Size Avg. Price for Move
Studio (231cf) $176
1 Bedroom, Small (390cf) $270
1 Bedroom, Large (524cf) $346
2 Bedroom (892cf) $578
3 Bedroom (1215cf) $774
4 Bedroom (1815cf) $1,148

Another way to estimate your moving costs is looking at the hourly rates. On average, local moving companies cost around $25 per hour, per-mover. It will take 3 movers around 6 hours to move a two-bedroom apartment locally, therefore the cost will probably amount to about $450 for labor. When relocating cross country, the cost can add up to about $3500 for an average inventory of approximately 5000 lbs.

However your movers’ wages are determined, make sure you add a proper tip. While tipping is in no way obligatory, it is the norm, unless you were totally dissatisfied. Rule of thumb is to tip anywhere between 5%-15% and make sure to divide the sum evenly between the movers. To learn more about the art of tipping movers visit this blog post.

An additional expense you may want to consider is insurance. The default coverage included in the rates offers a compensation of 60 cents per lb. Depending on the value of your belongings, investing more on additional insurance can be highly advisable. Do you want to be reimbursed 60 cents per lb in case your flat screen television got damaged? Insurance obtained independently will cost an average of $10 per $1000 of valued goods with a deductible of $250-$500.

Keep in mind that in the moving business competence, reliability and experience often come at a price. Make sure to read verified reviews and find a trustworthy mover to make sure your relocation goes as smoothly as possible.

About the author

Ashley Hernandez