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Moving Cost Calculator for Local & Long Distance Moving Estimates

Moving cost is one of the biggest factors you'll have to consider when planning for a move. Having a crystal-clear idea of how much you're going to pay for your move can help you plan the move better.

Our Moving Cost Calculator can help you crunch the numbers correctly to have an estimate of your moving cost. Whether you're planning to move locally or across the country, using our moving cost calculator will get you accurate moving estimates within minutes.

More so, our team of researchers have compiled the most important questions you'll like to ask about your cost of moving. We have provided all the answers you need to get started:

How Are Moving Costs Calculated?

Every move is different. Hence, there's no one size fit all when it comes to calculating moving costs.

Several factors affect how much you'll pay for your move but the two biggest factors that contribute the most to the cost are the Distance and Size of the Move.

Let's take a look at how these two factors affect the cost.

  • The Distance of Your Move

    You can either have a short distance move (local moves) or a long-distance move (mostly interstate moves). If you're moving within 50 miles radius, that's a local or a short-distance move.

    If you're moving over 50 miles radius, either within state lines or not, or across the country such as moving to Canada or Mexico etc. that's a long-distance move.

    The higher the distance of your move the higher the price will be.

  • The Size of Your Move

    The cost of moving items in a one-bedroom apartment is higher than the cost of moving items in a 2 or more-bedroom apartment. The more items you have, the longer it will take to pack and load them into a moving truck and the heavier your entire shipment will be.

    The more things you're planning on moving, the higher your moving cost is going to be.

Now that you know about the basic rule of calculating moving costs. Let's see how different types of moves are priced.

How are moving costs calculated for a Local Move?

Local moves are generally referred to as moves that happen with one state. If you're moving from one city to another within a state or less than 50 miles, you're making what is referred to in the industry as a Local Move.

Local moves are almost usually calculated on an hourly basis. In these moves, the time it takes to complete the move is the biggest deterring factor when it comes to calculating moving costs.

The longer it takes to complete the job, the higher your moving cost will be.

Here's the general formula to give you a quick idea:

(Number of Hours) x (Number of people needed) x (Hourly Rate) + Fees & Taxes

Additionally, most local moving companies charge at least 1 hr of Travel Time which is usually added to your estimate. This is to account for the time it takes the moving company to get to your house and then drive back after the move is complete.

How are costs calculated for a Long Distance Move?

Long Distance moves, or Interstate Moves are a little more complicated to price. There are many factors that affect the moving costs in this case. But the general rule of thumb still applies.

The higher the distance and the more stuff you're moving, the higher the moving cost will be.

The biggest factor when you're moving long distances is the weight of your items. Based on how much your stuff weighs, the price can differ drastically.

When getting estimates for a long distance move, the moving company will first and foremost try to estimate the weight of all your items that you're planning on moving. This is where the experience of a moving company comes in handy. The more accurately they can estimate your move weight, the more accurate your moving estimate will be, leaving less room for any surprises.

Don't worry tho, the move weight estimate is just to get you a price. Your items will be weighed formally at a weigh station to get the accurate weight, once they are loaded on the truck.

Here's the general formula moving companies use to estimate moving costs for a long distance or interstate move:

(Weight of Shipment) x (Rate per Pound per Mile) x (Move Distance)

If you're ready to get some estimates from our moving companies, try our moving cost calculator to get some no-obligation moving quotes.

How Much Does It Cost to Move?

Like we mentioned earlier, every move is different and there's no one fixed price for moves.

That being said, we've compiled a chart to give you a rough idea of how much you can expect to pay for different move sizes.

Please keep in mind that these prices are just very rough estimates based on several moving quotes we process through our website. Your moving cost will vary based on different factors discussed above.

So, with that in mind, let's take a quick look at some average moving costs you can expect to pay for your move.

Local moves generally cost a lot lower than Long Distance moves. A local move on average could range from $250 to $2000. While the average long-distance moving cost ranges from $1000 - $6000. Your final moving cost could be higher or lower, depending on the size of your move.

Additionally, if you need to ship a car or need storage options, those costs could be extra. The average cost of car shipping can range from $400-$1500 depending upon how far you're shipping and the type of car it is. To get estimates on car shipping, check out our auto transport page.

Here's a simple breakdown of the average moving costs based on distance and room sizes:

Distance Bedroom (2 Movers) 2 Bedrooms (2 Movers) 3 Bedrooms (2-3 Movers) 4+ Bedrooms (4 Movers)
<50 Miles$250-$500$300-$750$500-$1200$1200-$4000
<50-250 Miles$500-$1000$750-$1500$1000-$2500$1500-$3500
<250-1000 Miles$750-$1250$1000-$2000$1500-$2500$2000-$4000
<1000+ Miles$750-$2500$1500-$3000$2500-$7500$4000-$8500
<2000+ Miles$1250-$2500$2000-$4000$3000-$7500$4500-$9000

For more accurate pricing, specific to your move, use our moving cost calculator to request Free Moving Quotes

What Factors Affect the Moving Cost?

Many factors affect your moving cost. Let's take a look at some in detail.

  • Type of Moving Service you opt for
  • You have several options to choose from. You can either hire a full-service moving company, opt for partial moving services, truck rental services, or rent a moving container. Whatever you prefer will determine your moving cost.

  • Seasonality
  • Moving during winter is less expensive because only a few people move during the cold weather. Moving companies are typically busier during the summer as many people prefer moving during this period. This makes moving costs more expensive in summer months.

  • Your Moving Date
  • Moving costs are typically higher during weekends and month-ends. Moving during midweek and the middle of the month is less expensive.

  • Moving specialty items
  • Items such as hot tubs, boats, large musical instruments like pianos, motorcycles, pool tables, and safes etc. will add to your moving cost.

  • Special Services
  • These include full packing services, unpacking, shuttle truck charges, packing supplies, travel fees, long carry charges, and packing supplies etc.

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How Can I Reduce My Moving Cost?

This is without doubt the most common question we hear when people are looking to move. We've done some extensive articles on how to reduce your moving cost that you can read about in detail here. But for the purpose of being short and quick, here are several key things you can do to make sure you don't pay too much.

  • Book your move early
  • Try to avoid moving during busy (summer) season
  • Declutter your home before packing
  • Don't move what you don't need
  • Have a garage sale
  • Drive your own car
  • Be flexible on pickup and delivery
  • Inquire about moving larger items
  • Avoid storage in transit
  • Evaluate insurance options
  • Pack your own belongings (if you can)
  • Disassemble the furniture beforehand (especially if your move is being charged by the hour)
  • Inform movers of any stairs and extra levels in the house
  • Be as accurate as possible about your inventory to avoid extra charges

Are Moving Costs Tax-Deductible If You're Relocating For A Job?

The short answer: Yes!

⚠️ But wait, there are some speculations.

Moving costs are tax-deductible if you're relocating for a job. But that is based on certain conditions, according to the IRS.

There are 3 mandatory conditions you're required to meet for your moving for a job to be eligible for tax deduction.

Here they are:

The work resumption date requirement

For your moving costs to be eligible for tax deductions your move must happen within a year of the period you start working at your new job. This means that your moving and first work day at your new job must occur within one year.

The distance requirement

For your move to be eligible for tax deduction, the location of your new job must not be less than 50 miles away from your previous home and where your old job is located.

To understand this, simply calculate how far your previous workplace is to your previous home. Now subtract whatever you get from the distance from your previous home to your new job.

The work-time requirement

To be eligible for this, you're mandated to prove either of the following:

  • Hired and worked as a full-time employee for not less than 39 weeks in the year after moving, or
  • Self-employed and worked full-time for not less than 39 weeks in the year after moving and not less than 78 weeks during the two years after relocating

However, there are several exceptions to these conditions such as being an active member of the military, filing a tax deduct form as a married couple, or working outside the United States etc. Learn more about these exceptions on the IRS Form 3903.

Now lets take a quick look at what's eligible for deduction and what's not?

The following are eligible for deduction:

  • The cost of hiring professional movers
  • The cost of truck and equipment rental for a DIY relocation
  • The amount of fuel you consume if traveling by car
  • The cost of packing supplies such as packing tapes, and moving boxes etc.
  • Some traveling costs like spending a night or two in a hotel
  • Moving insurance
  • Maximum 30 days storage period between moving from your old to new home
  • The cost of moving labor help

Tip: All deductible moving expenses are made from just one trip. If you make multiple transportation while relocation, only one will be eligible for deduction.

For example, if you move to start a new job and then ship your items two weeks later, only one of those trips will be eligible for deduction.

The following are NOT eligible for deductions:

  • Home buying or rental cost in your new location
  • Costs related to your previous home sale or breaking your lease
  • The cost of meals while relocating
  • The expenses incurred during house hunting before moving
  • Expenses your employer has already compensated you for

What Is The Average Cost To Hire A Moving Company?

All moving companies do not charge exactly the same rate. So, the average cost to hire a moving company varies depending on a lot of factors.

At an average rate of $50-$75 per hour, the average cost of hiring a moving company for local ranges from $500 to $1,500. This average per hour rate is based on a national average.

Depending upon what state you live in, hourly rates of moving companies can be higher or lower.

Let's look at an example for a local move to make more sense of this, shall we?

Let's say you're moving from a 2 bedroom apartment to another, 5 miles away. Several local moving companies charge about $40 per hour for each mover. It will take 3 people about 6 hours to complete the move, plus 1 hr travel time.

So you moving costs can be:

(Number of Hours) x (Number of people needed) x (Hourly Rate) + Fees & Taxes

7 hrs (6 hrs+1 hr Travel Time) x 3 ppl x $40 = $840 + Taxes & Fees

Now, if you're making a long-distance move, costs can be different

Obviously these types of jobs cannot be calculated with hourly rates, because of the time it'll take to travel to the destination. The pricing here is different

Here the formula is:

(Weight of Shipment) x (Rate per Pound per Mile) x (Move Distance)

So for a move like this one you'll end up paying anywhere between $2500-$3500 depending upon the moving company you hire.

How Much Does Moving Insurance Cost?

Your moving insurance cost depends on the type of moving insurance you opt for. There are three major types of moving insurance:

  • Basic carrier liability insurance
  • Declared value insurance
  • Full replacement liability insurance

Basic Carrier Liability Insurance

First, the moving company you hire will include basic carrier liability moving insurance to the moving quote they will hand to you. It is the lowest possible coverage for your items during relocation.

This insurance will cover an estimated 60 cents per pound for each of your belongings. This is the least amount of insurance the moving company is mandated to provide by law when transporting your stuff.

Declared Value Insurance

This is a mid-level insurance cover that offers compensation depending on the depreciated value of a lost or damaged item. In this case, you'll have to declare the value of your entire household items to have a record of its monetary worth

Once that is done, there'll be an extra charge of $1.25 times the weight of your entire items. For example, if your entire household items weigh 9,500 pounds, the moving company you hire is liable for up to $11,875 in insurance. Ask your mover about its declared value insurance to learn more.

Full Replacement Liability Insurance

This type of moving insurance is an all-encompassing liability insurance. This policy compensates you with full cash value for any items that are lost or damaged while you're moving.

If many of your items on the moving tuck are worth or exceed $1.25 per pound liability, consider buying full replacement liability. While this policy is the most expensive, it is mostly suitable for people with expensive items who are cautious about losing any of them.

Benefits of Moving Cost Calculator

  • Create a moving budget

  • Keep your moving cost in check

  • Avoid moving company scams

  • Know exactly how much you'll be paying

  • Compare moving quotes

  • Get the best moving rate possible

Why use MoverJunction.com

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