Average Cost of Movers

  1. General Overview of Moving Industry Pricing 
  2. State-to-State or Cross-Country Moves
  3. Costs to Factor into Your Move
  4. Full-Service Moving Companies - Pay Attention to Deposits
  5. Hire a Reputable & Fully Licensed Company
  6. Tackling an Office Move Properly
  7. Importance of Getting Accurate Estimates
  8. How to Lower the Average Moving Cost
  9. Stay Within Budget While Still Using a Reputable Moving Company
  10. Choose Wisely
  11. Schedule Wisely
  12. Don't Overpack
  13. Can't Part With It? That's Ok, That's What Storage is For

1. General Overview of Moving Industry Pricing

Movers paying hourly wages to professionals will benefit greatly from an organization. This will result in fewer hours worked and fewer dollars spent. Full service moving services and relocation moving are usually the most expensive. In general, professional movers cost about $45 per hour, and professional packing services may cost about $325-$55 per hour. The overall average cost for 2 professional movers is about $95 and 3 movers per hour is about $135.

average cost of movers

2. State-to-State or Cross-Country Moves

For state-to-state and cross-country moving, consider hiring a professional relocation consultant. Experts recommend professional consultants. Useful to both residential and office movers, they can help them to save money, avoid scams, and improve efficiency. Professional movers and nationwide moving services are often hired to transport loads to cross-country locations. These loads contain large furniture items, musical instruments, and/or vehicles. Prices for these services vary widely depending on the company. This makes it necessary to obtain individual estimates.3. 

3. Costs to Factor into Your Move

Charges for fueling a truck or vehicle traveling cross-country might cost a minimum of $1,000 alone. A basic moving cargo van will cost a minimum of $35 -$90 per day, and summer and weekends prices are said to cost 20% higher. A basic moving cargo van will cost a minimum of $30 -$95 per day, and summer and weekends prices are said to cost 20% higher. A flat fee move is normally based upon the weight of the items being shipped and the amount of space required for the load. The average cost would be about $.74 per pound, plus additional fees related to the individual movers, and for example a $100 fee for each flight of stairs.

If there aren’t any large furniture items it might be more cost effective to arrange for these larger items to be sold or donated and then replaced in the new location.

Another option is to have professional movers professionally pack all of the items from the home or office into door-to-door moving pods. These companies offer discounted shipping prices. Prices for pods and storage containers that are shipped door-to door will depend on the size of the container.

4. Full-Service Moving Companies - Pay Attention to Deposits

Many full service moving companies will ask for a deposit, which is fine. It's normally around 20% or less that they will ask for.  Experts warn that companies who are not properly licensed will ask for a deposit before releasing goods. Sometimes this is called a hostage scam. Hostage scams occur when unlicensed companies see an opportunity to get more money from their clients. These companies will hold onto movers’ belongings after securing, for example, ¼ of the estimated move in advance. and then not return their belongings until they receive an amount that is a great deal more than what was originally agreed.

Average cost of movers

5. Hire a Reputable & Fully Licensed Company

Disreputable companies might also accept a deposit and then never show up or perform the move. These companies often start off by offering very cheap and reasonable rates. Moving Authority advises that you pay for what you get, cheap rates do not exist for good moves. You're not buying a cheap t-shirt at the market, you are buying a service. If you need to go to court, you hire the best lawyer. If you're going to a doctor, you're going to search around for the best doctor. It's exactly the same way with movers. You get what you pay for. One benefit of using Moving Authority is that everybody must have a local state license or a United States DOT license to receive a lead from this site.

6. Tackling an Office Move Properly

Packing up an office can be quite a different affair. It involves different types of assets. Office equipment, expensive furniture, and other technological appliances and systems. They will need to hire special movers to load, unload, and to professionally install computer systems. Many offices may also require special administrative labor in advance of a move. They have to properly prepare its inventory, clients, and business transactions. Invite employees to assist the move in any way they can and keep them informed. Insurance for offices and households is always recommended and usually costs about $.49 per pound. Obtain estimates in writing and don’t forget about tipping a mover, which is about 7%-20% of the cost of the move.

7. Importance of Getting Accurate Estimates

It should be noted that it's better to get a cost estimate using the Moving Authority cost calculator than attempting to guess the price of movers. There are estimates that a company may give you over the phone, but it is much simpler and more transparent to use the inventory tool. Just enter every piece you are moving and then see what typical moving costs for it are. Generally, the rule of thumb is to receive at least three estimates or quotes from different moving companies. This can seem like a hassle, but if you are meticulous about your exact inventory, you should receive accurate estimates. If you do not inform the company of everything you plan on moving, the price you were quoted may be higher than you were originally told. 

8. How to Lower the Average Moving Cost

Many people do not like to involve themselves with all the technicalities of moving. The items that we have discussed above are all things that are just accepted. More often than not, costs will vary based on a wide array of factors. You can get free online reviews in order to compare average moving costs across companies
three tips to lower moving costs

9. Stay Within Budget While Still Using a Reputable Moving Company

If you choose to go with a moving company as your moving provider, there are a few ways you can go about saving on some costs here and there. If you have ever moved, you know how expensive it can be, even to move by renting a truck. However, the best way to save money is not just by choosing the low-cost moving companies. You can still use a reputable moving company and save in other ways to compensate and still remain within your budget. Keep reading for some money saving tips to help you manage your budget while hiring a trustworthy moving company 

10. Choose Wisely

Make sure to select a reputable moving company. Checking online reviews and asking around is the best way to ensure that you are putting your goods in the right hands. As mentioned, create a budget for your move and a timeline to go along with it. Then, see if the movers that you find fit your budget. Keep in mind that the cheapest mover is not always the one you should choose. Usually, cheap movers are running a scam. This is why it is important to check genuine online reviews. This does not mean every low-cost company is bad, it simply means that you should do some extra research into their company background such as how long they've been operating, if they have a DOT number, checking their license, reading reviews and testimonials, as well as calling to ask questions. After all this, you will typically get a feel for the company. If you decide to choose such a company, double check all paperwork (terms and conditions) and ensure there is a bill of lading.

11. Schedule Wisely

Many people overlook this when moving. It is a common fact in the moving industry that moves cost more during summer months. So, it makes more financial sense to move during what is known as the "off season" of moving. This falls under the months of October-April. Of course, flexibility is not always an option for the average mover. You should try to find deals anyhow. A little can go a long way when it comes to saving money on your move. During the off season, sometimes moving companies will off coupons or a percentage off of something. The summer months are the hardest time to move and book a set date. Unless you have booked months ahead, you will most likely be given a window delivery time, meaning your belongings will be delivered during a window of days, rather than on one specific day, which is largely preferred. 

12. Don't Overpack

A good rule to follow when packing is to not pack anything that will not be used in the next 4 weeks. While this does not have to be as strictly followed when it comes to local moves, long distance moves are all about weight. Packing and shipping unnecessary items will cause the cost of your move to skyrocket. Take a day prior to the move to do an inventory of all of your possessions. Then, get rid of what you don't need.
You don't have to throw it away, but don't keep it. You will love having the extra space- and a lower moving bill.

13. Can't Part With It? That's Ok, That's What Storage is For

Storage is always an option as well. For example, if you are downsizing from a house to an apartment you will most likely have larger items such as furniture that you don't need or won't fit. If you don't want to get rid, donate, or trash it, a great way to keep it safe for some time in the future is by putting it in storage or long term storage. Just like getting rid of things when packing, getting rid of anything large or bulky like heavy furniture will save you a ton on a move where weight is a major cost factor. 

Average Cost of Movers Nationwide

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Did You Know


The trucking industry has made a large historical impact since the early 20th century. It has affected the U.S. both politically as well as economically since the notion has begun. Previous to the invention of automobiles, most freight was moved by train or horse-drawn carriage. Trucks were first exclusively used by the military during World War I.
After the war, construction of paved roads increased. As a result, trucking began to achieve significant popularity by the 1930's. Soon after trucking became subject to various government regulation, such as the hours of service. During the later 1950's and 1960's, trucking accelerated due to the construction of the Interstate Highway System. The Interstate Highway System is an extensive network of freeways linking major cities cross country.

Question “Country music scholar Bill Malone has gone so far as to say that trucking songs account for the largest component of work songs in the country music catalog. For a style of music that has, since its commercial inception in the 1920s, drawn attention to the coal man, the steel drivin’ man, the railroad worker, and the cowboy, this certainly speaks volumes about the cultural attraction of the trucker in the American popular consciousness.” — Shane Hamilton

Question Invented in 1890, the diesel engine was not an invention that became well known in popular culture. It was not until the 1930's for the United States to express further interest for diesel engines to be accepted. Gasoline engines were still in use on heavy trucks in the 1970's, while in Europe they had been entirely replaced two decades earlier.

Question Medium trucks are larger than light but smaller than heavy trucks. In the US, they are defined as weighing between 13,000 and 33,000 pounds (6,000 and 15,000 kg). For the UK and the EU, the weight is between 3.5 and 7.5 tons (3.9 and 8.3 tons). Local delivery and public service (dump trucks, garbage trucks, and fire-fighting trucks) are around this size.

Question The American Trucking Associations initiated in 1985 with the intent to improve the industry's image. With public opinion declining the association tried numerous moves. One such move was changing the name of the "National Truck Rodeo" to the "National Driving Championship". This was due to the fact that the word rodeo seemed to imply recklessness and reckless driving.

Question AMSA wanted to help consumers avoid untrustworthy or illegitimate movers. In January 2008, AMSA created the ProMover certification program for its members. As a member, you must have federal interstate operating authority. Members are also required to pass an annual criminal back check, be licensed by the FMCSA, and agree to abide by ethical standards. This would include honesty in advertising and in business transaction with customers. Each must also sign a contract committing to adhere to applicable Surface Transportation Board and FMCSA regulations. AMSA also takes into consideration and examines ownership. They are very strict, registration with state corporation commissions. This means that the mover must maintain at least a satisfactory rating with the Better Business Bureau (BBB). As one can imagine, those that pass are authorized to display the ProMove logo on the websites and in marketing materials. However, those that fail will be expelled from the program (and AMSA) if they cannot correct discrepancies during probation.

Question Signage of business routes varies, depending on the type of route they are derived from. Business routes paralleling U.S. and state highways usually have exactly the same shield shapes and nearly the same overall appearance as the routes they parallel, with a rectangular plate reading "BUSINESS" placed above the shield (either supplementing or replacing the directional plate, depending on the preference of the road agency). In order to better identify and differentiate alternate routes from the routes they parallel, some states such as Maryland are beginning to use green shields for business routes off U.S. highways. In addition, Maryland uses a green shield for business routes off state highways with the word "BUSINESS" in place of "MARYLAND" is used for a state route.


In the United States, commercial truck classification is fixed by each vehicle's gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR). There are 8 commercial truck classes, ranging between 1 and 8. Trucks are also classified in a more broad way by the DOT's Federal Highway Administration (FHWA). The FHWA groups them together, determining classes 1-3 as light duty, 4-6 as medium duty, and 7-8 as heavy duty. The United States Environmental Protection Agency has its own separate system of emission classifications for commercial trucks. Similarly, the United States Census Bureau had assigned classifications of its own in its now-discontinued Vehicle Inventory and Use Survey (TIUS, formerly known as the Truck Inventory and Use Survey).

Question The United States Department of Transportation has become a fundamental necessity in the moving industry. It is the pinnacle of the industry, creating and enforcing regulations for the sake of safety for both businesses and consumers alike. However, it is notable to appreciate the history of such a powerful department. The functions currently performed by the DOT were once enforced by the Secretary of Commerce for Transportation. In 1965, Najeeb Halaby, administrator of the Federal Aviation Adminstration (FAA), had an excellent suggestion. He spoke to the current President Lyndon B. Johnson, advising that transportation be elevated to a cabinet level position. He continued, suggesting that the FAA be folded or merged, if you will, into the DOT. Clearly, the President took to Halaby's fresh ideas regarding transportation, thus putting the DOT into place.

Question The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) is an influential association as an advocate for transportation. Setting important standards, they are responsible for publishing specifications, test protocols, and guidelines. All which are used in highway design and construction throughout the United States. Despite its name, the association represents more than solely highways. Alongside highways, they focus on air, rail, water, and public transportation as well.

Question The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is an agency within the United States Department of Transportation. The purpose of the FMCSA is to regulate safety within the trucking and moving industry in the United States. The FMCSA enforces safety precautions that reduce crashes, injuries, and fatalities involving large trucks and buses.

Question The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) issues Hours of Service regulations. At the same time, they govern the working hours of anyone operating a commercial motor vehicle (CMV) in the United States. Such regulations apply to truck drivers, commercial and city bus drivers, and school bus drivers who operate CMVs. With these rules in place, the number of daily and weekly hours spent driving and working is limited. The FMCSA regulates the minimum amount of time drivers must spend resting between driving shifts. In regards to intrastate commerce, the respective state's regulations apply.


Although there are exceptions, city routes are interestingly most often found in the Midwestern area of the United States. Though they essentially serve the same purpose as business routes, they are different. They feature "CITY" signs as opposed to "BUSINESS" signs above or below route shields. Many of these city routes are becoming irrelevant for today's transportation. Due to this, they are being eliminated in favor of the business route designation.

Question In order to load or unload bots and other cargo to and from a trailer, trailer winches are designed for this purpose. They consist of a ratchet mechanism and cable. The handle on the ratchet mechanism is then turned to tighten or loosen the tension on the winch cable. Trailer winches vary, some are manual while others are motorized. Trailer winches are most typically found on the front of the trailer by towing an A-frame.


The term 'trailer' is commonly used interchangeably with that of a travel trailer or mobile home. There are varieties of trailers and manufactures housing designed for human habitation. Such origins can be found historically with utility trailers built in a similar fashion to horse-drawn wagons. A trailer park is an area where mobile homes are designated for people to live in.
In the United States, trailers ranging in size from single-axle dollies to 6-axle, 13 ft 6 in (4,115 mm) high, 53 ft (16,154 mm) in long semi-trailers is common. Although, when towed as part of a tractor-trailer or "18-wheeler", carries a large percentage of the freight. Specifically, the freight that travels over land in North America.

Question The industry intends to both consumers as well as moving companies, this is why there are Ministers of Transportation in the industry. They are there to set and maintain laws and regulations in place to create a safer environment. It offers its members professional service training and states the time that movers have been in existence. It also provides them with federal government representation and statistical industry reporting. Additionally, there are arbitration services for lost or damaged claims, publications, public relations, and annual tariff updates and awards. This site includes articles as well that give some direction, a quarterly data summary, and industry trends.

Question Tracing the origins of particular words can be quite different with so many words in the English Dictionary. Some say the word "truck" might have come from a back-formation of "truckle", meaning "small wheel" or "pulley". In turn, both sources emanate from the Greek trokhos (τροχός), meaning "wheel", from trekhein (τρέχειν, "to run").

Question In today's society, there are rules and regulations everywhere you go, the same goes for commercial vehicles. The federal government has strict regulations that must be met, such as how many hours a driver may be on the clock. For example, 11 hours driving /14 hours on-duty followed by 10 hours off, with a max of 70 hours/8 days or 60 hours/7 days. They can also set rules deciding how much rest and sleep time is required, however, these are only a couple of regulations set. Any violations are often subject to harsh penalties. In some cases, there are instruments to track each driver's hours, which are becoming more necessary.

Question There many reasons for moving, each one with a unique and specific reason as to why. Relocation services, employee relocation, or workforce mobility can create a range of processes. This process of transferring employees, their families, and/or entire departments of a business to a new location can be difficult. Like some types of employee benefits, these matters are dealt with by human resources specialists within a corporation.