What Charges Go Into a Moving Estimate?

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It’s important to get a written moving estimate before you hire a moving company. It should be itemized and show everything that makes up your total moving cost. Here are typical charges you can expect:


The bulk of your moving costs will be transportation charges. The moving company will take the total weight of your belongings and multiply it by the miles they’ll have to travel to deliver your items, to determine a dollar amount. The further away your apartment, the more you’ll be charged for transporting your items. Do not accept a moving estimate that lists a daily rate, because there are many ways a moving truck might get delayed in transit.

A per mileage estimate is straightforward, and you’ll know ahead of time what to expect. The estimate can also include additional transportation charges that are unique to your move. For instance, an additional charge may accrue for carrying items up any stairs, or for transporting certain household appliances, such as a refrigerator.

Moving Boxes

If you don’t get your own moving boxes, you can buy some from your moving company. They’ll have various shapes and sizes for your items, along with the necessary packing supplies to secure each box. For instance, you might enjoy the convenience of a wardrobe box that has a bar installed to hang your clothes. Boxes with dividers in them, to secure and divide dishes and other kitchen items, are great to use during the move. The company will factor all of the boxes you’ll need into your moving cost estimate.


The moving company you hire will pack just about anything, except flammables and chemicals which are too risky to transport. They’ll send two or more professional movers to pack your items. The packers get paid an hourly rate, and those charges get added to your moving estimate. Packing services is usually an add-on service that you can request or deny. It really depends on your budget and comfort level with having someone else pack your things.

If you have the money for it (and you don’t mind people packing your personal belongings), then it can be a huge time saver. However, it can be spendy, and you should not use debt to pay for it. Make time to pack your own things if you can barely pay for the more important cost: transportation.


The same considerations apply to hiring the movers to unpack your belongings. Included in the transportation cost is unloading your items in your new apartment. However, what’s not included is unpacking your personal belongings. If you need help with that, you’ll be expected to pay extra. Again, you’ll have to pay hourly rates to the movers for this service, and that gets factored in as part of your moving estimate.

Before you hire a moving company, you should review three written moving estimates that itemize all costs. You’ll then be informed to make a decision that will save you money.

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