How Moving Cost Is Calculated By Long Distance Movers

How Moving Cost Is Calculated By Long Distance Movers?
Long distance movers charge by per pound (the total weight) or volume of your household belongings. The average cost of moving a house long distance can range from $2,000 up to $10,000, depending on the size and distance of the move. Learn how to calculate your move!

Have you ever think of how movers calculate your cost of move? Several factors constitute the differences between moving costs, such as the type of move, quantity of your items, the services needed, and the moving company you pick.

Although it is stressful to move from one state to another, most people find it difficult to think of the cost of moving to a long-distance home.

The price of moving long-distance will cost you several thousands of dollars compared to local moves because you have a lot of furniture to move as well as the size of your house.

All the local moving companies generally charge by the hour while long-distance movers charge based on the load, which is $2,000 dollars to $5000 per shipment, to be precise about $0.50 per pound. This implies that it is not only because of the quantity of the things you have to move but also the weight.

But there is a huge difference between $1000 and $3000, so you need to figure out how exactly how much your moving distance will cost you.

This can simply be figured out based on how your long-distance moving companies calculate their moving estimates. This post will look at what and what go into your moving cost.

Factors of Costs of Moving Estimates for a Long-Distance Move

While local moving companies generally charge by the hour, costs of the long-distance move are generally based on certain factors. These include:

How many items you have: It costs about $2,600 to move a single bedroom apartment to another part of the country, say from LA to New York or vice versa. However, what if your home is 4-bedroom and you have to move it? The moving cost will increase base on the number of boxes you packed and the amount of bulky furniture you need to move out.

How many movers: The number of movers you need will be determined by the number of things you own and need to move on a long distance. Homeowners with lots of moving boxes and furniture may need more than the normal two movers and this will also cause the moving cost to go higher.

Truck and Gas Costs: Long distance movers not only charge per shipment, but they also charge for the truck and fuel. Moving trucks are designed in various sizes and the larger the cost, so be sure to talk to your company and rent the right size of truck to avoid paying extra for what you didn’t use.

Special Items: The moving company may charge you an extra fee if special items like a pool table or piano are included in your move, and they need to move them with lift due to their size.

Storage in Transit: You will require storage in transit (SIT) if you got called that your destination home is not ready after the mover already started the journey with your belongings in their moving truck. The cost of the SIT will depend solely on the number of items you own and the storage duration required.

Additional Fees: Having your movers pack for you will make you spend more than you have budgeted for compared to packing yourself. Also, moving companies may charge an additional fee to any adjustment you make to your move at the late hour. Also, be sure to look into insurance. In case you have some kind of coverage, which you should, the cost can be up to 1% of the valuation of your belongings.

Average Costs of Long-Distance Moving

Generally, moving long distances will cost between $0.50 and $0.70 per pound of items moved a thousand miles from the old location. For instance, the items in a single bedroom apartment weigh approximately 2,000 pounds, which results in a moving cost of about $1,000 to $1,400.

In comparison, the content of a 3-bedroom home weighs approximately 9,000 pounds, resulting in an estimated moving cost of about$4,500 up or more than $6,000. Moving costs can rise or fall based on how long you travel whether more or less than 1,000 miles.

Moving companies generally charge by the mile and other possible costs could include fuel or toll charges. The American Moving & Storage Association as of 2018 reports that moving from one state to another on 1,200 miles cost an average of $4,300 approximately. 

Extra costs of a Long-Distance Move

Moving companies typically charge for extra moving services related to your long-distance move. Packing and unpacking of your household stuff is the most expensive additional cost. Also, you should have 3 or 4 movers issue in-home estimates for your possible costs of packing based on the quantity and types of items in your household.

Other additional costs could be any of the following:

  • Taking care of heavy, large, or delicate items like swing sets and pianos,
  • Carrying belongings to farther distance from the house to the moving truck (above 75ft),
  • Furniture disassembly and appliances disconnection,
  • Taking elevators or stairs,
  • Items storage before the move.

Purchasing full-value protection insurance is another cost-affecting factor for a long-distance move. Many movers offer basic released value protection insurance free of charge, but the coverage is just $.60 per pound, per cargo in the face of loss or damage. Lastly, the cost is greatly affected by the date you choose to move out.

The month of May through September is the busiest season for movers and thus leads to an increase in moving prices and fees with about 20%. During holidays, weekends, and at the start and end of each month, expect moving costs to be higher.  

How do you come up with the Cost of Local Moves?

For your local move, you will be charged by the hour all through the move. Each company determines its rate, but the cross country average rate is around $25 to $50 for each mover per hour.

You will need an extra mover than the number of your rooms. For instance, a 2-man moving team will cost $100 per hour to move a single bedroom apartment.

Be Careful of Additional Fees

Your movers may not discuss the different additional fees you will incur on a moving day with you during estimation. Make sure you are straight and clear about the moving services you will need during the in-home estimation and also ask any important questions about any possible additional fees they may charge.

Here are some additional services that will need extra costs: 

  • Packing services: If you want your belongings packed for you, note that it will cost you extra. For a local move, the time taken to pack your household will be factored into the hourly rate.
  • Packing materials: These are not added in your moving estimates as movers usually charge extra for moving boxes, bubble wrap, tape, shrink wrap, and furniture blankets.
  • Blanket wrapping: Even if you do a self-packing, you will still want to protect your furniture items from dents, debris, scratches, dirt, and chips. Your furniture will be carefully wrapped by movers with nice and durable blankets but the service may cost you extra.
  • Furniture assembly/disassembly: In case you need disassembly or reassembly of your bed set or entertainment center before or after your move, talk to your movers if these services are available for extra fees.
  • Stair carries: Stairs can greatly increase your moving cost. Moving companies may charge you an additional fee per flight, per turn, or per step based on the item being moved if you live in a home with stairs.
  • Long carries: If your property is very large or your driveway is very long and your movers have to carry your household items over some distances, this may increase your cost. Some movers will even charge for every step they take.
  • Shuttle services: If there is no nearby parking around your home, then movers will have no choice but to park the moving truck a faraway distance and haul your stuff via shuttle.
  • Storage: If for some, you couldn’t have your belongings delivered to your new home right away, then you will need storage service which comes at extra cost. It is generally calculated on a monthly basis.
  • Insurance: Insurance is very important to give your household possessions the protection you want against loss or damage. The basic released value protection is the standard from moving companies and it doesn’t cover beyond $.60 per pound. Request for the company’s additional coverage policies and related costs to give your items deserving protection.
  • Moving specialty stuff: You may be charged extra for any specialty items that need special handling procedures in order to be safely transported. Make sure you clearly ask your potential moving companies about the experience they have in moving such items before you hire.


Even though you may see relocation as simple and direct, when you take a look at the cost, there are many factors that constitute how long-distance movers develop moving quotes. Gladly, you can save about 45% (about hundreds or thousands USD) when you obtain long-distance moving quotes with Pricing Van Lines using our moving quote tool. So, even though you will still be required to spend some money on the move, at least you are certain of receiving the best prices from the reputable long-distance movers.