How to Estimate Moving Costs

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Whether you are moving across town or across the country, knowing all the costs involved is an important factor in determining what type of move is best for you.  

On top of packing and organizing for a move, the financial side can become an additional strain if you don’t do some investigating beforehand. Prepare for your move by getting an estimate from a professional moving company. This will let you eliminate any of the financial guesswork that can be associated with a move. 

Deciding whether or not to hire a professional moving company is one of the first steps in planning a move. Hiring professional movers will minimize your workload, allowing you to get back to what really matters: your and your loved ones’ well-being.  

An experienced, professional moving company like United Van Lines can help you with all aspects of your move, from packing and moving your belongings to shipping your car. If you decide to DIY, these and many other tasks will be up to you – and your move may wind up being more costly than you anticipated.

Continue reading to learn more about how moving companies create moving cost estimates to prepare you for your upcoming move. 

Understanding How Moving Costs are Estimated

Every moving company has a different way of estimating the cost of a move. 

Some companies may charge an hourly rate, particularly for local or labor-only moves. They consider how much time it will take to complete the move.

Most full-service moving companies base their prices on a combination of these factors:

  • The distance of the move
  • The move date and season
  • The number of large or bulky items
  • The weight of the shipment
  • The number of belongings
  • The number of bedrooms in your current home
  • The moving services that you need

When you look for a moving cost estimate from a moving company, always be sure to ask for an itemized breakdown of how your estimate is calculated and also what type of moving estimates you receive. A full-service moving quote from United Van Lines always includes a list of services for your move, giving you total visibility of how your cost is determined.

How Moving Cost Estimates Empower You

It’s important to get more than one moving cost estimate when evaluating your options. This gives you a true basis of comparison as well as the power to understand exactly what is involved and make the decision that’s right for your move. No surprises mean fewer hassles down the road.

A detailed moving cost estimate should always be customized to your exact move details, not only allowing you to compare costs mover to mover, but also versus a DIY move. Requesting an estimate  also helps you evaluate other aspects of the moving company, such as their cost transparency and the level of customer service they provide. 

When comparing move estimates from different companies, make sure they are written and signed, especially when it’s a local or labor-only move. This protects you from hidden costs or additional fees that could be added in later.

Important Things to Consider When Moving

When deciding between hiring a moving company or doing it yourself, be sure to consider these questions:

  • What time of the year are you planning to move?
  • Do you have any bulky or fragile items that you want to move with you?
  • Are you physically able to lift heavy boxes or furniture?
  • Will hiring a professional moving company reduce worry and stress for you and your loved ones?
  • How far are you moving?
  • What’s your timeline for the move?
  • What’s your budget?
  • If it’s a DIY move, what vehicles will you have available?
  • How many trips do you think it will take to move everything?

Choosing to hire a reputable moving company will largely eliminate many of the challenges above, giving you greater peace of mind.  Moving companies like United Van Lines also allow you to choose which services you receive, including such items as storage or car shipping. If cost is a factor, the ability to pick only the services you want allows you to better manage your moving budget. Be sure to sign off on only the moving services you need.

Moving Soon? Let United Take You There

As an America’s #1 Moving Company ®, United Van Lines has more than 90 years of professional moving experience as well as services from over 500 locations in the United States. If you decide that a professional moving company is right for you, we can help get you there. 

Request a free online moving quote to learn more about what United can do for you.  For more helpful tips on how to complete your move, visit United’s Expert Moving blog.

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