11 Best Moving Companies for Small Moves (2023)
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A small move typically involves a home smaller than a one-bedroom apartment. Regardless of your home’s size, you want to ensure you have proper care and protection during relocation. This in-depth guide pulls from 500+ hours of research into the best moving companies, including interviewing industry experts and analyzing sample quotes, to provide you with a list of our top picks for small moves, services each company offers, and more. Read on to find the best company for your small move.
The 11 Best Moving Companies for Small Moves
After conducting in-depth research into service offerings and requesting quotes from various providers, we found the following to be the best small-load moving companies. We recommend getting quotes from at least three providers before booking.
- International Van Lines: Best Service Offerings
- American Van Lines: Best Overall Moving Labor
- Interstate Moving & Relocation Group: Most Efficient
- Safeway Moving Inc.: Most Reliable Pricing
- Moving APT: Best Customer Service
- JK Moving Services: Best Specialized Packing
- Allied Van Lines: Best for Vehicle Relocation
- North American Van Lines: Best for Claims
- 1-800-PACK-RAT: Best Overall Self-Service Mover
- U-Pack: Most Affordable
- United Van Lines: Best Base Moving Coverage
Compare the Top Small-Load Moving Companies
Use our tool below to get an idea of what each mover provides.
|One-Bedroom Move Cost||Best For||Star Rating||BBB Rating|
|International Van Lines||$825–$1,650||Best Service Offerings||A|
|American Van Lines||$2,000||Best Overall Moving Labor||A|
|Interstate Moving & Relocation Group||$1,500–$3,500||Most Efficient||B|
|Moving APT||$525–$1,549||Best Customer Service||B|
|Safeway Moving Inc.||$4,570**||Most Reliable Pricing||A+|
|JK Moving Services||$1,600||Best Specialized Packing||A+|
|Allied Van Lines||Contact for quote||Best for Vehicle Relocation||A+|
|North American Van Lines||$1,000||Best for Claims||A+|
|1-800-PACK-RAT||$1,552.61||Best Self-Service Mover||A|
|International Van Lines|
|One-Bedroom Move Cost||$825–$1,650|
|Best For||Best Service Offerings|
|American Van Lines|
|One-Bedroom Move Cost||$2,000|
|Best For||Best Overall Moving Labor|
|Interstate Moving & Relocation Group|
|One-Bedroom Move Cost||$1,500–$3,500|
|Best For||Most Efficient|
|One-Bedroom Move Cost||$525–$1,549|
|Best For||Best Customer Service|
|Safeway Moving Inc.|
|One-Bedroom Move Cost||$4,570**|
|Best For||Most Reliable Pricing|
|JK Moving Services|
|One-Bedroom Move Cost||$1,600|
|Best For||Best Specialized Packing|
|Allied Van Lines|
|One-Bedroom Move Cost||Contact for quote|
|Best For||Best for Vehicle Relocation|
|North American Van Lines|
|One-Bedroom Move Cost||$1,000|
|Best For||Best for Claims|
|One-Bedroom Move Cost||$1,552.61|
|Best For||Best Self-Service Mover|
*For a move between Dallas and Austin, Texas, unless otherwise noted
**BBB ratings accurate as of November 2023
The Cost of a Small Move
Moving costs vary for every customer due to the many variables determining the total cost. Most small moves are local moves, which moving providers consider to be within the same city or 50 miles of your original location. Many local movers charge an hourly rate for services rather than a weight- and distance-based quote. We explain some of the most significant cost factors for small moves below.
- Movers: The cost of hiring professional movers to load and unload the truck depends on the number of movers and the hours needed.
- Moving supplies: Boxes, packing tape, moving blankets, and dollies can cost around $200–$300, depending on how many supplies you need.
- Rental truck: You may either rent your own moving truck or trailer or have the moving company use its own moving truck and add it to your quote.
- Tips: If they do an exceptional job, you may tip the movers. Usually, $20–$50 per mover is common, depending on the intensity of the job.
How To Prepare for a Small-Load Move
Moving companies can often help you remember the steps needed for a successful move. Some moving companies offer personal moving coaches, while others provide a moving checklist. Even with these resources, you may forget some important tasks when preparing for your move.
Take these steps to ensure your move occurs with ease:
- Condense your belongings: We recommend making two piles as moving day draws near. In one pile, place items you can donate. In the other, place items you want to throw away or get rid of. A few days before the movers arrive, take each pile to its respective drop-off location.
- Send proper notifications: Notify your internet provider, electricity and water companies, insurance companies, tax agencies, utility companies, post office, and the Social Security Administration that you’re moving. Filing a change of address form with the post office is easy to do online, or in person. Do this at least a couple of weeks before your move.
- Create an inventory: Make a note of your items’ conditions and take pictures of them. These photos and notes will come in handy if you have to file a damage claim for reimbursement.
Planning a one-bedroom move is just as involved as planning a five-bedroom move. We suggest you begin planning at least two months before your move date and get quotes from qualified movers near you. This approach provides the most stress-free moving experience possible.
We like International Van Lines because it can adjust its moving packages based on your small-move needs. American Van Lines offers experienced crews who can provide expedited moves between major cities. You can also consider Interstate Moving & Relocation Group for a last-minute small move because of its speedy quote process. Ultimately, we recommend getting quotes from at least three moving companies before booking.
FAQ About Small Moves
What is the most affordable moving company?
U-Pack is the most affordable moving company on our list. In general, self-service moving companies are more affordable than full- or partial-service movers.
What is considered a small move?
Most moving companies consider a move under 2,000 pounds to be a small move. This would roughly be the weight of belongings in a moderately furnished studio or one-bedroom apartment.
How far in advance should I book small load movers?
Though you will want to check with your moving company, we suggest booking your movers at least two months in advance.
Can I get a discount by sharing a moving truck?
Many moving companies offer expedited service at a lower rate when your shipment is packaged in a trailer with other moves. There is no defined discount for this service, but you will typically pay a lower rate than if you booked with a mover that shipped your goods on their own.
How long does it take to pack a one-bedroom apartment?
Most professional movers can pack a one-bedroom apartment in a few hours. If you pack your apartment on your own at a pace of one to two boxes per day after work, you could be fully packed in a few weeks’ time.
Our Rating Methodology
The This Old House Reviews Team backs up our moving company ratings and recommendations with a detailed rating methodology to objectively score each company. We conduct research by reading through the company websites, analyzing customer reviews, conducting consumer surveys, requesting quotes, and speaking with customer representatives. We then score each moving company against our review standards for services, contents coverage, scheduling, trailer and container options, additional benefits, and reputation to arrive at a final score on a 5-point rating scale.
To share feedback or ask a question about this article, send a note to our Reviews Team at firstname.lastname@example.org.