Best Local Moving Companies of 2018: Full-service, Hybrid, and DIY

If you’re moving across town, you have a few options to get you to your new home—and no, borrowing your friend’s truck isn’t one of them.

While there are literally thousands of local moving companies across the country, we focused our efforts to compare the top movers in three separate categories to help you decide what’s best for your local move:

Read on to see the best moving company we chose for each category and why you might want to choose one category over another.

Best full-service moverBest moving storage containersBest moving van rentals
Moving storage company
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Phone number(888) 689-5999(877) 770-7637(800) 468-4285
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Moving storage company
Website
Phone number
They load and unload
They drive
Best full-service mover Best moving storage containers Best moving van rentals
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(888) 689-5999 (877) 770-7637 (800) 468-4285

Each type of move offers its own advantages and disadvantages, so take a look below to see which option is the best fit for your move.

Full-service local moving companies

Full-service moving companies offer the most hands-off and customizable moving experience.

Choosing a full-service mover is certainly the most comfortable moving experience, but it’s also the most costly.

Move.org’s pick: College Hunks Hauling Junk and Moving

Overall rating

4.5 / 5

College Hunks Hauling Junk and Moving is the only national full-service mover that also specializes in junk and donation removal, giving it a leg up over other standard full-service movers.

In addition to offering a comprehensive list of packing and moving services, it offers what we think is the best solution if you need to dispose of some junk or donate any unwanted belongings during your move.

Pros

  • Great customer service
  • Over-the-phone estimates for small moves
  • Junk removal and recycling services
  • Donation pickup
  • Wide variety of hourly labor services

Cons

  • Fewer locations than TWO MEN AND A TRUCK
  • Limited information online about moving coverage and claims

Why College Hunks Hauling Junk and Moving is the best full-service mover

Reason #1: It offers everything you’d expect from a full-service mover and more

College Hunks Hauling Junk and Moving isn’t just a one-trick pony. Although its junk-hauling service takes top billing in the company name, it’s no slouch when it comes to moving.

From providing moving supplies to packing and transporting your belongings to your new home, College Hunks offers a wide range of moving services that would cover almost any movers’ needs.

We like College Hunks Hauling Junk and Moving because it also fills a need that many don’t think of when planning a move: taking care of all the unwanted stuff you find while packing.

Whether you need miscellaneous junk to be thrown out or recycled, or you have belongings that you’d like to donate, College Hunks Hauling Junk and Moving is the only mover on our list that can professionally remove those items and move you to your new home.

Reason #2: Its hourly labor services can lighten the load of your move

College Hunks Junk and Moving truly is a one-stop shop when it comes to moving. In addition to moving and junk removal, it also offers hourly labor services to give you an extra hand during any phase of your move.

Here are a few the hourly labor services available through College Hunks Hauling Junk and Moving:

  • Home staging
  • Furniture rearranging
  • Light demolition
  • Storm recovery and debris removal

Investing in a little extra help to stage your home or finish some light demolition for a final renovation can pay off in the long run when it comes time to sell your home. Be sure to request an estimate to get a better idea of the hourly labor rates in your area.

To learn more, read our full College Hunks Hauling Junk and Moving review.

Other full-service movers you should consider

Overall rating

4.7 / 5

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK is a full-service mover with over 380 locations and 2,300 trucks worldwide. Although it started as an after-school business by two high school students in the 1980s, it has become one of the most well-respected and customer-focused movers in the country.

Pros

  • Over 380 locations worldwide
  • Excellent customer service
  • Wide range of moving services
  • In-house moving
  • Pickup and delivery service

Cons

  • Limited information online about moving coverage and claims

Why we recommend TWO MEN AND A TRUCK

Customer service is important when you’re dealing with any moving company, but it’s especially important during a full-service move.

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK understands this, so it has “THE GRANDMA RULE.” Put simply, this means every employee is told to treat you the way they would want their grandma to be treated.

Although this might just seem like a marketing gimmick to make you feel better about choosing TWO MEN AND A TRUCK for your move, our research finds it generally lives up to these high customer service standards—while other professional movers may fall a bit short in this area.

We also like TWO MEN AND A TRUCK’s pickup and delivery service. It’s especially helpful if you’re turning to the classifieds to replace an appliance or two in your new home and the seller doesn’t offer delivery.

On top of all of this, we have found that TWO MEN AND A TRUCK is the perfect company if you’re looking for a full-service apartment moving company.

To learn more, read our full TWO MEN AND A TRUCK review.

All My Sons Moving and Storage

Overall rating

4.0 / 5

All My Sons Moving and Storage is a family-owned-and-operated moving company with more than four generations of moving know-how at its disposal. Although its locations are limited, we feel that its comprehensive list of moving services, commitment to customer service, and long history in the moving business make it a good option to consider for your local move.

Pros

  • Excellent customer service
  • High-quality packing services
  • Full-featured list of services
  • Professionally licensed piano moving

Cons

  • Fewest locations out of our recommended movers
  • Less informative website than the competition

Why we recommend All My Sons Moving and Storage

We like All My Sons Moving and Storage because it has the full-service options that you might find with a much larger moving company, but it maintains the customer service of a family-owned business.

If your move includes a piano or if you’d rather not empty your dresser drawers before moving day, consider requesting an estimate from All My Sons.

Moving and storage container companies

If you’re considering a hybrid move, renting a moving and storage container is the way to go.

You’ll find renting a moving and storage container is less expensive than a full-service move but will cost you more than renting a moving truck.

Move.org's pick: PODS (Portable On Demand Storage)

Overall rating

4.5 / 5

PODS, short for Portable On Demand Storage, is one of the largest and most popular storage container companies in the business. We like PODS because it offers some of the highest-quality containers in the industry and has plenty of container options to suit any sized local move.

PODS containers7 foot12 foot16 foot
Dimensions7′ x 7′ x 8′12′ x 8′ x 8′16′ x 8′ x 8′
ConstructionMetalMetalMetal
Capacity (rooms of furniture)12–33–4
Weight limit (lbs.)5,2004,7004,200
Interior space (cu. ft.)385689857
PODS containers
Dimensions
Construction
Capacity (rooms of furniture)
Weight limit (lbs.)
Interior space (cu. ft.)
7 foot 12 foot 16 foot
7′ x 7′ x 8′ 12′ x 8′ x 8′ 16′ x 8′ x 8′
Metal Metal Metal
1 2–3 3–4
5,200 4,700 4,200
385 689 857

Pros

  • Availability in almost every state with additional locations abroad
  • Multiple container sizes
  • Weatherproof, metal-constructed moving containers

Cons

  • Requirement of a phone call to finalize quotes

Why PODS is the best local moving and storage container company

Reason #1: It has multiple container sizes to fit your local move

Whether you’re moving a one-bedroom apartment or a small villa, PODS has container options to meet your needs. It offers three different container sizes to accommodate most average household moves:

  • A seven-foot container
  • A twelve-foot container
  • A sixteen-foot container

Larger homes may require multiple containers, but we like the fact that you can order multiple PODS containers if you find you can’t fit all of your belongings into just one.

Reason #2: PODS is available nationwide

Back in 1998, PODS introduced the concept of portable storage containers. Although several other movers replicated the idea over the years, PODS still remains one of the most popular and widely available moving container providers in the nation.

PODS is available in 44 states across the US (Alaska, Montana, North Dakota, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wyoming didn’t make the cut), as well as several locations throughout Canada, Australia, and the United Kingdom.

Other moving and storage container companies don’t offer nearly as many locations. So for some, PODS may be the best and only option.

To learn more, read our full PODS review.

Other moving and storage containers you should consider

1-800-PACK-RAT

Overall rating

4.2 / 5

1-800-PACK-RAT is a moving and storage container company with well-constructed metal containers and good availability throughout the US and Canada. It doesn’t offer as many locations as PODS, but its steel containers offer more interior space than PODS’ offerings.

1-800-PACK-RAT containers8 foot12 foot16 foot
Dimensions8′6″ x 8′ x 8′12′ x 8′ x 8′16′ x 8′ x 8′
ConstructionMetalMetalMetal
Capacity (rooms of furniture)1–22–33–4
Weight limits (lbs.)4,0006,0006,000
Interior space (cu. ft.)404620830
1-800-PACK-RAT containers
Dimensions
Construction
Capacity (rooms of furniture)
Weight limits (lbs.)
Interior space (cu. ft.)
8 foot 12 foot 16 foot
8′6″ x 8′ x 8′ 12′ x 8′ x 8′ 16′ x 8′ x 8′
Metal Metal Metal
1–2 2–3 3–4
4,000 6,000 6,000
404 620 830

Pros

  • Multiple container sizes
  • Weatherproof moving containers
  • More interior container space than PODS

Cons

  • Requirement for a phone call to finalize quotes
  • Limited availability compared to PODS

Why we recommend 1-800-PACK-RAT

One of the best reasons to choose 1-800-PACK-RAT for your local move is for the moving containers themselves. Their steel construction and barn-style doors offer solid protection for your belongings while offering you more interior space than a container with roll-up doors (like those offered by PODS).

If you have a 1-800-PACK-RAT location near you, be sure to look at its containers in person and compare them with PODS’ before you make your final decision.

To learn more, read our full 1-800-PACK-RAT review.

U-Box by U-Haul

Overall rating

3.8 / 5

U-Haul is no stranger to the moving industry, but you may be surprised to learn it offers moving and storage containers as well. U-Haul’s U-Boxes are made of construction-grade lumber rather than metal, meaning they aren’t quite as sturdy as their metal counterparts—but nationwide availability means it’s one of the most accessible options for your move.

U-Haul ContainerU-Box
Dimensions8′ x 5′ x 7′6″
ConstructionWood
Capacity (rooms of furniture)1
Weight limit (lbs.)2,000
Interior space (cu. ft.)257
U-Haul Container
Dimensions
Construction
Capacity (rooms of furniture)
Weight limit (lbs.)
Interior space (cu. ft.)
U-Box
8′ x 5′ x 7′6″
Wood
1
2,000
257

Pros

  • Nationwide availability
  • Online container reservation
  • Variable insurance options

Cons

  • Wood-constructed containers
  • Requirement of up-front payment—so if you don't use all the containers in your quote, you'll need a refund

Why we recommend U-Haul’s U-Box

U-Haul is the only local moving and storage container provider that’s available in all fifty states. Not only that, but U-Haul makes reserving a U-Box easy by allowing you to go through the whole process online—that’s something neither PODS nor 1-800-PACK-RAT can say.

Although the U-Box is available in only one size and we prefer the metal-constructed containers of other companies, its simple online reservation process and nationwide availability make it a solid option for small- to medium-sized local moves.

To learn more, read more about U-Box in our 5 Best Moving Containers Companies of 2018 post.

Moving van and truck rental companies

Renting a moving truck is definitely the most DIY approach to a local move.

Truck rentals are the least expensive way to move to your new home, but they require you to be behind the wheel during every phase of your move—literally and figuratively.

Move.org's pick: U-Haul

Overall rating

3 / 5

As we mentioned before, U-Haul is a household name in the moving industry—and for good reason. U-Haul is the oldest and most popular option for moving truck rentals and offers five truck sizes to accommodate any-sized local move.

If you’re considering renting a truck for your local move, U-Haul should be the first company on your list.

Truck sizes10 foot15 foot17 foot20 foot26 foot
Internal dimensions9′11″ x 6′4″ x 6′2″15′ x 7′8″ x 7′2″16′9″ x 7′8″ x 7′2″19′6″ x 7′8″ x 7′2″26′5″ x 7′8″ x 8′3″
CapacityStudio to 1-bedroom apartment1-bedroom home to 2-bedroom apartmentUp to 2-bedroom home2-bedroom home to 3-bedroom apartment3- to 4-bedroom home
Weight limit (lbs.)2,8106,3855,9305,6057,400
Interior space (cu. ft.)4027638621,0151,611
Fuel tank capacity3140404057
Miles per gallon1210101010
Truck sizes
Internal dimensions
Capacity
Weight limit (lbs.)
Interior space (cu. ft.)
Fuel tank capacity
Miles per gallon
10 foot 15 foot 17 foot 20 foot 26 foot
9′11″ x 6′4″ x 6′2″ 15′ x 7′8″ x 7′2″ 16′9″ x 7′8″ x 7′2″ 19′6″ x 7′8″ x 7′2″ 26′5″ x 7′8″ x 8′3″
Studio to 1-bedroom apartment 1-bedroom home to 2-bedroom apartment Up to 2-bedroom home 2-bedroom home to 3-bedroom apartment 3- to 4-bedroom home
2,810 6,385 5,930 5,605 7,400
402 763 862 1,015 1,611
31 40 40 40 57
12 10 10 10 10

Pros

  • More than 20,000 locations
  • Easy online reservation process
  • 5 different truck sizes
  • Trucks with low decks and "EZ-Load" ramps

Cons

  • Reservation changes if truck inventory is low

Why U-Haul is the best local van rental company

Reason #1: It has a wide variety of rental truck options with easy-to-load decks

Whether your in-town move is large or small, we’re sure U-Haul has a truck size that’ll fit your needs. U-Haul has the most variety of any moving truck rental company, offering five separate truck sizes:

  • A ten-foot truck
  • A fifteen-foot truck
  • A seventeen-foot truck
  • A twenty-foot truck
  • A twenty-six-foot truck

All of U-Haul’s trucks feature low-height loading decks, making it easier for you to load and unload your belongings. We love how this feature isn’t exclusive to its smaller moving trucks, so your lower back is safe no matter which size truck you choose.

Moving trucks from many other companies feature loading decks that are much higher than U-Haul’s. This puts the loading ramp at a steeper incline, making it that much more difficult to get large items like furniture into the truck (which are difficult to move to begin with).

Reason #2: It has more than 20,000 locations

If you’re looking to rent a moving truck, odds are that you’re near a U-Haul location. U-Haul truck rentals are available in all fifty states, and you’ll often find multiple U-Haul locations in populated areas.

We love the fact that you’ll almost never need to wonder if there’s a U-Haul location near you. Not only is this convenient, but it also ensures you can secure a truck in your preferred size without having to make your reservation too far in advance.

To learn more, read our full U-Haul review.

Other moving truck rental companies you should consider

Budget Truck Rental

Overall rating

2.8 / 5

True to its name, Budget Truck Rental is one of the most economical options for renting a moving truck. Budget offers several discount codes to help you save on your local move, which makes it a good option for local movers on a budget who don’t need too many extras with their truck rental.

Truck sizes12 foot16 foot26
Internal dimensions10′ x 6′3″ x 6′0″16′ x 6′3″ x 6′7″26′ x 8′1″ x 8′1″
CapacityStudio to 1- to 2-bedroom apartment3–4 rooms or 1-bedroom home5–8 rooms or 2- to 3-bedroom home
Weight limit (lbs.)3,6105,5249,180
Interior space (cu. ft.3808301,698
Fuel tank capacity (gallons)353350
Miles per gallon8–146–108–10
Truck sizes
Internal dimensions
Capacity
Weight limit (lbs.)
Interior space (cu. ft.
Fuel tank capacity (gallons)
Miles per gallon
12 foot 16 foot 26
10′ x 6′3″ x 6′0″ 16′ x 6′3″ x 6′7″ 26′ x 8′1″ x 8′1″
Studio to 1- to 2-bedroom apartment 3–4 rooms or 1-bedroom home 5–8 rooms or 2- to 3-bedroom home
3,610 5,524 9,180
380 830 1,698
35 33 50
8–14 6–10 8–10

Pros

  • Availability across the continental US
  • Low prices for local moves
  • Instant online quotes
  • Discounts for military members, students, and others

Cons

  • Higher prices for add-ons than U-Haul
  • Only 3 truck sizes
  • Higher loading deck height than U-Haul

Why we recommend Budget Truck Rental

While Budget Truck Rental isn’t quite as widely available as U-Haul, you can still find a Budget rental location in the lower 48 states and Washington, D.C.

Availability aside, Budget is a great option if you’re hoping to save some money on your local move. Although you may have to pay more for add-ons like appliance dollies and furniture pads, you’ll likely pay less at Budget than another truck rental company if you forego these options.

To learn more, read our full Budget Truck Rental review.

Penske Truck Rental

Overall rating

2.8 / 5

Penske Truck Rental is the third-largest truck rental company in the country and, coincidentally, it also lands at the third spot in our recommendations. Although its fleet of trucks is among the newest in the industry, we’ve found that local movers may end up paying a bit more with Penske than with either U-Haul or Budget Truck Rental.

Penske truck sizes12 foot16 foot22 foot26 foot
Internal dimensions12' x 6'6" x 6'1"16' x 7'7" x 6'6"21'11" x 8'1" x 8'1"25'11" x 8'1" x 8'1"
Capacity1–2 rooms2–3 rooms3–5 rooms5–7 rooms
Weight limit (lbs.)3,1004,30010,00010,000
Interior space (cu. ft.)4504501,2001,700
Fuel tank capacity (gallons)33335050
Miles per gallon12121010
Penske truck sizes
Internal dimensions
Capacity
Weight limit (lbs.)
Interior space (cu. ft.)
Fuel tank capacity (gallons)
Miles per gallon
12 foot 16 foot 22 foot 26 foot
12' x 6'6" x 6'1" 16' x 7'7" x 6'6" 21'11" x 8'1" x 8'1" 25'11" x 8'1" x 8'1"
1–2 rooms 2–3 rooms 3–5 rooms 5–7 rooms
3,100 4,300 10,000 10,000
450 450 1,200 1,700
33 33 50 50
12 12 10 10

Pros

  • Availability across the continental US and Canada
  • Newer moving trucks than the competition
  • 4 different truck sizes
  • Multiple insurance options

Cons

  • Higher prices than U-Haul and Budget for local moves
  • Relatively expensive packing materials
  • Higher loading deck height than U-Haul

Why we recommend Penske Truck Rental

If you’d rather not move with U-Haul and don’t mind paying a little extra for your rental, Penske’s trucks make it well worth considering.

Penske boasts one of the newest fleets in the truck rental industry, and its twelve- and sixteen-foot trucks offer better gas mileage than comparable trucks from U-Haul or Budget. Not only that, but Penske offers four truck size options compared to Budget’s three.

Penske is a good option for your local move if you care more about the quality of your moving truck than the cost of the reservation.

To learn more, read our full Penske review.

Let us know which local mover you choose!

Whether you seek out an estimate from a full-service local moving company or rent a moving truck, share your experience with us in the comments below! Our readers would love to hear how your move went and whether or not you’d nominate your mover for our best local movers list.

About Colin Holmes

Colin Holmes
Colin is no stranger to moving, having done so five times in the last five years. As a former journalist and documentary interviewer, Colin brings a wealth of research experience to improving your move.