How to Calculate Pounds, Weight & Distance for a Moving Company

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Moving companies often estimate costs based on weight and distance.

Moving is a challenge in and of itself. However professional movers can help make the process simpler and less stressful for you. Moving companies offer a variety of services from packing up, moving and unpacking all of your belongs to just simply transporting them from one location to another. Many moving companies base the cost of their services on the weight of your items and the distance that they will move the items for you. To guarantee you're getting a fair price, it is a good idea to calculate the weight and distance of your move independently.


Step 1

Request quotes from several moving companies. Ask what they base their estimates on and if you need to provide the distance that your items will be moved or the weight of your items or both.

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Step 2

Go to an online mapping website such as Google Maps or MapQuest to determine how many miles you will be moving. You can do this by using the "driving directions" feature, and entering the addresses you will be moving from and to. The website will then list the total distance involved. Even if the moving company figures out the distance on their own, you can double check the number of miles they have estimated to guarantee that they are being honest and quoting you a fair price.


Step 3

Estimate the weight of the household items that will be moved. The Gateways website explains that moving companies should send out a representative to give you an in-home estimate based on the contents of your home. However, companies use general guidelines to estimate weight. A studio apartment's contents are expected to weigh around 2,000 pounds; a one bedroom residence 2,900 pounds; a two bedroom residence 4,500 pounds; a three bedroom residence 7,700 pounds and a four bedroom residence 9,000 pounds. Estimate the weight of the contents of your home based on that guide.


Step 4

Request a copy of the weight tickets on the day of moving (there should be two--one showing the weight of the truck before any of your possessions are loaded and one after your possessions are loaded). Make sure that the numbers on the weight tickets match your own estimate and what you're charged for the move.

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