Best Apartment Movers
After I graduated from college, I moved straight to the Big Apple—New York City! And then I moved again. And again. Rising rents, changing jobs, and new relationships kept me hopping between different apartments throughout the city.
I was young and adventurous, so I didn’t mind the changes in scenery. (Plus I got an awesome workout lugging bookcases up all those flights of stairs—no pain, no gain, right?) But then started getting tired of strapping my mattress to the roof of my friend’s Camry.
There comes a time in all of our lives where we realize we’d rather work smarter than harder. So here are a few moving companies—some full-service and others DIY—that I wish I had known about back when I was moving between apartments.
|College Hunks Hauling Junk and Moving||PODS||Home Depot Truck Rental|
|Local and long-distance moves||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Extended loading/ unloading time||No||Yes||No|
|Storage included||Paid only||Paid only||Paid only|
|Junk removal and recycling||Yes||No||No|
|Standalone truck rental||No||No||Yes|
|Furniture assembly/ disassembly||Yes||No||No|
|Free Quotes||Get a Quote||Get a Quote||Get a Quote|
College Hunks Hauling Junk and Moving: Best overall
Pay these college kids to throw your stuff away! (It’s better than it sounds, ok?)
If you’re anything like me, then moving out of an apartment requires at least two trips: one to bring your stuff to the new apartment, and another to cart away all the stuff you don’t want anymore.
One of the things we like most about College Hunks is that it combines moving and junk hauling services into one. Not only that, but the company also donates to charity, has flexible scheduling, and is known for its calm, helpful customer service.
We know, the name “College Hunks” sounds more like the company you’d hire for your bachelorette party than one you’d hire to carefully move your prized possessions. But trust us, these aren’t your average college kids.
- Eco-friendly disposal and recycling
- Great customer service
- By-the-hour pricing
- Not available everywhere
- No online quotes
What you get with College Hunks
Like a college freshman figuring out their major, College Hunks likes to dabble in many subjects—long-distance moves, debris removal, and more. That’s great news for you, because it means you have plenty of options for customizing your apartment move.
One thing to keep in mind if you’re moving with College Hunks is the unique pricing structure. Rather than charging a lump sum price for a move, College Hunks charges by the hour for labor, and then charges a truck-use fee on top of that.
This pricing structure can work to your advantage for small moves and odd jobs. You can even hire some hunks (yes, the company refers to its movers as “hunks”) by the hour to come and help you fill up your own truck or shipping container!
That also means that the company won’t charge a specific fee for add-on services like packing, appliance hookup, or furniture assembly. Instead, College Hunks charges the by-the-hour rate for however long it takes the hunks to do the extra work.
|Services||Included in your quote||Costs extra|
|Loading/ unloading||Yes||Cost included in price|
|Junk removal and recycling||Add-on||Yes|
|Moving supplies||Yes||Cost included in price|
|Appliance connection/ disconnection||Add-on||Yes|
|Furniture assembly/ disassembly||Yes||Cost included in price|
|Online tracking||Yes||Cost included in price|
|Basic liability coverage||Yes||Cost included in price|
|Full valuation coverage||Add-on||Yes|
|Free Quotes||Get A Quote||Get A Quote|
One thing that really sets College Hunks apart from the competition is its junk removal and recycling service. Even other full-service movers like Allied Van Lines won’t be able to junk that old couch you never want to see again.
While College Hunks tends to be an A+ student, there are a few classes that are dragging down its overall GPA. For instance, the company doesn’t offer free storage, and the storage options it does have tend to be on the pricier side.
College Hunks mover experience
While I thought that College Hunks’ “stress-free moving” tagline might be an oxymoron at first, I was impressed by the laid-back vibe of my customer service rep. He sounded like he was leading me in a mindfulness meditation as he explained my quote.
We’d always prefer to have an online quote option, but having a helpful, no-pressure phone call to talk about pricing and preferences is a close second.
College Hunks is a courteous company—and that extends into the actual moving process as well. The hunks that move your stuff will use floor pads, stairwell protectors, and even some adorable shoe covers so they don’t dirty or dent anything. (That’ll help you get your full deposit back).
Since College Hunks is a franchise service, the experience will vary from place to place. But the fact is, all College Hunks movers work on a pay-for-performance plan, which means they’ll have an incentive to work fast and do their job well.
Options for getting a quote from College Hunks
- Over the phone
- In-home estimate
PODS: Best moving and storage container company
Great option for those who prefer D.I.Y. (that stands for “driver isn’t you”) moves.
What if you had to take all of your college exams on the same day? Or pay all of your yearly taxes at once? I, for one, would be a broke college dropout. Some things are just better spread out over time.
This is what’s so great about moving with PODS. With 30 days to do your loading and unloading, you can chip away at it slowly. Load up a box when you head out on your morning commute, then throw in the heavier sofa when you’ve got friends over.
And get this: you don’t even have to drive the big steel box once it’s loaded up! Your apartment moving plans just got a lot less stressful.
- No driving
- 30 days to load/unload
- Over-the-phone quotes
- Not available everywhere
What you get with PODS
Unlike other moving companies, PODS doesn’t have many add-on features like packing services, auto transport, or appliance hookup. But simplicity is kind of PODS’ thing, even if it does mean a bit more labor on your end. (Just call it Crossfit, right?)
If you’re worried about your stuff making the journey in a shipping container, don’t. The company offers two insurance options. One just covers the container itself (though it seems like it’d take Iron Man to actually do any damage to those things). The other insurance option covers both the container and the items inside.
The cost will vary greatly depending on your location, the length of your move, and how big your container is. But in almost all cases, it’ll be a fraction of what a full-service mover would charge.
|Loading/unloading time period||30 days|
|Multiple container sizes||7-ft., 12-ft., and 16-ft. containers|
|Moving supplies available||Yes|
|Free Quotes||Get a Quote|
PODS mover experience
Do you remember that pod-racing scene in Star Wars: Episode I? Working with PODS is . . . well, actually, it’s nothing like that. There’s no racing, and there’s especially no Jar Jar Binks. Working with PODS is more like playing slow-motion Tetris.
All you have to do is call up the company, pick the size of your container, and wait for it to be delivered. (Don’t forget to check with your landlord or building manager first!) Once it’s there, you get to casually load all of your things, and PODS will pick it up when you’re done.
Have we mentioned that PODS does the driving for you? (And that they top the list of the best shipping container companies?) Just unload the container at your new place. Bam! You’ve moved.
We should warn you that PODS has received its share of complaints about slow deliveries and poor customer service. You should take these with a grain of salt—after all, it’s the internet age, and everyone’s made someone mad—but it doesn’t hurt to check in once your container is en route.
If you’re still unsure about PODS, then maybe our full review for the company will help answer your questions.
Options for getting a quote from PODS
- Over the phone
Home Depot: Best truck rental service
Trucks of all sizes—for the studio apartment to the four-bedroom townhouse.
Renting a truck at Home Depot is a bit like eating from the salad bar—you can mix and match a ton of different ingredients. This variety is what gives the company a huge advantage over other cheap rental companies (like Budget), especially for apartment moves.
Want to rent a pickup truck to move a few heavy appliances between apartments locally? No problem. Want to rent a 26-footer to move your whole 3-bedroom apartment across the country? Home Depot’s got your back.
- Price transparency
- Guaranteed reservations
- No EZ-load ramps
What you get with Home Depot
Home Depot has its own pay-by-the-hour vehicles for local moves. But the company has also teamed up with Penske to rent large box trucks for long-distance moves at virtually all of its locations.
But Home Depot’s variety isn’t limited to the truck department. The convenient thing about renting from Home Depot is that you’re already at a hardware store. You can get packing tape, bubble wrap, dollies, and even for-hire help right there on the spot.
|Local round-trip rentals||Yes|
|Long-distance one-way rentals||Yes (for Penske trucks)|
|Multiple truck sizes||Yes|
|Moving/packing supplies available||Yes|
|Low ramps (for easy loading)||No|
|Online reservations||Yes (for Penske trucks)|
|Toll passes /b>||No|
|Free Quotes||Get a Quote|
Home Depot mover experience
All Home Depot-branded van and truck rentals are first come, first served. So you might want to head there first thing in the morning (though depending on your area, you can check availability online). But if you’re renting a Penske-branded truck, then you can make an online reservation (woohoo!).
Once you pick up the vehicle, though, you’re on your own. First, you have to figure out how to parallel park that boxy thing in front of your apartment. Then, you gotta load it up. And finally, you get to drive it to your new place. But you’re strong, smart, and capable—we believe in you!
To learn more about Home Depot’s pricing and insurance policies, head on over to our full Home Depot truck rental review.
Apartment movers for everyone from the do-it-yourselfers to the do-it-for-me crowd.
These are three unique companies, but they all have this in common: they’re good at doing smaller moves that involve complicated logistics. They won’t be halted by a narrow stairwell. They’ll rent you a truck for just a few hours.
And since we know apartment renters are always trying to save a buck, these companies are among the most affordable movers out there.
- College Hunks Hauling Junk and Moving: Best overall. Don’t let the name fool you—College Hunks Hauling Junk and Moving is a company full of sweet young movers who put the “om” in moving.
- PODS: Best moving container. PODS makes the moving process pretty stress-free. You don’t have to rush to load and unload, and you don’t have to drive at all.
- Home Depot: Best truck rental. Flatbed trucks, moving vans, box trucks—Home Depot has it all. Plus, you can buy some paint to do last-minute touch-ups as you’re moving out.
If you’re not sure which one of these companies is the right fit for your apartment move, there’s really only more thing to do—get a quote from each! Price tags tend to help in the decision-making process. And let us know in the comments what you find out!