Sarah Horvath

Written By

Sarah Horvath

Sarah Horvath

Written By


Sarah Horvath is a senior-level home service review professional with more than 10 years of experience in the homeownership industry. You can find her writing on sites like Robinhood, MoneyLion, Benzinga, Forbes Advisor, and more. When she's not busy writing, Sarah enjoys spending time in her home in Orlando with her fiance and her parrot.

Reviewed By

Lora Novak

Reviewed By

Lora Novak

Senior Editor

Lora Novak meticulously proofreads and edits all commercial content for Today’s Homeowner to guarantee that it contains the most up-to-date information. Lora brings over 12 years of writing, editing, and digital marketing expertise. She’s worked on thousands of articles related to heating, air conditioning, ventilation, roofing, plumbing, lawn/garden, pest control, insurance, and other general homeownership topics.

Updated On

May 11, 2023

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    Moving is a stressful process, no matter how you look at it. Most local movers recommend that their customers begin planning the moving process at least two months in advance, with more time if possible. Taking your time to plan your move can help ensure that when moving day arrives, your family will be stress-free.

    Unfortunately, in some circumstances, an emergency move is something that can’t be avoided. Whether you’re starting a new job a bit earlier than expected or if there has been an emergency in your space and you need to move now, working with a full-service mover can make a last-minute move possible. Unfortunately, not every professional moving company is able to provide relocation services on short notice. We’ve created a guide to help you find the right professional movers for your sudden move. Read on to learn more about:

    • Some of the best movers providing last-minute services
    • Information on pricing and what you might expect to pay for a last-minute move
    • Key factors and characteristics you should consider before you select a company to help with your short notice move.

    Not going far? Read about our top moving companies for small moves.

    The 7 Best Last-Minute Movers

    Our top recommended last-minute movers for 2023: 

    Compare The Best Last-Minute Movers

    CompanyWebsiteOur TakeOur RatingBBB RatingLocal Cost
    International Van LinesSiteBest Full-Service Mover9.8B$600 – $1,200
    American Van LinesSiteMost Transparent Pricing 9.7N/A$500 – $1,000
    Moving APTSiteMost Moving Partners9.6B
    JK Moving ServicesSiteMost Customizable Moving Experience9.5A+Call for a quote
    Allied Van LinesSiteMost Vehicle Shipping Options9.4A+$750 – $1,350
    U-PackSiteMost Widely-Available Container Service9.3A+N/A
    North American Van LinesSiteBest Pricing Options9.2A+$750 – $1,350

    International Van Lines

    Why We Recommend International Van Lines

    International Van Lines (IVL) is continually rated as the best moving company in the country. This is due to its comprehensive list of full-service moving options as well as its global reach. Not only does IVL work in every state — they can also help you move to over 150 countries globally. This means that no matter when you need to move, chances are high that IVL’s team can assist you in planning your last-minute move. 

    International Van Lines gives free quote estimates online, but in order to get a more accurate quote, you can use their software MoveOne. MoveOne is a software program designed to help you give an IVL representative a walkthrough of your home virtually, all through your cell phone. International Van Lines works to make moving as simple as possible for you, and this virtual estimate process can be ideal for last-minute movers who don’t have time to schedule an in-person visit. 

    Pros & Cons of International Van Lines


    • If you cancel your move within 48 hours before your move date, you get a full refund.
    • Storage solutions available
    • Newsweek has given IVL Best Customer Service Award several times
    • Moves freight by sea and air internationally


    • IVL contracts out to some third-party movers, depending on the area
    • 25% deposit of your move total required up front

    Services Offered

    IVL is a full-service moving company, which means that it offers more assistance and services than you would expect from a standard moving company. IVL currently offers the following optional services and moving processes. 

    • Packing and unpacking services
    • Loading and unloading services
    • Furniture disassembly and reassembly
    • Crating
    • Specialized packing services for fragile items
    • Storage solutions for both short-term and long-term periods
    • Packing supplies
    • Auto transportation services
    • Military moving services
    • Commercial moving services

    Scheduling services for packing and storage through IVL may cost a bit more than doing things on your own, but a full-service move can be worth the money for last-minute movers. 

    How Much Does IVL Cost?

    Pricing a move can be a very personalized process, and you won’t know how much you’ll pay for your moving services until you receive your estimate from the moving company you’re working with. To help you get a better feel for IVL’s pricing, we’ve collected previous customer data and compiled it in the chart below. 

     <250 miles500 miles1,000 miles2,000 miles
    Two-bedroom home$1,400 to $4,400$1,900 to $4,900$2,100 to $5,100$2,400 to $5,400
    Four-bedroom home$3,200 to $6,200$5,100 to $8,100$5,700 to $8,700$6,200 to $9,200

    State Availability: All 50 states

    Get a quote from IVL here.

    American Van Lines

    Why We Recommend American Van Lines

    American Van Lines (AVL) has been a household name within the moving industry for almost three decades. They specialize in long-distance moves, and with each move, they will make an accurate itemized inventory so that you can keep track of each of your belongings. The company also uses a flat-rate pricing system that helps you better understand where your money is going. This can be a major benefit for homeowners who are short on time when moving.

    AVL staff is trained and certified in piano moving, hot tub relocation, and antique packing and moving services. AVL’s team members can both prepare these items in the packing phase and transport them on your behalf. If you have any of these specialty items, it’s worth checking out American Van Lines for their expertise and fast service. 

    Pros & Cons of American Van Lines


    • Climate-controlled storage available if needed
    • Individually wraps each item they pack
    • Price-matching guarantee
    • Binding estimates and a flat-rate pricing system


    • No accurate online quote estimation tool, although they do have a list of popular city-to-city prices
    • No services to and from Hawaii or Alaska

    Services Offered

    AVL is another full-service moving company offering the following to its customers: 

    • Packing and unpacking services
    • Storage unit arrangement
    • Specialty packing services
    • Furniture disassembly and reassembly
    • Crating for large items (like pianos)
    • Moving supplies
    • Office moving services and corporate relocation
    • Military moves

    How Much Does AVL Cost?

    Use the chart of previous AVL customer data below to estimate what you might pay for your moving services with this provider. 

     <250 miles500 miles1,000 miles2,000 miles
    Two-bedroom home$1,700 to $4,700$2,300 to $5,300$2,600 to $5,600$4,200 to $7,200
    Four-bedroom home$4,800 to $7,800$5,600 to $8,600$7,400 to $10,400$10,800 to $13,800

    State Availability: 48 States

    Get a quote from American Van Lines here.

    Moving APT

    Why We Recommend Moving APT

    Moving APT is the only moving broker on our list of best last-minute movers of 2023. They will not move you themselves, but they can definitely create the right fit with moving companies that they partner with. Moving APT has over 2,500 partner companies all across the country that they have vetted and built a relationship with so that you don’t have to do the work of finding a mover that fits your needs and budget. Moving APT does that for you, and they can do it quickly. Simply contact a Moving APT representative, get your free quote, and allow Moving APT to handle the remainder of your moving process with the help of partnered professionals.

    Pros & Cons of Moving APT


    • Can save you time by finding you a quote as quickly as possible
    • Offers price-matching
    • Hot tub and piano moving available
    • Binding estimates available


    • Because all the movers are third-party companies, service quality may vary

    Services Offered

    Moving APT is a bit different from the other companies on this list because they are a moving broker — not a carrier. This means that Moving APT doesn’t need to limit the services it can schedule based on its own employee’s capabilities. Your move will be outsourced to a team that specializes in whatever service you need to get into your new home safely and quickly.

    The following are some of the most commonly requested moving services from Moving APT: 

    • Commercial and residential moving
    • Piano moving
    • Auto shipping
    • Packing services
    • Packing supplies (included for some moves)
    • Appliance connection services
    • Limited furniture disassembly and reassembly

    Specific service availability may vary by team. 

    How Much Does Moving APT Cost?

    Moving APT offers a price-matching policy that many homeowners take advantage of. If you find a better quote from a competing, reputable local moving company, Moving APT will match it for you so you can be sure you’ve got the best price, making it one of the best affordable movers available. A recent 1,000-mile move for a four-bedroom home was quoted at a price of $7,800 from Moving APT, which puts the company in line with its competitors. However, you should be sure to get your own custom quote to learn what you specifically can expect to pay for your move. 

    State Availability: All 50 States

    Get a quote from Moving APT here.

    JK Moving Services

    Why We Recommend JK Moving Services

    JK Moving Services is a beloved full-service moving company, known both for its wide range of services available and for its brilliant customer service representatives. When you get in touch with JK about your move, you can count on them to match your unique needs, which may include moving at the last minute. They then set you up with a personal moving coordinator to help you plan and execute every step of your move, saving you both time and stress. 

    JK Moving Services also has its own mobile app so you can always get in touch with its customer service team, which can be a lifesaver for homeowners planning a move on the go. JK even offers GPS tracking that helps you better estimate when your move will arrive as you head out. 

    Pros & Cons of JK Moving Services


    • Financing available so you can afford the last-minute move you need without breaking the bank
    • All staff is background-checked and drug-tested
    • 24/7 customer service


    • No local moving services outside of Maryland, Virginia, and D.C.
    • Pricier than competitors

    Services Offered

    JK Moving Services is known for going above and beyond regarding the services it offers its customers. While you can expect all of the standard moving services you’d find with any full-service mover (like packing and storage services) JK Moving also offers options for specialized workplaces and homeowners moving very fragile items. You can currently book the following services through JK’s team: 

    • Local moving in Virginia, Maryland, and Washington D.C.
    • Long-distance and international moving
    • Residential and commercial services
    • Packing (full-service or fragile-only)
    • Climate-controlled storage options
    • Furniture wrapping
    • GPS shipment tracking
    • Financing options
    • Freighting 
    • Crating
    • Furniture disassembly and reassembly services
    • Specialty packing for items likes antiques and pianos
    • Specialized services for commercial moves for law firms, hospitals and other specialized workplaces
    • Government moving services
    • Archive services
    • Auto relocation services

    How Much Does JK Moving Services Cost?

    JK Moving Services is best known for its personalized service, which extends into its pricing. Because your personal moving coordinator will help you create a packaged moving process that’s as unique as your move is, it can be difficult to estimate pricing for this company without getting a quote. Homeowners can usually expect to pay between $2,500 and $5,500 when moving a two-bedroom home a total distance of 500 miles, but prices will vary by customer.

    State Availability: All lower 48 states.

    Get a quote from JK Moving Services here.

    Allied Van Lines

    Why We Recommend Allied Van Lines

    Another well-known and reputable full-service mover, Allied Van Lines can help you with your last-minute move, be that cross-country, overseas, or long-distance. Allied does offer local moves, but their true specialty is long-distance relocations, especially if you have a vehicle to ship. If you’re moving in a rush but rely on the vehicle you’re moving, be sure to get a quote from Allied Van Lines, as their team covers your rental car expenses if they are late on your shipment.

    Allied Van Lines recently added a moving container service to their full-service repertoire. This means that you can choose to have a driver drop off a moving trailer at your home and you can pack up your belongings yourself. Plus, loading and unloading is included in the cost of the trailer, so you only have to pack and Allied will handle the rest. This is an excellent option for a quick move that also helps you save money on packing services. 

    Pros & Cons of Allied Van Lines


    • You can track your move with GPS
    • If you have any unwanted items, Allied will help you take them to the Salvation Army.
    • Full valuation insurance available’
    • Excellent selection of auto transport options


    • Instant quote option on the company’s website is not accurate; you need to get an in-person or over-the-phone cost estimate

    Services Offered

    Like International Van Lines, Allied Van Lines operates as a full-service moving company offering the following services and add-ons: 

    • Local and long-distance moving
    • Packing (full-service or partial)
    • Unpacking
    • Furniture assembly and disassembly
    • Auto shipping
    • Boat and specialty vehicle shipping
    • Storage
    • Debris removal
    • GPS shipment tracking
    • Packing supplies

    How Much Does Allied Van Lines Cost?

    View the table below to learn more about what previous customers paid for their services from Allied Van Lines. 

     <250 miles500 miles1,000 miles2,000 miles
    Two-bedroom home$1,800 to $4,500$2,400 to $5,400$2,700 to $5,700$4,400 to $7,400
    Four-bedroom home$3,300 to $6,000$5,700 to $8,700$7,500 to $10,500$10,900 to $13,000

    State Availability: All 50 states

    Get a quote from Allied Van Lines here.


    Why We Recommend U-Pack

    U-Pack is a moving container company, and as such, they offer plenty of advantages for your last-minute move. All you have to do is get onto their website and order whichever moving containers suit your needs. You have the option of ordering an entire moving trailer (you only pay for the space your stuff occupies) or one or more ReloCubes, which are smaller containers that fit in a parking space. You can view pricing immediately online in most cases, which saves you the hassle of spending time on the phone with a representative. 

    Once you’ve made your decision, U-Pack will drop off the container at your home, where you have three days to pack and load it up. U-Pack then returns after the loading period to deliver your shipment to your new home. If you’re looking to move in a hurry as well as save money, this could be the perfect option for you.

    Pros & Cons of U-Pack


    • Instant and accurate online quotes
    • Positive online reviews
    • A+ BBB rating
    • Moving containers available to accommodate moves scheduled as early as a few days in advance


    • No local moving services
    • Only provides three days to pack and load and then three days at your destination to unload

    Services Offered

    Currently, U-Pack only offers long-distance moving services alongside storage options. You’ll need to do your own packing, loading, wrapping, and unloading when you move with U-Pack. The company also limits its services to homeowners moving at least 150 miles from their current home. 

    How Much Does U-Pack Cost?

    U-Pack offers instant online quotes to most of its customers, so you may want to head to their company website to get your quote now. You can also view general pricing information from past U-Pack customers using the chart below. 

     <250 miles500 miles1,000 miles2,000 miles
    Two-bedroom home$600 to $1,600$1,200 to $2,200$1,600 to $2,600$2,100 to $3,100
    Four-bedroom home$800 to $1,800$1,800 to $2,800$2,800 to $3,800$4,100 – $5,100

    State Availability: All 50 States

    Get a quote from U-Pack here.

    North American Van Lines

    Why We Recommend North American Van Lines

    North American Van Lines has almost ninety years of experience in the moving industry. Their top priorities are safety and fitting your moving needs. They are a full-service mover, so if you need everything from packing to transport unpacking, they can do it for you. They also offer appliance installation and furniture disassembly and reassembly. 

    North American Van Lines has always been a forerunner in the moving industry. They have developed their own simulator for driver training, and since they were the first mover to traverse the Alaska Highway, it makes sense that they would come up with such an invaluable safety training tool. North American Van Lines is also known for its unique pricing options, like their “not to exceed” pricing that puts a cap on what you’ll pay for moving services. 

    Pros & Cons of North American Van Lines


    • Satellite GPS tracking available on all moves
    • Offer special discounts for commercial moving and corporate relocations
    • A+ BBB rating
    • Storage options available


    • Customers have complained about damaged items in their shipments
    • Instant quote option is misleading — you still need to talk to a person to finalize your quote

    Services Offered

    North American Van Lines’ customers can currently book the following moving services through this full-service provider: 

    • Full-service packing
    • Fragile-only packing
    • Boxes and moving supplies
    • Appliance disconnection and reconnection
    • Furniture disassembly and reassembly
    • Custom crates
    • Loading and unloading
    • Crane vans for large items
    • Storage
    • Auto transport
    • Basic liability coverage
    • Full-valuation coverage

    How Much Does North American Van Lines Cost?

    View pricing data from previous North American Van Lines customers using the table below. 

     <250 miles500 miles1,000 miles2,000 miles
    Two-bedroom home$1,800 to $4,500$2,400 to $5,400$2,700 to $5,700$4,400 to $7,400
    Four-bedroom home$3,300 to $6,000$5,700 to $8,700$7,500 to $10,500$10,900 to $13,000

    State Availability: All 50 States

    Get a quote from North American Van Lines here.

    What To Look For In Last-Minute Movers?

    If you find yourself forced to make a last-minute move, one area where you don’t want to cut corners is when choosing your moving company. While no one wants to think about the possibility of getting caught up in a moving scam, these unscrupulous companies are more common than most Americans think. Knowing what to look for when you select your long-distance movers is the key to getting into your new home quickly, no matter your move size.

    When you search for emergency movers, you’re more likely to encounter moving scammers. Be sure that you look for these attributes when booking your last-minute moving company.

    Thorough contracts: Moving scammers may sometimes capitalize on the stress of last-minute moving to pressure you into signing a contract without fully reading it. Never sign any form of contract with your moving company until you’ve had time to read every page of it and ask questions if something isn’t clear. A legitimate moving company will never pressure you to sign a blank contract, an incomplete contract, or a contract full of hidden fees.

    A positive online presence: Online customer reviews are useful for more than just moving tips — you can also learn a lot about potential movers by checking out their online presence. Choose a moving company with at least one year of experience offering moving services in your area and verify the company’s services by checking independent review sites like Yelp and Trustpilot.

    Rates that are comparable to other movers in the area: While no one wants to pay more than they have to for their moving services, “too good to be true” pricing may be an indicator of a moving scam. These companies may offer you initially low rates only to pile on hidden fees after you sign a contract. This is part of the reason why it’s important to get multiple moving quotes before you book your movers, even when you’re in a hurry. Speaking with at least three competing moving companies helps you find the best rates among legitimate local movers. 

    What Costs Are Involved With Last-Minute Movers?

    Booking a move at the last minute can cost you. In addition to the standard moving costs you’d expect on any move, you might incur the following charges when you book a last-minute move.

    Rush fees: Movers recommend scheduling your moving services no later than one month before you need to be in your new location. This window of time provides the moving company with the opportunity to schedule drivers, packers, and other team members for your move, as well as plan the most efficient route to your new home. If your moving company must make arrangements for a last-minute move, your movers may bill you a surcharge to cover the additional costs of planning your move without a notice window.

    Parking fees: If you live in a densely populated city, you might need to get a permit to park a moving truck on certain streets. However, if you’re making a last-minute move, you may not have time to file this paperwork. In these instances, your moving company will park further away from your property where it is legal to do so, and bill you an additional fee for the distance moved.    

    Assistance expenses: If you book a move with a full-service moving company, you might want to schedule a few optional services to ensure that you’re on the road on schedule. Each additional service you add to your move will increase the final price you pay.

    Final Thoughts

    Every moving company uses its own unique in-house underwriting process to determine what you should pay for your move. This means that it’s possible to get the exact same moving services from ten competing moving companies at ten different price points. It’s important to get as many quotes as possible before you move, even if you’re getting ready for a last-minute move. We recommend getting a quote from each of our recommended providers before booking your moving date.

    FAQs about Last Minute Movers

    How do I handle a last-minute move?

    The best thing you can do to begin a last-minute move is to make a list of everything you need to do. If you plan on hiring a moving company, that is the first thing on the list. Packing might be the second most important thing while moving your subscriptions to your new address is third. After your list is finished, you can begin completing tasks in order of importance.

    What counts as a last-minute move?

    Moving companies prefer at least one month’s notice before your desired move date so they can plan and help you pack everything. Anything less than a month, especially less than two weeks, is a last-minute move.

    What’s the cheapest way for me to move?

    The cheapest way is almost always going to be a DIY move where you rent a moving truck or a trailer to tow behind your vehicle. If you’re uncomfortable operating a large moving vehicle, a moving container company can help strike the perfect balance between convenience and affordability.

    What is considered a long-distance move?

    Any move 400 miles or over is considered to be long-distance by most moving companies. However, some may have different criteria. A local move is generally considered to be between 50 and 100 miles, so some companies may consider over 100 miles to count as a long-distance move.

    How long does it take to move a household?

    The time frame of your move is dependent on how much stuff needs to be packed up, the distance of your destination from your origin, and how soon the moving company can get everything ready to go. This may be a bit more challenging for them if you schedule a last-minute move, so don’t be surprised if there’s a rush fee added to your moving agreement. As a general rule, you should be prepared to spend at least two months moving a household from start to finish.

    Today's Homeowner Rating Methodology

    At Today's Homeowner, our primary goals are to be a reliable source of information and to be totally transparent to our readers. With that in mind, we’ve developed the following formula to render objective ratings – on a scale of 10 points – for the moving companies we review.

    • Transparency (3.0): Communication and being fully straightforward regarding company policies and licensing are incredibly important. A given mover’s willingness to display these, to supply quick quotes, and to provide clearly-worded moving contracts all factor into the three points within this single rating criteria.
    • Cost (2.5): A mover’s cost relative to industry averages, as well as accessibility to cost data play a role in the customer experience as much as anything else. We know that being sure of what you’re paying – and being confident that you’re not overpaying – will ultimately make for a positive move. We’ve weighted cost factors accordingly in our ratings.
    • Customer Service (2.0): Establishing an easy line of contact with your movers during the booking process or during the move itself is a huge asset for any moving client. The stress of moving, in general, can be greatly eased by knowing you can talk to a licensed professional whenever you need to, which is why we’ve listed this as a key rating category. This is where customer reviews come into play; since the majority of complaints stem from poor customer service, feedback from BBB, Yelp, Google, and other review platforms factor into this criteria.
    • Services Offered (1.5): This rates lower on our priority list than many would think, simply due to the fact that many movers provide a similar line of services. However, breadth of service offerings does still vary to a degree.
    • Customization Options (1.0): Having the autonomy to fully customize your move should rate highly on any moving checklist. Here, we’ve taken moving package customization ability, as well as pricing for more involved add-ons. Steep pricing for such services can provide something of a soft barrier for clients looking to add to their move, and we’ve taken this into consideration.

    Editorial Contributors
    Sarah Horvath

    Sarah Horvath


    Sarah Horvath is a senior-level home service review professional with more than 10 years of experience in the homeownership industry. You can find her writing on sites like Robinhood, MoneyLion, Benzinga, Forbes Advisor, and more. When she's not busy writing, Sarah enjoys spending time in her home in Orlando with her fiance and her parrot.

    Learn More

    Lora Novak

    Senior Editor

    Lora Novak meticulously proofreads and edits all commercial content for Today’s Homeowner to guarantee that it contains the most up-to-date information. Lora brings over 12 years of writing, editing, and digital marketing expertise. She’s worked on thousands of articles related to heating, air conditioning, ventilation, roofing, plumbing, lawn/garden, pest control, insurance, and other general homeownership topics.

    Learn More

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