A Comprehensive Guide to the Best Moving Companies in Los Angeles

Our top pick, Atlas Van Lines, services the entire L.A. metropolitan area.

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woman unpacking her favorite books in her new apartment after moving
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Whether you’re moving to Los Angeles for the first time, leaving the city, or just moving to a different neighborhood in the area, an L.A. move can be complicated. Navigating challenging terrain, infamous traffic, and a high-density urban area can make it particularly tricky—and potentially costly—to make your move happen the way you want. That’s why we’ve put together a guide to the best moving companies in L.A., helping you plan your move with comparison shopping and plenty of moving tips.

The best moving companies to handle your L.A. move are the ones that are experienced with the unique demands of the area, balancing a wide range of services while also keeping your budget in mind. Many of them work with a network of local moving professionals so that your move is handled by a team with plenty of experience handling the roads, costs, and neighborhoods of the greater L.A. area. You can choose a company that gives you more control, with services like self-packing and loading, or you can step back and work with a company that handles it all from start to finish.

RELATED: 6 Tasks to Add to Your To-Do List Before Moving to a New State

Best Moving Companies in Los Angeles in 2023

Best Overall: Atlas Van Lines

Atlas Van Lines logo

Key Specs

  • Nationwide Availability: 50 states
  • Moving Options: Local, long distance, and international
  • Initial Deposit Required? No  

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Offers full, partial, and self-service packing

  • 24/7 customer support

  • No deposit required upfront

  • User-friendly online tracking

Cons
  • May incur additional fees

  • No truck or van rentals 

Why It Made the List

Whether you’re just moving to a new neighborhood or you’re moving around the world, Atlas Van Lines has a moving solution that’s right for you. It provides moving services in all 50 states and more than 15 countries, and its network of local movers includes nine movers in the L.A. metropolitan area alone, providing excellent localized service anywhere in the region. With a wide range of solutions and service areas, it’s our top pick for getting exactly what you need, when and where you need it, and on your budget.

The company’s process focuses on customer convenience from the start. You can start the quote process online, as well as through a free mobile app that allows for a virtual inventory—no home visit required. After the booking is complete, Atlas offers multiple options for the packing and loading part of the move. You can choose to have the professional moving team pack and load everything, or you can do some of it yourself and have the company just manage some of the more challenging items. If you’re more of the DIY type (or looking to shave a few dollars off your final costs), you can also do the packing yourself—Atlas offers packing supplies to ensure you have everything you need. You’ll also get access to storage options if you’re not ready to move in as soon as your items arrive. 

Atlas has a strong customer service component as well, with 24/7 customer service available. A user-friendly customer portal allows you to manage every aspect of your move in one place. Track your shipments, get in touch with your moving team, make payments, keep copies of all your documents, and even file claims if necessary. 

Best for Self-Service: PODS

Pods Moving logo

Pods Moving

Key Specs

  • Nationwide Availability: 46 states
  • Moving Options: Local, long distance, and international
  • Initial Deposit Required? No 

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Multiple container sizes available 

  • No surprise fees

  • Moving and storage all in one

Cons
  • No packing services offered

  • Tracking not available

  • No option for self-transportation

Why It Made the List

PODS is one of the most recognizable names in self-service moving, and there’s a good reason for that. Its model is simple and its containers recognizable, offering customers a cost-saving option that also puts more power in their hands. Sticking to a budget is a must in a high-cost-of-living area like L.A., so renting and packing a moving container yourself can help make your move cheaper and easier.

Moving with PODS is a pretty simple and surprisingly flexible process. Using your own best judgment, the assistance of a PODS representative, or its online calculator tool, you can determine which of their three container sizes (eight, 12, or 16 feet) best suits your moving needs. Your overall cost will include rental fees for the container, which start at $149 per month, plus the costs of delivering the container to your current home, transporting it to your new destination, and picking it up when you’re done. It’s easy to get an initial quote online, although your actual costs may vary somewhat.

PODS is ideal for customers looking to save money and not worry about how movers are packing and loading their items. Once your container arrives, you can pack and load at your own pace, then have the PODS team transport and deliver it to your new home. If you won’t be ready to unload right away, the company also can store your container for an additional fee.

Best for Local Moves: Bellhop

BELLHOP

BELLHOP

Key Specs

  • Nationwide Availability: 27 states, including California
  • Moving Options: Local and long distance
  • Initial Deposit Required? Yes 

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Transparent pricing and easy online quotes

  • Flexible and last-minute scheduling available

  • Hourly labor options

  • No home walk-through needed

Cons
  • Can’t move heavy or specialty items

  • No tracking options

  • No storage or self-service packing

Why It Made the List

Bellhop is designed with convenience and urban moves in mind, making it perfect for moving in and around L.A. The L.A. area is one of the primary markets it serves, along with other major metropolitan areas across 27 states. Its services are incredibly flexible to fit whatever style of moving you prefer. Want a full-service packing, loading, and moving experience? Bellhop can do that. Want to just hire some hourly workers to help you load a rental truck? It can handle that too!

Where many other moving companies require a lengthy process—or at least a phone call—to get a quote, Bellhop streamlines the process online so you can plan your move around your busy schedule. Its online quote tool walks you through answering a series of questions about your moving plans, then gives you a quote right away—no surprise fees down the line. For long-distance moves, the quotes are fixed-price, meaning that the quote you get is the price you pay, period.

If you’re just moving between neighborhoods in the L.A. area, Bellhop can save you money by only charging for the time you need. The moving team assigned to your job will scan a unique QR code upon arrival and departure, ensuring you pay for exactly the time spent on your move. Bellhop is also great for last-minute moves or schedule changes. It offers resources to help you find short-notice moving solutions, as well as a flexible scheduling policy that allows you to change your schedule for free up to 72 hours in advance. The one downside to this streamlined approach is that Bellhop does not offer some of the long-term services that other companies do, such as storage solutions, tracking options, or specialty, vehicle, and heavy item moving.

Best for Out-of-State Moves: Mayflower

Mayflower logo

Mayflower

Key Specs

  • Nationwide Availability: 46 states including California
  • Moving Options: Local, long distance, and international
  • Initial Deposit Required? No  

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Full and partial packing services

  • Handles moves in 46 states and 150+ countries

  • Customizable services

Cons
  • No self-service packing

  • Few customer service options

Why It Made the List

If your L.A. move involves moving from far away or to a far-off destination, the long-distance moving experts at Mayflower have what it takes to make your move seamless. The company’s interstate moving services include a wide variety of options so you can customize your moving plan to suit your exact needs. 

From the very beginning of the process, Mayflower is all about figuring out how to customize your move to get you exactly the services you need and to fit within your budget. The quote process starts online, where you can enter basic information about your move, plus your contact information. A Mayflower representative will then get in touch with you, discuss which services you’ll need, and schedule a survey of your belongings. From there, an estimator will review your items, work with you to create a moving plan, and get you a final quote. You can choose different levels of packing and loading services (although Mayflower does not offer self-service packing options), decide if you need your belongings stored temporarily, and more. Once the move is in progress, you can track your belongings and get coverage through Mayflower’s protection plan. 

Moving internationally? Mayflower has that covered too, with some of the most comprehensive international moving services you’ll find. Along with its “regular” services, such as packing, loading, and storage, it also has experts who can help you with the complexities of moving across international borders. You’ll get a moving coordinator assigned to your job, who will help you manage everything from documentation to customs clearance to vehicle moving and more. 

Best Customer Service: United Van Lines

United Van Lines logo

United Van Lines

Key Specs

  • Nationwide Availability: 50 states
  • Moving Options: Local, long distance, and international
  • Initial Deposit Required? No 

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Multiple customer service channels

  • Excellent vehicle relocation services

  • Streamlined process with an app

Cons
  • No sustainable packaging choices

  • 24/7 customer service unavailable

Why It Made the List

With several moving agents serving all over the greater L.A. area and hundreds more moving companies nationwide, it’s easy to find a convenient moving solution with United Van Lines. Its broad network of movers, plus multiple avenues for getting prompt customer service, make it a great option for handling the ins and outs of any move.

Booking a move with United starts with inputting some info in its online quote tool. You’ll then be contacted by a member of the United team, who will book a survey of your home, figure out the best moving plan for you, and book your dates. United offers everything from full-service packing and moving to cost-saving self-packing options, specialty moving services, storage, tracking, and more. These services are backed with reliable customer service, including online live chat, social media contact, moving resources and tips, and automated chat for quick FAQs, although they’re not available 24/7.

United also offers customized and niche services that can fill your move’s unique needs. If you’re just packing up an apartment or a small home and don’t have much to move, you might like their Snapmoves solutions. Snapmoves offers streamlined, affordable quotes,  full-service moving options complete with a move coordinator, packing and unpacking, and more. United is also an excellent choice if your move requires vehicle relocation, offering door-to-door or terminal-to-terminal transportation of your everyday car or even antique or luxury vehicles.

Most Cost-Effective: Colonial Van Lines

Colonial Van Lines logo

Colonial Van Lines

Key Specs

  • Nationwide Availability: 48 states
  • Moving Options: Long distance
  • Initial Deposit Required? Yes 

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Detailed, personalized quotes

  • Knowledgeable customer service

  • Easy-to-use app

Cons
  • No local or international moving services

  • Limited customer service access

Why It Made the List

No matter which L.A. neighborhood is your destination (or your starting point), Colonial Van Lines can offer efficient, affordable moving services for long-distance moves with reasonable rates and customizable services.

After getting in touch with Colonial and inputting some basic information about your planned move, you’ll work with a team of moving experts to figure out the best solutions for your move and your budget. To make the process smoother, the company has an app to upload your inventory, get a personalized quote, and later communicate with customer service. Depending on your needs and budget, you can save money by packing yourself, or you can have Colonial’s full-service movers pack and load everything—even your specialty, antique, or fragile items. If you’re taking the DIY packing approach, talk to your Colonial representative about the  wide range of moving supplies at a budget-friendly cost. 

The moving process is fairly seamless, with everything from packing to storage offered in your customized moving package. One downside, however, is that customer service is mostly limited to access through the app or email and is not monitored 24/7. Aside from that, Colonial offers plenty of solutions and focuses on customizing each move to suit your budget, ensuring that your dollars stretch further and that your move happens how and when you want it.

Final Verdict

While plenty of moving companies offer robust services to the L.A. area, Atlas Van Lines takes the prize for its wide range of services and reliability. With a strong network of experienced L.A. providers, affordable rates, and plenty of customizable options, Atlas can handle any unique situations that may arise and can help your L.A. move go as smoothly as possible.

Compare the Best Moving Companies in Los Angeles

Company Nationwide Availability  Moving Options  Initial Deposit Required?  Vehicle Relocation?  Type of Quote 
Atlas Van Lines 50 states Local, long distance, and international No Yes Binding and Non-binding 
PODS  46 states  Local, long distance, and international  No  Yes  Non-binding 
Bellhop  27 states  Local and long distance  Yes No Binding and Non-binding 
Mayflower  46 states  Local, long distance, and international  No  Yes  Binding 
United Van Lines  50 states  Local, long distance, and international  No  Yes  Binding 
Colonial Van Lines  48 states  Long distance  Yes  Yes  Binding 

Guide to Choosing the Best Moving Company in Los Angeles

When you’re looking for the best residential moving companies in L.A., you’ve got a lot to consider! Keep a few key factors in mind, including how much you want to spend, when you want to move, which specific services you need movers to perform, and more.

Price

Cost is one of the key factors in any move, so look for a moving company that is fairly transparent in its pricing. What services, exactly, does your initial quote include, and how much will it cost if you choose to have additional services added on? If you’re on a budget, consider what options a company offers to save a little money, like self-packing or partial packing, and don’t be afraid to ask if there are any discounts or promotions available. Remember, cheaper isn’t necessarily better—you’re looking for the right balance between getting the reliable, quality service you need and avoiding excessive costs.

Services Offered

Different moves require different services and different levels of service. Most moving companies offer the same basics: packing, loading, transportation, and storage, although some may have self-packing and loading options or might not offer storage. You’ll also want to consider what additional services your specific move requires. Do you need a company that has experience with fragile or specialty items, assistance with move-in or installation, or 24/7 tracking options? If you think you’ll need any of those “extras,” check with prospective companies to see if they offer those services, and if so, how much they will cost.

Availability

When considering availability, keep two main factors in mind: location and timing. Does the moving company you’re considering offer service at both your starting point and end destination, and are they available during the period you need them? Booking further in advance can help to ensure you get the dates you need, although some companies may offer last-minute services, especially for short, local moves. Most moving companies have plenty of service options in large metropolitan areas like L.A., but it’s a good idea to confirm that they serve the specific neighborhood of your move when you discuss your initial quote.

Certifications & Accreditation

Trusting a moving company with your belongings requires a level of confidence and security. Check to see what, if any, certifications, accreditations, and licenses a company has before deciding to work with them. The U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has a public database of licensed interstate movers, and you can check with your local consumer affairs bureau if you’re staying in-state (for California, that’s the Department of Consumer Affairs). You can also see if a company is backed by business and trade organizations; major accreditations come from organizations like the Better Business Bureau or the American Moving and Storage Association and can indicate that the moving company has met certain criteria for trust, reliability, and quality.

Liability Insurance

Of course, we all hope that our moves will go smoothly and that our belongings will arrive safe and sound, but accidents happen, so it’s best to be prepared. When choosing a moving company, it’s important to confirm what liability insurance or valuation coverage they offer and what, exactly, it covers. Your personal homeowner’s or renter’s insurance may cover your belongings while they’re in your home or even under some circumstances like theft or accident, but you’ll probably need additional coverage to insure against transportation damage and similar moving-related incidents.

What Impacts the Cost of a Los Angeles Move?

Your final moving costs will be affected by a number of factors, including how large your move is, how far you’re moving, which services you choose, and what time of year you choose to move. Expect higher costs if you choose full-service moving options like packing and loading, installation and assembly, and/or storage; conversely, you can save money by choosing to handle some of those tasks yourself. You may also wind up with a higher bill if you’re moving a long distance, at a “peak” time of year such as the summer, or through an area with particularly challenging terrain. 

How to Prepare for a Los Angeles Move

Moving can be stressful, but preparing well can help to smooth the way. When you’re getting ready for your L.A. move, try a few simple tips to make the process easier.

  • Streamline and downsize as much as possible beforehand so you only have to pay for packing and transporting the items you truly want to bring to your new home.
  • Keep a folder or binder with all your moving paperwork, checklists, and inventory.
  • Acquire packing supplies through your moving company or by asking friends, neighbors, or local businesses.
  • Schedule a little “downtime” to give yourself a break from the moving chaos.
  • Get yourself in a flexible mindset. Something probably won’t go perfectly to plan, but it doesn’t have to be a disaster or a source of massive stress.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How far in advance should you schedule movers in Los Angeles?

    As a general rule, earlier is always better when scheduling movers, and that goes double in a high-density, high-traffic, in-demand metropolitan area like L.A. Booking at least three or four months in advance is best, especially if you’re moving during a busy season (such as the summer months) or in a busy area. Some movers offer bookings within shorter time frames, but those are usually most successful when the moves are relatively small and/or local.

  • What is the average cost of movers in Los Angeles?

    Moving costs in L.A. vary widely based on the types of services you choose, how many movers work on your job, the distance and size of the move, and other factors. Moving the contents of an apartment or small (one- or two-bedroom) house between neighborhoods will most likely keep your moving costs under $1,000. Moving the contents of a larger house, adding costs for specialty items or services, or moving across a longer distance, however, will probably see your costs increase to an average of $2,000 or more.

  • How much should I tip movers in Los Angeles?

    Tipping should always be built into your overall moving budget, and it’s usually best to tip in cash. Decide on your tipping amount based on how challenging the move is, how much labor it involves, and how short or long it is. If you tip per mover, a good starting point is between $7 and $12 per hour per mover; if you choose to tip in one lump sum for the team to divide among themselves, tip between 10% and 15% of your total moving costs. Take note if you have different teams moving at your current location and your final destination, and make sure that they both get tipped if they’re not the same team.

  • How do I know if a moving company is reputable?

    In today’s world, there are, fortunately, plenty of avenues for you to check the reputations of a prospective moving company before you book. The easiest way is to speak firsthand with people you know personally and get their recommendations on moving companies that they had a good experience with. If that’s not an option, or if it doesn’t turn up what you’re looking for, do a thorough online search of the companies you’re considering, looking at reviews on third-party sites (not just on the company’s own site), social media, and any recent news stories. Look for accreditations or recognition from reputable business organizations, too, like the Better Business Bureau or the American Moving and Storage Association.

  • Is it better to use a moving broker or a moving company?

    If you’re looking to save money and keep more control over your move, it’s usually better to deal directly with the moving company rather than hire a broker. Moving brokers are not authorized to actually carry out your move: They are “middlemen” who match customers with moving companies and handle the administrative tasks—and charge a fee for the convenience. In some situations, they might be able to get you a better quote than you’d get on your own, but there’s no guarantee that the final price will stay the same, nor do the brokers take on liability for the moving decisions they’re making for you. In most cases, the potential for savings with a broker won’t outweigh the risks, and you’re better off dealing with moving companies directly and just asking if they have any current discounts or promotions available.

  • How can I save money when hiring movers?

    Saving money on your move goes beyond comparison shopping—although that certainly helps you get a sense of current rates and where you can save on particular services. You may be able to knock your rates down if you choose more DIY options like self-packing and loading, forego add-ons like appliance installation or long-term storage, and ask if there are any discounts or special offers available. Along with slimming down the services your movers perform, look for other cost-saving measures like streamlining your belongings to avoid paying for items you don’t really want, asking local businesses for leftover boxes to save on packing materials, and moving during “off-peak” times (weekends and summer months tend to be the most expensive times to move).

  • What areas in Los Angeles are up and coming?

    Looking to move to a L.A. neighborhood with a good balance of affordability and interest? Choose one of the city’s best up-and-coming areas. Glassell Park is one of the buzziest neighborhoods right now, with relatively affordable housing prices plus easy access to the freeway, great schools, and a variety of entertainment. You also might like similarly blossoming areas such as Playa del Rey, Monrovia, Echo Park, and Faircrest Heights. All of these fast-growing areas offer that all-important affordability alongside convenience, vibrant diversity and culture, plenty of things to do, and strong schools.

Methodology 

This list of the best moving companies in Los Angeles was compiled using more than 500 data points collected over a two-month span. Our research team reviewed nearly 20 companies, looking at location, services provided, customer support channels, quote processes, online tools, and more.

Weights were assigned to each piece of criteria evaluated, then used to calculate an overall score. In order to receive a high rating, companies had to perform well in a handful of categories, including but not limited to:

  • Service area (15%)
  • Types of services offered (10%)
  • Company reputation (6%)
  • Online quote system (5%)
  • Additional costs and fees (5%)
  • Packing options (5%)

The information presented here was accurate at the time of publication and confirmed by at least two data collectors. Verification was completed through customer service calls and live chat or email exchanges.

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