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Best California Moving Companies 2022

Planning a move of any size or scope can be daunting. Moving, in general, is one of the most stressful life events you’ll ever go through. If you’re dramatically changing your surroundings by moving to a new state, you’ll likely have a number of other things on your mind. We’ve done all of the necessary research to help make the process of moving easier. Here, you’ll learn:

  • Who our top local, long-distance and interstate moving companies are in California
  • What to expect from professional movers
  • What to expect when relocating to California

Best Full-Service Mover

4.8
  • Local, Long-Distance, & Int'l Moving Services
  • Licensed Moving Carrier & Broker Nationwide
  • Live Chat & 24/7 Customer Service

Best Moving Add-ons

4.6
  • Local, Long-Distance & International Moves
  • Direct Carrier to All 48 Continental US States
  • Storage Options Available

Best for Military Moves

4.5
  • FMCSA-Licensed Broker Nationwide
  • Long-Distance Moving Only
  • Packing & One Month Storage Included

Best Insurance Options

4.5
  • Local, Interstate, Local, & International Moving
  • 24/7 Customer Support & Great Mobile App
  • Low-Interest Financing Available

Most Competitive Pricing

4.7
  • Long-Distance Moving Container Service
  • Storage at Secure U-Pack Facilities Nationwide
  • Two Container Sizes (8' and 27')

Where Are You Moving?

Moving distance is one of the two key factors – along with shipping weight –  which will influence your move cost while determining which companies you’ll evaluate prior to moving. We’ve collected data on the best local, long-distance, and interstate movers for you to review.

Long-Distance

Long-distance movers will often have slightly more comprehensive service ranges than their local counterparts. They have the experience and knowledge to handle any moving-related task and to help you on your longer move.

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Interstate

Interstate moves and movers are federally regulated. Movers offering this service must be licensed accordingly. All of our movers have the required licensing and credentials to operate across state lines.

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Local

If your move is on the shorter side, then a dedicated local moving company may be your best option. We’ve put together a list of our top local movers in California here.

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Best CA Long-Distance Moving Companies

Our top long-distance movers are all extremely qualified and have great records of quality service. When you’re moving over a greater distance, you’ll want movers who are up to the task. All of the following companies definitely are.

International Van Lines

International Van Lines is one of the most trusted movers in the industry today. With an extensive network of partner companies in the US, as well as an international reach, they can relocate you to any location you require. Their strong point is their superior customer service, which former clients review favorably.

Best Full-Service Mover

4.8
  • Local, Long-Distance, & Int'l Moving Services
  • Licensed Moving Carrier & Broker Nationwide
  • Live Chat & 24/7 Customer Service

American Van Lines

American Van Lines is one of the better pure carriers in the business today. With 25 years of experience, and an extensive line of add-on services, this mover has the expertise to handle any moving need. Along with this, flat rate pricing ensures that you’ll never have to pay more than the price you’re quoted during an estimate.

Best Moving Add-ons

4.6
  • Local, Long-Distance & International Moves
  • Direct Carrier to All 48 Continental US States
  • Storage Options Available

Safeway Moving Systems

Safeway Moving Systems is one of the best pure brokers in the US. This Chicago-based company utilizes a large network of partner companies to carry out all moves. Pledges of transparency and accountability to their clients often lead to repeat business, as do their flat rates.

Best for Military Moves

4.5
  • FMCSA-Licensed Broker Nationwide
  • Long-Distance Moving Only
  • Packing & One Month Storage Included

More CA Long-Distance Moving Companies

Best California Interstate Moving Companies

Here, we’ve listed some of our top interstate moving companies. These operators are all federally licensed and are able to handle moves across state lines with high efficiency.

Allied Van Lines

Allied Van Lines is one of the most easily-recognizable movers in the country today. Their orange trucks can be seen carrying out moves to all points in the US. After 88 years in the business, they are one of the most experienced movers you’ll be able to find. They offer a wide range of services to cater to unique moving needs and have an excellent customer service record.

Best for Extended Storage

4.6
  • Local, National, & International Moving
  • Extensive Add-On Service Options
  • Short-Term & Long-Term Storage

North American Van Lines

NAVL has been in business since 1933. In that time, they’ve grown to have more than 500 locations across the country. This mover promises the usual range of add-on services, along with 24-hour customer service. This, along with pricing structure options, ensure that clients never feel disconnected during the moving process.

Best Customer Care

4.6
  • Personalized Approach To Moving
  • Licensed Carrier & Broker in All 50 US States
  • 24/7 Customer Care & Support

JK Moving Services

JK Moving Services has a 40-year track record of excellent service. They operate primarily as a broker but are able to provide the most-customizable range of services to their clients via their partner companies. Should you require a remote or virtual estimate, their AI-assisted quote tool ensures pricing accuracy, regardless of your location.

Best Insurance Options

4.5
  • Local, Interstate, Local, & International Moving
  • 24/7 Customer Support & Great Mobile App
  • Low-Interest Financing Available

More CA Interstate Moving Companies

Best Local Moving Companies in California

Here, we’ve outlined our top local moving companies in each locale within California. All companies listed are extremely well-qualified and will handle your move with the utmost care.

Moving to CA

Moving to any new state comes with some degree of uncertainty. Keeping that in mind, we’ve put together enough information on life and moving in California to get you started. We’ve included some basic information regarding moving regulations, as well as the state’s culture to give you an idea of what to expect.

Moving Regulations in California

During any estimates you receive, you should request proof of the registrations and insurance policies we’ve listed here. Moving companies expect this, and should provide documentation when asked to do so.

  • CPUC Number: The California Public Utilities Commission regulates all moves within the state of California. Any mover conducting business primarily in this state must have a number issued by this organization, to be displayed on their trucks and written estimates.
  • Workers’ Compensation: This policy is required for any mover to operate. It protects you in the event of a work-related injury during a move. Without such coverage, you could be held liable for damages.
  • Released Liability Coverage: At $0.60 per pound, per item, this provides for reimbursement in case of loss or damage to your goods. You can elect to purchase additional valuation coverage from your mover if needed.
  • FMCSA Registration: Interstate moving companies are regulated by the FMCSA. Under this organization, they must also carry active USDOT and MC numbers. Clients should use these to research a mover’s complaint history and registration status through this link.

California Moving Costs

We were able to gather data from our top-five moving providers, among others to bring you these average price points for moves of many sizes. These shouldn’t be taken as a substitute for getting your own quote, however. Scheduling multiple estimates is the best possible way to secure an agreeable price for your move.

 

1 Bedroom 2 Bedroom 3 Bedroom 4 Bedroom
Local $1,551 $2,441 $4,261 $5,161
250 Miles $2,750 $3,872 $5,159 $6,000
500 Miles $3,100 $4,075 $6,092 $6,666
1,000 Miles $3,539 $4,246 $6,413 $8,492
2,000 Miles $5,394 $4,850 $6,212 $10,667

 

Best Places to Live in California

If you’re considering a move to California, and you’re on the hunt for an exact place to settle down, this may be a good starting point:

  • San Diego, CA: The only real deterrent to living here is the cost of housing. Median home values exceed $400,000, but residents will have access to a variety of cultures and nightlife attractions. Aside from that, the city’s weather is among the best you’ll find anywhere.
  • Irvine, CA: Job opportunities, safety, educational opportunities, and far more are available to residents of this Orange County city. More than 200 Fortune 500 companies have offices here, making high-quality employment fairly easy to find, even if it’s competitive.
  • Palo Alto, CA: This Bay Area mid-sized city has plenty going for it. As the home of Stanford University, and the traditional birthplace of Silicon Valley, employment and education are among the best you’ll find. However, the cost of living is prohibitively high for many.
  • Davis, CA: This college town near Sacramento has plenty of recreational activities and cultural attractions for residents. Add the slightly below-average rent prices, and it’s a highly attractive destination.

Top Reasons to Move to CA?

Despite a perceived exodus, California has plenty to recommend it to new residents. This includes the following:

  • Mild Climate: You’ll get plenty of blue skies here for most of the year. Unless you live inland at a higher altitude, you’ll be spared a snowy winter as well. Residents contend with cooler temperatures and rain during wintertime, but that’s about all near the shoreline.
  • Diversity of Outdoor Activities: Access to numerous state and national parks, as well as diverse terrain, makes California a great place to live if you’re an outdoor enthusiast. From skiing to surfing, this state has it all.
  • Food and Wine: Napa Valley and Santa Barbara have plenty of wineries for the connoisseur. Diversity of food offerings from street food in LA, to varied cultural cuisines, make California a destination for foodies as well.
  • Scenic Road Trips: Highway One runs along much of California’s Pacific Coast and provides plenty of memorable views. You should own a car if you live here anyway, but the promise of such scenery provides yet another reason for this.

Tips for Living in CA

If you’re just moving to the Golden State, there’s a good chance that it will take a while for you to get your bearings. Here are a few tips to get you started.

  • You’ll Need a Car: Aside from the major metropolitan areas, California is fairly spread-out. Having a car is almost a necessity if you live in any of these more loosely-packed suburbs.
  • Cultural Rivalry: Northern California vs Southern California is a cultural rivalry that will likely always persist. The state’s two halves experience different climates and have residents with different perspectives.
  • Housing is Expensive: Housing costs in this state are among the highest in the country. You should count yourself as being extremely lucky if you can comfortably afford a home here.
  • Beware of Natural Disasters: Certain areas of the state have been prone to mudslides, earthquakes, and wildfires. This has been especially true recently. Before moving here, you should make your choice of exact location carefully.

How to Choose the Best Moving Company

Before you settle on a specific moving company, you should consider all relevant factors as they relate to your move and your situation. We’ve listed a few vital areas to think about during the booking process.

  • Service Profile: When you inventory your home (eight weeks prior to moving), you should make a secondary list of add-on services you may need. During any estimates you receive, you should go over this list with your company representative to ensure that a given mover can help you.
  • Pricing: The importance of getting estimates cannot be overstated. Prior to committing to any specific moving company, you should get multiple quotes from different movers. After shopping around, you should be able to book with the mover who offers the best price.
  • Well-Reviewed: Positive customer reviews are vital to any service-based company. Moving is no different. You should only consider movers who have received consistently positive consumer feedback.

California Moving FAQs

Why are people leaving California?

The perceived exodus from the Golden State has been hastened by the pandemic but had already been a trend prior to March of 2020. Reasons for this have included increased remote working opportunities and cheaper housing elsewhere. Overall, this has more been the result of fewer incoming new residents, than more outgoing ones.

Why are companies leaving CA?

California is viewed by many business owners as being a less-than-favorable environment for them. More businesses left the state in the first half of 2021 than in all of 2020. This shows that company executives are favoring states with lower taxes and fewer regulations.

Is renting a better option here?

Housing in California is generally expensive: even more so if you live in the Bay Area or LA County. There’s no real way around that. With the average cost of rent being over $1,500, there isn’t a real way to get a bargain on housing unless you live in one of the state’s inland areas.