The answer to the above question can vary greatly since the amount that needs to be moved and how far the movers need to carry belongings all factor into a loading timeline. Generally, two professional movers can load: A 10-foot truck in less than an hour, a 24-foot truck in 4 hours, and A 26-foot in 4.5 hours. However, loading a moving truck by yourself and with friends will take longer.

Note that the entire moving process cuts across three steps. Pre-move planning, moving day, and post-move unpacking! Estimate roughly five to six weeks for all the phases of moving, but with the right preparation, you can manage all three stages stress-free and without any problems. If you have the time, a couple of months before you move is usually a good starting point to decide whether or not you will hire a professional mover or that your move will be DIY.

If you will be using movers, it is best to start your selection process right away. Get in-house moving estimates and compare costs and companies. If you are transporting a car for an interstate move, find professional auto transporters and select one just as you would a professional mover. Confirming that agreement is one less thing to worry about!

However, if you are moving yourself, get your truck rental agreement four weeks prior to moving day so that you know the vehicle will be available. It is also a good time to see what friends might be of help on moving day. One week before the move, you should contact your utility companies to confirm dates when service ends at your old residence and starts at your new residence. Make changes of address with the post office so your mail gets forwarded.

Remember to get all your moving supplies including moving boxes a month before moving day. Packing is a gradual process that should begin four weeks before the move and end a couple of days before moving day. It is ideal to make a packing timeline so you know what needs to be packed when. Basically, the things you use least get packed first.

It is also a good time to get rid of unwanted items, fewer things to pack means less time packing. It is too early to pack your pots and pans and everyday dishes and clothes, but you can begin labeling the empty moving boxes for when that time comes.

Certain things will make your packing process more time-consuming. Fragile items will require extra attention. Let professional packers do it for you if possible. They will spend less time doing it and they know what they are doing.

9 Factors That Will Influence the Time It Takes Movers to Load a Moving Truck

If you want to move, there are a lot of hoops to jump through. You will need moving quotes; you will need packing supplies, potential storage space, and so on. And with all these, on the moving day, it might take more time for your movers to load the truck, and there are a lot of reasons for these loading delays.

  1. Bad Weather

Something that might be the greatest delayer of all times is, of course, bad weather. When you are moving, you really have to pay attention to the weather forecast. Even if you do, there is no absolute guarantee that the exact day you choose for your moving day will be as the forecasts predict. Mother Nature is so unpredictable and can change her mind in an instant.

Therefore, instead of a sunny day, you may get thunderstorms, which will make the moving process impossible or severely delay it.

  1. Layout of the House

A two-bedroom condo might involve a large walk-in closet, an upstairs office, and a sprawling crawl space off the downstairs den. The destination might come with a long walk from the truck to the front door and an even longer walk around to the back of the house to the basement sliding doors you’ll have to use for that large sectional sofa.

  1. Inexperienced Movers

Another one of the reasons for delays is inexperience, especially if your movers are inexperienced. Note that most of the issues here are in the estimating department. Without experience, you simply cannot estimate how long things will take. And then there are potential accidents in packaging and transport and the whole thing compounds even more.

Indeed you may think you are saving some money if you go with a mover who is inexperienced but that is actually not the case, most of the time. There is a reason why there is an industry standard when prices are concerned. And that reason is that it simply costs that much for a good service.

  1. The Overall Size Of The Move

When you look for moving company estimates, you will be asked about the size of the move. This is one of the significant factors that affect the cost because it affects the truck the company needs to use and how long the move will take. Generally, the more items you are moving, the more it will cost.

However, if you are moving long distance, you will also need to consider the weight of your move. Heavy items will increase the cost of the move, and you need to factor this in. However, with these types of moves, the moving company will generally do an in-home estimate where you can ask for details about the effect of weight on the costs.

  1. Failure to Arrange Everything on Time

Have it in mind there are so many things you need to arrange in order to move into another place. Failing to get everything in order will inevitably cause loading delays. Most of the time, it is something really simple, such as transferring your gas and electricity to a new place. But we tend to forget.

Create a list of tasks for yourself. Then cross the items off the list as you complete them. That is the best way to make sure that everything is arranged properly.

  1. Flights of Stairs

For Movers, a good rule of thumb is to add 30-60 minutes (depending on the overall amount of furniture and boxes) for each set of stairs you’ll be meeting. Consider slipping in a quick question about the staircases inside the customer’s home (and outside, particularly in the case of an apartment building).

Are they wide and fairly accessible? If not, no need to wallow in the details, the customer will not only understand that you are a considerate moving pro, but will now have the notion in his or her head that tight corners and narrow passageways can slow the crew down if there are any large and/or heavy pieces to maneuver.

  1. Lack of Necessary Paperwork

It is strange how many times this has caused a loading and moving delay. This is indeed one of the worst reasons for delays. Note that you might do everything on time but you simply cannot get those papers in order by the time of the relocation. There may be situations where you are missing a single piece of paper, and everything just stops because of that.

A lot of people do not even know what sort of paperwork they might need and find themselves flabbergasted when someone tells them that they need to have a paper for their parking spot. And if there is no paper for the parking spot, your truck cannot park there and the move gets delayed. Not to mention that you will not be able to move into your new home at all if all of the papers that say that you are the new owner are not in order. Certainly, one of the worst headaches to have.

  1. Items that Require Tools for Assembly, Dismantling or Removal

Similar to questions about stairs, most movers prefer to ask about items that require tools. Things like the bar that won’t fit through the door unless the top is taken off; the wall unit that is screwed into the wall studs; the credenza that is mounted on a massive cleat behind the massive desk in the office. By mentioning these things you not only prepare your crew, but you also plant the seed in their head that certain things will add to the total move time.

  1. Heavy Items

Add 30 minutes for pianos, pool tables, and gun safes. Items like these can take the entire crew a while to move from room to truck or vice versa. Grandfather clocks also take up time as they need to be serviced (i.e. the weights need to be removed and packed) while the clock itself will demand a fair bit of TLC. Baby grand pianos require special equipment as well as extra time.


When you are planning a move, the last thing you want is to have surprise expenses at the end. Having an accurate idea of the total cost and time of moving is vital because it helps you plan and find ways to save money. Knowing what to expect when you move will make your relocation endeavor more stress-free. That is why it is important to know what factors affect how long a move will take.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. How Much Does A Rented Moving Truck Weigh?

A rental moving truck will have a Gross Vehicle Weight (GVW) between 8,600 pounds (4.3 tons) for a 10′ truck and 26,000 pounds (13 tons) for a 26′ truck.

  1. How Do You Load A Penske Truck?

When loading and unloading, bend your knees and lift with your legs, not your back. Put the heaviest items on the truck first. Tip: If there are stairs at your destination, unload enough items to allow you to move the heaviest items first before you get tired.

  1. Can You Hire Movers Just To Load A Truck?

Yes, you can hire movers to just load, unload or pack. Interestingly, the concept is simple, it’s generally more affordable to provide your own truck, storage container, or freight trailer than it is to hire a full service moving company.

  1. How Long Does It Take Movers To Load A Truck?

The time required for movers to load a truck will depend on some factors, but assuming that everything is ready and the moving truck is less than 50 feet away from your house (or first-floor apartment), 2 professional movers can load: a 10-foot truck in about an hour. a 16-foot truck in about 2 hours. a 20-foot truck in about 3 hours.

  1. How Do You Properly Load A Moving Truck?

In order to properly load a moving truck, you would have to double-check that all weight is distributed evenly, make sure that the heavier items are located towards the cab and against the walls. Medium-heavy items should go on top of heavier items, and lighter items should go at the very top and towards the front of the truck.

  1. How Much Does It Cost To Hire Someone To Load A Moving Truck?

On average, we’ve found that the rental fee for a moving truck can cost between $120 and $200 for local moves. For long-distance moves, a truck rental can cost between $1,500 and $2,300.

  1. What Do Movers Load First, Boxes Or Other Heavy Items?

Movers start with the largest and heaviest items first. This includes mattresses, bed frames, tables, chairs, refrigerators, washer/dryers, couches, sectionals, and coffee tables. Given the weight and size of these items, they should be on the bottom of your moving truck and not placed on top of other boxes and belongings.

  1. How Do You Stack Boxes In A Removal Van Or Truck?

Ideally, boxes should be neatly stacked from floor to ceiling; but to avoid damage, you will need to take an extra step. “To prevent your load from shifting, place the side of your item to side, floor to ceiling, and heaviest to lightest

  1. Do Rental Trucks Stop At Weigh Stations?

Generally, “Rental trucks can be a U-Haul, Ryder, Sears, Budget, Enterprise, etc. A rental truck is a motor truck, according to CVC Section 410, and must stop at the weigh stations. Most scale facilities make this very clear with signs reminding drivers: ‘All Daily Rental/Moving Trucks Must Stop At Scales When Open.

  1. How Long Does It Take To Load A Removal Van?

Well, this will depend on some factors, but assuming boxes are already prepared, it should not take more than 1 hour for two professional movers to load a moving van.

  1. What Should You Not Pack In A Moving Truck?

To keep the moving crew and your belongings safe during transit, there’s a wide variety of items that you can’t pack on a moving truck. These items fall into a few basic categories — from flammable materials to household chemicals — and include plenty of common items you will need to deal with before moving.

Here are some of the things you should not pack in a moving truck;

  • Ammonia
  • Batteries
  • Bleach
  • Fireworks
  • Gasoline and kerosene
  • Lighter fluids
  • Matches
  • Motor oil
  • Nail polish remover
  • Paint and varnish
  • Propane tanks
  • Signal flares
  • Sternos
  • Aerosol sprays
  • Oxygen tanks
  • Fire extinguishers
  • Weed killers and other gardening chemicals
  • Insecticides/pesticides
  • Cleaning chemicals
  • Pool chemicals
  • Food stored in glass jars or Tupperware
  • Food in containers that can be easily crushed or leak
  • Fresh produce
  • Frozen food
  • Alcohol
  • Charcoal briquettes
  • Guns and ammunition
  • Houseplants
  • Pets
  1. How Will I Know If The Truck Or Van Is Overloaded?

First, look at its tires, do they look underinflated? If the answer is “yes”, then your van may be overloaded. The sides and back of the van may also sit much closer to the ground, and the side wings are particularly close to the tires, due to the pressure of the load on the van’s suspension when overloaded.

If the cargo is bulging over the sides of the truck or stacked over the top, it is probably carrying more cargo than it should be. The truck struggles to slow down: If you see a tractor trailer braking but taking too long to slow down, it is likely overloaded.

  1. What Are Your Moving Crew’s Responsibilities?

Your moving crew members are responsible for loading, delivery set up, and pick up of rented furniture. The crew member is also expected to assist in the warehouse moving furniture and preparing inventory and consignments sold for delivery.

  1. How Can You Pack A Glass Kitchen Table In A Moving Truck?

First, you would have to wrap the glass table top in at least two overlapping layers of bubble wrap. Tightly tape the wrap so that it does not shift around the glass. With the bubble wrap secure, wrap the entire table top with the moving blankets — once again at least two layers deep.

  1. How Long Does It Take Movers To Load A House?

Well, to a large extent, this will depend on the size of the house and the number of movers involved. But on average it takes approximately 3-5 days to pack a three bedroom home. Keep in mind, this isn’t 1-2 hours a night of packing, it is more like dedicating 3-5 days of your life, with sleep and breaks of course, to packing. In some instances, packing is quick and easy.

  1. How Do You Pack Clothes In A Pod?

Distribute the weight of your contents evenly throughout the container. Use all available space inside the PODS container to pack your belongings. This includes wall-to-wall and floor-to-ceiling. Place heavy items on the bottom, lighter items on the top.

  1. What Should You Not Pack In A Pod?

No, cars, motorized vehicles, and lawnmowers are not allowed to be transported in PODS containers. What can’t I load in a Container? Hazardous Materials such as toxic chemicals, gas, liquids, substance, material or waste, lawn mowers, motorized vehicles, and illegal items cannot be placed in a PODS Container.

  1. Can You Leave Stuff In Drawers When Moving?

Yes, and this is so because the drawers can double as makeshift moving boxes. Do consider leaving clothes in the drawers if you are tight on space or short on moving boxes. Don’t leave items in the drawers if they are loose, fragile, or valuable. Do keep the drawers full in a solid, sturdy dresser if it will remain upright the entire time.

  1. Do Movers Need Everything In Boxes?

Generally, the answer is that everything needs to be packed into boxes, except for indoor and outdoor furniture which professional movers will protect with pads and furniture quilts.

  1. How Do You Transport Your Car Cross Country?

Here are some of the steps you can follow to transport your car cross country;

  • Pick a car shipping pickup location and destination.
  • Choose your dates for pickup and delivery.
  • Find a top auto shipping company to work with.
  • Secure an instant car shipping quote.
  • Prepare your vehicle for shipment to maximize efficiency.
  • Make plans to drop your car off and pick it up.
  1. Should I Disassemble Furniture Before Moving?

Although large, solid pieces of furniture tend to move just fine on their own, you will find that many items travel best when they are disassembled before they’re loaded. Each person’s invention will vary, but most find that it is smartest to take apart these common items during the packing and loading process.

  1. Do Movers Disassemble Beds?

Professional moving companies will disassemble beds, bookshelves, dining room tables, buffets/hutches, or other furniture pieces if it is necessary for loading them on the truck safely. Beds are normally the first items that the movers will re-assemble so you and your family can sleep in your beds on move-in the night.

  1. Should I Tip My Movers A Percentage?

Unlike waiters, movers don’t usually expect a percentage-based tip. Instead, the tip should reflect the number of hours they spent working for you as well as the quality of service that you received. In general, you should tip your movers $4-5 for each hour they helped you.

  1. How Much Does It Cost To Load A Pod?

The cost of renting a PODS portable container for a local move is usually between $349-$549, while the cost of a long-distance move average $999-$2,999. This includes a month of storage, a whole lot of flexibility, and a lot less stress.

  1. Is It Better To Move With Boxes Or Totes?

Although plastic totes may seem like a great idea, but oftentimes totes will buckle and crack under normal amounts of weight. But it is better to use moving boxes, which do a better job of absorbing the weight and keeping the load tight.

  1. How Far In Advance Should You Book Movers?

It is usually recommended you book the movers at least 12 weeks in advance, whenever possible. For most moving companies, an intrastate move requires at least an entire day. You will find fewer moving companies willing and available for intrastate moves compared to local moves.

  1. Do You Provide Lunch For Movers?

To keep things simple, it is recommended you provide food if the move takes longer than four or five hours. At that point, even if the movers start early, you are likely running into lunchtime. Letting the movers go off to lunch is fine, and they may very well need the break.

  1. Are Storage Bins Good For Moving?

First, plastic storage bins tend to be more durable than cardboard moving boxes. They are also more water-resistant and perform better in poor weather conditions than cardboard boxes. Second, you can easily find belongings when they’re packed in clear storage bins as opposed to opaque cardboard boxes.

  1. Do Movers Take Down TVs?

Professional movers are accustomed to handling items that are oversized, including colossal sized TVs. The type of wall mount you have will also come into play because a few types of mounts make it a little more difficult to remove the TV.

  1. Can You Negotiate With Moving Companies?

Absolutely Yes! Once you have received good moving quotes from different reputable moving companies, it is time to take advantage of those same quotes to get the best deal on moving companies.

Solomon. O'Chucks