The 20 Most Popular Cities for Local Moving Routes

Believe it or not, Americans are moving at the slowest rate since 1948—which is also the first year that the U.S. Census started tracking migration.

Only 11.2 percent of the U.S. population moved between 2015 and 2016. And most of those folks didn’t move very far: 6.9 percent of moves last year were within the same county according to the latest census statistics.

If most moves are local, that got us wondering: what metro areas have the most demand for short distance moves?

To answer this, SpareFoot partnered with Moving.com, a website that helps consumers compare free moving quotes between local and long distance moving companies.

Moving.com has provided a list of the most frequently inquired about short distance moves, as well as the estimated cost for each route, based on a two to three bedroom home without packing. (You can calculate the cost of your move with this calculator.)

More specifically, Moving.com analyzed the 250 most popular moving routes of less than 500 miles. The 20 most frequently searched short distance moves accounted for more than 51.5 percent of the 250 most popular local routes reported by Moving.com in 2016. The average distance for all all short distance routes was 40.5 miles.

Below we have ranked the top 20 local moving routes based on the number of searches for that route—we’ve also listed the  percentage share of searches among the top 250 short distance moves. SpareFoot has added the average monthly cost to rent storage in each city with the most local moves.

Without further ado, here are the 20 most popular short distance moves in the country:

20. San Antonio, TX

Percent share of local moves: 1.03%
Average distance: 12 miles
Average professional moving labor cost: $1,097
Average monthly self-storage cost: $87.90

Golden Hour Sunset Aerial Drone View Over Austin Texas

19. Austin, TX

The growing Texas capital features the cheapest average moving labor cost among cities on our list, with the average local mover looking to relocate an average distance of 11 miles.

Percent share of local moves: 1.07%
Average distance: 11 miles
Average professional moving labor cost: $1,095
Average monthly self-storage cost: $99.20

18. Washington, D.C.

Percent share of local moves: 1.43%
Average distance: 18 miles
Average professional moving labor cost: $1,146
Average monthly self-storage cost: $105.48

San Francisco with the Golden Gate bridge

17. San Francisco, CA

Known for its staggering rents and home prices, San Francisco also has the most expensive monthly storage rates among cities on our list. Moving the average distance of 15 miles will cost you on average $1,156.

Percent share of local moves: 1.47%
Average distance: 15 miles 
Average professional moving labor cost: $1,156
Average monthly self-storage cost:  $157.61

Baltimore The Greatest City In America

16. Baltimore, MD

Movers in the Baltimore area aren’t straying too far from their last home. The average moving distance in the Baltimore was 10 miles, the shortest distance on our list of cities.

Percent share of local moves: 1.53%
Average distance: 10 miles
Average professional moving labor cost: $1,122
Average monthly self-storage cost: $77.28

15. Las Vegas, NV

Percent share of local moves: 1.77%
Average distance: 15 miles
Average professional moving labor cost: $1,098
Average monthly self-storage cost: $64.80

14. Phoenix, AZ

Percent share of local moves: 1.92%
Average distance: 21 miles
Average professional moving labor cost: $1,112
Average monthly self-storage cost: $78.62

13. Orlando, FL

Percent share of local moves: 1.93%
Average distance: 18 miles
Average professional moving labor cost: $1,102
Average monthly self-storage cost: $80.27

12. Tampa-St.Petersburg, FL

Percent share of local moves: 2.08%
Average distance: 22 miles
Average professional moving labor cost: $1,110
Average monthly self-storage cost: $84.70

11. Philadelphia, PA

Percent share of local moves: 2.17%
Average distance: 12 miles
Average professional moving labor cost: $1,135
Average monthly self-storage cost: $78.14

Daybreak Detroit Skyline November 2015

10. Detroit, MI

Detroit offers the cheapest average monthly self-storage cost compared to other cities on the list.

Percent share of local moves: 2.17%
Average distance: 16 miles
Average professional moving labor cost: $1,114
Average monthly self-storage cost: $64.15

9. Houston, TX

Percent share of local moves: 2.26%
Average distance: 20 miles
Average professional moving labor cost: $1,102
Average monthly self-storage cost: $85.35

8. Atlanta, GA

Percent share of local moves: 2.82%
Average distance: 20 miles
Average professional moving labor cost: $1,123
Average monthly self-storage cost: $90.90

7. Dallas, TX

Percent share of local moves: 2.86%
Average distance: 23 miles
Average professional moving labor cost: $1,123
Average monthly self-storage cost: $90.90

6. Boston, MA

Percent share of local moves: 3.11%
Average distance: 17 miles
Average professional moving labor cost: $1,163
Average monthly self-storage cost: 114.67

5. Los Angeles, CA

Percent share of local moves: 3.47%
Average distance: 23 miles
Average professional moving labor cost: $1,173
Average monthly self-storage cost: $138.16

4. Newark, NJ

Percent share of local moves: 3.92%
Average distance: 18 miles
Average professional moving labor cost: $1,252
Average monthly self-storage cost: $94.25

nyc

3. New York City, NY

Moving within the Big Apple will set you back on average $1,301—the most expensive place to move on our list. That doesn’t seem to discourage New Yorkers from wanting to change up their living arrangements, considering it made up the third largest share of moving quotes under 500 miles.

Percent share of local moves: 4.01%
Average distance: 11 miles
Average professional moving labor cost: $1,301
Average monthly self-storage cost: $119.82

2. Chicago, IL

Percent share of local moves: 4.51%
Average distance: 20 miles
Average professional moving labor cost: $1,165
Average monthly self-storage cost: $83.88

miami

1. Miami, FL

Miami residents seem to move around within their metro area much more than other cities, coming in at number one on our list for cities with the most demand for local moves. They don’t mind hauling their stuff all the way across town either, as Miami features the longest average distance for moves on our list at 29 miles.

Percent share of local moves: 5.99%
Average distance: 29 miles
Average professional moving labor cost: $1,141
Average monthly self-storage cost: $113.03

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