AT Movers

How Long Does It Take to Move Out?

📝 Key Takeaways

  • Total Timeframe for Moving: Several weeks to months, from the initial decision to fully settling in.
  • Prepartions and Packing Time:
    • 4-6 weeks for smaller homes or apartments.
    • 6-8 weeks for larger homes.
  • Moving Day Duration:
    • A few hours for small apartments.
    • 1-2 days for larger homes, depending on size and distance.
  • Unpacking and Adapting: Additional weeks for unpacking and getting accustomed to the new environment.

Moving out? Wondering how long the entire process will take? Moving involves a bunch of tasks, from packing up your belongings to getting settled in your new place. At AT Movers, we believe in clear and accurate planning. This article is here to shed some light on what affects the moving timeline. Whether you’re just moving across town to a new apartment or you’re going to another state to start a new life, understanding these things will help you plan effectively and estimate how long it’s going to take you to move.

Factors Influencing Your Moving Timeline

Property Size:

The size of your home significantly impacts packing and moving time. Here’s a quick breakdown:

Property SizePacking TimeMoving Time
Studio/1-Bedroom Flat2-3 hours3-4 hours
2-Bedroom Flat3-4 hours4-6 hours
2-Bedroom House4-5 hours5-7 hours
3-Bedroom Flat5-6 hours6-8 hours
3-Bedroom House6-8 hours7-9 hours
4-Bedroom House7-9 hours8-10 hours
5-Bedroom House and larger8-10+ hours10-12+ hours
We do not take into account planning, procurement of necessary supplies, etc. This is the approximate time for direct actions
Start decluttering early to reduce packing time.


Distance: The farther you’re moving, the longer the process. Consider:

  • Local moves: Usually completed within a day
  • Long-distance moves: Might require multiple days, especially if over 100 miles
    • Moving 100-500 miles might take 1-2 days for transportation alone, excluding packing and unpacking time.
    • Moving over 500-1000 miles could extend the transport time to 2-3 days.
    • Moves exceeding 1000 miles may need 3-4 days or more, considering the complexities of cross-country logistics and rest periods for the moving crew.

Preparation and Packing:

Efficient planning and packing is key to a streamlined move.

  • Begin packing non-essential items weeks in advance. Start 4-6 weeks before you move, 6-8 if you’re moving into a bigger home.
  • Label boxes clearly for easy unloading
  • Disassemble large furniture pieces to save time on moving day
📋 Don't underestimate the power of a packing guides and checklists. A detailed plan keeps you organized and on track.

A well-planned moving day with professional movers can last from a few hours for small apartments to a day or two for larger homes. It is best to start packing 4 to 6 weeks before the move. Local moves can be completed in one day, but long-distance moves can take up to three days or longer, depending on the distance and logistics.

Photo by cottonbro studio:

Timeframe of The Moving Process: From Start to Finish

Phase 1: Initiating the Move

When thinking about the early stages of a move, it’s important to think about how long it takes to move out. Not just in terms of packing up and physically relocating, but also preparing for the new environment.

  • Timeframe: Variable, can start months or even years before the physical move.
  • Action Step: This preparation involves looking at potential new places. We can use online resources to make the process easier. For example, websites like give you a good idea of the cost of living in different places. LinkedIn and Indeed can also give you information about job opportunities. You can also find out about the quality of life in different communities by talking to people who live there, like on Reddit or City-Data.

Phase 2: Choosing Your New Home

Once you’ve figured out what kind of area you want, it’s time to start looking for the perfect place to call home. That could take anywhere from a few weeks to a few months, depending on the market and your specific requirements.

  • Timeframe: Typically 1-3 months, depending on market conditions and decisiveness.
  • Advice: Make a list of must-haves for your new place, like how many bedrooms, how close it is to work or school, and anything else you need. This will help you narrow down the search a lot.

Phase 3: Packing

  • Timeframe: Begin 4-6 weeks before moving day, 6-8 weeks for larger homes.
  • Action Items: Start by getting rid of items you don’t need or want anymore. You could donate it or sell it. Then, a few weeks in advance, start packing all the non-essential and seasonal stuff.
  • Packing Guide: Use our packing guide to get the job done faster!
📦 Tip

For apartments, start this process about 4-6 weeks before your move date. Houses might require more time, especially for families with children or larger homes.

Phase 4: Heavy Lifting – Furniture and Appliances

  • Timeframe: 2-3 weeks before moving day.
  • Action Items: Focus on taking down big furniture pieces and packing up major appliances for moving. Make sure you measure doorways and furniture so you can easily get out of your current house and into the new one.
🛏️ Tip

Enlist help or consult with your moving company on the best practices for securing and transporting these items safely. Proper equipment and techniques are crucial to avoid damage.

Phase 5: Last Week Essentials

  • Timeframe: The final week before moving day.
  • Action Items: Pack a bag with some essentials like toiletries and a change of clothes for the first couple of days in your new place. Make sure to check with your movers about all the details and make sure utilities are all set up in the new house.
📝 Tip

Make a detailed list of things to do over the last week so you don't miss anything. That includes things like defrosting the fridge, doing the last load of laundry, and putting any important documents somewhere safe.

Phase 6: Moving Day

On moving day, it’s important to start early to manage the workload efficiently. It depends a lot on your current situation and how much stuff you need to move.

  • Timeframe: A few hours to a full day for apartments; 1-2 days for houses, depending on size and distance.
  • Engage professional movers like AT Movers early on. Movers provide a better understanding of how many days does it take to move, based on your unique circumstances.

Phase 7: Unpacking

Once the boxes have arrived at your new place, it’s time to unpack and get settled. It could take a few days or even weeks, depending on your schedule and how big your new house is.

  • Timeframe: Unpacking might take 1-2 weeks for essential settling, with full unpacking extending up to a month or more.
📝 Tip

Start with the basics and work your way through the rooms. This methodical approach will help you transform your new home into a place that feels like home during a time of change.

Navigating Unexpected Delays in Your Move

Moving can be a crazy process, full of surprises. Knowing about potential delays and being prepared for them can help keep your move running smoothly.

Common Causes of Delays:

  • Weather Conditions: Sudden changes can slow down the process.
  • Logistical Issues: Challenges in scheduling with movers or last-minute packing needs.
  • Real Estate Delays: Problems with closing dates on homes or last-minute paperwork.

Mitigation Strategies:

  • Stay Informed: Keep an eye on the weather forecast and have protective materials ready.
  • Open Communication: Regularly check in with your moving company and real estate agents.
  • Flexibility: Be prepared to adjust your plans. Having a backup moving date can alleviate stress.

Contingency Planning:

  • Having a ‘Plan B’ is crucial. Whether it’s:
    • an alternative moving date;temporary housing;or emergency packing help,
    being prepared for the unexpected ensures you stay ahead of any challenges.


Moving from deciding to actually moving to a new house is a unique experience for everyone, but if you understand the key stages and possible delays, it can make the process a lot smoother. Planning, preparing, and being flexible are your best weapons for a safe and fast move.

Ready to move? AT Movers here to help you every step of the way. Just use our moving calculator to get an estimate of the cost of your move, then we’ll give you a detailed quote customized to your needs. With us, you can rest assured that your move will go smoothly, be well planned, and fit perfectly into your schedule.