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A Guide to Removal Fees 2024

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Are you getting ready to move out? Removal costs can add up pretty quickly, especially if you’re facing a long-distance move. If you’re attempting a move with a budget in mind, then this one’s for you. 

This article will cover all the costs of moving to the UK. We’ll cover everything from average costs to packing services and even provide tips and tricks to keep the expenses down. 

Let’s get started. 

Average UK removal costs (2024)

The cost of moving house in 2024 will vary significantly based on several factors. 

The main ones to keep in mind are:

  • The size of your house,
  • The volume of items to be moved
  • Accessibility to your property
  • The distance over which your belongings need to be transported.

However, in 2024, the average cost for moving a 3-bedroom house over a distance of 50 miles is estimated at £800. If you opt for additional services like packing and furniture dismantling, this cost rises to around £1200.

Suppose your move is local, such as within the same town or to a neighbouring city. In that case, removal companies typically charge on an hourly basis. 

You can expect a minimum charge for two hours of service and at least two removal staff members for local moves. The final cost will then increase based on the duration of your move and the number of staff required. 

Loading & unloading

Loading and unloading are the main parts of the removal process, which most people will look to outsource to a removal company. The cost for these services is influenced by several factors, including the number of items being moved, how difficult it will be, and the workforce required.

For example, larger homes with more items or those with delicate or unusually shaped objects will result in higher costs due to the increased time and care needed. Additionally, if either your current or new property has limited access or is located on a higher floor without an elevator, this will take more time for loading and unloading, thus requiring more costs. You may also decide to try to move faster by requesting additional staff, which will cost more due to the hourly wage for each staff member. 

Removal companies often include the cost of loading and unloading in their hourly rates. As mentioned earlier, local moves usually have a two-hour minimum charge and require at least two movers. So, while the overall average cost of loading and unloading will be about £800, this will include the hourly salary along with loading and unloading. 

Packing services

Most people usually pack themselves and have the removal company move the items. However, removal companies can pack everything for you, saving you much time. However, this will come at an additional cost. 

On average, the costs for these services are as follows (the cost for packing materials is usually included):

One-bedroom home – £150 to £200 

Two-bedroom home – £250

Three-bedroom home – £400 

Four bedroom home – £500 

If you’re pressed for time or have many valuable or fragile items, enlisting the help of professional packing services can save you a lot of trouble. However, self-packing might be more suitable for those on a tighter budget or with fewer items.

Packing materials

Many presume that you need boxes when moving. This is a big mistake, and many learn this the hard way. Using suitable packing materials will make sure your belongings remain safe and secure during a move. The following should serve as a guideline on what to purchase:

Types of Packing Materials

  • Boxes
  • Bubble Wrap
  • Packing Tape
  • Labelling Materials

The cost of packing materials can vary based on the quality and quantity required, but more importantly, where you choose to buy them from. Assuming you’ll be purchasing from Amazon, the prices would be:

Boxes

Typically, you’ll need ten large boxes for each room. So, you would need 60 boxes on the low end for a four-bedroom house. This would cost roughly £120 based on prices from Amazon. 

Bubble Wrap

Bubble wraps are sold in rolls in different sizes. Prices can range from £10-£30, depending on the length and quality, but on average, it will be around £15.

Packing Tape and Labelling Material

Packing tape and labels will cost around £5 altogether. Ideally, you will need to purchase durable tape that will keep the boxes firmly shut. 

Where to buy them from?

Packing materials can be sourced from the removal company, local stores, or online. The prices provided above are from Amazon at the time of writing. You can also repurpose boxes, bags, and other materials to cut down on some costs. 

Dismantling and reassembling furniture

Furniture dismantling and reassembling is another cost that many choose to opt for. There’s nothing worse than dismantling a bed, moving to your new property and forgetting where things go. So, it is worth paying someone to do this for you, especially for items like sofas, wardrobes, and other custom-built pieces.

Costs

The cost for this will vary based on a few factors. More intricate pieces, like those with electronics or delicate parts, may cost more to dismantle and reassemble. Additionally, the more items you have, the higher the cost. You will usually have to pay more for more items or complicated furniture. 

The average cost for dismantling and reassembling a single piece of furniture ranges from £50 to £150. However, this can vary based on the factors mentioned above. Some removal companies offer package deals that include these services, potentially offering savings compared to paying for them separately.

Moving involves more than moving boxes from one location to another. As a result, many removal companies offer a range of services suitable for different needs. Each of these services comes with their own set of costs. We’ve listed a few of them below:

Packing Services

As previously discussed, packing services range from essential to full-service options. The cost varies depending on the level of service, with complete packing services for a larger home potentially reaching up to £500 or more.

Furniture Removal

This service is beneficial for getting rid of furniture before a move. Prices can vary, but you can expect to pay anywhere from £50 to £150 for the removal of a large piece of furniture, depending on size and disposal fees. 

Many councils will offer this as a free service for a limited amount, after which it will be paid. For example, in Manchester, you can get rid of up to three unwanted items for free. After that, it will be £27 for another three and £54 for six. Another option is to contact local charities who will be more than willing to take away furniture that is still in good condition for free. 

Fragile Packing Service

Special care for fragile items such as glassware, artwork, and electronics will usually require additional costs. This specialised service might add £100 to £200 to your moving bill, depending on the quantity and type of items.

Self-Storage

Self-storage is a popular option if you need to store items before, during, or after your move. Costs depend on the storage unit’s size and storage duration, with prices starting from as little as £20 per week for a small unit.

International Moves

Moving internationally is a more complex and costly affair. Costs can range significantly, often starting from several thousand pounds, depending on the destination, volume of items, and type of transport (air, sea, or land).

Additional Expenses

Insurance

Taking out insurance for your move is a good idea, especially for high-value items or international moves. The cost will vary based on the value of your belongings and the level of coverage.

Access Issues

Difficult access to your property, like narrow streets or no parking zones, can increase costs due to the additional time and effort required. Make sure removal companies are aware of this ahead of time so they can plan accordingly. 

Removal costs by the size of the property

The size of your property will have the most impact on the overall cost of your move. This is based on the assumption that each room will have more belongings, so it will result in a higher cost of moving. 

One Bedroom Properties

Smaller properties like apartments or tiny houses will usually have fewer belongings. The average cost of moving can range from £350 to £600.

Two-Bedroom Properties

Similarly, two-bedroom properties will have fewer belongings. The average cost for this would be around £550 to £800

Three-Bedroom Properties

A standard family home with three bedrooms usually incurs higher costs due to the increased number of items. The average moving cost is around £800 to £1000.

Four-Bedroom Properties

Larger family homes require more extensive packing and moving services. The average cost for a four-bedroom house can be around £1,000 to £1300. 

Five-Bedroom Properties and Larger

For substantial properties, the cost can go upwards of £1,400. These moves often require additional movers and possibly more than one moving vehicle.

Average removal costs by city

CityAverage Cost
London £1547
Manchester £1306
Bristol £893
Cardiff £730
Leeds £1011

Removal cost by distance

The distance of your move will significantly impact the overall cost that you will be expected to pay. Generally, longer distances result in higher prices due to the increased time and fuel required. 

Distance1-Bed Studio / apartment3-bedroom house5-bedroom house
10-20 miles£900-£1000£1500-1650£2000-£2500
50 miles£950-£1100£1500-£1700£2200-£2500
100 miles£1000-£1150£1600-£1800£2200-£2600
200 miles£1200-£1400£1700-£2000£2400 – £2700
300 miles£1300-£1500£1900-£2100£2500-£2800
500 miles£1600-£1800£2200-£2400£2800-£3100

How costs are calculated

Removal companies will usually calculate costs based on the following factors:

  • The volume of items being moved
  • Distance between location
  • Accessibility of your property, such as ease of access or the need for additional equipment.
  •  The time of year and day of the week, weekends and peak moving seasons are often more expensive.

What can increase costs?

Several factors can increase the cost of your move:

  1. Extra charges will usually apply if your property has difficult access, such as narrow stairs or no lift in an apartment building.
  2. Special care items like pianos or antiques require additional handling and, thus, increase costs. While last-minute bookings often come with a premium, especially during peak moving seasons.
  3. If packing services are required, this will add to the overall expense.
  4. Extended travel distances or unforeseen delays, like waiting for keys, can also contribute to higher costs.

Do you need a pre-move survey?

A pre-move survey can be beneficial during removal, particularly for more significant moves. This is because it allows the removal company to assess the volume and type of items you’re moving, ensuring they provide an accurate quote and can prepare accordingly. 

During the survey, they can identify any potential challenges, like access issues or special care items, and have something in place. While not always necessary for smaller moves, a pre-move survey can prevent surprises on the day of the move and help in budgeting accurately for your move.

How much will it cost to do it yourself?

It isn’t wholly cost-free if you decide to carry out is only partially self. Here are some costs you need to think about:

  • Hiring a removal van or using a personal car
  • Fuel costs
  • Packing materials (costs covered above)
  • Your time and effort

Carrying out a removal by yourself will save you some money; however, ensure you’re realistic about carrying out the work yourself. It can be very intensive and can take a lot of time. 

Tips for keeping removal costs down

As promised, here are some tips to save some money during the removal process:

  • Remove unwanted items before moving

Reducing the volume of items to be moved can significantly cut costs. Sell, donate, or dispose of things you no longer need before the move.

  • Don’t settle; get a few quotes.

Request quotes from a few different removal companies. Compare prices and services offered to ensure you get the best value for your money.

  • Choose a weekday move.

Weekends and holidays are peak times for moving. Scheduling your move for the middle of the week can result in lower rates.

  • Pack yourself

Suppose you’re able to pack your belongings yourself. This saves on the cost of hiring professionals to do the packing for you.

  • Book in advance

Booking your removal service well in advance can secure you a better rate. Last-minute bookings usually come at a premium, especially during busy periods.

  • Be flexible with dates.

Be flexible with your moving date. This can allow you to take advantage of lower rates when a removal company has available slots. This will require planning ahead. 

There you have it, a complete guide for dealing with removals. If you’re in the process of moving but still need to secure a sale for your previous property, we can help. Here at Sold.co.uk, we can help you sell your house quickly through our options. Get in touch to find out more.

FAQs

Is It Worth Using a Removal Company?

Yes, especially for significant or long-distance moves. Removal companies know what they’re doing, so their expertise, efficiency, and insurance can reduce stress and save you lots of time. 

What Is the Cheapest/Most Expensive Day for Removals?

The cheapest days are usually Monday to Thursday, as weekends and holidays are more in demand and hence more expensive.

Do You Pay Up Front for Removals?

Policies vary, but most companies require a deposit with the balance due upon completion of the move. Make sure you confirm payment terms in advance.

How Much Are Movers Per Hour in the UK?

As of 2024, movers will usually charge between £40 and £60 per hour, depending on the region and the required services.

How Far in Advance Should I Book a Removal Company in the UK?

Book at least 4-6 weeks in advance, especially during peak moving seasons, to ensure availability and potentially better rates.

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