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Moving Resources: Tips for Moving To New York City

Posted in Moving on Mar 22, 2017, tagged with city guides, moving tips, preparing for your move

If you’re moving to New York City, congratulations! An international hub for banking, finance, business, entertainment, and the arts, this vast city has something exciting going on 24/7/365. However, all this excitement comes at a price. The cost of living in NYC is about as high as the Empire State Building — and if New York moving is on your schedule, you already know how pricey residential real estate is to rent or purchase. The last thing you want is for unexpected moving challenges to add to your expenses.

Make sure your move to NYC goes off without a hitch with solutions to four common problems, as well as our tips for preparing for your move.

4 Problems You Might Encounter Moving to New York City

With that in mind, don’t expect the cost of moving to New York City to come cheap. Here are four common problems you may experience when moving to NYC, as well as our tips and solutions for controlling the cost of your move, ensuring your belongings arrive safe and sound:

Problem #1

New York moving is slow because there is traffic everywhere in the city. The slower the moving vehicle goes, the more time it racks up — meaning, your eventual bill will be higher.

Solution ​​

A good idea is to plan for your moving truck to arrive in off-hours — before or after rush hour, or perhaps early morning on Saturday or Sunday.

Problem #2

It’s likely your new dwelling in NYC will not be on the ground floor. As a result, your movers will have to move your belongings up a staircase and/or in an elevator.


Before you load the moving truck — or better yet, before you even get estimates from moving companies — find out the dimensions and layout of those stairwells and elevators. Their size and proximity to your apartment or condo could have an impact on the price you are quoted.

Problem #3

Because your belongings are likely to require some maneuvering to get from the New York City street into your new residence, careful packing is a must for any New York moving project.


Some movers, like Transit Systems, have pros who can package your delicate, expensive and oversized items for you. If you plan to package those items yourself, this blog is full of packaging tips that will help you do it right.

Problem #4

Inexperienced movers may not be familiar with the city, which can lead to difficulties navigating city streets, as well as problems parking and unloading. 


When moving to New York City, it is very wise to select a moving company familiar with the city that has handled plenty of NYC moves in the past. Experienced movers know where they can park a truck and perhaps more importantly, where they can’t. They know the neighborhoods and what type of vehicle will be most efficient for parking and unloading your furniture. They also know the best routes to take, helping to save time (and cost) by dodging traffic jams.

3 Things To Do Before Moving to New York City

Preparation is the key to successful New York moving. Here are tasks you should complete in advance to make the loading and stowing of your belongings efficient and safe for the movers:

  1. Measure all the hallways and doorways of your current residence, and the dimensions of stairwells and elevators. Make sure your large items — bed frames, dining room tables, bookshelves, armoires, etc. — will fit through those spaces. If not, disassembly or more creative means will be necessary for loading the truck. Items that require disassembly, as we touched on earlier, can be handled by moving companies like us.
  2. Boxing and staging items in an easily accessible place (like your garage) make loading faster and stowing more secure. Make sure all of your boxes are strong enough for the weight you are packaging in them, confirm the boxes are clearly marked with the contents, and be liberal with cushioning materials like packaging bubbles and paper. A common “rookie” mistake is to opt for boxes that are very large, making the packed box too heavy to safely lift and maneuver. This will really come back to haunt you when your belongings arrive at your New York City apartment, and your mover (or you) has to, say, lug 10 80-pound boxes of books up five flights of stairs.
  3. Given the tough unloading conditions your New York move is likely to experience, it’s doubly important to make sure the moving company you hire is fully and properly insured. No New York City moving guide would be complete without mentioning this! All moving companies are required to carry insurance, but the terms and limits of coverage vary quite a bit. If you have valuable and/or fragile items — large mirrors, antiques, paintings, etc. — make sure you have current appraisals on hand so you know how much coverage you need. If the mover has gaps in coverage, the company can sometimes obtain additional insurance for your move. If not, you can obtain it through a third party. For valuable items heading for New York City, our advice is, better safe than sorry. No matter how capable the moving company is, anything can happen in the Big Apple.

If you’re wavering between a do-it-yourself move or hiring a New York shipping and moving company, this blog post has probably given you a lot of food for thought. If you are familiar with the quirks of New York City streets and real estate, and if you’re not moving a lot of items or a lot of hard-to-handle items, a DIY move just might work.

On the other hand, the risks and inconvenience of moving yourself is always a consideration, and for New York City, a bigger one than you’d be facing in most other urban locations. If you’re still on the fence, please contact us to discuss the specifics of your New York City moving project and let us give you an estimate — or at least some suggestions. Whether we end up handling your move or not, we want your entry to NYC to be as smooth as possible!