April 1, 2024
Movers ready to load PODS for moving.

You have several options when you move out of state. One of the most important decisions you’ll make is the best way to transport your belongings. For example: will you hire interstate movers, rent a moving truck and drive it yourself, or rent PODS for moving?

Renting PODS for moving is a great way for many people to move, but it’s not for everyone. The first step in determining whether to use PODS for your move is to learn a bit about what they are, their pros and cons, and some pro tips on how to use them.

What are PODS for moving?

“PODS” stands for “Portable On Demand Storage”. Basically, you can rent PODS for moving or storing your home’s inventory. They’ll drop off as many storage containers as you need (and as many as you have room for). After you have packed and loaded the container(s), the PODS team will pick up and transport your belongings to your new home so you can unload. And once you’ve brought everything inside your new dwelling, PODS will send a truck to pick up the empty container or containers.

In other words, PODS offers a convenient service that many people enjoy, especially those who are moving long distance. And here’s even more good news: your local moving company can handle the heavy lifting by loading and unloading your PODS for you!

Will moving companies work with PODS?

Renting PODS for moving doesn’t mean you have to pack up your home or schlep your heavy furniture by yourself. The best movers in Chicago provide packing assistance as well as loading and unloading services so you can focus on the rest of the details of your move.

Here are a few ways your local moving company can help when you rent PODS:

  • Packing. Your moving company will come to your home a day or two before loading the PODS to help you pack. They’ll come equipped with a variety of box sizes, plus packing paper, wardrobe boxes, tape, shrink wrap, and moving blankets. Then they’ll carefully wrap and box up your kitchenware, books, clothing, artwork, furniture, and the rest of your home’s inventory.
  • Loading the PODS. After your PODS containers are delivered to your home, your moving company will handle the heavy lifting and load up the PODS for you for safe transport.
  • Unloading the PODS. When your containers arrive at your new home, you can hire local movers to unpack the PODS and bring everything inside. Once your furniture and boxes are placed in the correct rooms, the movers will remove any shrink wrap and moving blankets and haul away the packing materials that you no longer want or need.

In other words, let the professional movers in your area handle the heavy lifting!

Are PODS good for local and long distance moves?

You can rent PODS for moving both locally and long distance. However, since you’ll need to either load and unload the PODS by yourself or hire a moving company to do so, many people moving within the Chicagoland Area opt for hiring a local mover to handle the entire process. Since more coordination is required for a container move, PODS is more popular with people who move across state lines (or even across the country) than folks that are moving locally.

The ideal moving process for your unique needs—and your unique home—depends on a variety of factors. Budget, timing, and convenience are three main elements that people who are planning a move tend to focus on. To determine whether to rent PODS for your particular move, it’s helpful to understand the pros and cons of container moving.

Pros and cons of using PODS for moving

So, is renting PODS for moving a good fit for you? It all comes down to what will make your life easiest during the move planning process and, of course, the move itself. There are several pros and cons to consider that can help you decide.

Advantages of using PODS for moving

Renting PODS is an ideal way for many people, especially for long distance and cross-country moves. Perhaps the biggest advantage of using PODS for moving is the convenience. If you have enough space like a large driveway, you can have the container(s) delivered and picked up on dates that work for you. PODS personnel will then drive your packed container to your destination and deliver the container(s) to your new home, also on a date of your choosing.

Another advantage of PODs is that they offer storage service. For example, if you’re moving out of state for a new career opportunity, it might take you a few weeks—or even a few months—to find a permanent home in your new city. PODS will hold onto your container(s) for as long as you need and deliver them when you can move into your new address. Additionally, since PODS has partnerships with specialty movers like car shipping companies, they can help you coordinate some of the more challenging details of moving long distance.

Disadvantages of using PODS for moving

Despite the advantages of renting PODS for moving, there are a few disadvantages as well. One challenge that many people face is the amount of room available to them. While some houses have a driveway or a paved backyard that can accommodate the containers, this isn’t always the case for everyone, especially apartment dwellers and condo owners. If you don’t have a spot for your PODS, you might have to look into special permits and have the containers staged on the street—and that’s if your city and neighborhood will allow the containers to take up public parking spaces.  

A second possible drawback of using PODS is that there’s always a chance that your delivery could be delayed. If there’s any inclement weather or the truck runs into transportation issues, you might not get your containers delivered to your old home for loading or your new home for unpacking on the exact date that you requested.

Finally, in order to successfully use PODS for your move, you must be accurate with your home inventory. If you overestimate what you’re moving, you’ll be paying for a larger container than you actually need. And if you underestimate your inventory, it’s possible that not everything will fit. In fact, having an accurate inventory so you can choose the right size container is one of the most important factors of moving with PODS.

What PODS sizes are available?

PODS offers three different container sizes. Here’s a quick look at the options:

  • Small 8’ Container: This size is ideal for a 500 square foot studio home or a partial inventory, as it’s comparable to a 10’ moving truck.
  • Medium 12’ Container: About the same cubic footage as a 10’x10’ storage unit, this option can hold the inventory of most 800 square foot homes.
  • Large 16’ Container: Since these containers can accommodate about a 1200 square foot home, they’re ideal for three to four rooms’ worth of inventory.

Homes and their inventories vary greatly, and some people simply have more stuff than others. Be sure to create an accurate inventory of your home so that you order the right size, and keep in mind that your particular house, condo, or apartment might require more than one container.

How much do PODS cost?

One of the first steps in every move is budgeting for your moving cost. You’ll need to obtain a custom estimate from PODS and your local movers for loading and unloading, and there are a few factors that you should keep in mind as you budget.

Not surprisingly, the level and length of service will affect your PODS cost. The actual container rental price will depend on the PODS size, quantity, and how long you’ll need the container(s). Additionally, the further away you’re moving, the more you’ll pay in transportation fees.

Long distance moving can be an expensive undertaking. A good practice is to start requesting your estimates at least two months in advance if possible. This will help you appropriately budget—and give you enough time to learn some pro tips for using PODS for moving!  

Tips for using PODS for moving and storage

There’s a big difference between hiring one moving company to handle your entire move and opting for a container moving service. However, since interstate movers can be pricey, renting PODS or a similar container is ideal for many people.

Fortunately, you can have a smooth and cost-effective move when you rent moving containers. Here are a few tips that’ll help set you up for a smooth move with PODS:

  • Start planning at least two months in advance. Begin by obtaining estimates from local moving companies to load and unload your container(s), plus pricing for the container rental and transportation.
  • Use a moving checklist to keep you on track and help you keep all the details on your radar.
  • Hire a professional packing company to carefully wrap and box up tricky items like delicate glassware, fragile knickknacks, and heavy books.

Bonus tip: throughout the move planning process, give yourself a break! Moving can be stressful, so set aside some time to be happy and get excited about starting a new chapter in your life. Make a list of fun things you’ll do in your new area so you have a bunch of things to look forward to once you’re settled in!

Let the best movers in Chicago load or unload your PODS in Chicago!

Renting PODS for moving is ideal for many people, especially those moving long distance. And our team loves to load and unload storage containers! If you’re moving to the City of Chicago, we’ll handle the heavy lifting and unload your container(s) at your new home. And if you’re heading out of town, we’ll be happy to pack up your home and load it into your PODS.

Contact us today for more information on how we can help you have a great move with PODS!

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