Moving Companies Orange County to San Francisco

Moving from Southern California to the Bay Area may involve staying in the same state, but the locations are very different. The move from Orange County to San Francisco is a significant change. To ensure a smooth transition to your new home, you need to find the right moving company to partner with. Whether you are a frequent mover or a novice, you can find the right vendor to handle your long distance move and help you get settled.

How do I choose a mover for a job in California?

Moving companies doing intrastate work in California (local or long-haul) are regulated by the Bureau of Household Goods and Services, similar to the way that interstate movers register with FMCSA, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. Both agencies provide consumers with protection against moving fraud and help them to identify reputable companies to hire. You can verify that the mover you are considering is correctly licensed in California by checking on the “License Search” button on the BHGS website. You will also find some valuable resources there to assist you in the selection of a vendor.

In California, moving companies must complete a visual inspection of the goods that you need to move before they can submit a quote for the service. The estimate must be written—oral or online rate quotes are not valid within the state. Consumer advocates recommend that you interview and obtain estimates from at least three moving vendors. This action serves two purposes. First, you have the opportunity to compare the estimates, and second, you can determine whether the company is one that you can trust with your household goods.

The estimate must be a “not to exceed” price for your household move. That means that the moving company gives you a written price, which is the most you will pay unless you change the move parameters by requesting more services. In that case, the mover must supply you with a change order. The vendor cannot create a change order just because they underestimated the weight or the time needed to complete the move. If you engage the company three or more days ahead of the move date, they must also give you a copy of their moving services agreement (often called a tariff) and two California documents. One is called Information for Persons Moving Household Goods (within California), and it details the rules around estimates, inventories, agreements, liability, and claims.

How much will it cost to move from Orange County to San Francisco?

Even though this move is not cross country, it probably won’t be cheap. A long-distance move is based on weight, and the average three-bedroom home has contents that weigh around 7500 pounds. An average is just that, with everyone being individual in how much stuff they collect and how much they want to move. If you have a small apartment and lightweight, modern furniture, your move will be more affordable than it will for someone moving a big house full of massive antiques.

Move costs vary a lot, so averages aren’t always useful. The average price of a move from Orange County to San Francisco is around $2,000, but that doesn’t distinguish between a small move where someone might only be moving a few items and a complete house with full-service movers and packers. The more services you want the moving company to take on for you, the higher the cost of the move. Some things you can choose, like packing, but others you may not be able to control. Here are some examples:

  • Packing service. Packing is one of the most common add-on services people ask for, and there are pros and cons to paying the movers to do this part of the job. It certainly makes a move more manageable for you—just let the professionals come in and take care of everything. They can pack your closet into those handy wardrobe boxes, put your linens into large boxes, and wrap your dishes and glassware safely while you relax or even attend to other matters elsewhere. If you have valuable items, consider having the movers pack those, since they know how to best prepare fragile things for transport. Also, if you pack something that is damaged while being moved, the mover won’t be liable for the damage unless the box or container is also damaged. If they packaged it, the damage is their responsibility. The downside of engaging the movers to pack for you is that they will pack everything—no sorting, no tossing things you no longer need. Moving is an excellent opportunity to declutter, and packing is the ideal moment to accomplish that task.
  • Storage. You may need temporary storage of your shipment if you are moving into a new home that is not ready when you need to vacate your former residence. One reason might be that you aren’t sure which neighborhood you want to live in when you move to San Francisco, so you choose a temporary housing solution and get to know the area. Or it could be that you are renovating a home, and the construction encounters delays. For whatever reason, you may need to have your shipment transferred into short-term storage if you cannot accept delivery when it arrives.
  • Stairs, elevators, and parking. These obstacles to loading and unloading are among the things you can’t control but may still have to pay extra for. When they are part of the layout at the home you are leaving; the moving company will advise when you do the walkthrough to create the inventory and estimate. It is possible that the conditions at the destination may be unknown until the delivery takes place so that some charges may be added at that time.

What happens if something is lost or damaged during the move?

It is essential to think about protecting your possessions before you start the moving process. Check with your homeowner’s or renter’s insurance provider, but those policies usually don’t cover incidents during a move. The mover has basic coverage included in its prices, but you will probably find that the protection level is inadequate. This basic coverage level only allows for reimbursement of $0.60 per pound, by item or carton. That means that the loss of a 20-pound item (like your flatscreen television) will only recover $12.00, which is not sufficient. Your mover will offer you two higher coverage levels: Actual Cash Value and Full Value. The difference between the two is that actual cash value is the current market value (depreciated) while full value covers the replacement cost, subject to deductibles.

The mover’s estimate will specify the separate charge for these coverages, and any exclusions or deductible amounts, as well as the total declared value of the shipment. Any individual items of “extraordinary value” (defined as over $100 per pound) should be listed individually on the inventory with a value. It would be best to keep possession of money, jewelry, financial documents, and other essential personal items.

When you receive your delivery, examine the goods as promptly as possible to determine whether you need to file any claims for loss or damage. Before you sign a delivery receipt, check the document’s language and ensure that it does not state that everything is undamaged and accounted for unless you have already had the opportunity to review the shipment for anything lost or broken. If the receipt says that you have examined the delivery contents, strike that portion out (and initial the strikethrough) before signing. While you should file a claim as soon as you can, you have nine months from the time of the delivery to do so.


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