Moving By the Numbers: A Sneak Peek Inside the Moving Industry in Canada and Beyond

Sneak Peek Inside Moving Industry in Canada

Did you know that the annual combined mileage of all North American U-Haul trucks, auto-transports, and trailers could move you to the moon and back almost 10 times per day, every single day of the year?

Or, if you prefer, you could travel around the Earth more than 177 times a day. Again, this would be every day of the year.

That’s a lot of miles on the road, and Canadian families account for a lot of those miles. In fact, as many as four million Canadians move every year. 70% of those moves occur during the summer months of June through September. Moving is a billion-dollar industry, and it’s not hard to see why.

Why Do Summer Moves Cost More?

It’s all about supply and demand. Since 70% of the people who are planning to move during the year schedule a move during the summer months, moving companies are busier. They know people will pay a premium to get their ideal move date, so they raise their prices to make up for the winter months when things drop off.

In fact, the demand is so high that a move during the summer months could cost you twice as much as it might in late fall or early winter. Depending on where you are moving and how much stuff you have, you could end up paying more than $10,000 to move during this peak time. Consider this when planning your move, and think about whether it’s worth it, or whether it might not hurt to wait a couple months.

Why Do People Move?

There are plenty of reasons to move, and Canadians have plenty to offer. When surveyed, it was revealed that the majority of people who move do so due to a family size increase or a job relocation. Here’s a breakdown of the most common reasons for moving:

  • Marriage or kids (42%)
  • Relocation for work (37%)
  • Family downsizing (empty nest, divorce, etc.) (20%)
  • Retirement (18%)
  • Income increase/inheritance (14%)
  • Old home needed too much work (14%)

Why, though, does any of this matter to you? Aside from the fact that it’s just interesting how people have so many similar reasons for moving, it can be helpful for you to understand the industry that you’re dealing with. Not only will it help you feel more informed, but it can help you feel less alone, too.

Seeing how many people move, and for the same reasons that you might be moving, can be a relief for some. It can offer peace of mind that you aren’t facing this alone. Plus, it will give you plenty of resources to use in making the most of your own move.

Other Interesting Facts

Did you know…

  • Canada Day is one of the busiest moving days of the entire year.
  • 28% of homeowners feel the urge to move approximately every five years.
  • 14% get the itch every single year.
  • Toronto is the Top Destination City for U-Haul
  • Census reports have shown significant growth in the Western provinces of Canada
  • Calgary was the fastest-growing metropolitan area from 2011-2016

Make the Numbers Work in Your Favor

There are over 500 moving and storage companies throughout Canada. If you are preparing for a move, you have a lot of options to consider. Fortunately, there are also tools out there that can help you. Now that you know more about the moving industry and moving in Canada, it’s time to use that to your advantage.

Start by utilizing a third-party service portal that can connect you with moving companies, self-storage facilities, and other moving services and businesses. This way, you’ll know that the companies have already been vetted for reliable service. Plus, you can get multiple quotes from one form within a matter of seconds. People often think it’s a big hassle to find and hire movers or moving services. The reality is that with the help of a moving services portal, you can find everything you need with ease.

Speaking of Numbers, Let’s Talk Budgets

When planning a move, a budget is a must. Putting it on paper and breaking it down piece by piece will allow you to have a clear picture of what you need to do and how much money you can spend on the move. You can keep track on paper if you want, but there are also a lot of great software solutions out there. A simple Excel spreadsheet could be effective. You can also find templates to download online that will allow you to customize categories, create charts, and more.

Your moving budget should include:

DIY Moving Budget

  • Truck, trailer, or container rental
  • Mileage and gas for truck rentals
  • Insurance for rental trucks (most standard auto policies won’t cover you)
  • Equipment and supplies
  • Food and lodging along the way (for long-distance moves)
  • Storage unit (optional)
  • Other expenses not listed here

Moving Company Budget

  • Moving company costs
  • Extra insurance for your property
  • Additional services and fees, such as for moving a piano
  • Extra (sometimes hidden) charges
  • Packing services (optional)
  • Moving supplies (if not included from moving company)
  • Storage unit (optional)
  • Other expenses not included here

These are very basic templates, but they will help you get a good start on your own moving budget. The way to get more out of your move is to be prepared. Having a budget, and actually seeing it on paper, can make all the difference. Plus, it will give you a chance to see where you can cut costs or maybe afford to splurge a little more if your initial quotes were frugal.

Take Advantage of Everything

Canadians move an average of five or six times in their lives. Whether you’re on your first move or your fifth, you can always benefit from getting to know the industry a little better. You don’t have to become an expert. You just have to know what you are getting into, and most importantly, know that there are resources out there to help you.


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Moving Tip

  • Get rid of the junk! Get rid of anything you don’t need or want, it will make packing that much easier and save you money.The more stuff you have will increase the time and or weight of the move and will cost you more money!
  • Do not move jewelry, money, coin collections, etc. Keep these items in your possession.
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