If you follow the Mississippi river south from Iowa, you’ll end up in New Orleans.
If you’re heading that way yourself, there’s one thing you should know.
DO NOT OVERPAY FOR YOUR MOVE!
That being said, the first question you should ask is:
How much will it cost to move from Iowa to New Orleans?
Quick Answer: The average cost to move from Iowa to New Orleans is $2,840-$4,200 depending on the size, route, and timing of the move. Hiring a professional moving company will be on the more expensive side. Renting a truck or using a moving container will save you money but also require a lot more work.
Get an even better idea of your particular moving cost using them moving cost estimator.
Ready to get a full grasp on the factors that affect the cost of your cross country move?
Let’s dive right in.
|Moving Company||Moving Container||Freight Company||Truck Rental*|
|Studio/1 bedroom||$1,720 – $2,988||$1,726 – $2,330||$1,425 – $2,025||$898 – $1,212|
|2-3 Bedroom||$2,650 – $4,100||$2,588 – $3,494||$1,853 – $2,633||$1,055 – $1,424|
|4+ Bedroom||$3,455 – $5,950||$2,928 – $3,953||$2,043 – $2,903||$1,168 – $1,577|
*Pricing above does not include lodging, gas, tolls, and other moving-related expenses.
Why Do The Moving Costs Vary So Much?
Moving rates are continually fluctuating. Many factors contribute to the price. Knowing when rates are the lowest may help you determine the best time to book your move.
Inbound vs. Outbound Demand
Inbound and outbound demand in your starting city and your new location affect the prices. When moving out of Iowa City, you should receive competitive rates because the population is rising, and fewer people leave the city.
The opposite is true in New Orleans. Fewer people are moving in. However, that still works in your favor. Many people are moving out of the city. That means that your moving company is likely to give you a better rate because it will be easier to schedule a job on the return trip.
Off vs. Peak Season Moving Expenses
You also need to consider the season. Just like hotels, airlines, auto rentals, and other seasonal businesses, movers charge higher rates during peak seasons. For the relocation industry, the peak season is the summer.
Kids are out of school, which makes the transition to a new city less hectic. There are other times throughout the year when you might run into peak prices. The most common peak pricing times are:
- Winter break
- Summer break
- Last minute
- Fall Holiday
- Federal holidays
Any time children are out of school; you can expect price spikes. You will also pay more to move on the weekend, holidays, or other times when people typically do not want to work.
Mileage and Gas Prices
The drive from Iowa City, IA, to New Orleans is 922 miles. The distance your movers have to travel to get to your new home adds to your moving cost.
Gas prices affect the price per gallon that the moving companies charge. While gasoline is reasonably affordable now, it is only a matter of time before the prices go back up. When they do, moving companies will pass the additional expense on to consumers like you.
Large, bulky items are the worst to move. So, many homeowners have their movers take care of it. However, heavy objects will cost you more than traditional furniture. Average fees are about 75 cents per pound. That means a 400 lb safe will cost you $300.
The rate you receive depends on what size truck you need. That is why rates are given in terms of the number of rooms you are moving. The more rooms you have, the larger truck you will need.
How Early You Book Your Move
Booking your move sooner rather than later will help you avoid last-minute rate spikes. You should not schedule your move more than eight weeks in advance of your move date. Rates may also be higher if you book months in advance.
Additional Factors That Affect Moving Fees
In addition to rate fluctuations, you need to include other fees and expenses in your planning. Here are some additional move-related costs you might encounter.
When you move, you need some materials. These supplies can add up, especially if you buy them from your movers. While you do need these items, you may want to collect what you can from your local hardware store if you are on a budget.
You can also collect boxes from local businesses instead of purchasing new ones. Here is a list of other items you may need:
- Storage space
- Moving blankets
- An appliance dolly
- Tie downs
Hiring Professional Movers
Having full-service movers pack, load, and transport your belongings for you removes a lot of your move-related stress. However, letting movers handle the heavy lifting for you will come at a price.
The rates charged for movers depends on how many movers you need. The average rates charged in the United Staes are:
- $105 for two movers
- $135 for three movers
- $155 for four movers
Paying for Peace of Mind
Personal property protection insurance costs around one percent of the total value of the items you are covering. So, many consumers choose to forego the coverage. Purchasing this additional protection can help in the event of a lost or damaged item.
Standard personal property protection included in most moving packages offers no more protection than required by law. In most states that regulate moving companies, the amount of coverage a company has to carry is only 60 cents per pound.
That is not even enough to replace a paperback book, let alone expensive electronics and valuable furniture. These policies cost around one percent of the total value of the items you are insuring. So, if you have an art collection and custom furniture for $150,000, your policy will likely run around $1,500.
New Orleans is a truly unique American city with historical sites, live zydeco music, world-renowned street parades, and authentic cajun cuisine. But, those are not even the most compelling reasons to move there.
Lower Cost of Living
The cost of living is a bit lower in New Orleans. The median home price is $178,500, and in Iowa City, the same home costs you $223,800. So, if you own a home in Iowa City, you should be able to sell it and purchase a larger home for the same price in your new town.
Culture and Amenities
There are a ton of things to do in New Orleans. The town is more than 300 years old, so there is a ton of history. However, these aren’t the boring stories you learned about in school. Famous pirates frequented local taverns, and the city is the setting of many ghost and vampire stories.
New Orleans is known worldwide for Mardi Gras, which the area has celebrated since 1699 when French explorer Pierre Le Monye d’Iberville found and claimed New Orleans. Each night during the festival season, the French Quarters comes alive with thousands of people in costumes, musicians playing jazz and zydeco music, and business owners and civilians on balconies throwing every color of beads you can imagine.
After the nearly six-week-long celebration ends, there are other festivals, professional NFL games, phenomenal seafood restaurants, and even legends of buried treasure in the area. So, you have more than enough to keep you busy.
New Orleans job force consists mostly of:
- Healthcare professionals
- Oil and gas worker
The job market is slow, so it is a good idea to secure a job before you move.
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New Orleans has undergone some significant changes over the past ten years. So, even if you have visited before, some of the most popular neighborhoods may not be the same today.
There are still areas that have not been rebuilt. Those sites hold excellent opportunities for investors. Old neighborhoods in the city offer quiet streets near the nightlife.
Lower Garden District
Lower Garden District parish sits on a bend of the Mississippi River, and the centuries-old trees that line the streets give it a majestic feel. As a resident, you enjoy the best of both worlds, modern amenities, unique shops, and phenomenal dining options.
Most of the residents are younger professionals who rent their homes. The median rent price is $1,250, and homes range from the $300s to the $700s.
If you are looking to buy a home, Audubon is a good place to look. Most of the residents are homeowners, and the median home sale price is $730,400. Rental prices are also higher than in other parts of town. The average rental prices are $1,538 per month.
The area also has local grocery stores, bars, coffee shops, a post office, and more. So, everything you need is a short distance.
Milan is a lesser-known neighborhood, but it is one of the more populous areas with 5,286 people. Around half of the residents, rent and the other half own their homes. Average home prices are in the mid $300, and the median lease price is $1,500. It is a tight-knit community where kids play in their yards while their parents sit on the porch.
You often see people outside in the evenings, and there are frequent community gatherings, festivals, and events. There are many young professionals in Milan, but the area is excellent for older people and families with small children.
Uptown is one of the safest areas in town, and it has excellent charter schools. Some parts of uptown can get pretty pricey. The median home price in Uptown, New Orleans, is $508,000. The rental prices are also higher, with average renters paying around $1,357 per month.
While real estate is more costly, Uptown is home to incredible music venues, unique clothing stores, and craft boutiques.