Moving From Los Angeles to Portland: Movers and Cost

Quick Answer: When relocating from Los Angeles, CA, to Portland, OR, your moving costs will range from $877 to $9,500. The exact figure that will appear on your contract will depend on the total volume of goods to be transported, when you choose to move during the year, the method of moving that you opt for, and a few other factors that we’ll discuss below.

In 2018, California lost about 661,026 people through migration according to the Census Bureau. Almost half of those people, 312,000 of them to be exact, were from Los Angeles County. Of the 661K people that left CA, 50,109 migrated to Oregon, with the lion’s share settling in Portland.

Buckle up as we take a closer look at why people are moving from Los Angeles to Portland, what the moving costs are, who the best long-distance movers are, and more!

Here are some other articles that might help you plan your move:

  • Best Los Angeles to Portland movers: The long-distance moving industry is full of scammy movers, and when all of your belongings are at stake, don’t take chances.
  • How much will your move cost?: This cost calculator will provide an immediate calculation of what your move should cost. Just plug in your moving dates, the size of your move, where you’re moving to/from, and let the calculator do the rest.
  • Consider moving containers: Need a more budget-friendly option? With these companies, you load, and they drive! These are the best moving container companies.
  • Best car shippers: Moving your car? Use a company that prioritizes professionalism, cares for your vehicle, and is experienced.

How much does it cost to move from Los Angeles to Portland?

Below, see the different moving estimates you are likely to end up with. The table summarizes moving estimates for relocating from Los Angeles to Portland during the mid-July peak season and compares different household sizes against different moving options.

If you choose to move during the off-peak season, you are likely to enjoy estimates that are lower than what you see below.

Home Size Moving Company Moving Container Freight Company Truck Rental
Studio-1 Bedroom $2,525 – $5,800 $1,726 – $2,330 $1,235 – $2,025 $877 – $1,212
2-3 Bedroom $3,020 – $7,250 $2,193 – $3,494 $1,663 – $2,633 $923 – $1,424
4+ Bedroom $4,950 – $9,500 $2,928 – $4,369 $2,043 – $2,835 $1,168 – $1,705

Source: Our moving cost calculator

Please note: The costs in the table above are not guaranteed. Nor are they exhaustive. Based on the terms of your particular move, you may have additional or subtractive costs. Please discuss all the possible fees with your mover so as to get the actual cost you will be expected to pay.

Who Are The Best Los Angeles to Portland?

Company Price Vendor Type Quoting options Storage Minimum Move Size
American Van Lines $$ Broker Phone/virtual estimate Yes, free 30 days 1 bedroom
Safeway Moving $$ Carrier/Broker Phone/virtual estimate Yes, free 30 days 1 bedroom
Compass Van Lines $$ Carrier Phone/virtual estimate Yes 1 bedroom

Why do moving costs vary so much?

Looking at the table above, what you see are price ranges between two varying amounts. We are sure you’d love to get an exact figure just for you. Right?

The reason why the table above shows price ranges and not a fixed figure is the different factors that come into play when determining moving costs. The bottom line is that your long-distance mover will factor in the distance to be covered and how much furniture they’ll need to haul. Each customer’s household goods will weigh different and require to cover a unique distance, even if it’s to the same town.

If you choose a moving company, the setup of one’s property also matters; while one person lives on a single-level unit, the other lives on the third floor and may incur a surcharge as a result. Additional options such as packing and unpacking will also add to your bill.

Other factors that cause moving costs to vary:

When you ask a moving service for a moving quote so that you can figure out what your LA to Portland move will cost, these additional factors will directly determine if you will pay more (or less) once the basic factors have been accounted for:

Inbound versus outbound ratios

This is where movers look at whether more or fewer people are traveling to a certain location. This allows them to gauge the availability of supply (moving trucks and moving staff). If a certain route is busy, the costs tend to go up.

Moves out of LA surpass those heading into LA. In Portland, OR, there’s just a pinch more people moving in compared to those moving out of the city.

So what’s the verdict? The LA – Portland route is busier than average so that will nudge moving costs up slightly.

Peak moving seasons

Most people across the country move during summer when the weather is great and schools are closed. This swarm of moves makes it a very busy time for moving service providers. As such, due to demand and supply forces, moves scheduled for summer are bound to cost more than those taking place during other less-busy times of the year.

Weekends & public holidays

Weekends and public holidays are other factors that will impact your moving charges. If your move falls on either a weekend or a public holiday, expect to pay a little more for the service. The opposite plays as well. If you move on a weekday that is not associated with any public holiday then expect to pay just the standard rates – or less.

Major events (sports, weather, festivals, etc)

There are many major events sprawled across the calendar. There are sporting events, music festivals, state fairs, and even weather events. Do you know if any of these fall on your moving day?

Such events or particularities could affect your move by raising rates due to labor shortages, steep accommodation costs, higher fuel costs, etc. They could even prolong the moving days due to traffic.

Events during peak moving season in Los Angeles that could affect your move:

  • LA Film Festival – June
  • LA Pride Festival – June
  • July 4th Fireworks – July 4th
  • Anime Expo – July

Events during peak summer in Portland, Oregon, that could affect your move:

  • PedalPalooza – June
  • World Naked Bike Ride – June
  • Oregon Brewers Festival – July 4th
  • Waterfront Blues Festival – July

Get your own personalized estimate

Find out how much your Los Angeles to Portland long-distance move will cost.

Use our FREE moving cost calculator and see what your move will cost you based on your household size, location, and date.

Why are people moving from Los Angeles to Portland?

So why are so many people leaving Los Angeles? And why are so many of those movers heading to Portland? Do they have the same reasons as you? Let’s take a look below.

Why people are moving out of Los Angeles:

Since 2016, California’s population growth has dropped gradually. In the last decade alone, California lost about 750,000 people to migration. In 2017 alone, CA had a net domestic loss of about 140,000 people. Therefore, it is no surprise that Los Angeles actually tops the list of the cities that lose the most number of people due to migration to other areas.

People are leaving Los Angeles mainly because of:

  • High housing costs.
  • Cost of living
  • High taxes (property taxes and business taxes).
  • Search for employment.
  • The rising homelessness situation.
  • Political reasons.

Why people are moving to Portland

According to the US Census Bureau, Oregon had a net domestic migration of 181,252 people between 2010 and 2017. Between 2018 and 2019 alone, Oregon gained about 26,000 more people than the number that left. So, why Portland?

People are moving to Portland because of:

  • Lots of employment opportunities.
  • Great weather – 4 full seasons each year.
  • Great outdoors for skiing, hiking, biking, driving, camping, and more! Portland has mountains, forests, parks, trails, and lakes.
  • Laid back, small-town feel.
  • Low crime levels.
  • Affordable cost of living.
  • Great food and local beer.

Why people are leaving Los Angeles for Portland, OR:

California had a net loss of over 200,000 people between 2018 and 2019. And a good chunk of the people that have been making a beeline for Oregon (mostly Portland) is from Los Angeles. Why is this so?

People are leaving LA for Portland, OR, mainly because of:

Lots of job opportunities

Many corporations and tech companies are setting up here. Examples include Nike, Adidas, Intel, and IBM.

Small-town vibes

LA is busy and overly “hip”. Life in Portland is a lot simpler and a tad traditional. It’s quieter, the people are more relaxed, and life moves a little slower here.

Zero sales tax

California has a sales tax rate of 7.25%. That is money you won’t pay in Portland because Oregon has zero sales tax.

Affordable housing

It is no secret that housing costs in LA are through the roof. A major attraction for people relocating north from LA is the lower cost of housing. The average rent and mortgage prices in Portland are $1,400 & $ 460,000 while in LA they’re $2,100 & $750,000 respectively.

Lower cost of living

Overall, it is approximately 12% cheaper to live in Portland when you’re from LA. The biggest cost gains you’ll enjoy are in housing and entertainment.

What are some of the best places to move to in Portland?

As we hinted earlier, Portland is an amazing place to live in. It was voted one of the best cities for millennials a little while back, it has some of the lowest crime in the nation, and it’s a wonderful place to start a family. The outdoors are amazing too; between biking, boating, hiking, climbing forest trails, and skiing in the winter, you’ll be lost for options.

Some of the best places to live here include:

Pearl District

Pearl District is located in downtown Portland, right on the waterfront. Once an old railway town, the Pearl is now one of the hottest locations in Portland. You can go for chic BoHo historical buildings that have been recently updated, or you can pick one of the many modern condos coming up.

There are lots of options when it comes to eating out, local beers, shopping, and good food. The Pearl is also the best neighborhood in the city for walking and biking.

South Waterfront

South Waterfront is located south of downtown, along the Willamette River as you head to South Portland. It’s an amazing location, especially if waterfront views are something you’d love. Here you’ll find lots of new and refurbished condos and apartments with breathtaking views of the Willamette. If living here, you’ll also enjoy refreshing walks and bike rides along the river.

Arlington Heights

Arlington Heights is located west of Portland. It is surrounded by Washington Park which boasts the Oregon Zoo, the Japanese garden, Hoyt Arboretum, and other attractions. This is a quiet neighborhood with a smaller population but it has all the fine amenities you’d need for your entertainment and shopping sprees.

The park areas and the good schools here make Arlington Heights a great pick for young families.

Northwest District

The Northwest District is a large metro area to the northwest of Portland. It’s tucked between Pearl District to the East, Goose Hollow to the south, Willamette River to the northeast, and the Northwest Industrial District to the, well, northwest. It comprises mainly Nob Hill and Willamette Heights neighborhoods.

Northwest District puts you within walking distance to downtown Portland, the lake, and Forest Park. The neighborhood has a lot of history and the busiest streets here have storefronts and boutiques stocked with everything you’ll need.

Nob Hill

Located in the northern part of the city, across the Willamette River, and just next to the Pearl District, Nob Hill is a buzzing neighborhood with lots of shopping and dining options. It’s an upscale neighborhood so property prices here are higher than what you’ll find in the other areas on this list.

Nob Hill is close to Couch Park, Providence Park, the Japanese Garden, and Oregon Zoo. So you’ll never lack fun outdoor activities for you or the entire family.

Sellwood – Moreland

Sellwood-Moreland is located east across the river but still within close proximity to Portland. It’s a lively neighborhood with all the amenities you may need – from bars and cafes to stores and restaurants. There are great views of the river and the forest here. You will also find lots of housing options so there’s something for everyone.


And there you have it.

If you are planning to relocate from Los Angeles, CA, to Portland, Oregon, you now have an idea of what your moving costs might be, as well as what you can expect north in Portland. You also now know that, besides moving companies, you have other viable and cheaper alternatives to explore. That is, moving container companies, truck rentals, and freight companies.

From us here at moveBuddha, we wish you the best of luck with your move to the City of Roses!

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