Packing a House: How Long Does it Take?

Don’t know how long it takes to get ready for a big move? Find out everything you need to know on packing a house with this informative guide.

Packing a house can be both invigorating and a nightmare. Between the breakables, the heavy books, and the endlessly full dresser drawers, preparing for a move takes effort.

Before moving day approaches, it’s a good idea to track your inventory and see where you stand. Whether your home is a tiny studio or a large 5-bedroom home, packing a house can take a long time—especially if you’re feeling less than organized.

For those who are wondering exactly how long does it take to pack a house?—this article is for you. In our informative moving guide, you’ll find everything you need to know before the big move.

We’ll help you figure out whether you can do all the work yourself or if you should go the route of hiring a professional. We’ll even cover all the best packing supplies to get you started as you tackle the task, box by box.

Learning from the Professionals

When you’re talking about packing, no one knows better than moving companies. So we took our cues from them, when they shared how long packing usually takes, if you sit down to do it all in one go.

Packing Time for an Average Person

The pros at estimated how long it would take an average person to pack up various size apartments and homes in this article.

Here’s their take on things:

  • Studio or One-Bedroom Apartment/House: A typical studio or one-bedroom apartment/house takes 1-2 days.
  • Two-Bedroom: A two-bedroom apartment house takes a bit longer, at 2-3 days total.
  • Three-Bedroom: A three-bedroom house ranges from 3-5 days.
  • Four-Bedroom: And the largest of them all, a four-bedroom house, would take about 4-6 days total of intense packing.
Packing Time By Box

In answering how long does it take to pack a house, Beltway Movers also had some interesting advice.

They broke their packing estimates down by size of the space, moving box numbers, and eventually, time.

  • Apartment: As moving experts, they believe that an apartment will require 30-40 cardboard boxes with 20 to 30 minutes a box.
  • Townhouse: For a townhouse, they estimate 50-75 boxes, for a total packing time of 15-20 hours.
  • Single Family Home: A single-family home is around 100-150 boxes with packing time clocking in at 50-75 hours.
Packing Time with Professional Movers

In the same article from, they estimated how long it would take to pack the house if you bring a professional moving company into the scene.

Studio: With a crew size of 2, the movers would take 2-3 hours to pack and 2-3 hours to unpack, for a total packing time of 4-6 hours.

  • One-Bedroom: With a crew size of 2, the movers would take 2-3 hours to pack and 2-3 hours to unpack, for a total packing time of 4-6 hours.
  • Two-Bedroom: With a crew size of 2, the movers would take 3-6 hours to pack and 3-6 hours to unpack, for a total packing time of 6-12 hours.
  • Three-Bedroom: With a crew size of 3, the movers would take 6-8 hours to pack and 6-10 hours to unpack, for a total packing time of 12-18 hours.
  • Four-Bedroom: With a crew size of 3, the movers would take 8-12 hours to pack and 8-12 hours to unpack, for a total packing time of 16-22 hours.
  • Five-Bedroom Plus: With a crew size of 4, the movers would take 10-12 hours to pack and 10-12 hours to unpack, for a total packing time of 20-24 hours.
When to Hire Movers

If you can fit a packing service or movers into your moving budget, you’ll reap the rewards of more free time and one less thing to think about for your big moving day. Here are some of the top reasons to hire professional movers.

When You’re Moving Quickly

In certain cases, moves can happen fast. During these times, the world spins, and the checklist for moving into a new house grows exponentially. If your moving timeline is short, consider enlisting the help of professional movers and packers to speed up the process. In the best of scenarios, you can sit back with your moving binder and a cup of coffee and get all the extra details checked off the moving checklist.

When You’re Moving Out-of-State

Moving out of state is generally more time-consuming and boasts a bigger to-do list than moving locally. Making a long-distance or international move increases the amount of travel time for your boxes. With your boxes in transit, it’s also more likely that they’ll shift around and possibly, that things may break. If you have fragile items or breakables, it’s always a good idea to make sure they’re packed perfectly, especially for long-distance moves.

When You’re Packing a Big House

Generally speaking, the larger the home, the more stuff there is. Big homes that have two, three, and four bedrooms, will take a substantially longer amount of time to pack up than smaller spaces. In addition to the bedrooms, you want to draft a packing list that includes everything from your outdoor storage areas to your upstairs linen closet. Add in the stocked garage, and you have your work cut out for you. If you’re busy and you have a big home, you might want to opt for professional help.

When to Pack Yourself

If you’re able to pack your belongings up yourself, doing so can be a therapeutic and rewarding process. There’s something fun about packing up a box in the old space, knowing that when you open it next, you’ll be on to a whole new adventure.

When You Have Time

If you have the gift of time, you can afford to take a leisurely stroll down memory lane. Take the time to pack up the holiday ornaments, the sentimental glassware, and the kids’ artwork. Many families choose to move during the summer so that they have more time to pack and go through their belongings. If you’re moving solo, and you can take some time off work, this might be a good time to go through your things, get packing, and move along.

When You’re Moving Locally

Moving locally is much easier than moving far away. It means you can pack your car up as many times as you need to and go back and forth between your old and new spots. If you’re moving to another location in the same area, you can also enlist the help of nearby family and friends to help with organizing and packing boxes.

When You’re Packing a Smaller Space

A smaller space like a studio or one-bedroom apartment is less-time consuming and often less stressful than packing up a larger home. With a small-sized space, you’ll typically need fewer boxes, less packing material, and less help overall.

Tips on Packing Supplies

If you’re packing a house on your own, make sure you have all the necessary packing supplies. Whether they bring their own or expect you to provide any packing material is also something to discuss with your packing service and moving company.


When it comes to boxes, go for a variety. Heavy items should be put in smaller boxes, while a large box or wardrobe box is a great place for clothes. As long as they’re sturdy, cardboard boxes will do the trick. You can also go the route of plastic boxes or bins.

Packing Material

From bubble wrap and packing paper for breakables to saran wrap for things that leak, make sure you have all the appropriate packing materials before you embark on packing a house.

Packing Tape

When it comes to packing tape, go for the good stuff. High-quality packing tape will make your life much easier and will ensure that your boxes don’t fall apart mid-move. It may be tempting to opt for those inexpensive rolls of tape at the dollar store, but spend a little more for quality here.

Trash Bags

Trash bags and plastic bags are good to have on hand during the packing process. You can use them for smaller items and clothing to save space. They’ll also mean fewer boxes and less packing tape, which is always a bonus. Plus, whether you’re cleaning out the old house or tidying up the new one, having extra trash bags and plastic bags on hand is always necessary.

The Easy Alternative: Stay with Zeus

If your brain is spinning with what to do before moving, there’s one way to cure the pre-move anxieties and keep things simple. Whether you’re in between places or simply looking to throw your stuff in storage and try something exciting, Zeus may be the answer you’ve been searching for.

At Zeus, we offer all the comforts of home, but we keep things easy, so you don’t even have to lift a finger. Our modern long term rentals come fully-furnished with lightning-fast WiFi, kitchen basics, and self-check-in. Whether it’s a studio in the city or a single-family home with a yard, we’re certain we can help you find the perfect fit.

The only thing you need to pack is a personal bag with your toothbrush, clothes, and your favorite book. We’ll have the rest covered.