What’s the Difference Between a Storage Pod and Moving Truck?
Comparing and Contrasting Two Moving Methods
As we’ve discussed before, moving is legitimately one of the most stressful life events. The process contains so many different moving parts, and you need to keep track of all of them so your stuff and your family arrive safely at your new home.
Fundamental to the moving process is determining exactly how your possessions will be transported from your old home to your new one. In other posts, we’ve shared our tips for selecting a moving company you can trust, the size of moving truck you might need, avoiding moving scams, and more.
Since several readers have asked us about the viability of storage pods (a growing trend with the do-it-yourself crowd), we wanted to provide some information about this moving option and then compare it against the traditional moving truck.
The goal? For you to have the information you need to make the right decision for your move!
Storage Pod Basics
When you rent a moving truck – whether you drive it yourself or use a professional company – you only have the truck for that day. Securing a truck for that specific day means reserving it weeks in advance, and you still only have it for one day. This pins everything on you to have your entire house packed while still having those boxes all-around your house until Moving Day arrives.
When you use a storage pod, you typically have a big moving box for an entire month, which means you can pack up your possessions at a pace that better meets your schedule. With each room you pack up, you can move everything out to a safe and secure storage pod located right in front of your house.
This can reduce the stress you feel during the moving process because you won’t have to navigate a sea of moving boxes as they fill up your home.
Storage Pod Pros
Storage pods can be a great solution if you’re planning to pack up everything yourself, without the benefit of professional movers. Other key benefits of this moving solution include:
- Convenience: You decide when and how you’ll pack up your possessions
- Simpler packing: The pods are on the ground, which means you don’t have to navigate loading ramps
- No Driving: The container company picks up the pod and moves it for you.
- Simpler fee structure: Everything is usually combined into one up-front fee.
- Safety: You have the key to the container – not the moving company.
In short, storage pods offer a level of ease that moving trucks do not.
Storage Pod Cons
But they aren’t the perfect answer. Depending upon your situation, a storage pod might not be possible or feasible for you for a couple of distinct reasons.
- Location Dependent: Your Homeowners Association might not allow a storage pod on your street, yard, or driveway. And obviously, you couldn’t use a pod if you live in an apartment.
- Higher Costs: The convenience of the storage pod does mean it’s a more expensive solution, as you’re paying for a month (or more!) of using the pod, plus paying for the transportation.
Before you contact that storage pod company, you should check with your neighborhood (and neighbors) if you can even use a pod.
Moving Truck Pros
Moving trucks remain the best option for the cost-conscious do-it-yourself mover.
- Lower Cost: Because you’re simply renting a truck – no driver, no delivery, no-frills – you can keep your moving costs relatively low.
- Location Independent: You can use a moving truck no matter where you live or where you’re moving to, as long as you observe appropriate parking laws.
But for all that money you think you’re saving with a moving truck, you’re paying for it in other ways.
Moving Truck Cons
When you go the moving truck route for your DIY move, you’re taking the entire process into your hands – for better or for worse.
- Time-Sensitive: You typically have to do everything in a day – pick up the truck, pack it, drive it, unpack it, and return it. And if you don’t finish in time, you’re paying for the extra time you might not have in your Moving Day budget.
- Driving: Unless you’re experienced with large trucks or trailers, driving the moving truck might be the most stressful part of the day. They can be cumbersome to navigate and park, especially compared to your everyday car.
- Unexpected Costs: These include buying extra insurance from the moving truck company, any damages that might happen due to your lack of experience driving large trucks, and more.
The point is not to make you nervous about the options, but to give you as much information and perspective as possible.
The Choice is Yours
Ultimately, whether you choose a storage pod or moving truck for your move depends upon what’s important to you and what’s most feasible. For some people, you can’t even choose a pod because you’re an apartment dweller, while others don’t want the truck because they’re understandably nervous about driving a large truck.
Since Spark has had experience with both options, we wanted to compare and contrast them for you so you can make the choice that best fits your situation.
We hope your Moving Day is a success!