Moving Cross-Country? Find Out Whether You Should Ship Your Furniture or Buy New

Dawn M. Smith
Written by Dawn M. Smith
Updated July 12, 2022
Couple sitting on couch, moving into new house
Photo: / Adobe Stock

It may be best to ship your comfy couch, but forgo sending your basic coffee table

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Packing up everything you own and moving across the country can be … a lot. So, if you’re moving long-distance, you might want to consider shipping some of your furniture instead of lugging it down the interstate yourself. 

Here’s how to determine if shipping your furniture is right for you, or if you should simply offload that couch and buy a new one when you get settled.

How Much Does It Cost to Ship Furniture When Moving Out of State?

The cost to ship furniture cross-country depends on what you’re shipping, the method, and how far. 

Shipping furniture via a freight line costs between $300 and $800 per piece. But this depends on the furniture you’re moving—shipping a buffet table ranges from $400 to $500, while shipping a couch runs from $350 to $1,000

The cost of shipping furniture varies by company and location, so it’s essential to gather multiple quotes from local moving companies to compare prices and services. However, it’s your call whether your furniture piece holds enough sentimental value or functionality to justify shipping it over state lines.  

Shipping Furniture Pros and Cons ​

Shipping your furniture out of state can ensure all your favorite pieces arrive at your new home, from your cozy recliner to your nightstand. But sometimes, it can be more expensive to move your furniture cross-country, especially if it doesn’t have any sentimental or practical value.


  • Maintains sentimental value: If there’s an armchair that was passed through generations or an end table you adore, shipping it allows you to keep the special piece in your life.

  • Can offer practical value: There may be certain pieces you’ve grown to love and use daily. Shipping it can have practical value, especially if the piece would be difficult or impossible to replace.

  • Can save you money on certain items: A high-end couch that costs $2,000 will be less expensive to ship than buying a new one.

  • Allows you to have furniture when you arrive: When you get to your new place, it’s convenient to have your bed frame, couch, and dresser ready to go.


  • Can be more expensive for smaller or less-valuable items: For inexpensive furniture, like a $100 end table, it often costs more to ship than to replace.

  • Might not fit your new space and layout: After shipping your old furniture, you may realize it’s not the best match for your new space.

  • Items might not be insured or hold up well to a move: Some furniture might not be insured and older pieces could get damaged and lose some stability.

Buying New Furniture Pros and Cons​

Buying new furniture when you arrive can allow you to select pieces that fit the space, and it can even save you money.


  • Can save money: If you’re moving cross-country, buying new furniture is often more expensive than shipping, especially if your furniture isn't high-end. You can often find quality second-hand furniture in your new location if you're budget-conscious.

  • Might fit your new space better: Buying new furniture can help you find pieces that custom-fit your brand new space.

  • Nothing gets broken or damaged: There’s always a risk that your furniture and other special items can get damaged in a move.

  • Allows you to change your style: If you’ve had the same bookshelf or dining room table for years, take advantage of the opportunity to find something new that fits your current style.


  • Takes time to choose and buy: Shopping and selecting your new furniture takes time and planning, and you might not have the new pieces right away when you move.

  • Extra delivery and assembly costs: Keep an eye out for expenses like furniture delivery and assembly, which could make buying new furniture more expensive than expected.

  • Can be more expensive: Purchasing a brand-new $3,000 couch is likely more expensive than shipping your old one.

Is it Worth Shipping Specific Furniture?

An easy way to know if it’s worth shipping your furniture is to get an estimate from a handful of local moving companies. After you understand the cost range of shipping your furniture, you can decide whether or not it makes sense to ship heavy or oversized items like a sectional sofa or dining room collection. Keep in mind that shipping furniture via freight costs between $300 and $800 per piece. 

Ask yourself why you want to ship your items to help you decide if it’s worth shipping specific  furniture across the country.

  • Is the furniture a family heirloom? 

  • Did you recently purchase it? 

  • How much did you spend originally?

  • Does the item still have personal or monetary value?  

Should I Ship My Mattress?

If you’re wondering whether you should ship your mattress to your new address, take a hard, critical look at it. If the mattress is older than eight years, uncomfortable, or doesn’t fit your new bedroom, it's probably time for a new one. 

If you’re on the fence about shipping it, start by evaluating the mattress’s condition, age, and the shipping rate for its size. Then, conduct some online research to determine the cost of a new mattress, box spring, and delivery fees to your new house. Then, you can compare prices. 

Shipping Furniture vs. Buying New Furniture

Moving boxes and furniture in new home
Photo: moodboard / Adobe Stock

Whether to move or buy new isn’t always a clear-cut decision. Check out these key factors to determine if you should ship or move your new furniture based on cost, ease, and more.


Both new and old furniture can be stunning, depending on the style and your tastes. If you adore a piece of your furniture and think it will go well in your new space, it could make sense to ship it, depending on the cost.

On the other hand, buying new furniture gives you the chance for colors, style, and comfort you’ll appreciate in your new home.

Best appearance: Both


Finding a shipping company for your furniture takes time and research. To ensure you hire the best movers, check out at least three shipping companies or moving services to get quotes, talk details, and compare prices.

On the flip side, buying new furniture takes time to select, buy, deliver, and assemble. In the end, you might be spending just as much time either way.

Least time-intensive: Neither—both shipping and shopping require time and effort


New furniture will have its original durability and stability. Old furniture could get damaged or deteriorated during the move. But sturdy, high-quality furniture can survive a move with a trustworthy shipper who will take care of your items.

Most durable: Buying new furniture


Lower-quality furniture is often more expensive to ship than to replace, such as a $150 side table or a $400 couch. In this case, you're better off buying once you move. But higher-quality furniture can be worth it to ship, such as a $5,000 bedroom set.

Least expensive: Depends on the value of your furniture

Sentimental Value

Your dining room table might bring back memories of your grandmother and your armchair might elicit a sense of relaxation. Shipping your furniture can make sense for sentimental items and offer you value for years to come. 

Most sentimental value: Shipping furniture

Match for New Space

You might have an armoire that fits perfectly in your current home but won’t have a new location once you move. Buying new furniture can allow you to find pieces that fit your space, theme, and lighting.

Best fit for new space: New furniture


New furniture impacts the environment due to the trees, cotton, plastic, and other materials used, as well as gasses emitted during production. Some furniture companies have greener solutions and products than others.

But shipping your furniture isn’t without its environmental impacts, either. Shipping materials, truck parts and maintenance, and carbon monoxide emissions affect the environment.

Most sustainable: Shipping furniture

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