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What Size Moving Container Do I Need?

Post updated on October 25, 2023

We rent and sell BigSteelBoxes in a variety of sizes, but there are a few sizes that are most commonly used for residential moving and storage. The size container you’ll need depends on a couple of factors:

  1. The amount of space you have to place the container on your property.
  2. The size and number of items you’ll need to pack.

If you’re wondering how much furniture can fit into a 20-foot container, there are a few ways to estimate that. While the number of bedrooms and the square footage of your home are important considerations, it really depends on how much stuff you have to move. Most moderately-furnished 2 to 4-bedroom homes will fit in a 20′ BigSteelBox, however, not all 4-bedroom homes are the same size and may need an additional 10-foot container if it is heavily furnished or you’re moving appliances.

For example, if you have a 4-bedroom, 4,000 sq.ft. home with a games room, exercise room, media room and a 3-car garage, that’s not your “average” 4-bedroom home. So, while most BigSteelBox customers with a 4-bedroom home only need one 20′ BigSteelBox for their move, it’s possible you could need two moving containers if your home is heavily furnished.

Our BigSteelBox Storage Consultants are moving and storage experts, and they will be happy to help you choose the exact size moving container you will need. But, if you want to get a quick estimate for the size moving container you might need, try our online space calculating tool!

You can add individual items, or choose one of the ‘Presets’ to select the size of your home. Keep in mind that the calculator results are just a rough estimate, so it’s still a good idea to speak with your Storage Consultant to determine the size container that will work for you.

Moving Space Calculator for Moving Containers

Here’s a little more information to help you determine the size moving container you’ll need:

Home SizeMoving Container Size Needed
1-Bedroom Home10' BigSteelBox
2-Bedroom Home20' BigSteelBox
3-Bedroom Home20' BigSteelBox
4-Bedroom Home20' BigSteelBox + 10' BigSteelBox (for larger 4-bed)
5-Bedroom Home20' BigSteelBox + 20' BigSteelBox
6-Bedroom Home20' BigSteelBox + 20' BigSteelBox

What size moving and storage containers does BigSteelBox offer?

If you’re trying to decided what size BigSteelBox shipping container you’ll need for your moving or storage needs, and wondering how big each of our storage container sizes are, here are some more details to help you out:

8′ BigSteelBox

An 8-foot storage container is great if you just need a little storage. It’s perfect if you’re looking for an extra tool shed or space to store some seasonal gear that is taking up too much room in your garage. An 8-foot shipping container is ideal if you don’t have a lot of room on your property, as it won’t take up too much space in your driveway or yard.

Container Dimension Details:
Exterior dimensions: 8′ x 7’3″ x 7’5″
Interior dimensions: 7’6″ x 6’11” x 6’9″
Total cubic feet of storage space: 351.3 cu ft
Contents Weight Capacity*: 10,000 lbs


10′ BigSteelBox

The 10-foot BigSteelBox is used by customers moving to or from a smaller living space, like a condo or apartment. You can usually fit the contents of a moderately furnished 1-bedroom home in the 10-foot shipping container. This size is also great for a smaller-scale move because many condo and apartment buildings will only have space for (or allow) a moving container of this size on the premises while you’re packing.

A 10-foot shipping container is also a great size for a storage shed on your property or for use during a home renovation. Shelving can be added to any size container, which makes it even easier to store and access tools, equipment, household items, boxes and supplies.

Container Dimension Details:
Exterior dimensions: 9’10” x 8′ x 8’6″
Interior dimensions: 9’4″ x 7’8″ x 7’10”
Total cubic feet of storage space: 564 cu ft
Contents Weight Capacity*: 10,000 lbs


20′ BigSteelBox

The 20-foot BigSteelBox is our most commonly used size container for residential moving and storage. The contents of a typically furnished 2 to 4-bedroom home will usually fit into a 20-foot BigSteelBox, however, if you have a heavily furnished 4-bedroom home, chances are good that you’ll need an additional 10′ or 20′ container. For a fully furnished 5 to 6 bedroom home, you will probably need two 20′ containers.

This size container is also perfect during a home renovation if you need to store your furniture and other household items while your home is under construction. This size moving container will fit in most single and double driveways.

Container Dimension Details:
Exterior dimensions: 20′ x 8′ x 8’6″
Interior dimensions: 19’4″ x 7’9″ x 7’10”
Total cubic feet of storage space: 1,172 cu ft
Contents Weight Capacity*: 10,000 lbs

*All container sizes can hold more than 10,000 lbs of contents, however, in order for us to move a loaded container with our equipment, the weight of its contents must not exceed 10,000 lbs.

Need a Bigger BigSteelBox?

If you have enough room on your property to accommodate a larger portable storage container, and want to buy or rent a 40′ BigSteelBox, we have that size available too. Please note, however, that a loaded 40′ container cannot be moved. So, if you’ll need your loaded container moved to a new location and cannot fit everything into one 20′ Box, then renting two 20′ containers is the best option for you. Contact your nearest BigSteelBox Store for information on larger shipping container size options.

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