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Pros and Cons of a DIY Move Vs. Hiring Professional Movers

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Moving is one of the most complicated tasks we will have to complete in life, simply because of the number of individual tasks required to get it done. There is a lot to plan and so many things to decide when moving, and it all begins with one initial question - "will I hire professional movers, or will I handle the move by myself?" There are many advantages and disadvantages to both options, and it is important to weigh all the factors involved before deciding on something. The following guide will provide you with some insight into which move is right for you.

Pros and Cons of a DIY Move vs. Hiring Professional Movers

Pros and Cons of a DIY Move

Pros of DIY Move

Affordability

  • By moving on your own, you will incur only the expenses of packing materials and perhaps a rented U-Haul or other rental truck
    • Moving containers are another great money-saving option (suck as U-Pack, PODS, or U-Box)

You Make the Schedule

  • If you are moving yourself, you can decide when you want to move without worrying about the company's availability
    • If something comes up that disrupts your plan, there won't be any cancellation fees for changing the day of your move

You Have More Control

  • If you are conducting the move, you have control over how your possessions are handled, how the truck is packed, and when the move takes place
    • You will make all the decisions about the best way to accomplish the move and protect your belongings during transport

You Can Avoid the Possibility of Scams

  • While most moving companies are reputable and reliable, some are looking to scam you out of your money
    • Moving yourself mitigates that possibility

Cons of DIY Move

It's a Lot of Work

  • The reason so many people hire professional moving companies is that moving is hard work
    • Not only do you have to carefully pack away all your earthly possessions in boxes, but you have to haul them out of your house and load them onto a truck

It's Physically Demanding

  • Lifting and carrying heavy boxes, furniture and appliances can be back-breaking work
    • Even if you enlist the help of a few strong friends, you are susceptible to serious injury

Lack of Experience

  • If you are not in the moving industry, chances are you don't know the proper procedures for moving heavy items, protecting your furniture, and loading or driving a moving truck
  • Inexperience will put you at risk for damaging your items or hurting yourself
    • It may also make your move much more difficult and time-consuming if you spend hours struggling to fit your most cumbersome items in the back of the truck

You May Miss More Work Than Anticipated

  • The added time of moving yourself will likely require that you take extra time off from work
    • While you will be saving money by doing the move yourself, you may be losing some by taking off additional days

Pros and Cons of Hiring Movers

Pros and Cons of a DIY Move vs. Hiring Professional Movers

Pros of Hiring Professional Movers

You'll Have More Time to Focus on Other Tasks

  • With the aid of professional movers loading, transporting, and even sometimes packing your belongings, you will have extra time to focus on the millions of other things that require your attention-caring for your children, preparing pets for the move, setting up utilities in your new home, and changing your mailing address.

You'll Have Less Responsibility

  • When hiring a moving company, you can relinquish responsibility to someone else and alleviate some of the anxiety moving inevitably causes
    • That way they oversee everything, and you don't have to worry about the little (or big) things

They Take Care of the Heavy Lifting

  • Movers know how to lift heavy items in a way that prevents injury or damage to the goods
    • Allowing professionals to take care of the physically taxing work will make your moving experience less stressful

They Are Experienced

  • Movers are trained professionals and know the best ways to wrap your furniture for protection, how to protect your floors and walls from damage during the move, and the most efficient way to position your belongings on the truck to conserve space and prevent a mishap
    • Hiring movers increase the probability that your move is pulled off without a hitch.

They Are Skilled at Driving the Truck

  • Maneuvering a large truck weighed down with all your possessions is a difficult task
    • Hiring movers eliminates this challenging responsibility for you

Cons of Hiring Professional Movers

It Can Be Expensive

  • Depending on the size and distance of your move, hiring professionals can be very expensive
    • Finding movers that are reputable and as affordable requires considerable research, which can become time-consuming

You Must Trust Them with Your Belongings

  • Many people find it very difficult to leave their most prized possessions in the hands of total strangers
    • Accidents happen, and if you would rather take the responsibility for your belongings then hiring movers might not be for you

You Could Be at Risk for Scams

  • While most moving companies are honest and reliable, there are some that scam customers out of their money, usually by offering a drastically low estimate and then hiking the price up after picking up your items
    • Preventing such a scam requires a thorough investigation of a moving company's background, which will take some time and diligence on your part

You Must Work Around Their Schedule

  • Life is unpredictable, and if you have an emergency that prevents you from moving on the day you booked your movers, you may be charged a cancellation fee for the inconvenience

The Bottom Line

The decision to move yourself or hire professionals is unique to your personality, needs, and the specifics of your move. If you are moving long-distance or you have a large home, a DIY move will be much more difficult. Also, if you have children and many other responsibilities to focus on, hiring a moving company will make the process a much easier and less harried one. However, if you are single, on a budget, have a small home or apartment, and just a few pieces of furniture to transport, a DIY move may be better suited for you.

Before making the decision, it is important to contemplate your circumstances and what is most important to you--safety, control, scheduling, ease, and cost are all important factors to consider when deciding if a DIY move or a professionally-handled move is the right move for you.

Katherine Broome  Posted by Katherine Broome on December 3, 2020

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