Should I Hire Movers Or Move Myself?
From your initial house or apartment hunt to the day you start unpacking, moving comes with a multitude of decisions to make.
On top of the stress of upending your life, you’ll have to decide where you’re moving, what relocation tips to follow, which realtor you trust to guide you along your home ownership journey, and how to pack and transport the items you’re taking to your new home.
One of the biggest decisions you’ll have to make is whether to hire professional movers or rent a truck and move yourself.
This may seem like an easy decision, but there are many factors to consider, and your final choice will ultimately depend on what resources are available to you and what your priorities are.
What Options Do You Have When Moving?
- Hiring Professionals – This usually means packing your belongings yourself and having movers load the truck and transport your stuff. Alternatively, you can opt for full service and have movers pack, load, and transport your things for you. This is typically the most expensive option, but it also can significantly reduce your stress and free up time to focus on other aspects of your move.
- D.I.Y. Move – When you D.I.Y. your move, you rent or borrow a truck, pack your stuff, load it on, travel to your new home, and unload everything yourself, likely with the help of a few trustworthy friends or loved ones. One of the best money saving moving tips is a D.I.Y. move. This is a generally a cheap option that may be easier if you have a small apartment, access to a large vehicle, willing volunteers with flexible schedules, and don’t mind making multiple trips between your old and new home.
- Shipping or Containers – A combination of the aforementioned methods, this option involves packing your belongings and prepping them for loading (or loading them on the truck or container yourself) before they are picked up and shipped to your new home. You can also opt for white glove service, which means movers will prep and load your furniture onto the truck for you, leaving you time to take care of organizing and packing up smaller items in your home.
So, how do you decide between hiring professional movers or renting a truck and moving yourself?
Here is our expert advice:
Things to Consider When Deciding Between Hiring Movers Vs. Moving Yourself
For some, the best method for moving is obvious, but it’s always good to take a look at your options before committing so you don’t become overwhelmed and regret your choice later.
Here are some things to consider when deciding whether to hire movers or move yourself:
- Timeline – Are you on a deadline? If you’re relocating for a job, you may not have the time to pack and transport your belongings while continuing to work and get everything organized on top of looking for a new home. If your schedule is more flexible and you have the physical ability to pack and load your belongings, moving on your own maybe easier.
- Amount of Stuff – If you’ve been living in one location for a while, the amount of items you have to pack up can be intimidating. If you have a houseful of furniture and years of belongings to box up, professional movers can pack and/or load it up quickly while you focus your attention on other things. On the other hand, if your mantra is minimalism or you plan to seriously declutter before you move, DIY may be the right option for you.
- Cost & Capability – If you are physically able and have friends or family available and willing to help you out, moving by yourself may seem like the cheaper option. But when it comes down to it, there is more than just the financial cost of moving to think about. The amount of time and physical effort you put into a move—finding and gathering supplies and equipment, decluttering and donating, packing, cleaning, loading and unloading the truck, transporting your belongings—plus the risk of injury or damage to your furniture while lifting heavy items can make the cost of hiring professionals worth it. If you’re already injured or have limited mobility, you should definitely hire movers.
- Distance – How far you’re planning to move is also a factor in what option is best for you. If you have a short distance to transport your stuff—such as within the same building or down the street—and the means of doing so, moving with the help of a few friends might be easiest. If you’re moving long distance, sending your belongings across the country with the help of a shipping company or moving service so you can arrive at your own pace and handle any additional details might make more sense.
- Monetary Value – If you possess a number of fragile, valuable, or antique items, paying for white glove service can be worth the added expense. Professionals have access to the best possible materials for keeping these items safe, as well as the knowledge and experience to pack delicate items securely. Additionally, if anything is damaged, professional movers offer insurance that can help mitigate the loss.
- Stress – Moving can be a very emotionally trying time, and sometimes it’s easier if you can delegate physically intensive but relatively simple tasks like packing and transporting to someone else. This allows you to focus your energy and attention on other important tasks, or simply provides an opportunity for some much-needed downtime.
Comparison Of Hiring Movers Vs. Moving Yourself
If you’re still not entirely sure which option is right for you, try this comparison:
You Should Move Yourself If…
- You want more control over how things are packed, loaded, and transported.
- You have reliable people who can help you with the move.
- You have access to all the supplies and equipment you’ll need to complete the move.
- You have a more relaxed timeline.
- You don’t mind road trips.
- You want to save money.
You Should Hire Movers If…
- You can’t or don’t want to do the heavy lifting.
- You’re moving long distance.
- You live in a walkup—why do that to your knees if you don’t have to?
- You already have a lot on your plate.
- You’re pressed for time.
- You have lots of large items or valuable antiques.
On The Move
There are benefits to both moving yourself and hiring movers, and the option you select will ultimately depend on what your needs are and what tools are at your disposal. Whichever choice is right for you, try to start making your plans early on. The more details you can pin down, the easier your move will be and the less stress you’ll feel.
Other Helpful Moving Resources
- How To Make Moving Easier via Sonja Pound
- 5 Tips For Moving To A New City Or State
- 5 Ways To Make Moving Out Easier via Hiscock Sold Team
About The Author: The above article “Hiring Movers Vs. Moving Yourself | The PROs & CONs Of Each” was written by Rachel Hazzard. Rachel is the content manager at TSI. Learn more about TSI’s moving services.
About Rochester’s Real Estate Blog: Rochester’s Real Estate Blog is owned and operated by Kyle Hiscock of the Hiscock Sold Team at RE/MAX Realty Group.
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