WEEK 6

Moving Options: Hiring a Moving Company vs. Self-Moving

The Benefits of Hiring a Moving Company

First and foremost, you won’t break your back moving all of your belongings on your own. On top of that, you’ll avoid the inevitable moving day stress with friends and family. Most importantly, when you leave it up to the professionals, you’ll feel peace of mind with insurance on your belongings and transportation with the right equipment.

Download Week 6 Checklist

How to Choose a Moving Company

Selecting a moving company to handle all of your belongings can be quite the process. But, believe us, you’ll thank yourself for the time and effort you save later. Especially if you have a lot of stuff, hiring quality movers can help ensure a smooth move – no lost boxes, broken tables or shattered stemware.

Save yourself the headache on moving day by choosing a moving company you can trust.

Research Your Moving Company Options

How to find and hire the best moving company:

a ruler
1. Embrace Word of Mouth

Ask friends and family for moving company recommendations and to share their experiences. Hearing first-hand feedback from someone you trust can make all the difference.

A green moving company truck
2. Consider Green Moving Companies

Limit the environmental impact of your move by choosing a green moving company. From eco bubble wrap and recycled moving boxes to fuel-efficient trucks, green moving companies offer an eco-friendly alternative to moving.

A customer service representative
3. Screen Moving Company Recommendations

Take a few minutes to dig into the background of your moving company list with some quick online searches. Refer to organizations like the Better Business Bureau, the American Moving and Storage Association or Movingscam.com for in-depth background checks.

A checklist
4. Request In-Home Consultations

During a consultation, a professional estimator performs a quick walk-through to determine the weight of your move. For the most accurate estimate, be prepared to explain which items you intend to move yourself and which belongings will be trashed or donated.

“When you’re moving, you’re paying to have items brought from point A to point B. Ask yourself if the item is worth paying to move. If the answer is no, donate it and skip the cost of moving it.”

Bonnie Joy Dewkett,

Founder, The Joyful Organizer

A checklist and a moving box
5. Take a Moving Inventory

A reliable moving company takes a thorough inventory of your items room by room. This should include everything from inside dresser drawers and kitchen cupboards to garage shelves and boxes in the attic. This detailed inventory list protects you from losing items and ensures an accurate estimate of cost.

A few appliances
6. Ask About Extra Fees

Be sure to ask the estimator about extra fees to move appliances or other large items. For instance, when moving to or from a two-story house or a high-rise apartment, stairs and elevators might result in surcharges.

A scale
7. Always Compare Prices

After in-home visits from a handful of moving company options, compare each of them side by side to find the highest quality option for the lowest price.

A hand making a transaction
8. Never Pay a Deposit Upfront

The only time you should make a payment is upon delivery. Trustworthy movers won’t ask you to pay cash or a large deposit before the moving service is completed.

A blank contract
9. Never Sign a Blank Contract

Make sure everything is in writing before signing. Verify that the estimate, extra fees and moving dates are all correct.

How Much Do Professional Movers Cost?

The average cost of hiring professional movers is between $90 and $120 per hour. When determining the price to hire movers cross country or for long distances, keep fuel and transportation costs in mind. For larger items like pianos or appliances, you might be charged extra fees. Be sure to ask your moving company about all of these factors to avoid any surprise charges.

A completed checklist

Items Movers Won't Move

During your in-home consultation, your estimator should run through their list of prohibited items with you, including:

Hazardous Materials

Hazardous Materials

Explosives

Explosives

Flammable Items

Flammable Items

Corrosives

Corrosives

Power Equipment with Fuel

Power Equipment with Fuel

Pets

Pets

Plants

Plants

Perishable Food

Perishable Food

Valuable / Personal Items

Valuable / Personal Items

Specialty / Especially Heavy Items

Specialty / Especially Heavy Items

When to Go With DIY Moving

A white ruler

For small-scale moves, renting a truck and self-moving might be an option. If you’re moving back home from a college dorm room, from apartment to apartment, or even into a starter home, you may not have enough furniture to fill an entire moving truck.

A few moving boxes and pizza

Do It Yourself Moving Tips:

  • Research multiple truck rental prices in your area.
  • Ask for help from friends and family in advance. Never move alone.
  • Practice safe lifting. Don’t hurt yourself.
  • Fill the truck with the heaviest items first.
  • Strap boxes and other items down as you load.
  • Wrap furniture in cloth to prevent scratches.
  • Consider wearing gloves, a back brace, or knee pads for safety.
  • Load boxes from the same rooms together.
  • Thank your friends for the help with a pizza.

Take this week to decide whether you need a moving company or if do-it-yourself moving will do the trick. Keep reading to prepare for organizing your home in Week 5.