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Hiring movers vs doing it yourself

What’s better? Pros and cons

You sold your house and bought a new home! Yay!


Now you have to actually move your stuff. Boo.


There’s no way around it, part of buying and selling a home is the whole “moving thing.” It costs money, takes time and, frankly, is a lot of work. But it has to happen. And one of the first decisions you need to make is whether you should hire movers or do it yourself.


It seems everyone has a “moving disaster” story as well as an opinion on how to do it. But the reality is, the decision to DIY or not is unique to every situation and depends on numerous factors, including the distance and timing of the move, the number of belongings involved, safety, costs and availability of help.


So, if you’re thinking of making a move and not sure how to approach it, following are some pros and cons to consider.


The do-it-yourself move

Typically, when you move this way, you’ll gather boxes, pack them up yourself, load them into your own vehicles or rented truck and then unload and put away everything at the other end. It’s the least expensive option and straightforward but can get more complicated if distance and lack of free help are issues.


Pros:

  • You’re in charge of everything
  • Costs less than other options
  • You control the timeline

Cons:

  • You’re in charge of everything
  • It’s a lot of work
  • Rental costs and time invested can add up
  • Large items can be a challenge


If you’re leaning towards this option, ensure you have the right equipment and necessary help. Invest in good packing materials like duct tape, bubble wrap and wardrobe boxes. Does the rental truck come with a dolly and a ramp? And line up helpers well in advance, calling upon different people for different stages. Your mom is probably better suited to wrapping the teacups a few weeks prior to moving than lifting the boxes of records on the day. Factor in additional costs like insurance, gas and pizza and beer. Come up with a realistic plan and timeline.


Hiring a moving company

Professional movers can do everything from packing boxes and transporting items to unpacking belongings and getting your TV working at your new home. Of course, you pay for the convenience.


Pros:

  • Less work
  • Less stress
  • Belongings are insured

Cons:

  • Their timeline
  • They are in control
  • More costly


If outsourcing is starting to sound good, make sure you start by asking for referrals from friends, family and your realtor. You may even want to check with the Better Business Bureau to see if any companies should be avoided. Get detailed quotes from two or three movers, ensuring to ask about insurance and minimum charges. Find out whether packing materials cost extra or if you can do the packing part yourself? What about big or specialty items like pianos, electronics and appliances – how are they handled?


No matter which route you take, the day will come, and it will get done.


Even though cost is a big determinant, remember that your family’s safety and well-being is most important, so don’t push yourself too hard.


As always, if you have any questions about moving in or out of the Comox Valley, feel free to contact me or visit the blog section of my website. To find out more about Comox Valley real estate opportunities, view MLS listings on my website or follow me through Facebook.  

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