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Full Service Moves vs. DIY Moves

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You're ready to move, but unsure whether you want to shell out for a full service move or to opt for a small move and take care of some of the responsibilities yourself. There is much more to this decision than simply weighing cost against convenience. Let's take a closer look at the pros and cons of both types of moves.

Full service moves

  • No heavy lifting, the movers will do that for you

  • No need to rent a truck, the movers will have a professional driver to take your belongings to your destination

  • You don't need to drive a moving truck yourself

  • Professionals are taking care of the move so silly mistakes an amateur may make are unlikely
  • You can relax as the physical part of the move is taken care of

  • Generally, all the expenses are paid in one lump payment
  • Full service moving is always going to be the most expensive option.

  • Hidden fees for moving heavy items or the inconveniencies of particular circumstances can be added to the already pricey initial estimate

  • You are fully dependant on the movers and must trust them to handle everything you own

  • Certain things that go towards the full service price, such as packing materials, may have been easier to do or cheaper to buy yourself

  • You still need to be present during the moves in order to orchestrate where furniture should be moved or how it should be handled

  • How much you should spend on moving insurance before the move largely depends on how comfortable you feel with the movers' attention to detail and care when handling your possessions

Small moves/Do-it-yourself moves

  • You can pick and choose what you are able to do and what you want to pay for

  • Usually small moves are substantially cheaper than full service moving

  • You can trust yourself with your most important possessions

  • You can move at your own pace and your schedule is more flexible

  • The cost of everything you need is more readily apparent to you since you pay for each part of the move one thing at a time rather than just paying one company a lump sum all at once

  • You don't need to worry about other people mishandling your belongings since you are the one packing, transporting, and placing all of your things into a moving truck and then driving it to your new home
  • You'll have to insure things individually rather than all at once

  • You are responsible for packing all of your own belongings

  • You will need to rent, load, and drive a rental moving truck which can come with a slew of problems itself

  • You likely aren't a professional mover and you may make silly mistakes with no one to blame but yourself

  • Literally all the heavy lifting is up to you. Even if you enlist friends to help you move, you'll likely have to give them food or drink as payment

  • You need to spend all of your time and focus on the move. You need to be there at every moment to both physically move things and to decide what to do next

  • You won't be able to move specialty items like pianos yourself and may still need to pay some experts to move them
Choosing a do-it-yourself move or full service plan largely depends on the type of move you are doing and how you feel about the moving companies available to you.

If it is a long distance move and involves a large number of items, you likely need a moving company to handle most of it. However, it is important to remember that "full service” means the moving company will take care of everything you can't do, but they will also take care of some things that you can do-and charge you for them.

If you mistrust most moving companies and like to research, do things yourself, get the best deal, and are physically active, a small move may be best for you. If you rather pay a little more to leave most of the physical move to the pros, a full service move is for you.

If you're ready to move and would like to compare some actual prices, reviews, and quotes from full service and partial service moving companies, then check it all out at!

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on June 19, 2014 - Moving Expert
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