Moving House: DIY v Professional Help
Moving house is arguably one of life’s most stressful experiences. Packing up your entire life and moving it from one property to another is a daunting task, and it can be very challenging knowing where to begin.
Like any big life event, moving house requires careful consideration and planning.
One of the most important steps in your plan will be deciding whether to hire a professional house moving service, or whether you’ll do it alone. Regardless of which option you choose, there are a number of tasks you’ll need to complete to get ready for your move. Here’s a handy checklist to get you started:
4-6 weeks before moving day
- Notify your landlord or property agent of your intention to move and confirm your moving day.
- Decide if you want to use a professional removal service, and if so, decide what level of service you want. Do you want a professional packing service? Or just movers? Once you’ve decided, start researching removals companies.
- Seek recommendations from trusted friends and colleagues, read reviews online, and once you’ve found some suitable options, ask for quotes.
- Book the company most suited to your needs. Make sure you book early so that you can get your preferred moving date and times.
- If you decide to do it yourself, ask if your friends or family could help you with the heavy lifting on moving day.
- Start de-cluttering! Moving house is the perfect time to downsize your belongings. Don’t waste energy moving things that you don’t really need.
- Prepare an inventory of everything that needs moving. Don’t forget about things that may be hidden away in the attic, garage or garden shed!
- Notify utilities companies of your intention to move, and organise for your accounts to be closed or transferred to your new property.
2-3 weeks before moving day
- Check your insurance and make sure the policy includes your moving day and covers your belongings for the move from the old property to the new one.
- Notify relevant companies and contacts of your change your address and arrange for your mail to be redirected.
- If you are packing yourself, gather any packing supplies you need – bubble wrap, boxes, tape and so on.
- Book a storage unit for any surplus belongings you wish to store rather than move to the new property.
- Consider what you’ll do with your children and pets during the moving process. You may want to arrange for someone to look after them during this time.
- Book a professional cleaning service (if required).
- Start using up any perishable items you have in your freezer.
- Get packing! Have a plan and do one room at a time. Start with non-essential items, and leave out any important documents or essentials until the last week. Make sure to clearly label all of your boxes, and to keep an inventory of what is in each box and where it needs to go (this is to help you or help your movers).
- Once most of your belongings are packed and you have a fair idea of the number of boxes/items you have, inform your moving company so they can determine the type of vehicle required.
1 week before moving day
- Confirm details with your removals company including arrival time and address of your new property as well as any access issues.
- Use up remaining food you don’t wish to take with you.
- Collect the keys for your new property.
- Give the property a thorough clean, and repair any damage.
- Have one final clear out and pack any final items.
As you can see from the list above, moving house is no easy feat! That’s why it is so important that you carefully consider whether you wish to engage professional help or carry it out yourself.
There are a number of pros and cons for either approach:
- It saves time: with the aid of professional movers loading, transporting, and even sometimes packing your belongings, you will have extra time to focus on the many other tasks that come with moving house.
- They are experienced: movers are trained in the best way to move and pack items and know how to protect your belongings and property during the move.
- They can handle the heavy lifting: movers know how to safely move heavy items to avoid any injury or damage to the goods.
- Less responsibility: leaving your move in the hands of professionals will reduce the stress on you.
- They know how to handle trucks: manoeuvring a large vehicle is not easy if you’re not used to it, and you could risk damaging the vehicle or your property.
- They can sometimes be expensive: using a professional service comes at cost. Finding movers that are reputable and affordable can take a fair bit of research on your part, which can be time-consuming.
- Requires trust: some people may find it hard to relinquish control and leave their most valued possessions in the hands of others.
- You have to work around their schedule: if you use professionals, there is less flexibility, and should you need to cancel or change at the last minute, you may incur a fee.
Do It Yourself
- Flexibility: you don’t have to fit around anyone else’s schedule; you can choose the timing and alter last minute if needed.
- Affordability: depending on the size and distance of your move, hiring professional movers can be costly. If you do it yourself, you’ll only need to factor in the cost of packing materials and hire of a van or truck. If you can borrow a vehicle, this could reduce the cost even more.
- You have more control: you can decide how you want your belongings packed, how they are handled, and how they are placed in the vehicle.
- It’s hard work: packing up your life is one thing, but loading boxes and furniture onto a truck, driving to your new home and unloading everything will take even more time and energy and increase your stress levels!
- Physically demanding: lifting heavy boxes and household items can take a toll on your physical well being and put you at risk of injury.
- Time-consuming: completing the move by yourself, even with some extra hands, will take more time than you expect.
- Lack of experience: if you’ve never moved before, chances are you won’t know the most effective and safe way to move items to ensure that both you and your goods remain in one piece.
So what’s right for me?
When making the decision whether to use a removal company or not, you need to carefully evaluate your own circumstances, and weigh up what is important to you. While using a professional service may seem like an expensive option on the surface, it has the potential to save you a lot of time and stress in the long run.
If you’re moving and think that you could benefit from a removal service, get in touch with John Ryan Removals. With decades of experience, the team at John Ryan offers high-quality house moving services in Melbourne. Give us a call today for expert advice and see how we can help make your move a breeze.
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