A lot of people figure they can handle most things themselves, as long as they have the know-how. However, there’s a lot that goes into the average house-move that people don’t consider, and it can take a lot more work than people really anticipate. To that end, there are several ways to pull off the average house move. The easiest, though most costly way, is to hire a mover. The most time intensive, though it can be a lot cheaper if you do have the time, is to do it yourself. However, people don’t often consider basic moving costs, like buying boxes and renting a truck big enough. Then there’s the option most people end up using if they can afford it, is moving what you can, packing what you can, and hiring movers to get the rest. So today we’re going to compare the three different methods and look at some of the cost and work involved.

Should You Move Yourself or Hire a Professional?

1) Hiring Movers

Hiring movers is one of the easiest and quickest ways to move to a new house. You schedule a day and time for the movers to come, pack up most of your personal belongings, and the movers will do the rest. They can move all the big stuff, the small stuff, and the fragile stuff. What’s more, they have the equipment and expertise to move it all without damaging anything, especially that new big-screen T.V.

However, it does tend to be the more expensive option. Moving companies who have offices all over the country, allow you to fill out forms to get an estimate online. The price generally changes based on the size of your house, how much furniture you have, and how far you’re going to move. So, if you have a large house, this option may cost a bit more, but then again you may be able to afford it.

2) Do It Yourself

Moving yourself can take a bit of time if you’re moving out of a house. Mainly because, if you don’t have a large enough truck, it can usually take several trips to get everything packed and moved. In a house, where you can accumulate a lot of large items, such as lawnmowers, weed whackers, ladders, and, depending on how much you’re moving, a washer and dryer. No matter how big the bed of your pickup truck is, it’s unlikely you can move everything in one go. You’ll likely have to rent a truck, if you don’t have one of your own. U-Haul rents pickup trucks out for $19.95 a day (plus 89 cents a mile), but you can get hit with some serious fees if you’re not careful. If you’re moving out of a house, you’ll likely need something larger than a pickup truck. The amount of fees charged seems to changed based on which U-Haul location you go to, but some have charged U-Haul of purposely overbooking to make money on the extra fees.

What’s more, heavier items like a refrigerator, dining room tables, or a piano can take specialized tools, or simply an inordinate amount of brute strength to move. So, if you opt to not hire any movers at all, you’ll need a good solid cadre of friends around to help. Be sure to buy your helpers lunch!

3) The Hybrid Method

In my experience, the best way to move is to combine the ease of a moving company with the low cost and reliability of doing it yourself. This way the move can be knocked out in about a weekend, and you can move on with your life. This way, you pack and move everything small that you can. Clothes, dishes, books, paintings, and even small furniture like chairs and coffee tables, can all be taken in the back of a van if you don’t want to rent a truck.

Sticking to the weekend to move everything back and forth makes sure you have enough time to do so. Schedule the movers to come on the Monday morning, so that they can take everything else that wouldn’t fit in the back of an SUV. At this point, all the small junk should be gone already, so they’ll likely only need one medium-sized truck to take the furniture out to your new home. They save on trips and gas, and you save money hiring them.