What Is a Self Service Move and Who Is It Right For?

We all know that moving is expensive. One way to reduce the costs of moving your belongings over long distances is through a self service moving option. However, a self service move may not be the best choice in all situations. The best way to determine if such a service is right for you is to weigh the pluses and minuses before you finalize your moving plans.

For a self service move, a moving company delivers a truck or a storage container to your home. Over the period of a few hours to a few weeks, you load all of your belongings into the storage area. When you are finished, the moving company drives your packed belongings to your new home. You are then responsible for the unloading of all of the items.

In essence, a self service move is a compromise between a traditional moving service, in which movers load and unload your belongings, and a do-it-yourself move where you rent a van or moving truck to load and drive yourself. The costs of a self service move can also be considered a compromise between the often expensive full service movers and the cheap, but basic do-it-yourself options.

When is a self service move a good idea? First and foremost, in order to take advantage of a self service move, you need to be able to load and unload all of your property. The movers will not touch your belongings, so it is your responsibility to get everything properly moved, stored and secured within the agreed-upon time limits. Ask yourself several questions. Do you have enough people and time to move the belongings? Can you lift heavy boxes and furniture without injury? Are you confident that you can secure your belongings safely for the move? If the answer is yes to all of these questions, then a self service move might be the right choice.

Cost is another factor in a self service move. While the process is cheaper than a full service move, you are still paying for the cost of a driver, truck space and driving expenses. If you are moving large quantities of boxes and furniture over long distances, the self service savings can be impressive. For local or small moves, a do-it-yourself van or truck can be a much better – and cheaper – choice.

Self service moving also affords a few additional advantages. It offers much more flexibility with time than other moving options. With both full service and do-it-yourself moving, all moving times are scheduled well in advance and extended packing periods are not cost-effective. You move when the company comes or when you have your truck rental scheduled. With a self service move, you can arrange for a storage container to arrive at your home as much as a week or two in advance. This allows significantly more time to organize and pack your belongings. Self service moving companies also often provide for time during the move itself. If you need more than just the shipping time between your old and new homes, some self service movers are able to provide storage for that period.

A self service move can be an excellent and cost-effective option for moving your belongings. When moving, check with both self service and full service moving companies to receive an estimate, so that you can determine if the extra work required will actually save you money.