If you want a job done right, do it yourself?

I recently had an enquiry from a potential customer who had requested a quotation from me a few weeks ago and came back to ask a few more questions. She said to me that she had done some research on the internet and had prices from various sites for sourcing her own materials and hiring her own van, with the intention of moving her home by herself, with the help of a few friends. She then asked why my price was more than the costs that she had calculated.

I explained to her that the greatest cost involved in a removal is the cost of labour and so the easiest way to save some money is to employ friends who are happy to do a day’s labour without getting paid. If cost is your greatest concern, then of course, this is the way to go and I say good luck to you and I hope the future brings you prosperity so that next time you move you can afford a removal company.

However, this “free” labour doesn’t come without hard work.

Let’s start with the packing materials. I have seen many helpful box packages from various retailers with sets of packing materials aimed at 1, 2 or 3 bedroomed properties. At first glance these look quite cheap and likely to provide all your packing material requirements, however, from our experience you generally need about 3 of these packs to supply your actual needs. So in the end, you pay more for your packing materials than we would charge. Besides, if this option was so terribly cheap, then we would be sourcing our boxes from there too.

Next we look at the van hire. The biggest vehicle you can hire with a standard driving licence is a 3.5t van. Our vans are purpose built with a bigger body so that we can fit more into them, so we know that any standard 3.5t van that you can hire yourself will not be as big. We also have to remember that it takes skill to pack a van efficiently. You need to fit as much as possible into the van, whilst ensuring that once you close the back and start driving, the furniture and boxes won’t move around and consequently break. So you’re looking at doing a few runs because you won’t be able to pack the van as tightly or safely as men who have years of experience.

Finally, let us consider the man power. Our men are young and fit and can keep going for 10 hours straight. Even people who are regular gym-goers find a whole day of walking up and down stairs quite tough going. Also, you need to know the best way to lift things without hurting yourself and for two and four man lifts, you need to have a team of people who can work together well. There are also various techniques that make the job easier and safer to do and a myriad of equipment that is expensive to purchase or hire that we already have and your team of enthusiastic amateurs won’t have.

So in the end, if we’re quoting 3 men for 8 hours to do a job, you would probably need 6 people for 12 hours to do the same job as you won’t have a big enough van, the right equipment or a team who are as skilled and as fit as our men.

Some say to do a job right, do it yourself. We say, to do a job right, get an expert to do it.

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