Decision Diaries Meets Furniture Fridays: When to Call for Backup

To DIY or not to DIY, that is today’s question.  More specifically, when do we move things ourselves, and when do we call in the pros?  Chris is relatively strong for someone with a tall, slender build.  I’m surprisingly strong for my very small size, but we aren’t the most compatible movers with each other because of the difference in height, arm length, center of gravity, etc.  We can handle most of our furniture, but there are a few key pieces that require a call for backup.  Who you gonna call?  Ghostbusters!  My dad.

My family moved enough times in my childhood/adulthood that I learned to carry my share of the load, literally.  My mom had back problems, so typically my dad and I carried things while she held the door open and ran pet interference so that animals didn’t get trampled  underfoot in the way.  Good thing my dad is as strong as an ox.  Paul Bunyan’s ox, to be exact.   When he was young, a tractor ran over his chest and he survived with only a few cracked ribs. He was recruited for college weightlifting.  He singlehandedly lifted a 700 pound upright piano into a truck (he used both  hands, but you know what I mean).  My daddy’s a strong man, but there’s one item he said he would never move again (understandably) as he nears retirement age: my baby grand piano.

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Folks, if you have seriously heavy and/or priceless items like antiques, pianos, solid wood pieces, and appliances on upper floors with stair access only, weigh the costs of preventable medical bills versus hiring professional movers.  You can even hire movers just to pack, pack and load, load, haul stuff downstairs, unload, etc., even if you plan to rent a moving truck to drive yourself and your belongings cross-country.  Trust me, there are times when it pays to pay someone else to do your work for you, especially when those people do this for a living.  Chris, my dad, and I will be moving all of our furniture, with the exception of my piano, which I am glad to say has already safely arrived at the new house, thanks to the careful work of Modern Piano Moving.  We shelled out a little over a grand (pun intended) for the move, but we had factored this into our budget for moving expenses, knowing it would be well worth it.

http://www.modernpiano.com/

There are a few other heavy/awkward pieces of furniture for which we needed my dad’s help, primarily because these are items that needed to go down a steep, narrow flight of stairs with a 90 degree turn, a low ceiling, two awkward railings, and an inconveniently placed newel post.    Even though I will miss decorating stairs with festive garland and lights for Christmas, we are so glad to not have stairs in our new house for a number of other reasons (self-moving being one of those!).  First in the lineup is our solid mahogany bedroom furniture.   Then there’s the elliptical, which gives me quivers just thinking about the time I tried to move it by myself and it landed upside down (cue imaginary gif of bad seesaw experience with lightweight me flying up on one end and it, with its heavy flywheel, banging down on the other).  We don’t recommend moving furniture alone.

Last but not certainly not least, there’s the evil twins: the washing machine and dryer.  You should have seen us get those things up the stairs in our townhome originally.  We literally rolled them end-over-end because there was no other way to get them up the stairs, and I’m still amazed that we succeeded. (We don’t recommend this method AT ALL.)  As we prepped to move them back downstairs, Chris and I had visions nightmares of these things picking up momentum and slamming clean through the drywall on the landing where the turn has to be made, hence why we called for backup.

Good news: We were able to move everything safely downstairs without damaging the furniture, the walls, or ourselves.  Now our furniture is all emptied and downstairs, ready for loading, which will happen in a couple of weeks.   We are all getting older, though, so time will tell whether or not we have to start calling in the real pros at some point.  Hopefully we won’t be moving again any time soon, though. *Fingers crossed*

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