How Do Labor-Only Movers Compare To Other Moving Services

How Do Labor-Only Movers Compare To Other Moving Services

A woman sitting on a chair surrounded by cardboard boxes

Moving can be a stressful event, especially when you’re trying to tackle a move by yourself. Sometimes you may need to enlist some help with your move but hiring a full team of movers can get expensive quickly. Do you ever wish you could just hire movers without a truck? Labor-only moving services are an alternative option to traditional full-service movers that will allow you to do just that.

This article will serve as a guide to the ins and outs of labor-only moving services, from the pros and cons of hiring labor-only moving services, to where to rent moving supplies, to the frequently asked questions about labor-only moving services.

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What Are Labor-Only Moving Services?

Labor-only moving services provide exactly what the name implies, just the labor itself for the move. Everything else, such as the moving truck and supplies (like furniture pads, tie-down straps, or dollies) you will need to supply yourself, though occasionally certain items like tools and lifting straps can be provided upon request. Additionally, the responsibility to physically pack your items into boxes will fall onto you. Essentially, you will be hiring just the movers, without a truck.

Packing jeans into box for labor-only movers to pick up

Pros of Labor-Only Moving Services

There are many benefits to hiring labor-only moving services, such as affordability, more control in your move and ease of mind knowing you will have help in the move.


The major draw to labor-only moving services is the affordability of the service. With labor-only moving services you will be paying simply for some assistance with the heavy lifting of the move, meaning you will be saving money by packing your items as well as providing the truck and other supplies yourself.

More Control

Full-service movers will oftentimes come into your home and pack your belongings for you. While some people may prefer this, many people would rather handle packing their items themselves. This means they only pay the moving company to physically move the boxes into and out of the moving truck. While hiring labor-only moving services requires more of a commitment on your end to packing the items into boxes, you also have the advantage of having your personal belongings packed with care.

Ease of Mind

Moving can be immensely stressful, and even dangerous if you attempt to move heavy items or boxes on your own. While hiring movers can be expensive, injuring yourself during a move could be even more expensive in the long run. Taking the time to hire labor-only moving services will ensure you can rest easy on the day of the move knowing you will have help with these heavy items and boxes.

100 US dollar banknotes showing expenses of alternatives to labor-only moving like full-service moving

Cons of Labor-Only Moving Services

While labor-only moving is a great option for a moving service, it may not be for everyone.

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Will Still Be More Expensive Than on Your Own

While this may seem obvious, choosing to move on your own will certainly be less expensive than if you were to hire labor-only moving services. However, labor-only moving services are cheaper than hiring out a full-service moving company. Additionally, if you only have a few small items that you need to move, many people choose to enlist the help of friends or family in their move. Just be cautious, as you may risk injuring yourself or others if attempting to move heavy items without the help of professional movers.

Where to Rent Items

When you hire a labor-only moving service, you are essentially hiring the movers without a truck. This means you will need to rent or buy certain items, like a moving truck, dolly, boxes, or other supplies.


There are many companies that offer great rates for renting a moving truck for the day. Brands such as U-Haul, Penske, and Budget all offer competitive rates, starting as low as $19.95. Paying additional to rent a truck after paying for a moving service may seem counterintuitive. However, hiring labor-only moving services and renting a truck is still cheaper than hiring full-service movers.

Other Supplies

Most moving supplies such as packing tape, bubble wrap, and boxes are available for purchase at any home improvement store. Make sure you have the proper equipment, such as sturdy boxes and durable bubble wrap. Ensuring all valuables and breakables are protected allows your move to be seamless and stress-free. Other tools that may be needed for your move, such as a dolly, are also oftentimes able to be rented out by stores by either the day or hour. You’ll want to make sure you have everything you need to help you and your labor-only moving service move heavy boxes or appliances to avoid the risk of injury.

Man packing boxes using acrylic packing tape for labor-only movers

FAQs about Labor-Only Moving Services

Should I Tip My Movers?

While tipping your movers isn’t required, most labor-only moving services like UniMovers, pay their employees by the hour. This means that tips are always welcomed and appreciated but never expected. On average, customers tip our movers about 17.5%, but tips are entirely based on your satisfaction with our services.

Does The Moving Company Provide Any Supplies?

UniMovers can provide certain items, such as lifting straps, ratchet straps, and tools for assembling beds and other furniture, at your request. UniMovers does not provide moving blankets or a dolly. As mentioned earlier, these items can often be rented from a moving truck company or home improvement store. We recommend you make note of which items may require additional assembly in your inventory. Also that you reach out to your local UniMovers for more information as to what equipment they have in stock.

I am originally from a small town in Western Maryland. Currently, I am a senior at the University of North Carolina Wilmington studying Communication and Pre-Law, and will be attending law school in Cincinnati in the fall. In my free time I love to try out new coffee shops, go to the beach with my friends, and spend quality time with my family.