With more than 1.1 million homeowners, according to HDB statistics, there are more than an estimated 100,000 house moving occurring in Singapore every year. If you have experienced home moving before, you know how stressful it can be, whether its DIY home-moving or engaging a professional house mover.
Engaging the right service makes moving a lot easier, but it can add a whole new layer of stress to the process. Simplify your move by researching what to expect from hiring the right house mover.
How Much Does It Cost To Hire Local Movers?
One thing to note is that different company charges differently. Some movers charge by per hour basis, while others charge based on per trip, yet others charge based on the number of items.
According to our research, hiring movers in Singapore:
- typically cost between $250 to $1500
- cheap movers able to provide the lowest prices between $250 – $500
- other mid-tier companies between $500-$1,500.
As for per hour charges, the average moving rate is from $100 to $150 per hour.
Many different factors can determine how much it costs to move, so continue reading to learn more.
For example, when moving bulky items (such as a piano) or fragile items, be ready to pay more for the extra manpower or care required.
Plus, timing is everything — moving during the busy season almost always costs more.
When looking for movers, the cost is only one of the many factors to rake into account. It is also useful to be familiar with the process of finding and hiring movers, including the different types of estimates you might encounter.
This guide is designed to give you all the basics, so you have a reasonable idea of what to expect. Other important points include finding the right mover and avoiding falling victim to a moving scam.
Piano Moving Prices
The cost of moving a piano in Singapore depends on a few other factors, but in general:
- Regular upright piano: $80-$120
- Baby grand piano: $250-$350
- Digital piano: $70-$100
Factors that can affect prices include proximity to the moving vehicle, presence of lifts. You can find out more about piano moving screening process in this article. It is best to talk to a few companies to compare quotations.
Disposal and Junk Removal Prices
Disposal fees start from about $50 and can go beyond $1,000. It depends on factors such as location, number and type of items, and whether there are stairs to climb to reach the customers.
International Moving Prices
Due to the complexity and factors in international moving, international moving costs can be impossible to gauge. Talk to international moving companies here on Homees and compare quotations today.
Estimated Household Moving Costs
When it comes to house moving, one of the more reliable metrics to estimate the cost of moving is the size of your home.
Should you need a house moving quotation, you can find our directory for moving services in Singapore.
Based on our findings, below are the average prices for a typical Singapore homeowner based on average hourly rates charged by local moving companies; including the truck rental cost and the hourly rate charged by professional movers.
- Average 3-room flat: $500, 3-5 hours
- Average 4-room flat: $700, 4-6 hours
- Average 5-room flat: $900, 5-7 hours
Note this is merely an estimate as the final moving quotation is dependent on many factors.
How do moving companies set prices on services?
Most companies use the following as a guide to their pricing:
- Moving services
- Volume of items
- Labour via staircase
- Long pushing distance
- Before/after working hours
- Volume of items
- Packing/unpacking moving services
- Number of carton boxes to pack/unpack
- Disposal services
- Volume of items
- Disposal fee
- Handyman services
- Complexity of job
- By the hour
What are the payment options available?
The following payment methods are common amongst movers in Singapore:
- Bank transfer
- Secure online payment such as Paypal or DBS PayLah!
What To Know Before Engaging A Professional Mover?
What type of moving do you want?
There are a few steps when you move. Depending on your budget and preference, you may opt for different combinations. The five stages are:
- Moving (with or without vehicle provided)
- Cleaning up
- Storage services
Packing includes tapping, bubble wrapping, packing into boxes to ensure your items are in safe hands. We would advise you to pack essential items by yourself, such as relevant documents, jewellery, personal items.
You need to know what you are moving
Be clear on what you are moving and what you are leaving behind.
Usually, when you ask for a quote, house movers will come done to your home to assess the items that you will be moving.
Most movers, according to the industry standards, do not charge for viewing and quoting at your home. Even if they do charge, they will offset it once you engage them to move your home.
If you do not want multiple house movers to come to your home, you can also list down your items comprehensively and pass it on to movers who allow quotations based on a list of things.
It is better to have the professional come down to your house to give a quote. Moreover, they will be able to assess things that cannot be addressed via the phone, such as:
- Whether big furniture requires dismantling before moving
- Whether the layout of the house will result in more complicated moving
- Items that could be accidentally left out by you via the phone
Download this moving inventory checklist.
This Checklist also covers the more important points, such as:
- Involvement of stairs
- Prevention of Flooring scratches
- Big items that are involved (Piano Moving, Bed dismantling)
- Things to take note when speaking to the professionals
You need to make sure that the quote is final based on the viewing or the list of items. You need to make sure you and the professional list all the items that you want moved. Also, ensure that the professional has finalized the quote, and no further adjustments will be made.
Most quotation includes labour, transportation, basic dismantling & assembling of furniture, necessary protection using stretch film for furniture and electronic goods. Clarify with the house mover what is covered, and whether more is required during the move such as packing, unpacking etc.
If you would like your items to be insured during the move, make sure to check your insurance status. If you are not protected, you can purchase insurance from the movers directly.
However, if you are not willing to pay for insurance, then you will need to do an extra step of checking their reviews to see what past customers have commented about their service. Make sure that you are engaging a trustworthy professional.
Factors That Affect Home Moving Cost
The amount of money you can expect to spend on moving depends on a variety of factors —most notably, your current location and the distance of your move. In summary, the factors are:
- Manpower and help needed
- Moving van & truck rental costs
- Ease of access to a location
- Bulky & fragile items
- Wrapping and packing
- Dismantling of bulky items
- Temporary storage
Manpower and help needed
The more help you need, the more you can expect to pay.
While most of us can do most of the packing, loading and unloading ourselves, often such tasks are too time-consuming or require too much effort. Hiring a mover to settle these tasks for us saves time and also help move more quickly.
The average estimate can differ considerably depending on the size of your home, amount of furniture you need packed, as well as any special packing material you may need for your bulky or fragile items.
Whether or not this rate includes standard packing material is dependent on the moving service you hire.
Be sure to discuss this in advance with the mover before engaging them. To save money, some homeowners pack their own belongings, disassemble large furniture, and reassemble it once they arrive in their new location.
Moving Van & Truck Rental Costs
For some of us who may want to experience moving ourselves or save money, you can consider renting a truck or van when moving.
The cost of a truck or van can vary considerably depending on the size of the truck needed, mileage the truck will travel, price of gas charged by the rental company and overall required time with the vehicle.
Common van models include the following:
- Toyota Hiace Van
- Toyota Liteace Van
- Nissan Urvan
- Nissan NV200
- Nissan NV350 Panel Van Auto
- Nissan NV350 Panel Van Manual
- Mitsubishi L300 Van
Cargo van dimensions include:
- Internal Length: 2.1m
- Internal Width: 1.4m
- Internal Height: 1.2m
- External Length: 3m
- External Width: 1.6m
- External Height: 2m (Make sure the car park clearance height is higher than 2.1m)
The typical basic rental cost for a cargo van in Singapore can range between $45-$55 per hour, and a surcharge of around $20/h may be added after 6 pm.
For 10ft trucks, the basic rental cost typically cost between $50-$60 per hour, and a surcharge of around $25/h may be added after 6 pm.
For 15ft trucks, the basic rental cost typically cost between $55-$65 per hour, and a surcharge of around $25/h may be added after 6 pm.
For lorries, rental typically ranges between $130 to $200 per day, depending on the size and availability of the lorries available.
Common lorry dimensions include:
- 1 ton
- 2 ton
- 4 ton with tailgate
- 5.5 ton with tailgate
- 9 ton with tailgate
Lorries can also come in the following categories:
While this is the cheapest alternative to hiring a moving company, many factors should be considered before a final decision is made to exclude moving professionals; including the length of the move, size of the vehicle and weight of the household items being moved.
Ease of Access To A Location
How easy it is to access the pickup or dropoff location is also a critical factor.
Some homes are further away from loading/unloading areas, whilst some estates (especially condominiums) have strict rules enforced such that movers have to carry items over a considerable distance.
Other require professionals to scale down several flights of stairs (places with no elevators) or hoist items into or out of the home through a window.
When moving locally, the extra time needed, given your specific access limitations can affect the overall cost of the move.
We recommend you to speak to movers and packers in Singapore and have a site inspection prior to the day of the move to provide a quote for any additional costs, provide an estimate of how long the move will take, and prepare with any additional materials needed on moving day.
Timing of The Move
Like all industries, there are high seasonal demands as well as lull period in the home moving industry.
Moving prices may change depending on the time of the move, subject to the mover’s discretion.
Chances are, there will be an additional cost for moving on weekends or holidays like Saturdays and Sundays.
It depends on individual movers. Some may require a surcharge on Sundays and public holidays, while some quote the surcharge depending on the volume of work.
Bulky & Fragile Items
For bulky and fragile items, it is important to take extra caution and include bubble wrapping of these furniture and fragile items before moving.
Packing & Wrapping
Most movers include bubble wrapping furniture and fragile items in the price of their packages, but some may not. You can easily buy some packing and wrapping items such as boxes from Carousell.
Dismantling of Bulky Items
While some movers may do it for free (usually those that charges a bit more), other movers may not provide this service for you.
Some moving companies may be able to provide warehouse storage space as well. Should you need to store your belongings temporarily before your new home is ready, some moving companies also provide warehouse space, either free for a number of days or for a fee.
If you have large items that cannot be dismantled and cannot be removed from your house by the door and elevators or stairs, they may have to be hoisted, which will incur extra moving costs.
Most professional moving services include basic liability coverage as part of the price. For full value protection, expect an increase in moving cost.
Cost of Moving Other Items like Cars and Pianos
Moving a piano may cost an extra $150 to $800, although it can cost up to $2,500 extra if the movers need to lift the piano with a crane (extreme cases).
Heavy, bulky items take up extra space in the moving truck, and they are often hard to handle.
You can expect to pay more for bulky items such as:
- Pool tables
- Swing sets
- Extra-large furniture
Cost of moving by yourself
If you are looking to pack by yourself, here is an estimated cost of materials that you may require.
|Boxes||$2.5-$4 (from small to large sizes)||20|
|Bubblewrap (20 ft)||$9/roll||2|
|Corrugated paper (20 feet)||$10/roll||1|
|Silica gel $0.3/packet||$0.3/packet||10|
|Packing peanuts $36/packet||$36/packet||1|
|Brown packing tape||$2.50||6|
|Newsprint (100 sheets)||$10/pack||1|
|Total = $306.7|
They usually allow boxes to be sent to your house directly with a transportation fee if you want to pack the items into a box by yourself. Some companies do buyback boxes that are still in good condition if you engage them for moving service – so do ask them!
If you are looking to move by yourself, you may require a vehicle rental and driver.
|Type||Cost*||Size||Load weight||Load size||Size of bed that can fit||Estimated time for loading and unloading|
|Toyota Hiace Van |
|About $60 per hour with driver included||2.5m (length) by 1.5m (width) by 1.25m (height) |
|Up to 1.06 ton of goods.||About 40 jumbo (59cm by 46cm by 55cm) boxes||A queen size bed will be able to fit in there. |
|0.5h per load|
|10 Ft Open Lorry ||About $70 per hour with driver included||3m (length) by 1.5m (width) by 1.8m (height) |
|Up to 1.5 ton of goods.||About 60 jumbo (59cm by 46cm by 55cm) boxes||A king size bed will be able to fit in there.||45 mins per load|
|14ft Box Covered Lorry ||About $80 per hour with driver included||4m (length) by 1.8m (width) by 2m (height) |
|Up to 2.5 ton of goods.||About 150 jumbo (59cm by 46cm by 55cm) boxes||2 queen size beds will be able to fit in there.||1h per load|
*At different timings (e.g. evening or night times), prices may be higher.
If you have items that exceed the size of the lorry, opt for the open lorry to manage those items.
Things to note:
- Do take note of both the size and the weight of the items. If the load is too heavy, the suspension of the lorry may get damaged, which may eventually result in a higher cost.
- Take note of the height limit of your loading area. Ensure that the pickup point and drop off point can fit the height of the lorry. If not, you will have to arrange for a smaller lorry.
Should I move with or without a house mover?
Our advice is to move with a professional house mover. Most of us are not moving experts. Renting a lorry to move may end up incurring higher costs as we spend hours away moving the items.
Taking into account your sweat and effort, and possible problems that may result from inexperience moving, consulting a moving professional is definitely the option to go for.
We would advise you to take charge of packing and unpacking of your personal items. This ensures that your items will not be misplaced, stolen and damaged during the move.
Tips on Hiring Movers
When it comes to hiring a reliable mover, due diligence and planning go a long way.
Although you can find moving companies through Google or in the phonebook (if you are ancient enough), it is easier if you seek reputable online mover reviews rated by hundreds if not thousands of past customers.
You can read more about frequently-asked questions when hiring a mover, some of the more crucial tips before hiring a mover include:
- Checking the credentials for prospective movers by contacting them to get their license/company numbers, doing business as (DBA) names, and the number of years they have been in business. Checking movers reviews of pre-screened companies is a good place to start when identifying local, reputable business to consider for hiring.
- Getting estimates from multiple movers. We will suggest getting at least 3-5 movers quotations before confirming one to make sure you are getting the most competitive prices and to find the movers that meet your needs.
- Confirming the details with movers. Some of the nitty-gritty details such as confirming whether there will be additional charges for wrapping, boxes, assembling/dismantling do help in your moving experience. Get as many details as you can about factors such as the rate structure and payment terms, extra fees and hidden costs, the history of the company, and whether it works with subcontractors. Other helpful things to know about include packing services, storage services, insurance, and what to expect on the day of the move.
How to Avoid Scams
With so many moving projects a year, there will bound to be cases of scams and frauds involved.
Avoid falling prey to fraudulent criminals by recognizing the warning signs and quickly moving on to another company.
- Asking for a deposit: Some movers may require a deposit, however, if the sum is too large, it is a cause for suspicion.
- Listing a P.O Box or a residential address: Verify the address on the company website to make sure it is legitimate.
- Asking for a really low price: The most common moving scams in Singapore is that companies offer really really low prices then ransom the victim’s possessions to receive extra money, if not adding extra moving costs to the bill without the client knowing.
If possible, write down all the services promised for the quoted fee and get the company to sign off on this when they visit your home for a quotation. If you are a victim of possible scams, you can always report to the Singapore police or let online users know about your story.
If the moving company is on Homees’ directory you can always leave a review at the mover’s profile.
Movers Singapore Price Infographic
Before we proceed further, we have prepared a handyman cost guide for your easy reference.
Check out the infographics we’ve created regarding home moving price in Singapore, click on the image to see the full infographic.
Are you looking for a reliable moving company?
Homees provides reliable moving companies for you to engage with. You can find the following moving services offered on Homees:
- Things You Should Know About Storage Space Renting
- Ultimate Packing and Moving Supplies Checklist
- How To Move House On A Budget In Singapore
- How to Find & Hire Reliable and Reputable Movers In Singapore
- Your Ultimate Easy Moving Checklist – From Start to Finish
- House Movers — Commonly Asked Questions
- Plan Carefully For International House Moving
- Cheap Movers: Things To Be Aware Of
- How To Hire Piano Movers in Singapore
- Finding International Movers In Singapore
This article was published first in September 2018, updated on May 21st, 2019, and in March 2021.
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