Weird Items Professional Movers will Move and Oddly Common Ones they Won’t

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So, you are getting ready to move.  Now what?  Some people think that you just get on Google and search for Professional Movers Near Me.  That’s somewhat true, but I’ve stumbled across this interesting list of items movers won’t move and some of them are ones I wouldn’t have thought twice about.  I’ll bet you haven’t thought of them either, and I don’t want you to be sitting on the curb outside your house with a pile of STUFF and no idea how to get it to your new house….

Speaking of which, check at the bottom of this post for my terrific MOVING PLANNER.  It’s got tons of checklists and tips for moving and you’ll need them because moving is a PAIN in the neck, so you need all the help you can get!

Weird Items Professional Movers Won't Move

Why Movers Won’t Move Some Stuff

Since movers are all about profit, they are obviously interested in your business and they are perfectly willing to pack up and move your 400 pound bookshelf, but they won’t touch your goldfish.  But apparently people have sued them over different things and that has led them to set some boundaries about what they will and won’t move.  And I’m sure every company has different policies, so as they say, your mileage may vary, but here are some of the more common items professional movers won’t move.

Typically, if professional movers refuse to move something, there is usually a safety or legal reason behind it.

Too Delicate Items

Yes, obviously they will take delicate items like your glassware, your plates, even your fine china or your lace undies.  But there are some items that just aren’t going to make it if you pack them into a hot (or freezing!) moving truck for a week or so.

  • Plants
  • Live animals of any kind
  • Candles
  • Your ant farm or anything to do with insects – in some areas, you must have a gypsy moth certificate or if you are moving countries, you may have to certify that you aren’t bringing invasive species of fruit, vegetables, or insects into the country.
  • High-end stereo, computer, or video equipment.  Most electronics do not deal well with extreme heat or cold

Expensive/Priceless Items

  • High-end jewelry.  Costume jewelry is fine, but you’ll be toting your diamonds, emeralds, and rubies along yourself.
  • Collectables – baseball cards are both delicate and expensive to replace as are many other collectable items.  If you collect items with a value that runs into the thousands of dollars, your movers will be cautious about even touching it and may require you to sign a waiver for them to move it.
  • Taxidermied animals.  These are both delicate and expensive items that most movers won’t touch.  After all, you don’t want your priceless stuffed horse Trigger to arrive with a broken leg or your much-loved cat to be missing an ear!

Sentimental Items

  • Your photo albums – nothing could be more impossible to replace than photos? And how would you ever put a replacement cost on your kids baby photos or your wedding album?  I wouldn’t touch them either if I were a professional mover.
  • Antique or heirloom furniture.  Some piece of junk from Ikea can be replaced, but your grandmother’s antique rocker?
  • Framed family photos?  Most movers probably WILL move items like these, but are you sure you want them to?  Photos that are decades old probably deserve more careful handling than the average mover is going to show them.

Anything Flammable or Explosive

  • This is one a lot of people don’t think about, but lawn equipment, snow blowers, oxygen equipment, BBQ’s, and lots of other things have assorted flammable liquids or gasses in them.  Anything that could ignite or seep fumes is an OBVIOUS NO NO.  Is it a headache? Absolutely!  My husband would need a shipping container for all his flammable stuff, but I can see the point to this rule.
  • Fireworks – c’mon….  But what about camping stoves? Nail polish remover?  Even rubbing alcohol is quite flammable.  Think about what you absolutely NEED to bring with you and what you can replace later on.
  • Firearms – this is a tricky one.  Some movers will take firearms if they are unloaded and secured with a sturdy lock, but you might be better off to have your local gun shop owner transport it to a similar shop in your new area.

Perishable Food or Liquor

  • I’m not sure you should trust your movers with your liquor cabinet.  You might find yourself at the end of the day with some very jolly movers and a lot of damaged furniture.  Plus alcohol is quite flammable, has a pungent odor when spilled and comes in delicate glass bottles.  Maybe it’s better to just have a really big party to say goodbye to your friends….
  • Food?  Not many items in your fridge or pantry are going to survive sitting in a very hot or cold moving truck, especially if you are moving cross-country.  Locally, you might get away with it.  We tend to hire the professional movers to move the extra big and heavy stuff like the fridges, desks, and beds and we get friends together and a rental truck for the rest, but we tend to do short-range moves.

Important Papers

  • Another thing movers are pretty hinky about is your personal papers.  Would you want to be responsible for someone else’s passport, tax returns, or critical business papers?  Not me.

Unusual Items Professional Movers WILL Move

  • Your dog house or chicken coop.
  • Your kid’s Legos – all 10 million of them!
  • Your creepy clown collection
  • A collection of pinball machines
  • Your Star Trek memorabilia

Here are some other move-related posts you may enjoy:

Moving? Learn how to pack like a boss

10 Simple Strategies to Ease the Stress of Moving

Create the Ultimate Gamer Space in your New Home


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One Comment

  1. I actually didn’t know that it was not possible to just tell the first and second addresses and go drink some coffee while others work 😀 But everything you wrote makes sense! There are many things that I would really move by myself (such as plants, documents, and computer). Thanks for this informative post! I know that one day I will move from my small apartment to a bigger one, so this post was very useful!

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