My friend's mom moved last year. She owns a beautiful baby grand piano that has a lot of sentimental value to her. She really wanted to keep her piano and move it. I decided to do some research for her and find out, how much does it cost to move a piano?
Piano moving companies charge by the mile, locally it can cost anywhere between $1.50 - $2.50 per mile. Cross country moves cost even more, usually $2.50-$10 per mile. There is often a baseline fee attached to these figures. You most likely will not be moving your piano for less than $300.
So you've decided to move, and you want to move your piano with you. This is often a big decision because you have to figure out if your piano is worth moving. This often comes down to how emotionally attached you are to your piano or how much value is there in your piano. It is also often very difficult to sell a piano so don't necessarily think you'll just sell your piano and buy another piano where you move easily. If you do want to sell your piano before moving though make sure to put it on the market for at least six months before you plan on moving. This gives you enough time to find a potential buyer, hopefully.
If you want to find a good piano mover there are few places you can look. First thing you should do is call local places that have pianos and ask them who they had help move there. This could even be a friend. Or you could call your local church or you could call local music studios or even call a local symphony. When someone has a piano mover that they're happy with they are often very happy to share their name. Don't think you're putting these people out by calling them and asking for a referral.
You should also check online forums in your local area to see if anyone has recommendations on piano movers. There are multiple piano forums online and you can also check Reddit. of course you can also Google and read reviews.
It is important when you're looking for a piano movers that you find a mover who specializes in pianos. You don't just want a regular old moving company to be handling your piano. Granted some moving companies have experience with pianos and that is a great thing.
A piano is not just like a sofa or an end table. It is a complex fragile instrument that needs to be treated likewise. It will need to be secured a certain way in the truck and obviously it should not have stuff piled on top of it. It also shouldn't be warped or put under pressure in any way because this will cause it to go more out of tune. And it might take you a long time to get the piano back in tune. I know all this stuff sounds like it's not a big deal but trust me it is, you should make sure that the movers you have moving your piano is an expert at moving pianos. If you are feeling brave, with smaller pianos it's possible to move them yourself:
The most important thing to ask your piano mover is, have you moved a piano before? You really want to find someone who specializes in moving pianos. Sometimes moving companies will say they specialize in moving pianos but you have to make sure that they are telling the truth.
One good way of doing this is asking for the numbers of past clients who they move pianos for. I know this may sound extreme but you don't want to take this stuff lightly, your piano is a very valuable instrument. And if this sounds like too much work maybe you shouldn't be moving your piano in the first place. So if the moving company you're using says they specialize in pianos, ask them for the phone number of someone they’ve moved a piano for.
Oftentimes people are hesitant to put in the effort to do a little research about the moving company they're using. You shouldn't feel this hesitancy though. Moving a piano is a very difficult task especially if you're going up and down floors. You don't want a moving company that isn't specialized in moving pianos.
Another way to tell if your piano mover is good is to ask them if they have any special equipment they use when moving pianos. You can also ask them what measures they put in place to keep your piano safe while it's in transit. Some things you should make sure they do is to cover the piano and know how to properly attach the piano.
A great trick to tell if your piano mover is good is ask them if they move pianos. They will most likely say yes and then ask if there's anything special to do. They should then ask you what kind of piano you have. They should realize that they have to treat different pianos in different ways. If they don't ask you what kind of piano you have but they specify how they move pianos chances are they don't specialize in moving pianos. That's a very basic question that any professional piano moving would ask. So make sure to go through this process when you're talking with your mover.
Okay so you've moved your piano to its new home and you're all excited, what should you do next? The first thing you should do when you have just moved the piano into your new home is very closely inspect the piano for any cosmetic damages that weren't there before. I always tell my piano students this after they move, I happen to teach in-home piano lessons in Tigard. Technically you should look over your piano before you move it in Mark any cosmetic damages. You want a record of this so you can contest any damages that have been done to the piano. But hopefully there are no damages!
The next thing you want to do is call a local piano tuner and explain to them that you just moved into town and would like to have your piano tuned. Make sure to tell them when you moved into town and ask them when they suggest you get your piano tuned. They should ask you where you're moving from and take into account differences in temperature and humidity.
It's a real workout for piano to move from Colorado to Oregon! There's a huge difference in humidity, altitude and temperature. Since pianos are made out of wood this will put a certain amount of strain on your piano. This is okay. You don't know what is not ideal but make sure your piano tuner knows where you're coming from so they can treat your piano appropriately.
There can sometimes be an adjustment for instruments when they move from different humidities. You want to make sure that you have your piano tuned shortly after you move but still gives your piano ample time to adjust to its new environment. You don't need your piano fighting its new tuning and pushing itself back out of tune.
Moving pianos can be extremely stressful on top of an already stressful activity. Moving in general is stressful as I'm sure you know! So if you follow these steps lay down this article you will hopefully have a very successful move and have your piano and its new home safe and sound. Just make sure to remember that it can. I was just not another piece of furniture, it's an expensive fragile instrument. Old pianos are unique and should be treated as such.
Unfortunately I have heard my fair share of piano moving horror stories. I've heard stories about pianos being dropped and broken. I've heard stories about pianos cracking. And I've heard stories about boxes falling on pianos and trucks. All this can easily be avoided if you use a moving service that specializes in moving pianos. There should be at least one of these in your area if you live in or around a metropolitan area. Another good way to tell if a piano moving company specializes in pianos is if they put piano moving in the name of their company. This is often a very good sign!
I hope you've enjoyed this article. It means a lot to me that you've read it all the way through. I wish you all the luck in the world with your piano moving! It can be a very stressful experience. Hopefully you've learned a thing or two from my article. I just like to help people with their pianos!