How Much Do Piano Movers Cost? (2022)

Jul 20, 2022 | Moving

Moving a piano can be a challenging endeavor to do on your own. Not only can it result in injury, but it can cause costly damage to your home or piano. In the end, hiring professional and experienced piano movers can save you time, money, and aggravation. 

So, how much do piano movers cost? This depends on several factors, including the type of piano you have, how far you need to move it, and any special circumstances of the move.

In this article, we’ll provide you with a comprehensive list of considerations when it comes to how much piano movers should cost. This way you’ll be able to make a more informed decision, prior to hiring a moving company like Easy Local Movers.

piano moving cost ranges

What’s the Average Cost of Moving a Piano?

How much do piano movers cost? The average cost of moving a piano is $150-$2000 for a local move or $500-$2000 for a long-distance move. Smaller upright pianos cost less to move, while large grand pianos cost the most. 

Local movers often charge an hourly rate with a minimum of three hours. However, cross-country movers tend to charge a flat rate based on mileage.

Here’s what you can expect to pay:

  • Upright piano, local move: $150-$400
  • Grand piano, local move: $250-$2000
  • Upright piano, long-distance move: $500-$800+ (depends on mileage rates)
  • Grand piano, long-distance move: $1000-$2000+ (depends on mileage rates)

What Affects the Cost of Moving a Piano?

Not every piano move is the same. Several factors affect the overall cost of moving a piano:

  • Size and weight
  • Moving distance 
  • Location of the piano within the house
  • Hoisting requirements
  • Insurance
  • Special packing needs
  • Rush requests
  • Re-tuning

Piano Size and Weight

The taller, longer, and heavier a piano is, the more difficult it is to move, and the more people or special equipment is needed for moving it. 

Upright pianos are easier and cheaper to move than grand pianos. Some pianos even require disassembly and reassembly with the need to crate and wrap some parts.

Here’s an idea of the size and weight of various types of pianos to get an idea of whether your piano will cost more or less to move:

  • Spinet piano: 36”-40” high, 200-400 lbs
  • Console piano: 40”-43” high, 350-450 lbs
  • Studio piano: 44”-48” high, 400-500 lbs
  • Upright piano: 48”-60” high, 500-1000 lbs
  • Petite baby grand piano: 4’6”-5’ long, 400-500 lbs
  • Baby grand piano: 5’-5’6” long, 500-600 lbs
  • Medium grand piano: 5’6”-5’9” long, 600 lbs
  • Living room grand piano: 5’10” long, 700 lbs 
  • Professional grand piano: 6’ long, 700 lbs
  • Parlor grand piano (recital grand piano): 6’3”-6’9” long, 750 lbs
  • Semi-concert grand piano: 7’-8’6” long, 900 lbs
  • Concert grand piano: 8’11” long, 900-1200 lbs

Moving Distance

Distance is an important factor to consider for the cost of moving a piano. Local movers typically charge $1.50-$2.50 per mile. On the other hand, long-distance movers often charge $5 per mile. If the price of gas is higher, the per-mile cost may be even more.  

Location of Piano Within the House

Moving the piano around corners and down stairways in a house may affect the overall prices because of the difficulty, danger, and risk involved.

You may find that the moving company charges $40-100 per staircase or $5-10 per stair step.

Hoisting Requirements

If it’s impossible to move the piano up or down the stairs or elevator, a specialized crane may be necessary to hoist it in or out of the building. The hoisting service alone will cost $750-$1000. 


Piano movers tend to cover $5000 worth of insurance on the piano at no extra charge. However, if your piano is worth over $5000, you may decide to purchase additional insurance. You can expect to pay $10-$15 for every additional $1000 of value over $5000. 

Special Packing Needs

Many large pianos, like grand pianos, require dismantling and crating, which adds to the overall cost of moving them. Prices you can expect for special packing include:

  • Removal of legs or pedals: Around $100
  • Piano crating: Around $800 (more for heat-treated crating)

Rush Requests

If you don’t plan ahead or need last-minute piano moving services, requesting rush service can cost several hundred dollars more.


An essential requirement at the end of any piano move is to have it re-tuned. Hiring a professional piano tuner after the move will cost $100-$300.  

Tips for Getting the Best Piano Moving Quote

The more information that you can give your piano mover, the more accurate your moving quote will be. If the movers encounter obstacles they didn’t expect when moving, they will add them to the overall cost of the move. Thus, it’s best to give all the necessary details ahead of time to eliminate surprise costs.

  • Get multiple quotes: Getting multiple quotes can give you a good idea of what everyone charges. It can also give you the information you need to negotiate for a better rate with a company that you trust more. 
  • Give specific information about piano size: Let the mover know what type of piano you have, how tall or long it is, and its weight or estimated weight. 
  • Provide information about a more valuable piano’s worth: If the piano is worth more than $5000, they can tell you the cost of additional insurance.
  • Give specific information about moving obstacles: Let the movers know about any stairways (especially spiral stairways), tight corners, decks, sidewalks, or other obstacles that will figure into the moving process. Also, let them know if there’s a possibility of needing hoisting services.
  • Don’t forget to mention information for both locations: It’s important for the movers to know about the moving obstacles at both locations, so you will need to plan where your piano will be in your new home early.
  • Let them know when you plan to move: If you’ve waited until the last minute to make your moving plans, the services may cost more. 
  • Give distance information: The moving company will need to know how far you need to move the piano.

where the piano is headed

Are Piano Movers Worth It?

Hiring professional piano movers has many benefits, making the moving process safer, faster, and cheaper. Let’s look at the advantages of hiring piano movers than making hiring a piano mover worth it.  

Hiring Piano Movers Eliminates the Need to Purchase Specialized Moving Equipment

Piano movers already own the equipment necessary to move and protect your piano during a move. 

To move the piano yourself (especially a heavy piano) you would need to invest in piano-moving equipment, which could end up being costly:

  • Packing tape: $3 per roll
  • Hump strap: $25 
  • Locking transfer belt: $25 each
  • Pads and blankets: $30-$35 each
  • Large dolly: $125-$200
  • Piano skid board: $125-$700 
  • Hoist and crane: $750-$2000

Hiring Piano Movers Prevents Home Damage

Because of the weight and difficulty of moving a piano, hiring a professional piano mover with the expertise and right equipment to move your piano can prevent home damage. If you’re moving out of a home and into a new home, the last thing you want to do is cause damage that can be costly to repair. 

Home damage that professional piano movers prevent includes:

  • Floor scratches
  • Holes in the wall
  • Broken banisters
  • Broken stairs
  • Broken decks
  • Broken door or window frames
a piano's mass

Hiring Piano Movers Prevents Piano Damage

The heavy size and awkward, bulky shape make moving a piano difficult. While even professional movers sometimes drop and damage pianos, they’re far less likely to than you. Even if you don’t drop the piano, the sensitive mechanisms inside may still break from the moving process.

Plus, a professional mover has insurance that covers piano damage. Here’s the cost of repairing a damaged piano if you have to pay for it yourself:

  • Normal restoration: $750-$3500
  • Restringing an upright piano: $1000-$4000
  • Restringing a grand piano: $4000-$10,000
  • Basic interior rebuilding: $3500-$9500
  • Interior restoration for pre-1920 piano: $25,000-$45,000
  • Refinishing smaller upright piano: $2000-$7500
  • Refinishing mid-sized upright piano: $3500-$5000
  • Refinishing grand pianos: $5000-$12,500

Hiring Piano Movers Reduces Risk of Injury

Because pianos are extremely heavy, moving them yourself can cause serious back pain and muscle strain. Besides the physical toll moving a piano without the proper equipment can cause, there’s also the risk of dropping the piano and breaking someone’s foot or pinning someone beneath it.

More serious injuries could result in a trip to the emergency room or even the hospital, not to mention the possibility of a permanent injury.  

Hiring Piano Movers Prevents Personal Insurance Claims

Piano movers should have insurance that can cover the costs related to costly piano damage and worker’s compensation to cover any injuries. 

Home insurance policies usually cover the cost of musical instruments like pianos. While your policy has a personal property limit, it should still be enough to cover a valuable piano. However, you’re likely to have to pay the deductible first, and your insurance policy will probably cost more after your claim.

Hiring a piano mover can also help prevent you from having doctor, emergency room, or hospital bills you didn’t expect. Even if you have medical insurance, you will probably still need to pay a deductible. 

Hiring Piano Movers Speeds Up the Moving Process

Professional movers have the experience, equipment, and the correct number of people to move your piano quickly and safely. They can get even the heaviest, awkwardly-shaped piano past obstacles, down steps, and into your new home more quickly than novices trying to puzzle out the process. 

a note about grands

Why Should You Hire Piano Movers?

Hiring piano movers helps save time, money, damage, and injury. While it may be possible to move a smaller piano yourself, there are still risks involved. Let’s look more closely at what’s involved in moving a piano yourself and the value that piano movers bring. 

Can I Move a Piano Myself? 

Pianos are among the most difficult and heaviest items to move. Moving a piano yourself is not recommended because doing it properly requires the knowledge of piano-moving techniques and special equipment. 

Moving such a heavy object around corners and down stairways can be difficult and even dangerous for a non-professional mover, resulting in injuries to the piano or the movers. 

The size, weight, obstacles, and value of your piano may dictate hiring a professional. While it’s possible to move smaller pianos without movers, it’s still not a good idea. Even the smallest pianos (spinet pianos and studio pianos) are heavy enough to need two strong people to move them. Meanwhile, heavier pianos can require up to six movers.

Some especially challenging scenarios for moving a piano yourself include:

  • Moving a piano down more than four consecutive steps: Moving a heavy piano is difficult if you have to move it more than four steps without a resting spot because you’ll have to carry it farther. 
  • Moving a piano up or down a spiral staircase: Having no landing to stop to rest makes the process especially difficult and perilous because it requires multiple people to carry the piano the whole way down without stopping.
  • 4-legged upright pianos: There’s nowhere to place a dolly, making it harder to move.
  • Large upright pianos and grand pianos: They’re often heavier than you anticipate, and are especially difficult to move over more than four consecutive steps.

Hoisting: Even with the right equipment, you can end up damaging your home and piano if it bumps into the building, roof, balcony, door frame, or window frame.

piano mover costs based on piano type


Here are some other questions people often ask about moving pianos.

How much does it cost to move a heavy piano?

Heavy pianos typically cost between $250 to $2,000 to move. The overall price depends on whether you’re moving it locally or long distance and whether you need add-on services like moving up and down steps, hoisting, extra insurance, special packaging, or rush delivery.

How much do you tip piano movers?

You can choose to tip $4-$5 per hour per mover or 5%-10% of the total moving cost. So, if three movers took three hours to do the move, you could add a $36-$45 tip. Or, if your total piano moving cost was $1000, you could pay a $50-$100 tip.   

What is the cheapest way to move a piano?

The cheapest way to move a piano is to hire a professional. It can save you the cost of buying specialized equipment, paying home or piano damage costs, or paying medical bills.

Final Thoughts on the Cost of Moving a Piano

How much do piano movers cost? Moving a piano locally will usually cost $150-$2,000 while moving a piano long-distance will cost around $500-$2000. The cost depends on the type of piano you have, its size, and how many miles you need to move it. There may also be add-on costs such as the cost of moving it down stairways, hoisting services, extra insurance, special packing, or rush costs. Plus, you’ll need to pay to re-tune it after it arrives in your new home. 

If you need to move your piano within the state of California, let Easy Local Movers help. We’ve been connecting Californians with the best piano moving services since 2007. Our movers are all experienced, safe, reliable, and have fair prices for all your piano-moving needs. Contact us for an estimate today.

Get A FREE Moving Estimate