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Saying Goodbye to Your Family Home

Saying Goodbye to Your Family Home

Downsizing has become a very common and necessary step these days as our parents grow older and the house that once served well for the family has now become more cumbersome to maintain. Living in a home for years and then having to part with it can be an extremely difficult moment to face when moving day finally arrives, but it’s important to help your parents remember that all of those fond and sentimental memories will be going along with them.

When it comes to saying goodbye to your family home, packing up and moving, here are some ways to help ease this transition – for you or your parents – to get excited for a new chapter.

 

Create Documented Memories You Can Look Back On

Whether it’s a scrapbook, random sentimental items, or a video series of your favourite home movies, having some form of documented memories is a great way to really capture those moments that were made in your family home. You can sift through old photographs and put together that photo album you’ve been meaning to do for so long. It’s the perfect way to bring along the best moments and keep them close to you no matter where you’re moving.

 

Throw A Big Goodbye Bash

What better way to say goodbye than by celebrating all of the wonderful moments in your family home, while embracing the new chapter of your life? Throwing a big bash in your home to say farewell to it and your neighbours is one of the best ways to part. It doesn’t have to be elaborate or fancy; you can fire up the barbeque, send out a BYOB invitation and get everyone to bring along a dish. Going out with a bang is always the best way!

 

Focus On Your New Move And All Of The Benefits

Feeling sad is perfectly normal when undergoing a move like this, but just keep focus on the reasons why this was initiated in the first place. Think about all of the benefits about moving to your new home – no more lawn maintenance, no more shovelling through endless piles of snow, no more empty rooms to dust or waste electricity on. Plus, you’ll get to be closer to great amenities and friends.

Keep your mind focused on the exciting moments that lay ahead and you’ll breeze through this emotional process.

Saying goodbye to your family home is something that is never easy for anyone, but by keeping some documented memories that you can look back on and by focusing on all of the exciting ones that have yet to be made, you can get through it and start looking forward to the future.

Want to make sure your belongings are in good hands during your move? Get in touch with our expert moving crews today!


5 Signs It’s Time to Move

5-signs-its-time-to-move

No one enjoys the idea of moving and having to endure all of that packing, organizing, reorganizing, bending, and lifting. It’s exhausting just to think about! But, sometimes there are enough factors in life that can make that process seem well worth it. When you reach a point when you feel like it’s time for a change, there’s simply no other option than to plow on through. But how do you really know if it’s the right decision or not?

If you can relate to these five signs, then you should feel confident that it’s time.

Affordability

First things first – affordability! Is money a factor? Can you afford to stay where you are? If you are struggling to get by living where you are, or if the monthly rent or property taxes just keep rising as you keep swimming in debt, well, moving somewhere that doesn’t force you to work overtime can be well worth any moving hardships!

Desperate Need of More Space

We all want a roomier abode. But when you desperately need more space, such as when a new addition to the family is expected, then it becomes a serious priority that can’t be ignored. If you are struggling to maintain sanity in the space you currently reside in, it won’t do you any favours if you stay.

Empty Nesters

If you’re at a stage in life when the kids have all grown up and you and your spouse have now been left with empty rooms, it might make more sense to consider downsizing. There’s no point on dishing out expenses for a home that is much larger than you need. Downsizing can make your life much easier while saving you money too.

Grueling Work Commute

If your commute to and from work is taking up a huge chunk of your day, it might really be worth considering moving to a location where you can eliminate that. Having to cram on public transit or crawl through traffic after a long day at work can really affect your mood and anxiety. When it begins to wear on you, avoiding or minimizing that commute can often be reason enough!

Change of Neighbourhood

Whether you feel as though you’ve outgrown your current neighbourhood, or you want the kids to attend a school in another area, it’s important to live in a community that suits your lifestyle. If your neighbourhood no longer serves you well, find one that does.

Sometimes, life highlights so many signs that may often go unnoticed until we really stop to consider our current situation. And when it comes to moving, if you feel as though you can relate to any of these factors, it might just be time to recognize the signs that are telling you it’s time to make a move.

When you’re ready to move, you don’t have to do it alone. Call First Rate Movers for professional moving services including local moving, local long-distance, consolidated moves, piano moving, and furniture moving.


Helping the Kids Adjust to Your New Home

Helping the kids adjust to your new home.

Making a big move is a hard process and change for anyone to endure. But when it comes to the kids, having to uproot them from their familiar surroundings and friends can be an even bigger challenge to overcome. Between making new friends and getting used to their new environment, it can be a difficult and scary adjustment to make. You can help your kids settle into their new home with a few of these helpful tips.

Prepare Them for the Move

Many parenting experts always say that preparation is key for everything – especially when it comes to a big move. At least a month or so prior to your moving date, tell your children about the move so that they can have time to process the information. Make sure that you explain the changes the will take place, but also what will stay the same – such as how they still get to keep their toys! If you can, take some time before the move to bring your kids to the new area and home, and show them around while highlighting all of the great features about the home and neighbourhood.

Maintain Familiar Routines

Sometimes, the upheaval of familiar routines can really through a chaotic kink in the mix of life. So while everything else is changing, the one thing that can really help to comfort your children is trying to maintain as much of their familiar routines as possible.

Use Technology to Connect with Friends

One of the best features about living in the age of technology is how easy it is to stay connected with friends and distant loved ones. So you can use it to your advantage by helping your kids connect with friends from school and any relatives that they might be missing.

Meet the Neighbours and Get Social

When you move into your new neighbourhood, it’s important to really encourage your children to get out and make news friends and stay social. This is one of the essential ways to break through those emotions of anger and sadness. Meet the neighbours, get them out and socializing with other kids, sign them up for a sports class or something that they will enjoy while making new friends.

Uprooting your life and readjusting to a new environment is a stressful and frightening experience, especially for children. Getting used to their new reality takes time. But with a few strategic ways, you can help them to settle in and make them feel at home in no time.

Planning an Ottawa move? Call First Rate Movers or compare us against the competition – you won’t be disappointed. We offer full-service moving in Ottawa and to and from the Greater Ottawa area.


Welcome to Ottawa!

A view of Ottawa's parliament buildings and canal

New to Ottawa? Well prep yourself, because Canada’s capital city has something for everyone to enjoy. It’s a place that is encompassed by natural beauty, and the people here know how to embrace it. It’s a city full of life, with an emphasis on family living, education, outdoor adventure, and of course, convenience and entertainment. Step inside one of Canada’s best cities and you won’t want to leave. Welcome to Ottawa!

Ottawa, Ontario: Canada’s Capital

Although Ottawa is the fourth-largest city in Canada, many residents have flocked here for its small town vibe that makes it a great place for families. In comparison to its neighbouring cities, it is much quieter, safer and family-oriented – but don’t let that fool you into thinking it’s no fun. Communities like Westboro, the Glebe, and Old Ottawa South have a tight knit vibe in the heart of the city, while suburban communities like Barrhaven, Kanata, and Orleans are great places to raise a family.

Recreation & Scenery

Ottawa stands on the south bank of the Ottawa River and is roughly divided into east and west by the paths of the Rideau River and Rideau Canal. With an abundance of natural settings, recreation is a large part of life here. From hiking trails, kayaking, fishing, water skiing, along with some of the country’s best ski slopes nearby– this city is your outdoor oasis in summer and winter alike.

Education & Culture

But nature aside, this metropolis is both enriching and diverse. It is home to both Carleton University and the University of Ottawa – two renowned schools with global reputations. It also houses some of the best museums in Canada, including the Canadian Museum of Nature, the Canadian War Museum, and the Canada Science and Technology Museum (set to re-open in 2017). The Canadian Museum of History lies directly across the river in Gatineau, Quebec.

Shopping & Transportation

This city has all the conveniences and amenities you need, without the overwhelming big city vibe. Take for example the Rideau Centre, one of the largest shopping malls in Canada with designer names like Michael Kors, Kate Spade, Nordstrom, and not one but two Starbucks. Additionally, there are great transportation systems. The OC Transpo bus system is robust and construction is well underway on the Light Rail Rapid Transit which is will transform transportation in the main corridor. VIA Rail connects you to other parts of the country in no time, such as Montreal and Toronto, while MacDonald-Cartier International Airport lies in the south end of the city and can take you anywhere in the world.

Living in Ottawa

Ottawa is renowned as being a safe and friendly city where families can feel at ease. It’s also a place where the federal government of Canada feels proud to call home. The small town vibe mixed with the variety of recreations, great urban amenities, and conveniences is what make this city an ideal place to call home.

Being home to some of the best educational facilities, museums, and cultural hotspots in the country are what make life in this city an overall enriching experience. But who are we to really tell you. Come and see for yourself. But be prepared – like so many others, you just might not want to leave.

Do you need moving services for your move to Ottawa? We can help – just give us a call at 613-260-0505 or 1-844-260-0505 or request an estimate.

On behalf of the entire First Rate Movers family, welcome to Ottawa!


Helping Your Pet Adjust to Your New Home

A dog and family

Moving is stressful on every member of your family, even our furry little honorary family members! To prevent undue discomfort to your pets during the moving process, it is important to make sure that you do everything in your power to make the job as simple, straightforward, and streamlined as possible – and make them feel comfortable in the process.

Here is a quick guide to ensure a smooth transition and happy pets on moving day!

Bring your pet to your new home as early and as often as possible before move-in day

Help your pet get acclimated to your new home by bringing them over to your new place as early and as often as possible before you actually make the move in order to get them used to their new surroundings.

There will still be an inevitable “break in” period where your pet will be exploring and discovering their new surroundings for themselves, but introducing them to the new space progressively over a spread out period of time is going to cut down significantly on the stress and anxiety that they may feel.

Create a unique space for your pet that is all their own

If you have a pet that is prone to anxiety, try to dedicate a space in your home that they can feel is their own. It doesn’t have to be a large space, even a small nook would do, but just somewhere that they can keep all of their favourite toys, and perhaps a blanket, etc.

Be there for your pets, especially during the first few nights

The odds are that your pets are going to have their toughest time in your new home during the first few nights. This is when you need to make sure that you are extra sensitive to their emotions. It can be really easy to get caught up in moving tasks and unpacking, but don’t forget to show your pet the love and attention they deserve, especially while they are adjusting!

Your pet is going to lean on you as the “pack leader” to get them through rough times when they are feeling scared and stressed out. If your pet is not having a smooth transition, make sure to give him or her a lot of playful, fun attention and a cozy, safe place to sleep.

Looking for a reliable and professional moving company in Ottawa? Contact First Rate Movers today!


Getting To Know Your Neighbourhood

A family takes a walk through a park

There are many things you will not know about your new neighbourhood until you are a fellow resident. While reviewing your potential property and seeing the property of your neighbours can give you some idea during the house hunting process, it is ultimately a flip of the coin what the neighbourhood will be like. It doesn’t matter if you’re moving from Kanata to Orleans or from Vancouver to Ottawa…reaching out and getting to know your neighbourhood may be challenging. Sometimes even moving just a few blocks away can feel like a whole new world. Let’s take a moment to review why you should reach out to your neighbours, as well as ways to go about doing it.

Why Reach Out To Neighbours At All?

Your neighbours are your safety net. They are the first line of defense against things like a break in. They do this by watching your property and identifying/reporting people who don’t belong. Consider the role you’ve played in your previous neighbourhood. Would you call the police if your neighbour’s house was being robbed? Absolutely. The same is true for your new neighbourhood. By building up a strong relationship with those living around you, you can have a peace of mind. Neighbours can become friends for life, mentors to your children, and harbours in a storm.

How Can I Get To Know My Neighbourhood?

You can do research online. Consider looking at crime statistics reported by the police as well as information on your block that may exist in older newspaper clippings and releases. You can also walk the neighbourhood yourself and see what the other properties are like. You can learn a lot without ever stepping foot on their property. You can see what exterior work has to be done, what houses are for sale on the street or may be in disrepair. Walk to the nearest commercial strip. Dine at the Italian restaurant around the corner. Watch the RedBlacks game at the local pub. Pick up fresh bread from the bakery down the street. Jog through the park or bring the kids to play at the local soccer field. Live and breathe your community.

More often than not, neighbours will introduce themselves when you move in. Whether it is when your moving trucks arrives or in the days after, make the most out of these interactions. It is easy to feel overwhelmed at first, and scheduling to meet for lunch or to see the house at a later date is a great way to begin building those connections with your neighbourhood. If no one comes to your door, then consider reaching out yourself. Go to the houses around you in the afternoon or on the weekend and introduce yourself to the other houses.

While you are getting to know your neighbourhood, make the moving process itself a non-issue by hiring a professional moving company in Ottawa to handle to process. It will make you getting to know your neighbourhood far easier and less stressful. First Rate Movers is the first choice among moving companies in Ottawa, so give us a call!


Should You Move Before or After the Baby Comes?

Should You Move Before or After the Baby Comes?

Learning that you are expecting a baby is a common impetus for couples to move. That awesome loft in the Byward Market may have been an awesome place to live when you were kid-free, but once you become expectant parents your needs change and that Barrhaven townhome looks a lot more attractive.

However, you have an important decision to make. Should you move before the child arrives so you can be all settled into the new home by the due date? Or should you wait until after the baby is born so you don’t have to go through the stress of moving while pregnant? Let’s explore the pros and cons of both options.

The Benefits of Moving Before the Baby Comes

  • Trying to do anything when you have a newborn baby can feel like an impossible feat. Now imagine house hunting, negotiating the purchase price, doing all the paperwork, packing your things, and then moving when you’ve got the world’s crankiest neighbour – no fun.
  • The nesting instinct is real and peaks in the third trimester. If you move before the baby comes, you’ll be able to get the house in perfect order three times over.
  • Babies are all about routine, and moving early in their life can upset important things like their feeding and sleep schedule. Moving before the baby comes means there will be no interruption in routine.

The Benefits of Moving After the Baby Arrives

  • Being pregnant ranges from uncomfortable to painful. Your back aches, your feet swell, you walk with a waddle…it’s no fun. Now imagine being in that position and trying to move house. Of course hiring professional movers makes this easier, but it’s still a headache you don’t need in the late stages of pregnancy.
  • With the baby bump gone, it will be a lot easier to set-up and organize the new space.
  • With the baby finally here, you’ll have a better understanding of what you need from your space. For example, only after having the new baby do you realize how much space a baby takes up with clothes, diapers, toys, and gear. Plus…what if you have twins?
  • Your new baby provides an instant topic of conversation to neighbours, allowing you to make new friends and connections right away without that awkward introduction.

No matter which option you choose, First Rate Movers is here to help. Our professional moving company in Ottawa will get you settled into your new place quick and easy so you can focus on what matters most: starting a new chapter in your life.


How to Get Settled In Your New Home

A couple sits on a couch amongst boxes in their new home

There’s just nothing quite like a new home, especially in today’s day and age.  Studies have shown that more and more potential homeowners – particularly Millenials – are choosing to stay flexible and rent instead.  As such, if and when you are able to finally land a job with a good enough salary to allow you to put up the money for a down payment on that sweet new home, you’d better believe that’s an accomplishment worth celebrating.

After the housewarming’s ended, however, the task of actually settling into your home begins.  Too many first-time homebuyers make settling in an even bigger hassle than it has to be.

So, what steps can you take to get settled and feel at home faster?

For starters, you’ll have a much easier time settling in if you work with a moving company in Ottawa beforehand. They’ll make sure your belongings are transported safely and put exactly where they should be in your new home. This will save you a lot of time searching for cutlery that ended up in the spare bathroom or having to replace a broken TV because your friend smashed it.

Safety First!

After moving in with the help of a moving company in Ottawa, you’re ready to get started. You’re going to want to take a quick moment to check all the safety features that the place has to offer. True, you should have already done this before buying the home, but just in case something’s gone wrong, you want to catch it sooner rather than later.

Prioritized Unpacking

Unpacking is bound to seem like a hassle and a half, so you’re going to want to prioritize the boxes you open in order of overall priority so as not to wear yourself out or else feel so overwhelmed as to be paralyzed into inaction. Treating the task of unpacking as a singular one is thus a big mistake to make. You’re likely to have a mountain of boxes, and so the best way to tackle that is one step, one box at a time.

Keep The Momentum Going

After that initial night, there’s plenty more to do.  The unpacking process is likely to continue for a while, and while that may be a bit exhausting, at least you’ll have the benefit of knowing that, at the very least, the more you unpack the more your home should start to “feel” like home.

You’ll also want to keep on top of any paperwork that might need doing, either in relation to or separate from the move.  It can be all too easy to lose or forget about paperwork in the franticness of a move, but that will only lead to bigger headaches when you’re trying to attain some well-earned serenity, so be sure to keep all of that safe and not let it pile up.

Finally, you’ll want to take time out from your labours and actually enjoy your hard work- you’ve earned it.


5 Tips for Helping Your Child Adjust to a New School

A boy in a classroom smiles

Children are usually a lot more resilient than we think. At the same time, everyone has a time when they are pulled from an environment that they know and dumped into one that is completely foreign to them, especially during their younger and developing years. This is especially true if you are planning a move to a different neighbourhood in Ottawa or a new city.

If your child is going to have to adjust to a new school in the future, here are just a couple of tips and tricks to help make that process a little easier on everyone.

Give your child time to adjust

A big mistake that a lot of parents make when uprooting their child and bringing them to a new school is the idea that making new friends is somehow going to happen almost instantly, when nothing could be further from the truth.

Sure, some children are naturally very social, but almost all children are going to be reeling from being uprooted from all of their other friends and are going to be at least a little bit apprehensive about meeting new ones.

Expect a rough and rocky six weeks or so until the ship rights itself and they have time to adjust. Don’t keep bringing up whether or not they’ve been able to make new friends, as you’ll only add more stress and pressure to the process.

Enroll them in sports and activities

School is a fantastic place for kids to socialize and make new friends, but the structure of school might not offer quite as many opportunities to create and forge friendships as sports and activities can.

Try to get your child as active in these activities as possible, supporting any and all of the activities that they are interested in just as much as you’re able to.

Encourage them to interact with their friends as often as they can

The last thing that you want to do when your child is just starting out to make new friends is to stifle that activity in any way. What you’ll want to do instead is make sure that they have every opportunity to interact with their friends as often as they can, even if that means baking a couple of extra batches of cookies for the neighbourhood kids or hosting sleepovers on the weekend.

Find ways to befriend the parents

It’s a lot easier for children to make new friends with kids in a new school when they have interactions with those children “after hours.” If you’re able to make friends with the parents of children in your kid’s classes, you make things a lot easier.

It wouldn’t be so bad if you were able to make a couple of new friends as well!

Keep to your regular routine (as much as possible, anyway)

At the end of the day, you’re going to want to try and normalize the transition as much as possible. Really try to stick to your regular routine (as much as you’re able to) to give a bit of stability to the entire process.

A big part of a smooth move is working with a professional Ottawa moving company like First Rate Movers. Make the transition easier on the whole family – give First Rate Movers a call!


5 Signs You Need to Move to a Bigger House

A woman stands with a box outside a lovely country home

Sometimes a moment arrives when we realize the home that was once perfect is no longer suitable to our needs. However, it’s also possible that this moment will pass you by. Our homes are our sanctuaries and we form emotional bonds with them. Sometimes we need a little push to be able to admit that we need to take the plunge and relocate. To help you come to this difficult decision, here are five signs that you need to move to a bigger house.

  1. You Have Different Needs

When you moved into your current home, your needs were primarily focused on yourself and your social life. You wanted, fancy restaurants and lively bars. Now, your needs have shifted and you’re looking for family-friendly restaurants and good schools. This change in circumstances is the perfect time to consider moving.

  1. Your Family is Growing

Adding to your family is probably the most straightforward reason for needing to move to a bigger house. More people mean more space, it’s as simple as that. When you’ve got little ones running around, you’ll definitely want to enlist the services of a professional Ottawa moving company to make the relocation a breeze.

  1. You Want a Taste of the Great Outdoors

As we get older and the bright lights of the nightclubs feel more like tools of medieval torture, we tend to appreciate the simple things in life, including nature. If you are feeling your green fingers beginning to itch for release then possibly it’s time to consider finding a new home in a more scenic and serene area on the outskirts of Ottawa.

  1. Your Work Life has Changed

You love your new job, but you don’t love the commute quite so much. If your work life has changed, and you have been left having to travel long distances each way then maybe it’s time to consider moving closer to the office.

  1. You’ve Got More Cash in the Bank

You’ve finally scored that promotion at work, or you’ve unexpectedly come into some inheritance and suddenly your bank balance is looking significantly healthier than before. It’s not that your home is cramped or old or run down, but this influx of cash means that you can afford to purchase a home that has more space for you and your family.

Moving house is a big step, but it could possibly be the best decision you ever make. And with the help and services of a professional Ottawa moving company like First Rate Movers, moving to a new home will be an easy and stress-free process.


MOVING TIPS  |  DON'T LEAVE HOME WITHOUT THEM.


Preparing Household Appliances for a Move
Preparing Household Appliances for a Move

When it comes to packing for a move, the last items that normally get packed are your appliances. Since these are not only the most used, but also usually the most expensive items you will be moving, you want to ensure they are well protected during transportation. You also want to avoid any mold or Read More…

Helping Your Teen Move into a Dorm
Helping Your Teen Move into a Dorm

Getting ready to move your teen into their new school dorm? If so, make sure you know about these helpful tips that can make the moving process a whole lot easier for everyone. Review the Registration Information Most residences will have set times and drop off locations for moving in. Make sure to read up Read More…

MOVING TIPS  |  DON'T LEAVE HOME WITHOUT THEM!


Preparing Household Appliances for a Move
Preparing Household Appliances for a Move

When it comes to packing for a move, the last items that normally get packed are your appliances. Since these are not only the most used, but also usually the most expensive items you will be moving, you want to ensure they are well protected during transportation. You also want to avoid any mold or Read More…

Helping Your Teen Move into a Dorm
Helping Your Teen Move into a Dorm

Getting ready to move your teen into their new school dorm? If so, make sure you know about these helpful tips that can make the moving process a whole lot easier for everyone. Review the Registration Information Most residences will have set times and drop off locations for moving in. Make sure to read up Read More…

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