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4 Unpacking Tips

Young couple unpacking their belongings in their new home

Moving can be challenging in many ways, but with a little organization, certain parts of it can be quite smooth and even exciting! Moving into a new home provides you with the opportunity to start over with your organization systems and purge those items that you don’t really need. Here are some unpacking tips that are sure to make your moving transition as smooth and easy as possible.




Organize Boxes on Move-In Day

Whether you have a moving company lugging your boxes into your new place or you are doing it yourself, be certain to direct where specific boxes are to be set down. A benefit of hiring movers is that they will put all of your boxes go in the rooms you wish them to be in which will make unpacking so much more organized. This step goes back to the initial packing phase where you hopefully remembered to properly label your boxes.


Build Essential Furniture First

Although you may have the desire to set up your kitchen just the way you like it, it’s important to think ahead. You will need somewhere to sit down and take a break, maybe have a snack, and you will need somewhere to sleep. Make setting up your bed a priority for unpacking, including sheets blankets and pillows, while you still have energy. Meticulously folding your shirts and pants can come later, but having a place to sleep should be your first task.


Take Help if It’s Offered

Some people are more particular about their unpacking rituals than others, but the fact still remains that moving is chaos no matter how you approach it. If you are offered help with your unpacking then it’s wise to accept it. Even if you relocate everything that your helpers unpack, at least the stuff is out of the box and the box is broken down and set aside. You will have plenty of time to set up your cupboards and shelves just the way you want them once everything is out of boxes, but in the early stages eliminating the clutter of moving materials should be your number one goal.


Unpack Certain Essentials Before the Real Unpacking Journey Begins

No one wants to be stranded in a bathroom with no soap or worse, no toilet paper. If you don’t know where your bathroom supplies ended up in the mess of boxes labelled “bathroom,” be proactive and buy a pack of toilet paper and a new soap dispenser to have available for both yourself and whoever else you have at your place on moving day.

Moving is an adventure, and how you choose to approach your adventure will dictate how fun or miserable your experience is! Try to have fun with your unpacking experience and relish the fact that you are finally in your new home.


Getting the Kids to Help with Packing


Going through the motions of the moving process is challenging and stressful enough. But when you have children it can present some unique challenges that impact your packing process. But kids are more willing to get involved when you allow them. You can designate some specific tasks for your children to keep them busy and free up some time so that you can focus on some important tasks that need to get done. Use these suggestions if you’re wondering how to get the kids to help with packing.

First, Explain What’s Happening

If your children are still quite young, moving can be an overwhelming and confusing experience for them. So take some time to explain what’s happening, and explain all of the benefits that they’ll get to enjoy about their new home. You can even take them to the new neighbourhood to play in a nearby park so they can see that it’s not so bad.

For Children Under 6 Years Old

If your children are below the age of 6, you can still have them participate in simple ways. You can go through their bedroom items and box of toys together. You can explain that what they don’t want to keep can be donated to children who aren’t so lucky and can use their toys and clothing.

For Children 7-11 Years Old

At this stage, you can allow your children to go through their room on their own and sift through what they no longer want to take with them. You can also have them help you collect other belongings, such as toys from the backyard to wash and organize.

For Children 12 Years and Older

Children at this age can take on much more responsibility. They can help you pack up boxes from various rooms throughout the home, as well as go through their own room and belongings. They can help wrap up delicate items in newspaper once you show them how to carefully pack fragile items. You can also get them to help you sort through the garage.

You can really smooth out the packing process and even help calm your children’s nerves by talking to them about the process and allowing them to help. When children are younger, they’re always keen to help out. When they reach 12 years of age and older, you might need to convince them a little more. But getting the whole family involved allows the kids to experience some responsibility and decision making, which is great for their development too.

When it’s time for your Ottawa move, call First Rate Movers. We have been serving the Ottawa area with superior moves since 2003!

Preparing Your House for Moving Day


Beyond the basics of packing and organizing for your big move, there are other tasks that are necessary to perform before saying your final farewell and throwing in the key. Over the years, wear and tear can easily show throughout your home in subtle or not so subtle ways. Maybe it’s the holes in the wall from when you struggled to hang that giant piece of art, or it could be the paint that’s begun to peel throughout the home. Whatever it may be, take the time now before you move to perform some of those basic tasks so that your house can be fully prepared for moving day.

Fix Holes in Walls

Many of us are guilty of not always hanging our pictures and artwork with ease, or on the first attempt. As a result, many of our walls can display those many failed attempts once we take down our precious wall hangings.  And of course, once there’s no way to hide those holes, they end up on full display when potential buyers come to view your home. Take the time before moving day to fill in and patch up any holes along your walls.

Touch-Up Paint

If it’s been years since the paint throughout your home has been touched up, chances are it could use a fresh coat. The bathroom is an important area for this since the constant steam from those hot showers can easily cause the paint to peel away over the years. A touch-up with fresh paint can make a world of difference to the appearance of your home.

Touch-Up your Porch and Entranceway

The entrance way is what buyers notice first, and it’s what gives them that first immediate impression before entering your home. It’s a focal area that needs to look good. If you have a porch or a walkway and steps that look weathered and dilapidated, make the effort to strip away old paint and add a fresh coat to the porch. Also, any weakened or rotten steps, or cracked patio stones that lead up to your home should be repair or replaced.

Consider adding a fresh coat of paint to your doorway as well. By performing a few repairs and adding some finishing touches to the walkway and door that lead into your home, it can help boost the curb appeal of your home.

Clean the Windows

The windows are also a focal point for buyers and one that can really say a lot about how well you’ve maintained your home. Make sure that all windows have been clean thoroughly. Ensure that the window frames have also been washed as well.

Preparing your home for a move takes more than simply packing. In order for your move to be a successful one, you need to have your house presentable to grab the attention of people looking to purchase. So always look over your home with a stern set of eyes and make the effort to tackle any of those minor repairs and tasks throughout it. They can make all the difference!

4 Tips for Packing When You Have Kids


Having to endure a big move is already a huge endeavour to take on. But once you throw a few kids into the moving mix, it becomes a whole new level of anxiety when you’re trying to carve out some down time to pack up the house.

So how do you multi-task as a parent while still maintaining your sanity? Here are a few tips to help you get through the packing for your move when you have kids.

Be Efficient with Your Time

As every parent knows, it’s important to have a schedule and to use that calendar as though your life depends on it. That includes everything – from when to pick up the kids from soccer practice, when to cook dinner, when to exercise, and maybe even when to relax and breathe. Use that same calendar to schedule in time each day to pack. You can squeeze this in during the school day or whenever the kids are out and about to allow you to focus and get things done.

Chip Away at the Packing

The best method for packing when you have a house full of children to take care of is by chipping away at it consistently during those “off peak” times when the kids are not around, or are preoccupied in front of the TV.

Use the Evenings

Packing can actually be therapeutic when you give yourself enough time so you don’t have to rush through it. Why not use some of your evenings once the kids have gone to bed to sift through your items in peace, with a glass of wine in hand. You might actually enjoy it!

Set Aside the Essentials

Knowing what to pack away and what to keep out of the boxes can be difficult to decide on. But just begin by packing away items that you don’t use on a regular basis. Carve out an area of your home to begin storing boxes so that your home can avoid falling into a complete state of chaos for as long as possible. And set aside the essentials to keep for last.

Packing up your home in preparation for a big move can be a challenge when you have children thrown into the mix. But it doesn’t have to be as long as you use your time wisely. You can create a simple schedule to remind yourself when it’s time to use those key moments of calm. And by setting aside your everyday essentials, you can slowly begin to chip away at the packing so that by the time moving day arrives, you’ll be set and ready to go.

When you have kids, it can be a real challenge to organize a DIY move. Hiring professional movers can ease the stress and make for a quick and simple move. Call First Rate Movers today to request an estimate!

How to Be Prepared on Moving Day

A couple moves a chair that their little boy is sitting in

When the big day arrives, you need to have more than just your coffee prepared for the day ahead. In order for the process to go as pain-free as possible, preparation is key. That means no scattered items left lying around to throw in a box last minute. Everything should be signed, sealed, and ready. Here’s what to do in order to be prepped and ready for that big moving day.

Have Items Packed

This seems pretty obvious, but you’d be surprised how often people leave some items unpacked until the very last minute. Don’t be one of those people. Remember, you most likely will be paying those movers by the hour, so save yourself those extra dollars by having everything ready to go.

Ensure the Destination is Ready

Whether it’s an elevator that needs to be booked, or street parking that needs to be saved, have all of these details figured out and solidified before the big day. If you live in a rental property, be sure to get in touch with the landlord so they are aware of your moving date.


When movers are handling your heirloom China and precious cargo, you have every right to supervise the loading process to ensure that each piece is handled with care and respect. If you feel that items are being handled in a rough manner, don’t be afraid to speak up.

Check Inventory List

For certain moves, particularly long hauls, there should be a detailed, written inventory list. Be ready and waiting at your new destination so that you can go through that checklist as each item arrives. This is a smart way to ensure nothing is missing, and if it is, you can account for it while there is still an opportunity to recover the item.

Take a Sweep

When everything has been loaded, take a sweep through your (former) home to be sure that nothing was missed. Don’t forget to check behind the doors!

Double Check Unloaded Items

After the unloading has been completed, do a walkthrough and scan of the items and furniture. Try to keep an eye out for any signs of damage. The sooner you notice it, the better.

Once you have everything packed and ready for your local move, the rest is in the details. Keep a watchful eye on the moving process between loading and unloading, have your new destination ready and waiting, and take an inventory of your items for those long distance moves. Do all this and you’ll be sure to have smooth sailing to your new home.

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The Only Move-In To-Do List You’ll Ever Need

A woman seals a box with packing tape

Moving can be stressful, but at some point in your life, if not more often, it will become unavoidable. It is inevitable that the average person is going to have a large collection of things to transfer from home to home during a move.

Moving countless boxes and heavy furniture up and down multiple flights of stairs, and through elevators and courtyards, can easily feel like a three-ring circus swirling out of control, causing a real headache. However, effectively preparing yourself for moving day, and even enlisting the help of professional movers, will ensure the process moves as seamlessly as possible.

In order to help you better prepare for your moving day, we have put together this quick to-do list to ensure a smooth transition.

Organize everything before you start packing any boxes

The most important thing you can do to really streamline things when you’re getting ready to move is to organize everything you own before you start to pack everything into boxes. This approach requires you to invest a bit more effort at the beginning, but it will pay off when you are unpacking and can easily coordinate which boxes go to each room. It will also enable you to eliminate a lot of stuff that doesn’t have to be moved – cutting down on your effort and all that heavy lifting.

Label all boxes with their contents as well as their new location at the new place

Labelling each of your boxes with both a list of the contents and the new location that this box has to be delivered to upon arrival at the new place will cut down on any confusion on moving day, and promote a quicker move in general.

Organization is key when it comes to an easy and stress-free move. Often, people try to go about this moving process without much preparation or real plan of action, and that’s why so many people end up in their new homes with boxes everywhere, frustrated and overwhelmed.

Load your moving truck strategically in the order that you want items to arrive

When packing your moving truck, make sure to think strategically about the order that everything is being placed. It can really slow down the moving process if you are trying to move in a big couch and there are already piles of boxes blocking your way in the middle of the living room.

It can also be beneficial to put all of the big items into the truck last, so that they are the first thing you unload at the new place in order to prevent any significantly heavy lifting from taking place at the end of the day when you are already exhausted.

Looking to enlist the help of a professional moving company? Contact First Rate Movers today!

How to Safely Move Your Big Screen TV

A TV and some boxes in an empty room

Moving your belongings can be a challenge. There is the planning and logistics that go into finding movers, getting quotes, and setting up a pickup and delivery time. There is also safeguarding your most delicate possessions to ensure a successful delivery. In particular, one of the most common and challenging items to ship safely is a big screen TV. Becoming a ubiquitous part of modern living, the big screen TV will put up several hurdles that you have to overcome if you want to ensure a smooth delivery. With that in mind, let’s take a moment to review how to safely move your big screen TV.

Consider Getting The Right Box

Were you aware that they make boxes specifically for big screen TVs? Your best bet is to go with the box that the big screen TV originally came in. If you cannot secure that television box, then you will want to choose a box that best fits the dimensions of your TV. Size 1 boxes cover up to 37 inches. Size 2 boxes cover up to 46 inches. Size 3 boxes cover up to 54 inches. Successfully packaging a TV larger than 54 inches will require you telescoping two boxes around either end and taping them together to provide full coverage.

Prepare The TV For Moving

Unscrew any base for the TV. If any part of the TV needs to be protected, it will be the screen. The one thing you want to avoid is pressure impact over the moving process as this can destroy parts of the screen. You will want to wrap the screen in sheets and blankets. You will want to wrap that with bubble wrap until everything is securely in place. If you are placing the TV in a box, then you can use crumpled up newspaper as a back support.

Consider Hiring Professionals To Pack/Move

True, hiring Ottawa movers will cost you money. However, by having someone experienced with moving TVs take care of packing and moving the TV from one home to the next, you can guarantee that your TV will arrive unhurt. Consider the current cost of your television and how much it would cost to replace. For a fraction of that cost, you can hire Ottawa movers to ensure that your TV does not risk damage. Having handled countless televisions in the past, they will be able to provide invaluable experience that will give you peace of mind.

Soon enough, you’ll be relaxing in your living room watching the Sens do battle on your big screen TV…if the kids don’t take it over to watch Paw Patrol.

Avoid These Packing Mistakes

A woman seals a moving box with packing tape

Are you planning a move in the future? If so, you should know that a lot of people don’t pack the smart way and that they encounter stress and problems as a result. To help you learn what not to do as you pack for a move, we’ve created a quick guide to some common packing mistakes with moving in Ottawa.

Once you discover the biggest packing faux-pas, you’ll be ready to pack wisely and you’ll take some of the pressures of moving off of your shoulders.

Failing to Make a Plan

People who pack haphazardly may end up packing away things that they actually need… right before their move! For example, packing up kitchen stuff when you’re going to need it in order to feed yourself may result in tiresome unpacking and re-packing…or in a take-out bill which is astronomical.

To pack smarter, have a logical plan. Pack rooms up one at a time or make a list of essential items which you won’t pack up until the last minute. Have the right packing supplies on hand in order to minimize stress, and reduce the chance of breakages.

The best Ottawa moving companies often provide tons of helpful advice about how to pack the smart way – check out First Rate Movers’ packing hints and tips. We also provide packing supplies and accessories! If you’re going to use a moving company (and this is definitely recommended, as it will make things easier for you), be sure to ask questions about how to pack. You’ll get plenty of expert advice from people who really care about your move.

Underestimating the Important of Sorting

Sorting is really important. While some of us undoubtedly prefer a “quick and dirty” approach to moving, taking the time to sort things and pack them properly is one of the best ways to ensure that a move into a new place is a happy event. Without proper sorting, everything will be a jumble and you’ll need to do all of the sorting at your new place.

If you do sort ahead of time, you’ll be able to place things in your new home easily, without the tiresome sorting. Doing the hard work beforehand is the key to making things more pleasant at your new home.

If you don’t have time to pack everything yourself, talk to a moving professional. They will be able to arrange for a team to pack up your things, or, at the least, provide you with exceptional packing materials which make sorting and sealing boxes simpler.

First Rate Movers has been moving Ottawa since 2003. Compare us against the competition – we know you’ll be impressed. Get an estimate now!


Young couple unpacking their belongings in their new home
4 Unpacking Tips

Moving can be challenging in many ways, but with a little organization, certain parts of it can be quite smooth and even exciting! Moving into a new home provides you with the opportunity to start over with your organization systems and purge those items that you don’t really need. Here are some unpacking tips that Read More…

Help Your Parents Move by Hiring Ottawa Movers

As your parents age, it becomes increasingly challenging for them to pack up and move all their belongings on their own. Plus, as part of running a family, they probably have collected a large quantity of items over the years, which can be incredibly overwhelming to organize. With your busy schedule, you may not have Read More…


Young couple unpacking their belongings in their new home
4 Unpacking Tips

Moving can be challenging in many ways, but with a little organization, certain parts of it can be quite smooth and even exciting! Moving into a new home provides you with the opportunity to start over with your organization systems and purge those items that you don’t really need. Here are some unpacking tips that Read More…

Help Your Parents Move by Hiring Ottawa Movers

As your parents age, it becomes increasingly challenging for them to pack up and move all their belongings on their own. Plus, as part of running a family, they probably have collected a large quantity of items over the years, which can be incredibly overwhelming to organize. With your busy schedule, you may not have Read More…

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by Julie & Gundel
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When we first booked our move over the phone with Matt, we were immediately put at ease by his consideration of our concerns. On the day of the move, the crew arrived right on time and were both professional and funny! This was the easiest and most worry-free move we have ever had and we Read More…

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Matt, my mom asked me to tell you that she has never seen such professional guys do a move the way they did her move on the 22nd of May 2007. Not only did they load the truck so well and quickly; they unloaded it 400 or so klicks away in the same manner. She Read More…

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I just wanted to thank First Rate Movers for a professional and smooth move. Donald was the mover you sent me and he was fantastic! He made the moving experience less stressful for me and worked very efficiently. He made me laugh and did a great job fitting everything into the locker like a perfectly Read More…

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