5 Ways to Adapt Your Move For The Pandemic

 

Moving during the current pandemic is a lot different than moving has been in the past. There are new precautions, mandatory rules, and behaviours that need to be followed.

 

Our priority throughout this pandemic has always been to keep our customers and our teams’ safe while continuing to provide exceptional quality service. Our team of professional movers are here to help you adapt to these new changes and make your move as stress-free as possible. The following tips were designed to help you prepare and feel more comfortable moving during a pandemic:

 

Tip 1: Research Your Moving Company

 

It’s important to stay informed and make sure the company you hire is following the correct procedures. Protect yourself and your family by researching your moving company before you start taking out your wallet. Search for a company that is clear with their COVID-19 procedures and is able to provide the level of comfort you are looking for.

 

Atlas Canada and our network of mover agents will continue to follow the recommended protocols of Health Canada, the CDC, and WHO. These help us ensure that there is a uniform set of guidelines and safety measures across all of our operations. If you have further questions about our safety protocols, please contact your local Atlas Van Lines moving agent to ensure peace of mind when moving.

 

Tip 2: Find a Moving Estimate

 

We know cost can be a major driving factor when choosing a mover, especially during the pandemic. Many people are planning their finances well in advance and considering all aspects of cost before making decisions. Atlas Van Lines can help you plan by providing you a moving estimate to ensure you know what to expect. Click to get your moving estimate today!

 

Tip 3: Plan Your Pre-Move Shopping

 

As many stores are limited to the number of people indoors or have resorted to curbside pick-up only, it is necessary to plan in advance what moving materials you will need. To try and limit the amount of contact you have with others, it’s best to plan what you need and where you need to go. What supplies do you need? What stores carry these supplies? Make a list to ensure you have enough packing and moving supplies so you don’t need to worry about running out last minute. If you can, try to limit yourself to 1-3 stores during your outing.

 

While shopping for moving supplies, don’t forget to pick up some safety materials as well. Make sure you’re stocked up on gloves you may need, hand sanitizer, cleaning products, and disposable masks. Having enough supplies will make it easier to follow health guidelines during your move.

 

Tip 4: Use Safety Supplies and Follow Procedures

 

Now that you’ve been able to go out and get all of your supplies, make sure you put them to use. Sanitizing and cleaning high touch surfaces before the move is important, but it is also important to try and maintain these efforts throughout moving day as well. Create a sanitizing station with all the essentials and assign one person to make sure high traffic areas are sanitized.

 

Tip 5: Designate a Point of Contact

 

Someone should also be designated as the main point of contact with the movers. This will limit closer contact with our team and your family to reduce any risk. Make sure you are following safety guidelines such as staying six feet apart, washing/sanitizing your hands, wearing a mask, and not removing your mask while interacting with others will help keep everyone safe.

 

By sharing the above tips, we hope to help you stay informed on how moving has changed during the pandemic and ways we can make the process less stressful for you. We can’t wait to help you Go New Places®.

Clever Moving Tips To Make Your Move Easier

Moving is an event that everyone can relate to. Whether you are moving to your first home, upsizing, downsizing, or even relocating for work, we all go through the process at some point in our lives.

 

There is a lot that goes into making a move successful and the process is time consuming to say the least. As professional movers we’ve shared some of our best tips on how to save money on a movepack like a pro, and even settle in to a new city. But we wanted to hear first hand from you what tips and tricks you’ve learnt from your own experiences to make moving easier.

 

We ran a social media contest asking the public to submit their best moving tips for the chance to win a gift card to Home Depot and have their tip featured here in an Atlas Canada blog.

 

We were amazed by all the different tips we received and after much deliberation, narrowed it down to our 3 winners. Each tip was chosen for practicality and the ability to think outside of the box. Keep reading to see what our winners had to say and don’t forget to check the Atlas Canada Facebook page for more monthly contests!

 

Tip 1: Keep track of everything

 

Have a notebook for keeping track of all the things you have to do. Utilities to terminate and new accounts to open. All the persons and companies you have to notify of your address change. The dates completed, persons you speak with and confirmation numbers will all be in one place.”
– Susan H.

 

When it comes to staying organized while moving, it’s easy to lose track of what needs to be done. Having a notebook to write down your progress and to do list can put your mind at ease as well as help you stay focused during a busy time.

 

Tip 2: Use detail when labeling boxes

 

“When I label my moving boxes, I go into more detail than just writing “Bathroom” or “Bedroom.” I’ll list some of the main contents so that I can easily find items when I’m unpacking or when I’m trying to survive those first few days of having my life in boxes. So instead of just “Kitchen”, for example, my label will be “Kitchen: mixing bowls, strainers, cutting boards”. It is a little extra work up front but saves so much time in the end!”
– Alison G.

 

Labelling boxes is very important when moving because it allows you and the movers to know exactly where everything goes. This tip alone will speed up the moving process drastically. But taking it one step further and writing down specific items within the box will make finding whatever you need, when you need it, that much easier.

 

Tip 3: Use coloured tape or labels

 

“Use different colored tape to seal the boxes for each room you pack. Then when you arrive at your new home you can easily stick the coloured tape on each room’s wall and everyone will know which box goes where.”
– Monica L.

 

Coloured tape is a creative and effective way of showing which room each box should go in when unloading your belongings. For example, all the kitchen boxes could have blue tape on them and the kitchen door itself could have a blue sticky note to direct all helpers. Colours are easily seen from a distance making the unloading process much quicker and more efficient.

Gardening Tips And Tricks

To celebrate the beginning of spring, we ran a social media contest asking the public to submit their best gardening tips.

 

The top 3 tips were selected to win a gift card to a garden centre of their choice and have their tip featured in an Atlas Canada Blog. The entries poured in from all across Canada and we were truly amazed by the knowledge, expertise and even humour added to these tips. Keep reading to see what our winners had to say and check out the Atlas Canada Facebook page Atlas Canada Facebook page for more monthly contests!

 

Tip 1: Use Organic Waste

 

“I use banana peels, coffee grounds, and egg shells to grow my garden. I chop my banana peels and add them to my soil around the garden. Bananas add potassium and nitrogen to the soil and it works similar to a slow-release fertilizer. The coffee grounds I also use for blueberries and azalea flowers mostly as they love acid. The eggshells I never throw out; I let them dry, crush them and then add them to the soil for extra calcium and to prevent vegetables from Blossom rot.”
– Barb M.

 

Who knew kitchen waste can be such a great organic fertilizer for your garden! Aside from using banana peels, coffee grounds and egg shells, citrus fruits can also be used to keep pests away from plants. However, it is important to note not all waste is good waste. Leave out any grease, oils, meats and dairy products as it will lead to a sloppy mess.

 

Tip 2: Use Wildlife to Your Advantage

 

“When you plant carrots, wait until rabbits come around your garden. If they sniff your carrots then don’t try any, you know they’re not ready yet. If they take one out of the ground, they’re ready! Rabbits know best!”
– Olivia A.

 

Attracting animals to your garden isn’t always a bad thing. Animals can sense when produce is ready for picking and if plants are poisonous. Toads, bats, and lizards help decrease the population of unwanted insects. Their arrival indicates that you have a healthy ecosystem to sustain them.

 

Tip 3: Fish as Fertilizer

 

“Use fish heads to grow the biggest and best tomatoes as it provides nitrogen and calcium during decomposition. Most gardeners will use the head, but any part will work. These nutrients encourage healthy leaf and branch growth.”
-Jo-Anne P.

 

Other than growing the biggest and best tomatoes, fish fertilizers provide natural nutrients to soil to help grow many different kinds of crops. The best way to use the left over pieces of fish is to blend or grind the scraps, then work it into the soil. Make sure to bury it deep to avoid attracting unwanted animals. The only disadvantage about using fish fertilizer is that it can sometimes be a bit smelly!

Advantages Of Moving During Non-Peak Season

If you have the luxury of choice, consider moving during non-peak season when the demand for movers isn’t as high.

 

This season usually falls between the months of fall and winter when temperatures start to drop. As long as you properly prepare for the weather, moving during these months can save you money and time. Here are a few advantages to moving during non-peak season.

 

Lower Moving Costs

 

The number one advantage to moving during non-peak season is lower prices. Moving can be costly, especially if you are travelling long distance across Canada or the United States. The good news about moving in the slower season is that credible movers will lower their costs to attract more customers. If you have a strict moving budget, consider arranging your move during this time to save yourself a ton of money!

 

Flexibility on Dates

 

It is always a good idea to book your move as soon as possible regardless of the time of year. However, throughout non-peak season movers have much more flexibility in their calendars to accommodate your preferred dates. Unforeseen delays or changes do happen in the buying, selling and moving process. Knowing your mover has the flexibility to adjust and work with you will give you additional peace of mind during what can be a stressful time. In peak moving season which falls in the spring and summer, your mover should be arranged at least 6-8 weeks prior to your move to ensure you get your required date.

 

More Time to Settle in

 

People typically spend a lot more time bundled up indoors come winter. Especially if you have children, the outdoor activities and events start to wind down and shift inside. During this quieter season there is a lot more time to plan and settle in after a move. Unpacking, decorating and organizing your belongings are much easier when you aren’t juggling your time with outdoor activities and day camps. Find some time to scout out your new area and discover all the nearby attractions and amenities as well.

Get Organized For The Cool Weather

As the leaves change and the days get shorter, we know that cooler temperatures are on the horizon!

 

While the cooler weather is a nice change to the hot humid days of summer, the transition can be hard on your home. There is more to think about than switching off your AC and turning on your heat. To help you prepare, here are a few home projects to complete this fall.

 

Entry way

 

It’s time to dig out your boots, coats, scarfs, gloves and hats! Although these items can be great for fashion, they can be a bit of an eye sore in our entry ways. Start by putting away all your summer gear to make more room for bulky items. Stay organized and minimize clutter by adding extra hooks and storage bins to separate your essentials and save time when leaving your house. Foot mats are also great to contain dirt and eliminate wet floors!

 

Garage Maintenance

 

There’s nothing better than getting into a warm car free from snow and frost during the cold winter months. The best way to make room for your car and other winter tools is to do a little fall maintenance. Start by hanging up your bikes and setting aside your lawn mower. Make sure your snow blower, shovels, holiday decorations and other necessities like windshield wiper fluid are easily accessible. Do your due diligence and check the condition of your winter supplies. The last thing you want is to realize you need to replace a broken shovel after a big snow storm!

 

Garden and Lawn

 

Growing season has come to an end but that doesn’t mean your garden and lawn can be left alone until next year. There is some preparation you should do to ensure your yard thrives come spring. If you have a vegetable garden, gather all your herbs and veggies as they will be great for soups and hearty meals! Don’t forget to pull up any weeds to save you some much needed time in the New Year. When it comes to your lawn, short grass can be susceptible to damage during cold temperatures. Make sure to trim your lawn but leave 2- 1/2 inches of height as well as fertilizer for protection.

 

Doors and Windows

 

A lot of air can escape or enter a home if your doors and windows aren’t properly sealed. This can be very costly on your monthly utility bills! Take a few minutes to check the weather stripping around your windows and doors to ensure there aren’t any gaps between the fixture and the frame. Thick curtains are another great insulation tool and will act as a great décor element in your home.

 

Home Décor

 

Last but not least pull out your favourite cozy blankets, change your bed sheets and add some festive fall décor! It can be easy, affordable and fun to make small seasonal changes around the house. You will be surprised at how new throws or pillows can really change the look and feel of a space.

How to Stay Organized for a Summer Move

June, July and August are the busiest months for moving.

 

If you plan to move during peak season, start looking for your mover as soon as possible. It is recommended that you book your move 4-6 weeks in advance to make sure the date you want is available. Once your date is determined you can start to prepare for the big day. Below are some great tips to help you beat the heat and stay organized during your summer move.

 

Set Up Utilities

 

With everything going on during a move, arranging for the utilities to be set up in your new home may be one of the last things on your mind. But this is an essential step in the pre-move process. During peak moving season, it can take up to 2-3 weeks to schedule a date for these arrangements. The last thing you want to worry about is moving in without lights, air conditioning or running water! Make sure to give your local utilities provider a call well in advance to avoid these conditions.

 

Schedule to Start Early Morning

 

One of our best tips to combat the summer heat during your move is to start as early in the day as possible. The hottest time of day is usually around early to mid-afternoon which can fluctuate depending on where you live. It can be very challenging to move in such high temperatures as your body exhausts more energy than usual. Talk to your movers to arrange for an early morning start; that way you can get ahead of the heat. If you don’t have a lot to move, starting later in the afternoon may be a good option as well.

 

Prepare Yourself for the Heat

 

Being outdoors on a hot summer day requires some preparation regardless of whether you are lounging or being active. Moving is an exhausting task on its own not to mention adding heat to the mixture. One of the best heat safety tips to stay protected during hot weather is to drink lots of fluids. Carry a water bottle with you or have a case of water nearby to consistently hydrate your body throughout the day. Another important tip when moving in the summer is to wear light fabrics. Avoid dark colours that easily absorb heat and make sure you are comfortable in loose fitting clothes. Last but not least, wear your sunscreen! Even if you are not directly in the sun all day, your skin will still likely be exposed at some point.

 

Preparing for your summer move with the tips above will help you beat the heat, stay organized, and set your move up for success.

4 Ways to Revive Your Home with Paint

Taking on a home renovation is a huge task on its own, not to mention the extensive cost associated with it.

 

If you are looking for a more affordable solution to change up the look and feel of your home, adding a fresh coat of paint will do the trick! For a quick and simple update, painting your walls alone will make a huge difference. If you are looking to go beyond the walls and add a little more dimension, here are 4 great painting options to consider for your next DIY or professional project:

 

Painting kitchen cabinets

 

One of the main elements to every kitchen is the cabinets. Cabinets are not only great for storage they are also used as a focal design feature to bring the entire space together. Experts say that before finalizing your wall colour you should first decide on the colour of your cabinets. Painting your cabinets is a great way to freshen up a kitchen that is outdated or maybe just not your style. When it comes to paint colours, white is the new black! The best part about white cabinets is that they are so versatile you can always change the accent colours. White also gives the illusion of a bright and light space. Does your kitchen have an island? Try painting it a contrasting colour from the upper cabinets to really liven up the room. Between the type of cabinets, the colour, and the hardware, you can really customize the look and showcase your personal style throughout. After all, we spend so much time in our kitchens it’s important to create a space you love.

 

Painting banisters

 

Small, narrow, a means to an end… Don’t let these adjectives be the only words to describe your staircase. All you need is a quality bucket of paint and your stairway can become the new grand feature in your house. The most popular way to revamp an old, outdated staircase is to paint the banister using neutral colours. If you want to go a little further and make more of an impact, try painting the vertical portion of each step also known as the stair risers. You can get really creative here by adding pops of colour or even prints. Stains can be a great alternative to paint and are also a great option to transform your staircase.

 

Painting Decks and Porches

 

Has your deck or porch seen better days? Bring it back to life with some paint! Although paint isn’t the traditional way to revive an old deck, if done properly it will certainly add some life and curb appeal to your home. You can keep it simple and use one solid colour throughout or get a little more adventurous with stripes, checks, or faux rugs. Pro tip: Traditional oil-based enamel wood paints are very durable options for wood floors that see lots of foot traffic. Don’t forget to use primer!

 

Painting Doors

 

Painting your front door is an easy and affordable way to add instant curb appeal to your home. Make a statement by using a vibrant colour like red or yellow, or go a little more classic with a solid black or steel blue. Make sure there is a contrast between your door and the colour of your house as you don’t want them to blend together. Once you choose a colour, add some show stopping accessories like new hardware and a decorative wreath. Have you ever considered painting your interior doors as well? Step outside the traditional white or off white and go a little bolder with colour! You can really play around with your paint choice and add a fun design element to the room.

Timeless Home Decorating Tips

To celebrate National Decorating Month in April, we ran a social media contest asking the public to submit their best home decorating tips.

 

The top 4 tips were selected to win a gift card to The Brick and have their tip featured in an Atlas Canada blog. We were overwhelmed by all the amazing advice we received and after much deliberation, narrowed it down to our 4 winners. Each tip was chosen for its practicality, timelessness and ability to give your home a unique touch. Keep reading to see what our winners had to say and don’t forget to check the Atlas Canada Facebook page for more monthly contests!

 

Tip 1: Don’t rush your design

 

“Decorate as you go and come back to your design after a while. Starting with a fresh mind will boost creativity every time to make your decoration a masterpiece.”
– Calvin F.

 

After looking at a room for a while it can start to look like a blur when trying to plan a theme and style you want. The best way to avoid getting frustrated or overwhelmed by the decorating process is to take your time! Maybe you’ve been trying to plan the look of your kitchen and with most kitchen renovations being expensive and time-consuming, you want to get it done as soon as possible. Taking a break and coming back to the design with a fresh set of eyes will spark creativity and help you create something you truly love. Shop around for the products and styles you like and look online or in magazines for some extra inspiration. In the end, you will be glad you didn’t rush through your design.

 

Tip 2: Reinvent old pieces

 

“We like to go to the Habitat for Humanity Restore and find recycled products to make changes to our house. We’ve repainted and/or recovered a new door, new cabinet fronts and a new chair all found at the restore. They look brand new all over again!”
– Melissa B.

 

When it comes to picking out some new décor for your home be sure to check out old finds in any local vintage shop, restore, or garage sale. You can find some real treasures in these places! Just by adding a fresh coat of paint or changing out the hardware you can easily modify the look of a piece and still keep its antique detail. You don’t have to go to a thrift shop to do this. It can also be done with old items passed down from family members or furniture you’ve had lying around for years. The makeover possibilities are endless!

 

Tip 3: Picking the right colours

 

“Pick colours and styles that are interchangeable. For example, grey, white and pink. If you create a room with the same flowing colour scheme, it’s easy to change out certain features to create a whole new look without breaking the bank. Change the drapes from white to grey. Switch up the cushions. Move your decor pieces around or even paint them. Before you know it you’ll feel like you’re in a brand new room because you made it easy to keep things fresh!”
– Estelle M.

 

It’s important to find a good balance between trendy and timeless when it comes to designing your home. Trends come and go so often that it can be difficult and expensive to keep up with them. The easiest and most cost-effective way to incorporate trends without going over board is to use trendy pieces as accent features that can easily be swapped out. For instance, small furniture, lamp shades, pillows, and throws all make great accents that can be changed each season at a minimal cost. Stick to neutral colours for your walls and larger furniture items as these pieces tend to be more permanent.

 

Tip 4: Test the rooms lighting

 

“Pay attention to the lighting in your house before you start. Natural lighting and electrical lighting can really affect the mood of a room, so you need to see how much light is present before you start choosing your colours. This will help create the best showcase for your space and save you time and money in the long run.”
– Jamie H.

 

When you’re picking a new colour for any room in your home you want to make sure to test the colour in different lighting. One mistake you don’t want is to paint the whole room and then realize the colour looks completely different than it did in the store. To save you some time and money its best to take a sample of the paint colour and test it on a portion of the wall. See how the paint reacts to different lighting in the room throughout the day. After all, a colour can look entirely different in natural light compared to electrical light and will also change depending on the shape and size of the room.

Minimize Food Waste Before Moving Day

Even with the best of intentions many people tend to throw away a lot of useful items when they move, especially food. Lack of time and convenience often overrule when deciding whether to make a trip to the local food bank, and as a result a lot of good, sustainable food goes to waste. We understand finding extra time is difficult during the busy weeks and days leading up to a move. But with a little bit of planning and some help from our Atlas Agents, minimizing food waste doesn’t have to be a burden. Here are some tips on how to use or donate the food left in your home before moving day.

 

Plan Your Meals

 

Meal prepping is a great technique to effectively clear out your pantry. Start by making a list of everything you have in your fridge, freezer and cupboards. Knowing what you have will help you plan better meals and use up more food. Focus on using all your perishable, freezer and opened foods first as these items will spoil quicker and can’t be donated. If you decide to go grocery shopping, stick with just the essentials and avoid buying in bulk. Remember, any leftover non-perishable items make for great donations!

 

Donate Your Non-Perishable

 

Atlas and many of our Atlas Agents have partnered with nonprofit group Move For Hunger to help make it easier on you to donate non-perishable food items when you move with Atlas. Simply gather all the non-perishable, long lasting food in your pantry and place them in a donation box. Our partnering Agents will pick up your donations at the time of your move and drop them off at the local food bank. Contact your local Atlas Agent to find out if they participate in our partnership or visit Food Banks Canada to find a donation center near you.

Moving in With a Roommate

The rise of Canadian real estate has been a hot topic this past year. With many Canadian’s unable to buy on their own, they’re led to invest with others for the additional support or rent if that’s not an option.

 

Today, the notion of living with a roommate has become very common not just for those in their early 20s but for adults and families as well. Sharing a space whether it’s with your friend, partner or a stranger can be challenging. We made a list of some important questions to address before moving in with a roommate.

 

What’s your day-to-day schedule like?

 

Get a better idea of who the person is and what type of routine they have. Their routine will tell you how often they are home and what they do professionally and recreationally.

 

Are you a night owl or an early bird?

 

Finding out what time a person generally goes to bed and wakes up will give you a lot of insight. If you have conflicting sleep patterns, be cautious of your noise level during these hours.

 

What is your favourite way to spend a Saturday night?

 

If you are a homebody who likes to spend most Saturday nights curled up with a cozy blanket and a good movie, searching for a low-key roommate would be a better fit.

 

Do you have pets?

 

There are additional factors to consider when adding pets into the mix. Depending on the size, type and personality of the pet, there might be responsibilities not just for the owner but for the roommate as well. Make sure allergies aren’t an issue!

 

What’s your biggest pet peeve?

 

When living in close proximities with someone, you will discover what makes them tick sooner or later. Be open, honest and realistic about your expectations.

 

Are you neat or messy?

 

When it comes to cleaning, pulling your weight is important when living with a roommate. Make a cleaning/chore schedule to prevent miscommunication and confrontations in the future.

 

Do you like to cook at home?

 

This is a great follow up question that will open the dialogue to groceries and whether you will be sharing anything such as condiments or kitchen appliances. It will also indicate how often there will be dishes at which point you can clarify cleaning responsibilities.

 

How do you prefer to communicate and resolve conflict?

 

Some people prefer to communicate face to face and others via text or email. Perhaps a combination of sending a quick text letting your roommate know what the issue is and then discussing in person later will lead to a more productive outcome.

 

How do you plan on making rent/bill payments?

 

This question is very straightforward and necessary to discuss. Ensure your assets are protected by confirming who is in charge of what, how the payments will be made and what will be done if a payment cannot be made by one party.

 

These questions will lead to some great discussions between you and your potential roommate. After all, there are certain things you should know about each other before deciding whether to live together. There’s nothing worse than realizing after the fact you aren’t the right fit.

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