Tips for a smooth move

Everyone dreads moving day.  I bet it’s right up there on the endorphin scale with “public speaking”, “doing my taxes” and “bumping into my ex”

Since I hope we are all past friends renting a van and paying with beer and pizza, there are some ways you can make a move more organized and less stressful.  Clients often ask me for moving recommendations, like how do you move in a month; moving checklists, or in a pinch - how do you move in 3 days?

I just helped a client with a move; and here are my top tips for making the day work:

  1. Don’t move on closing day.  This is my top tip with good reason.  If you’re closing on a property – or even 2 to do the move, one thing that is NOT in our control is the time a property closes.  That means you may have to be out of one property before you get the keys for a second.  If you’re moving to a property that needs an elevator reservation it will be pretty difficult to have that all lined up.  Figure out which works best, getting your sale proceeds & storing your things overnight or closing on your new property before and overlapping ownership a few days. 
  2. Hire packers – have them come a week ahead of time.  Pack everything you don’t use on a daily basis
  3. Pack a suitcase with essentials and put them in your car.  Your clothing, toiletries, toilet paper, clean bedding
  4. Get a floor plan for your new home so you can direct the movers
  5. Move everything to the main floor if you can – this minimizes movers time in the house
  6. Use medium sized boxes with handles, they aren’t too heavy to lift when packed, stack nicely and don’t crush what they’re stacked on
  7. Moving to a condo?  Get the logistics in place as soon as you have a move date (elevator reservations, registering with the building etc.)
  8. Label everything in BOLD capitals on the face of the box that will be visible 
  9. Have the movers provide specialty boxes for art & clothing – try and get them to bring things that they can re-use
  10. Take pictures of your electronic set-up so you can put everything back together.   You can buy sets of write-on wire labels from Amazon
  11. Tip the movers.  Have water and snacks on hand

Here are some links to tips from industry experts:

The Frugal Girls 10 Moving and packing tips

PODS recommends - What to pack first when moving

Buzzfeed - Brilliant moving tips

Here's some links to some of my favorite moving supplies:

Medium Moving Boxes the link is to home depot, but anywhere that sells moving supplies - like storage warehouses will have them too

Electronic Cable Labels this takes you to a generic search on Amazon, but you can sort through the results

Packing tape and mini cutter there is nothing more annoying than losing the end of the tape roll!  I find these mini dispensers easier to wrangle than the big ones.  Bonus they store easier too when moving is done

Sharpies invest in multi packs of sharpies like these double sided Sharpies  from Staples, or for a bolder font try these Jumbo Chisel point Sharpies

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A disturbing trend I've come across recently is the fraud in the rental space.   As an agent who handles a fair share of rentals; these issues have shown up over several ways this year.   I'll tell you about 3 instances I've had and the red flags that appeared with each! 

When I'm representing a landlord and an application comes in, I spend a lot of time going through an applicants documentation and getting references and looking through their background.  Here's what I do:

  • Call their employer by finding the employer's website and calling through their office to confirm employment.  I don't just call the supervisor on the application
  • Look carefully at the documents to see if they are real; company letterhead & credit reports can be faked or bought
  • Check social media & linked in
  • Call past landlords
  • Make sure there is a building at the address they're currently renting
  • Check that the landlords name and property owners names match.   If it's an apartment building call through the property management company if it's an apartment rather than calling the number provided.
  • Look at the credit report for signs of altering

With those things in mind, let's look at 3 things that have happened to me this year!

1.  Student rental Scam - fake rental and landlord

First of all, you should never have to pay to submit a rental application, or be asked for a deposit before you get a chance to see the place.   These scams are generally ads on sites like Kijijii and Facebook for rentals that look too good to be true.  They also steal MLS listings for homes and advertise them at lower rates.  I came across one recently through a family friend desperate for some student housing.  It was a big scam; and when I called them out they 'protested too much'.    Here's how to spot these scammers:

  • They demand payment to submit a rental application
  • They demand a deposit before you see the unit
  • Makes excuses why they are not available to speak to on the phone 
  • Will only communicate through messenger, text or email
  • The advertised price is way lower than other rentals
  • Their Facebook profile was just created
  • Their Facebook name does not match their user name ID (see the URL) 

2. Fake Rental Applications   

There are some very good forged documents out there.  I had some people submit an application on a lease I was advertising and here's what I found during the checks, among the other checks I did as above :

  • Inconsistencies in addresses on the application
  • Employment letter does not look real - no header or footer with information on the company letterhead

3. Forged Tenacy Papers

I had a call from a gal who had a great story, good employment, good credit, moving to Toronto from outside the city for work, can't come in to look for a place so needed virtual showings.  Could I help her find a place.  Sounds great right?  

Now I don't usually check tenants out before I help them (and I'd helped out a client with an out of town move this year already in a similar situation)  But with everything going on right now, I felt it couldn't hurt to see what her references would say.   So she sent in her application & 

then came the paperwork - the address of her job didn't match up with her story.  The company had never heard of her or her supervisor.  There was even no property listed at the home she had put for her address!  Other red flags for scammers include what she did:

  • get overly upset when called out 
  • provide complicated excuses for 'mistakes' on application forms
  • call the fact checker a liar, unprofessional, etc.

So be careful out there folks! 


A big thank you to the communities of Guildwood, West Rouge & Port Union for the terrific support last Saturday for my Community Shredding Event.  About 30 families participated - and their generous food donations filled our Jeep to the brim!   The food donations were taken straight to Feed Scarborough - the Scarborough Food Security initiative and will be distributed to local satellite food banks in the area.   Judging from the huge line up outside the Manse Rd. food bank Saturday, it's much needed. 

Chartwell Guildwood was my partner for this event and provided the venue and great snacks.  Thank you Kelly & Dianne for your wonderful support.  As always, Papersavers was gracious, friendly, professional and helpful!  

One interesting sideline - My husband, myself, Dianne and Alex from papersavers all grew up within the same area!   Such a big city/small world!