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5 Mistakes to avoid during your next move

Storage units in North York are a secret weapon when it comes to moving between homes.  Whether you are moving into Toronto, out of Toronto, to a different part of the GTA, across the country or out of the country, we at Self Stor can make your move easier.  Our clean, secure and affordable storage units are available throughout the city.

Our state-of-the-art storage facilities serve Toronto Pearson International Airport, Mississauga, Etobicoke, North York, Scarborough, Richmond Hill, Milton, Markham and Guelph. 

As seasoned storage experts, our experience helping customers during moves is extensive!  We always want our customers to have the best experience – even during their most stressful times.

For a less stressful move, avoid these common mistakes:

1. Leaving packing to the last minute

Unfortunately, many people justify leaving packing to the last minute for the following reasons:

  • It is assumed they will need/use all of their belongings until the day they move
  • They do not want boxes will take up space in their home 
  • They think there’s not enough time to pack 
  • The movers will pack for them

The above reasons may seem valid while procrastinating before moving, but leaving packing to the last minute is rarely ideal. 

Results from last-minute packing can include:

  • Belongings are hard to find when unpacking
  • Delicate items break
  • Too much or too little was thrown out
  • Cleaning obligations neglected
  • Unnecessary stress

This mistake is easily avoidable by planning a gradual and organized process of packing.

Here’s how to plan an organized move:

  •  Determine what you will not need until you move, such as;
    • Seasonal clothing
    • Sporting equipment
    • Furniture in the spare bedroom
    • Wall art
    • Specialty cookware and appliances
  • Get a clean, pest-free storage unit to store your boxes and furniture to create space in your home to pack, clean and organize.
  • Source and purchase packing material and sturdy boxes to protect your belongings and save money on movers packing for you.
  • Gradually move furniture and packed boxes to the storage unit.
  • Pack a suit case to keep with you that could be lived out of for two weeks. This prevents having to search through boxes immediately before and after moving.


2. Not labeling or keeping a record of boxes

Blindly opening boxes looking for your favourite sweater or teapot is frustrating and messy at any stage of your move.

Creating an inventory of what you are moving may seem tedious, but you won’t regret it.  Locating the belongings you need at any stage of the moving process will be a lifesaver.

Your inventory record does not have to be very detailed or take long to do.  Here’s how to create an inventory to make your move easier:

  • Create the inventory document in your smartphone. Use an app like Google Docs, so you can share and edit your records in real time. 
  • Number your boxes starting with the first box you packed.
  • In your inventory document, record the number of the box, the household room it belongs, its contents,  and the current box location.  For example; #1 – Kitchen – Smaller pots, oven mitts and tea towels, storage unit
  • Add to the inventory document as you pack, editing when box contents change or the location of the box changes.
  • Label your box with the assigned number and what room it was packed in at the very least. The finer details of what is in the box can be saved for your inventory document. 
  • Be sure to keep track of which boxes are still in your home, storage unit, or in your new home as you go!

3. Letting boxes pile up and crowd your home

Moving is stressful. Having to wade through boxes before and after the move adds to the stress. Gradually moving boxes out of your home and into your home leaves more space to organize, clean and feel more relaxed. 

Using a storage unit as a moving hub will avoid boxes piling up in your home.  Overwhelming towers of boxes cause anxiety for humans and pets alike.  At Self Stor, we have storage units available for as long or as little as you need to gradually move out of and into a home. 

Having a storage unit as a hub for moving  is especially handy when between homes. Have peace-of -mind that your belongings are safe while waiting for the perfect rental property or occupancy of a newly purchased home. With drive-up storage access, repeat visits to your Self Stor storage unit will be easy and convenient. 

Using a storage unit as a moving hub is where your inventory document will come in handy. You will know what is in and out of storage and can plan the stages of your move accordingly! 


4. Using old and/or flimsy moving supplies

Busy people in the middle of moving often overlook the quality of packing and movies supplies. Your precious household items risk dammage when boxes break,  or if mattresses and furniture aren’t covered properly.

You invested in your household items, so protect them with the right moving supplies. 

Here’s the moving supplies we recommend you use to avoid damage and breakage of your belongings while moving: 

  • Strong packing tape and tape dispenser
  • Sturdy boxes
  • Chair covers
  • Mattress covers
  • Strong, water resistant wrap 
  • Moving blankets
  • Markers
  • Bubble wrap
  • Packing paper/newsprint
  • Packing peanuts

At Self Stor, we have all of these important moving supplies available onsite at all of our storage facilities conveniently located in the GTA and Guelph. 

5. Not thoroughly researching professional movers before booking

The moving industry is unregulated in Canada. Anyone with a truck can call themselves a mover! Moving scams are not uncommon. Once a moving company has your possessions in their care, they can charge whatever they like to release them back to you. 

However, there are many great moving companies out there. Be sure to read online reviews before booking.  Try not to be tempted to book the movers that give you the lowest quote. A quality moving company will ask for fair compensation.  Be aware that if a mover quotes low, they may add surprise charges after your belongings are in their care.

Once you have a moving company, here are tips on how to keep your costs low and avoid surprises:

  • Make sure all of your items that are not furniture are packed properly in boxes. Most moving companies require this and will charge a premium to provide their own boxes and pack for you.
  • Communicate clearly with the moving company how far your home or storage unit is from the street and if there are stairs involved for access.  Get in writing if there will be an extra charge to accommodate these specifics. Do this for both the home you are moving out of and into. 
  • When moving cross-country or internationally, ask if a subcontractor will be used to deliver your belongings.  If they will, ask if the subcontractor will charge a fee upon delivery. 
  • Ask the moving company about stopping at your storage unit, or if all items should be moved there before the move date.
  • If moving a long distance, ask if your items will be shipped in a trailer with other orders.  This could affect the timeline of the journey of your belongings to your new home.
  • If the moving company is basing the majority of their fee on the weight of the cargo, go with them to the weighing station. Get a copy of/take a picture of the weigh station receipt.

After thoroughly investigating your moving company options, compare the cost and effort of renting your own truck and moving yourself.  If you rent your own truck you will not have to worry about potential surprise charges from movers.  You will also be able to move freely between the two homes and your storage unit. 

We hope these tips will make your next move go as smoothly as possible. At Self Stor we have solutions for every step of the way. We understand that moving can be stressful but we are here to help!

Get in touch with us to find the storage right for you during the moving process. Our secure drive-up units are super convenient during moves.  With no lengthy contracts, we at Self Stor can help you for as long or as little as you need!

Happy moving!


Contact your local Self Stor today!

A storage unit is a solution to a lot of your needs.

Check out some of our key features:

  • Drive-up access allows for ultimate convenience
  • Heated units let you store with comfort
  • Online account management gives you the control
  • Packing and moving supplies allow you to tackle any move
  • Extended access to storage units, including holidays
  • Livechat customer service allows you to get the answers you need
  • Month-to-month contracts with flexible payment options
  • State-of-the-art lighting to be easy on the environment

If you do not have a storage unit, visit and book yours today!

For help on what size storage unit you will need, check out our helpful size guide:

Talk to your local Self Stor manager by dialing 1-833-523-0453, they are available to reserve units or answer any questions.

About Justin Morgan

Justin Morgan is a York University alumnus and began his Self Stor journey in 2015, earning a deep understanding of the qualities of self-storage and what made Self Stor special. Justin is now applying his unique talent as a Marketing Manager and content creator to bring storage to life! Follow his latest content on Instagram by subscribing to @selfstor!


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