When you work for a company, and they ask you to move in Canada to take a new position in another city, you may get a relocation package. Relocation packages can come in the form of stipends for moving, salary bonuses, temporary housing, long distance moving services covered by the company, or other help getting settled in to your new home (and life!).
Relocation packages can include temporary accommodation, or company housing
Sometimes, people who have to relocate for their jobs are put up in a home paid for by the company – for them and their family. It might be cheaper for the company than paying for you to travel a lot on business.
If you are asked to find the accommodation, for reimbursement later, check out our article on this topic here:
You can negotiate your relocation package when moving in Canada
You may not realize this, but if your company is asking you to move long distance, they probably really want to keep you. That means you can ask for a custom relocation package. Of course, don’t go overboard. But for instance, if you need to take your family with you to check out houses before moving, you can ask for that. They may pay for that trip.
Relocation packages can include a lot you may not be thinking of. It’s not just the long distance move they’ll cover, or the housing and storage needs. A company may help your spouse get a job, pay for child care services, or even cover language training.
The point is to think about what you will need before and after the move, so you can ask the company for compensation in your relocation package. Not all will be willing to go that far, but it’s worth asking, and worth making a case. After all, you’d be uprooting your life to work for them.
While relocation packages may have become rare due to recent economic downturns, they are not totally abolished as a reasonable concept among businesses.
As an article linked to above notes, always maintain receipts of the cost of your move. Even if that includes meals paid for while road tripping with a trailer across the country. Track all of it. It may be needed when calculating the stipend a company will reimburse you for.
You can search for jobs with companies that offer relocation packages, if you want to move in Canada
It may sound sly, but if you are job hunting, and also would like a change of scenery, there isn’t a lot stopping you from finding job postings with companies that are willing to pay you to move.
One way to do this is to visit a job website, and type in the word “relocation” in your search. You can get results where the company is actually advertising a relocation package as part of their job offer.
You can also google a company you want to work for, and then also type in the word “relocation” to see if they have job openings on the web that include these packages.
However, these can be few and far between.
Other times, the company may not advertise their relocation package policies so directly. If you know someone within the company, they may be able to give you an inside scoop on typical relocation packages. If the company has an HR department, you might be able to randomly call in to ask if they offer these incentives to eligible applicants.
Other times, you’ll just need to apply for the job you want. Then if you get selected, ask – in a professional way – if they can offer you help with your business move. If they see you are highly qualified, and a rare hire, it may just work out.
When you’re ready to move to another city in Canada, give us a shout! We can help you with the long-distance move, as well as temporary storage of your belongings until you get settled. Our storage comes in portable containers, which means your goods can be shipped when you want them, without unnecessary unloading.
See Other Relocation or Long Distance Moving Articles:
You might think this topic doesn’t need a ‘how to.’ But you’d be surprised what the Internet can teach you when you do a little digging. Call it a ‘hack’ if you will. We’re about to teach you how to pack kitchen food when moving in or out of Vancouver.
Step 1: eat your food before you move in or out of Vancouver
This is important. Don’t buy more food at the grocery store until you make a serious commitment to go through your pantry, shelves, spice drawer and fridge. You will be amazed at how much food you have accumulated and not eaten. On the one hand, this can make you sad about the money you wasted. On the other hand, this can help you get creative by looking up recipes specifically to use all your ‘odds and ends’ food ingredients. Won’t that be fun?
Food is heavy. If your mover has quoted you based on weight (which we think they shouldn’t), then moving food can get expensive. So if you don’t eat your food to save your money, you’ll need to consider whether getting rid of it is going to be cheaper than buying new food at your new home.
Also, as a resident (or soon to be resident) of Vancouver, moving food is not as simple as you may think. We’ll get into that.
Step 2: reduce and categorize your food to plan for the cost of the move
As movers in Vancouver, we would strongly not recommend you take the approach of ‘dumping’ all your food into cardboard boxes and hope to ‘deal with it’ later. In fact, while you’re getting an estimate, you should be telling your moving company about how much food you want to transport in their trucks. If it’s unreasonable, this can affect the quote you get – even if it is a binding quote from an in-person visit. Don’t forget, the in-person quote that a mover gives you won’t be able to take into account how much food you will have stored in your cupboards on moving day. So be wise, and talk about that in advance with them, to avoid disputes.
The best thing you could do is to start reducing your food, either by eating it up, as noted in Step 1 above, or by getting rid of it. You can throw away the about-to-expire foods. And, while we don’t want to promote food waste, if you’re keeping a cereal box around because it has a snack-size serving left at the bottom of it, maybe don’t plan on keeping it.
You also will want to categorize your food so that you can properly plan for moving it later. Heavy things will transport differently than lighter things, and the way they get packed can affect how well they do in transit. You won’t want to pack up a bunch of dry pasta only to find out it got crushed in the moving truck when you arrive at your new home. That would feel like a waste of effort.
Perishables should be kept somewhere where they can easily be put into a cooler on moving day. Or…left behind. Remember, movers won’t realistically be able to move your fridge or deep freezer if it still has food in it.
If you want to go all survivor-mode and learn how to doomsday prep your food for long term storage – even if it’s dry foods – check out this article on how to do that:
That way, if your kitchen is full of a farm-sized pantry you planned on using to feed 13 kids for the next 20 years, you won’t lose your investment during the move. But on a serious note, that blog post above has some really good pointers about preserving shelf-life on the foods you didn’t think would perish so easily.
Glass food containers
Foods in glass containers are another story. Those will have to be very carefully packaged upright with lots of padding, or otherwise thrown away (though this article suggests getting rid of them altogether). Another option is pouring their contents into sturdy plastic containers, but that may not be practical depending on how far you’re moving. Some moving companies may say no to moving glass bottles.
What about food you medicines4all.com store in glass canisters you paid good money for? Good question. These decor items should be treated like your plateware. You may want to empty their contents so you can pack them as carefully as your fragile items. Sorry, but the food needs to go somewhere else…unless you’re willing to take the risk (which is more doable on a short-distance move, or when you can pack them in your car).
If you’re holding kerosine around for your BBQ, or other flammables meant for cooking, the moving companies will likely give you a flat out ‘no’ to putting them in the moving truck. So just forget about it. You’ll need to find a new home for them, or legally dispose of them.
Spices, flours, teas, coffees and other dry goods:
Some dried herbs and cooking ingredients need to be kept at certain humidity levels to stay useful. This is where moving in Vancouver is a bit tricky. The region has different seasons depending on what time of year you’re moving. And on any given day, humidity levels outside can change. So you’ll need to take care when packing these kitchen foods for moving – even if it’s just across town.
While convention would say to just tape them up and make sure they are sealed before the move, experience may remind you how easily they can either clump, or go stale depending on temperature and humidity. And, as this article notes, spices can be expensive, especially when you consider how many years it took you to accumulate them.
So whether it’s placing them in a climate-controlled cooler, adding moisture-suckers to their containers, or even using vacuum sealers to preserve them, be careful with these. That is, if they are valuable enough to you to do so.
Step 3: donate your unwanted food to charity before moving, or through your moving company
You can also then donate food to a charity, if you don’t want to take it with you. This is especially a good idea for canned or dry goods. And, this is something you’ll want to do on a long-distance move especially.
As movers, we have programs for donating food during our trips to service you. You can keep your donations separate for pick up. But ideally, you’ll want to clear out your space before the movers arrive.
See these articles for more info on donating food:
http://ps8ad.hosts.cx/blog/packing-food-donation/ and http://ps8ad.hosts.cx/blog/dec-1st-2013-participate-move-hunger/ and http://ps8ad.hosts.cx/blog/fergusons-supports-local-food-bank/
Step 4: don’t bring foods that can get contaminated, and avoid contamination
If you’re planning on bringing a paper bag of flour, remember that if it’s been opened, or if it’s susceptible to tear, you are risking contamination. As the preservation blog noted above, foods with some shelf life won’t last forever, and insects can leave eggs in there too. The environment of the move will increase that risk all the more. Temperature also affects the lifespan of foods, especially perishables.
Also, cardboard boxes probably aren’t best for keeping food safe if it’s in plastic bags. Consider plastic containers, or companies that rent out plastic moving boxes, like FrogBox in Vancouver.
Step 5: don’t move illegal foods across borders
You may not be allowed to bring some vegetation across borders. So do declare them to your movers, or look up the rules in advance to avoid the hassle of finding them in the moving truck if you are told they must go after the fact.
Step 6: pack up and hand off to the movers
After you’ve gone through the steps above, it’s time to pack up the remaining food you want to take with you.
You can leave this part to the movers, or do it yourself. Either way, remember where your foods are, so they can be unpacked as soon as possible when you arrive at your new home. You won’t want them sitting under the elements too long.
While the thought of acompostingtoilet probably sounds gross at first mention, you may be interested to know that the industry has come up with some advanced solutions to make it not so. Eco-friendly toilets are emerging as a great alternative both in public spaces and in private homes. If you’re moving in Vancouver, acompostingtoiletor eco-friendly toilet may be more accessible than you think.
If you’re moving into a new home, and especially if you’re in the process of making upgrades to your home beforeyoumove, you may want to consider acompostingtoilet or an otherwise eco-friendlier toilet. These come in multiple forms, which we’ll describe below.
We know what you’re thinking: why would I change my toiletbefore moving?
Well, there are a few reasons people are opting for the compostingtoilet systems, or eco-friendly toilets. They are, among other things:
A desire to care for the planet, and have an eco-friendly move
Also, cesspools, which may seem like a natural way to get rid of waste, are actually causing harm to the environment in places like Hawaii. Pooping into the ground nowadays means distributing disease and other harmful things into the environment (like our drinking water!). Human waste needs to be treated before it goes anywhere. The liquids are disposed of by evaporation or by legal dumping (which you’d need to check rules for locally).
Acompostingtoilet, or at least atoilet that uses less water, can help solve these issues. Doing your part can make a difference.
Moving to a land away from traditional sewers or septic systems
This is a big one. We’ve written about tiny house living on our blogbefore. And that is one reason to need an alternative toilet. This is especially so if you want to move into tiny home or travel trailer that won’t be parked at an RV park.
You want to save money when youmove into a new home!
If you’re going green with your move in Vancouver, you may have already sought out money-savers like solar panelsoralternative heat sources. Composting toilets can also save on water bills (though some use electricity). They are also cheaper to use than building a septic system, if you were in that situation.
What are the best composting toilets or eco-friendly toilet options to install before moving?
You will definitely want to install your eco-friendly toiletbeforeyoumove, especially if you have one bathroom in the home. This will give you time to get used to it, and not feel the pressure to install quickly, if you need the time.
Here are your options for acompostingtoilet to install before moving:
1) Bucket style toilet with saw dust
This type is very basic. Even if there are some nicely designed ones, it’s essentially a two-bucket system. One for poop, with sawdust, and one for pee, which gets bottled. Youcan dispose both when they get full.
Here are some videos to explain them a bit better:
These types of toilets may require building codes to use! They are great for situations where you’ll be far from plumbing, as explained above. Wilderness locations, oremergency shelters can make use of these toilets well.
To conclude, atoilet is not just atoilet anymore! Pick a good one before youmove in Vancouver
You can save both the environment, and money – not to mention be able to live anywhere – with these composting and eco-friendly toilets. If you have amove-in planned, check out your options for installing a new toilet. You could get both a new look, and an efficient way to do your business!
In our last article on this topic, we covered some thingsyou can’t doin a storage unit. This was after it was discovered that someone inVancouver was caught living in a storage facility illegally.
Two thingsyou can’t doin a storage unit, whether self storageor a portable storage unit: live in it or run a business out of it. It also goes without saying you can’t do artwork in it, or run a studio out of it. You can’t sleep it in either, just to be clear.
But there are morethingsyoujust can’t dowithstoragecontainersorstoragefacilitiesinVancouver. In this article, we’ll cover more of those things, which you may not be aware of (though some are obvious… to most of us).
You can’t store animals in a storage unit
Animals, like humans, need ventilation, sunshine, and nature. Youcan’t store animalsin a storage unit. If youdo need a place for your animals to live while you’re gone, you could consider pet babysitters. Or, if you have a lot of animals to move, we wrote some articles on this subject here, to give youmore info on the process:
This one may not be obvious to everyone. A storage unit is not meant to be a warehouse or keeper of food. This mostly applies to perishable foods (see link above). Since other tenants are using the storage units for things other than food, it would not be good if food started attracting insects or rodents. That can affect everyone else in the storage facility. Just like our last article on thingsyou can’t doin a storage facility, this poses a security and liability risk to your neighbouring tenants.
If you have a restaurant, and need to store food for other similar purposes, you’ll need to find a suitable food storage warehouse. Or, consider how you can add refrigeration or space in your restaurant, if possible.
Also remember that some storage units are climate controlled for the purpose of keeping belongings from moisture and other damage. This is not going to be most suitable climate for storing food perishables.
No, you can’t put illegal drugs, stolen property, unregistered vehicles, weapons and anything else illegal up in a storage unit. Also, no to illegally trafficked humans.
Need we say more?
Sure, you’ve seen this done on TV, but it never ends well for the bad guys who try it, now does it?
There may legal ways and procedures for storing firearms, as noted in this article. You should look into local laws about this before you stow them away, for best safety.
You can’t store toxic chemicals or flammables in a storage unit
If your are a mad scientist or nuclear physicist and need a place to store your collection of chemicals, don’t try to do so in a storage facility, please. Remember, humans that are untrained to handle these chemicals will be in and out of a storage facility accessing their belongings. If there is ever a leak, or if there is an explosion as a result of flammables (even by accident), you could end up causing a lot of damage to other people’s stuff. Storagefacilities need to be kept safe from all this – even if they are manned and guarded.
This rule includes gasoline and propane tanks, which you may think are innocent (they’re just for cars and BBQs, right?). But they’re flammable, so they have to be stored properly.
Also, remember that electronic waste can be hazardous, and needs to be disposed of carefully. See our related article on how to move electronics:
On our FAQs page, we also list items that we can not ship for you, which include chemicals like nail polish remover (it’s got acetone in it!) and lighter fluid. Please have a look at that list for other items you can’t keep instorage.
So, keep your chemicals in a safe place please.
To conclude: keepstorage units for storage only
The thingsyou can keep in a storage facility are things like furniture, office papers, appliances (if safe), antiques (though you may want to insure them first), and your hobby materials, like printing presses, vending machines or that old restaurant-grade mixer you thought would kick-start your catering career. Sometimes, you can also store RVs or old cars at storage properties that have space for them (but pay your rent, or they can be towed away).
Inthis article we mentioned you can re-purpose your storage unit into a garden gazebo and other things. But remember, that involves buying a storage container and legally placing it on your own property (or property you have permission and permits to use). In these articles on illegalthingsyou can’t doin storage units, we are talking about commercial areas that are zoned for storage, and not anything else.
Wheretomovefor groundwater accessin B.C., Metro Vancouver, and the Fraser Valley
Sometimes, picking a place tomovein B.C., when you have options, presents a set of considerations. To some, groundwater, or well wateraccess is important. As they say, real estate is all about location, location, location. The importance of location to you may be the idea of having a water source that is either cheap in the long run, controlled by you, or avoids surface water contaminants. Whatever your reason, we’ll discuss wheretomovefor groundwater accessin B.C., particularly in Metro Vancouver and the Fraser Valley (though principles can apply to other parts of the province).
What you should know about Metro Vancouver and Fraser Valley waterbefore you move here
If you’re moving to B.C. from another area, and are used to some complaints people may have about water purity, you may not find those to be issues you’ll face after you move. You see, at least in Metro Vancouver, water does not contain added fluoride. There are opposers and proponents of fluoride out there, and we’re not here tomake the argument either way. It simply stands as a fact that you’re less likely to face added fluoride in your water if you moveto B.C. Water is also soft, which affects its taste.
Not only that, but some complaints about surface water contaminations in other cities are less likely to present a problem in B.C. Some people fear that pharmacy-no-rx.net pharmaceuticals can be found in their water source. However, in Metro Vancouver, surface water reservoirs are so highly placed in their elevation, that most of this is not a concern.
Water is treatedfor health and safety in Metro Vancouver, and is chlorinated (though filtration, UV and Ozone processes are also used). While some choose to use extra filters for their drinking water source (or sometimes even for their showers), generally speaking (barring unusual circumstances, and with the best knowledge we have on hand), waterin the area is safe to drink from the tap. Water boil advisories may be published at some times of the year when necessary, however.
Here is a map showing how water is distributed throughout the Metro Vancouver region:
With the above knowledge in hand, though groundwater may be important to some, it’s also wise to consider the cost and payoff of moving for groundwater accessinB.C. It may not present as many benefits as it would in other cities in North America or around the world. A home water filter may do the trick for you.
If you want to tap into an existing public well or aquifer for groundwater access when you moveto B.C.
Believe it or not, this is not as easy to find out online as one would think. Some municipalities in Metro Vancouver may service residents with groundwater through a city-maintained well. This does not seem to avoid any treatment processes, however, if you have a concern of such. The main example we’ve found is the Watershed well inDelta, B.C., which serves residents south of 64th Street (see “1.0 SYSTEM OVERVIEW” in this doc).
If well wateraccess is important to you, and you prefer not having to maintain your own water source on your property, moving near city wells like this one are something to ask your realtor about. You may also need to call city halls and find out if neighbourhoods you’re movingtoaccess existing groundwater sources managed by the city, such as the one in Delta.
Fraser Valley groundwater is extra special, and a possible reason tomoveto Abbotsford
Interestingly, parts of Abbotsford have won awards for groundwater purity. In the Fraser Valley, it is more likely you’ll see options for groundwater access. This may mean buying a property connected to a built-in private well, or having your own well dug. We’ll discuss digging your own well later.
The thing to know here is that since the Fraser Valley sits on a lower plateau compared to mountainous Metro Vancouver, and is near rivers, groundwater access is more likely, regardless of the city you choose tomovetoin the Fraser Valley.
However, some municipalities can purchase or accesswater from surface reservoirs, lakes or streams, so again, you’ll need to make calls, or talk to your realtor to make absolutely sure what your neighbourhood’s water source will be. In fact, as the Abbotsford and Mission area grows, finding a new water source is becoming a political issue. It may be that your current city water source could change in the next couple decades, if you moveto Abbotsford or Mission. And, as noted in this article, several municipalities in the Fraser Valley have to deal with their own water sources, and water crises, when they come up. This includes private well owners who face dried-up wells.
You can dig a well to the property you movetofor groundwater accessin B.C.
Interestingly, in our modern day and age, city dwellers may not realize that if you have the space, budget and capacity to do it, you can dig your own well. Yes, sort of likein the olden days, but today, a lot more modern, and with regulations to ensure safety, such as noted on the City of Chilliwack’s website.
Why do this? Well, some argue that it’s cheaper. However, this is debatable, as there are upfront costs, and ongoing maintenance costs. Plus, there can be a consideration of how much water your well will yield versus how much you need (you’ll need expert help to make a best guess before you dig). The other reason to do this would probably have to do with distance to your city’s water source connection. This would apply if you are moving to a very remote place, for example. And, as noted above, some may simply prefer groundwater for taste, purity, or otherwise.
While you could undertake the project of digging your own well, if you reaaaally wanted to, you probably are more likely to hire professionals to do this. And yes, there are companies that do this, and that can provide more information on this topic, such as this one in the Fraser Valley: https://www.fraservalleywelldrilling.com/ (this is not an endorsement, however. It is simply provided as a reference).
Well drillers are only one part of the equation here. Some would recommend hiring a well dowser, to avoid digging for nothing, as explained here (by a B.C. area well dowser).
If you do want to do it yourself, Wikihow explains the process here. That said, just because you can do it, doesn’t mean you’d be allowed to do it – at least not without some qualifications. B.C. protects its groundwater through legislation that is meant to ensure water is not wasted, or turned into a safety hazard.
So, once you’ve decided the route you want to take for digging your own well on your own property, there are still a few more considerations. We’ll point out some of them here:
Space and location considerations when you movefor groundwater access:
Ideally, you’ll need tomoveto a property that can give you enough allowance for both your house, and the space around the well that is needed for it to be legal, and safe. Wells need to be positioned so that the property’s water source is not contaminated (such as by flooding, wastewater, and so on). Plus, they need to follow municipal guidelines for placement from property lines, if there are any.
Maintaining wells, and sealing abandoned wells after you moveto B.C.
When you dig your own well, you not only have to maintain your own pump, equipment, and get your water tested frequently. You also will be responsible for sealing the well if you decide to abandon it, to avoid contamination of groundwater. This will be an ongoing cost for you.
It will be up to you to do your research to find out if the cost here is worth it for you, as opposed to tapping into city source water. Some will claim that costs are minimalafter the initial investment to dig a well, and that the payoff of clean-tasting water is worth it. Keep in mind though, there are electricity costs to keep the pump working, and you’ll need a constant power source to maintain water supply (or dread through power outages with bottled reserves).
Finding aquifers when moving for groundwater accessin B.C.
In B.C., finding existing aquifers for digging a well is something you can do through documented research. The documentation may take some prior knowledge tounderstand, however. But when hiring an engineer or well-digger, you can reference these sources, or ask them about it.
To conclude: moving to B.C. for ground water access involves a lot of research
As you can see from the above, there is a lot to research and consider if you want tomovefor groundwater accessin B.C. It’s not as simple as grabbing a shovel and digging in your backyard. Ok, that was a joke – though it might make a fun kids’ project, if you don’t mind the mess! Nonetheless, regulations and costs are important matters to look into before you decide to dig your own well. And if you are simply looking for a clean water source before you move, you may be happy with B.C. water as it is. Or, if groundwater is important to you, try finding a neighbourhood in a municipality that can offer well-water, keeping mind it will likely still be treated. The Fraser Valley may be the best option for this.