Updated for 2017

Most of us are destined to find ourselves overcome with clutter at some point in our lives. We can’t help it – we have too much stuff!

And now you’re moving, and you can’t imagine packing it all up and taking it with you. But how do you approach it?

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Thanks to our many years of Ottawa moving experience, we’ve perfected a process that we’re ready to share with you. We’ll help you figure out where to start, and how to dispose of all your clutter before your next move.

1. Start with the Big Items, Like Furniture

It’s better to get rid of things like bookcases, bedframes, and living room furniture sooner rather than later. After all, you’re going to need to cash in favours with your friends and family to have them help you dispose of it, which takes some extra planning.

Organizing this task beforehand is one of the best clutter solutions; now you won’t have to worry about it in the time right before moving day.

There are a few ways to properly dispose of furniture. You could find it a new home by giving it to a friend or selling it to an interested party (either a consignment shop or an online buyer, for example).

If it is is bad shape, like a poor overused sofa from college, you should arrange to take it – or have it taken – to a landfill.

Donating your furniture is always a good option if it’s in good shape, and there’s a place that’s looking.

Donate Furniture in Ottawa

Places to donate your furniture in Ottawa include:

2. Organize All Your Electronics for Proper Disposal

Electronics are some of the things that tend to pile up, mostly because we don’t know what to do with them. Either they’re broken and shoved in a basement corner, or they’re old and outdated and hidden in the back of a closet. This is the perfect time to cut the clutter before starting the actual packing.

For unusable, broken electronics, they need to be disposed of at a special recycling facility, like Revolution Recycling or Recycle My Electronics.

Please note: Depending on where you go and what you have to recycle, there may be a small fee, so you should make sure to do a thorough sweep of your home and get rid of all electronics at once.

If you’re not sure what should be recycled, check out this resource >

If you have some electronics that are still in good shape, and have all their accessories – like charging cords – they could be donated.

Donate Electronics in Ottawa

Places to donate your electronics in Ottawa include:

Remember: Before you donate, make sure to wipe the memory and hard drives of your devices to prevent identity theft. Webroot and Earth911 have some helpful articles on that subject.

3. Dispose of Any Corrosive or Specialized Materials

Chances are you have a cupboard somewhere full of household chemicals that you’ve amassed over the years. So when it comes time to cut the clutter, you have to take extra care of how you dispose of them.

These materials include:

  • Fluorescent light bulbs
  • Paint
  • Oil
  • Batteries
  • Any harsh chemicals
  • Aerosol spray cans

Anything corrosive, flammable, or marked poisonous should be included in this list.


How to Dispose of Them

The City of Ottawa sets up several one-day Household Hazardous Waste Depots – you can see the schedule here.

Remember: A lot of these materials have to be disposed of before the move, because our movers in Arnprior and the rest of the Ottawa Valley can’t transport them. Find out what can’t come on the truck >

4. Work Your Way Through Your Closet

This is one of the biggest clutter catchers in your home. A lot of us just can’t seem to get rid of clothes on a regular basis. It’s only when we get caught in a cascade of clothing that we admit we might have a little too much.

Before you move is a perfect time to cut the clutter in your closet. We recommend organizing it into three piles:

  • The Keepers
  • The Give Aways
  • The Never-to-Be-Worn-Agains

In other words; the clothes you keep, the clothes you can donate, and the clothes so worn out, they can’t be worn at all.

Places to Donate Your Clothes

If you have a sizeable amount of clothes in good shape that you know deep down you’ll never wear again, take them (freshly washed) to somewhere like:

Many neighbourhoods and buildings also have clothing donation bins where you can put your donations – just keep an eye out for them, and make a note of the ones near you!

5. Finish with the Small Stuff

Now you need to take your last bits of energy to find clutter solutions for all the little stuff. This includes:

  • Your knick knacks
  • Your thing-a-ma-bobs
  • Your doohickies.

Or, more precisely, things like:

  • Kitchen supplies
  • Books
  • Children toys
  • Movies and CDS
  • Decorative objects

These are things that, if in good shape, are eagerly accepted by donation centres. You could take your items to:

More Helpful Links for Recycling and Donating

Once You’ve Cut the Clutter, We’ll Handle the Move

Congratulations! You’ve officially cut the clutter, and are ready to start collecting it all over again.

Before that happens, get us to help you move. We’ll handle the heavy lifting, and you can focus on the excitement of your new home.

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