“How do I make my move eco-friendly?”
That’s one of the biggest questions facing moving companies nowadays. And it’s a valid question. From large moving trucks that require a lot of fuel to single-use plastic and cardboard packing materials, old-school moving doesn’t exactly come with a low carbon footprint.
Fortunately, moving is evolving into a more environmentally safe industry. Trucks are manufactured to emit less fumes, and reusable and recyclable packing materials are readily available to consumers. So if you’d like to do your part to protect the Earth, check out these five ways to help make your move eco-friendly.
1. Use reusable and eco-friendly packing materials
Moving can be wasteful if it’s not done properly. In fact, according to a recent study, the United States moving industry generates 900 million cardboard boxes and 30 million roles of tape in waste every year.
The good news is that whether you’re moving on your own or hiring a local mover, you can easily find reusable and eco-friendly packing materials. And the benefits don’t stop at saving you money and protecting the earth. These materials protect your belongings better than single-use items. They’re safer. And they’re even more sanitary.
Here are a few ideas for packing materials to use in your eco-friendly move:
- Rent plastic moving boxes instead of buying cardboard boxes and tape.
- Wrap your items in packing paper made from recyclable newsprint.
- Use your fuzziest socks and comfiest sweatshirts to provide padding in every box you pack.
- Got a heavy box of books that isn’t quite full? Maximize that space with lightweight items like clothing, towels, and linens.
2. Donate or sell the items you don’t love
The less items you move, the more cost effective your move will be. And since less items mean smaller trucks and less trips back and forth, you’ll also help the planet by wasting less emissions.
So get rid of those old concert shirts from the 80s and that unopened birthday gift from your weird aunt. You can drop them off at a donation facility in your neighborhood, have a yard sale, or even put them up for sale online. Let someone else use the stuff that you no longer want—and save money and the Earth!
A great way to reduce the amount of items you’re moving is to drop them off at a recycling center. Just be sure that your items can actually be recycled. Here are a few examples of what you should donate, sell, or dispose of instead of recycling:
- Plastic or metal hangers
- Construction debris like bricks, wood, and cement
Keep in mind that items like electronics and batteries are difficult to recycle. So they often can’t be dropped off at a regular recycling center. Check out your local electronic stores and even alder offices to see if they have an upcoming electronics recycling event.
4. Plan ahead and stay organized
When you plan ahead and stay organized, you don’t have to repurchase supplies that you’ve already bought. Planning and organization also help you avoid unnecessary trips between your old and new homes. And less driving means less fuel and emissions!
Even after you’ve packed up your home, you probably still have a meal or two before you actually move. So be sure to keep out some flatware, silverware, and glasses that you can use for eating and drinking until you’re ready to walk out the door for the last time. This prevents you from using wasteful things like paper plates, plastic forks, and Styrofoam cups.
Our mission is to help people have stress-free and eco-friendly moves. And our reusable plastic moving bins can help make that happen!