6 Tips For An Eco-Friendly Moving Day

Guy Fuchs
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Strategies for Making Your Move More Eco-Friendly

Moving can be a hectic process, and people look for as many convenient ways as possible to power through it quickly. A hurried approach often leads to excess waste and decisions that are not as good for the environment. Without a mindful approach to the entire process, it is easy to inadvertently do things that you may not usually do. While it’s not always possible to plan a move months in advance, start planning early if you are able. This will give you enough time to make an eco-friendly moving strategy. Here are some helpful tips to get you started.

Have a Garage Sale

Whether you call it a yard sale or a garage sale, it’s a fantastic way to accomplish three things with one solution. First, you can effectively declutter before you move. Second, you’re earning some extra money for your move. Third, you can get rid of things without adding to what’s already in the landfill. Keep in mind that cities usually require permits for garage sales. Because it may take a little time to obtain one in some locales, try to plan your sale as far in advance as possible. Some cities allow you to register and get your permit info online, and some cities will even add you to a map or list where local people who are looking for garage sales can find yours.

Donate What You Don’t Take

Someone else may be able to use anything that still works or is usable that you no longer want. If you don’t sell everything at a yard sale, you can still get rid of whatever is left by donating it. Today, the Salvation Army and some other organizations that accept donations will pick up items from your home if you schedule a time in advance. Local churches or charities may also offer donation pickup services. Some places will give you a donation receipt if you want to write off your donations on your taxes.

In the United States, people waste about 150,000 tons of food daily. If you have leftover food that you don’t want to haul, you can donate some of it instead of throwing it in the trash. Local churches or food banks may accept unopened frozen items, canned goods, and dry goods. Search to see who accepts donated food and what they accept.

Recycle What You Can

As you go through things and declutter, you’re sure to find some things you can’t sell or donate. Most of those can be recycled. Divide items into glass, plastic, and other recycling categories. Find out what your local recycling centers accept. Also, collect everything that’s hazardous and needs to go. Pesticides, batteries, old electronics, oils, and paints are considered hazardous. When they go to landfills, they seep into the soil and can cause groundwater pollution. The Environmental Protection Agency has a state-by-state list of hazardous waste programs you can use to find one near you.

Some items you can also repurpose as a way to recycle them. For instance, you can use old socks or worn clothes for packing material or cleaning rags. Do you have white vinegar, baking soda, lemon juice, or fresh lemons? Don’t throw them away. You can use these items to make natural and eco-friendly cleaning solutions instead of buying cleaning goods to clean up your home before you leave. Try to think of other creative ways to repurpose items and ask the rest of the family to contribute suggestions.

Find Free Moving Supplies

Why should you invest the effort in sourcing free moving supplies? Yes, it may take a little extra work. However, you’re accomplishing two things, which are saving money and reducing waste. When you buy all your moving supplies, it could cost you hundreds of dollars. Costs vary based on item dimensions, home size, and other factors.

Flat lay of empty open cardboard box on wooden surface

So, where do you find free boxes? Most large retail stores and grocery stores have plenty of extra boxes they are willing to give away instead of discard. You can call and ask what time they restock shelves or where they put out boxes for people to take. What can you do with old moving boxes? Some of those boxes are pretty sturdy, which means you may want to keep them for storing seasonal items even after you move. If you have boxes you don’t want to keep after moving, you can give them away to someone else who may be moving.

Going back to the previous section, you can repurpose items you already have to use as packing material. For instance, you can use old newspapers to wrap dishes and other fragile items. If you have sheets or blankets, you can wrap them around pictures, mirrors, lamps, or other larger items that may otherwise get damaged in a moving truck. Fill drawers of desks or dressers with clothes to use fewer boxes and make the most of your moving truck space.

Work With a Professional Moving Company

Whether you’re renting a truck or planning to hire someone to do all the labor and driving for you, there are several options. Modern moving companies are familiar with ways to minimize waste during the moving process and minimize environmental impact. Some full-service companies also provide packing services. Additionally, many moving companies let you drop off used packing materials to recycle instead of throwing them away.

Delivery men with moving boxes near car

To give yourself enough time to do everything and meet all your eco-friendly moving goals, be sure to construct a plan with a clear timeline for moving preparations.

Guy Fuchs

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