Moving can generate a significant amount of waste and use a lot of fuel. However, proper planning can make moving more eco-friendly. Moving can also be an excellent way to kick off a new eco-friendly lifestyle in your new home.
Here are some green household moving tips.
1. Pack Lightly
One way to reduce the environmental impact of your move is to move less stuff. First, make a written list of every item you own so that you avoid taking duplicates to your new home. Then sort through your clothes, towels, and kitchen appliances so that you only take those items you truly need and love.
Rather than throwing away items you don’t want, donate or sell as many as possible. CraigsList and Offer Up provide options for selling unwanted furniture and housewares. In addition, charities and thrift shops will accept donations. Responsibly recycle batteries and similar items appropriately.
2. Reuse Boxes as Much as Possible
Buy new boxes as a last resort. If you think you will move, save boxes from deliveries throughout the year. Also, check with grocery stores and bookshops to see whether they have sturdy, gently-used boxes you can reuse. Some movers can also provide used containers.
3. Use Alternative Packing Containers
Chances are, you have many packing containers throughout your home. Pack items in suitcases and totes.
Also, pack smartly. For example, you can put kitchen utensils and silver inside pots and socks inside shoes. The fewer containers you need, the less you’ll impact the environment.
4. Use Eco-Friendly Packing Materials
Before you buy packing materials, consider what you may already have. For example, towels, sheets, blankets, and clothes make suitable packing materials for all but the most fragile items. After that, consider using newspapers which you can easily recycle.
Buy bubble wrap only for fragile items that require it. When buying bubble wrap, look for an eco-friendly version.
6. Don’t Pack Up the Whole Kitchen Right Away
When you pack up the kitchen, leave a few plates and silverware for last-minute meals. That way, you can avoid using paper or plastic. Pack the last-minute kitchen items in a separate essentials box and take them in your car. You can also use them for the first few days in your new house.
7. Recycle Boxes After the Move
Offer your gently-used boxes to community members who are moving. Place a notice on NetxDoor or Marketplace.
Otherwise, corrugated cardboard moving boxes are recyclable. To recycle your boxes after the move, first, break them down. Then, store them in a dry place until recycling day. Wet boxes, or boxes with wet spots, cannot be recycled. If a box still has some moisture, cut the damp piece off so you can recycle the rest of the box. Then check with your waste management company on the best way to put your boxes out for recycling.
You can also recycle boxes in other ways. For example, you can donate boxes to a compost center, cut them up to make drawer dividers, or use one or two to make a cat playhouse.
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