Let’s face it, moving ranks among the most stressful events in a person’s life.
Unfortunately, it often pushes us to cut corners and leave sustainability and the environment behind as we try to make the moving day at least a bit more accommodating and easy. However, we can’t disregard nature and our impact on it, so it’s important to make an effort and make your move as sustainable as possible.
The good news is that it’s not that hard to make switching homes into a more eco-friendly event. Even better, it will not only make relocation easier but going green will also be much cheaper as well.
Re-Use Old Newspapers and Boxes for Packing
The biggest problem with moving out when it comes to the environment is littering.
Usually, when packing, we use a ton of single-use boxes and wrapping paper, which takes its toll on the environment and comes at a significant price. Instead of buying new boxes and wrapping paper, just use old newspapers, brochures, and used boxes.
In addition, we all have some boxes left from products we purchase. For example, many keep their microwave or toaster box to have an easier packing option if it needs to get repaired or moved around.
If you don’t keep the boxes from your purchases, you can ask friends and family for theirs, which will help you save money and find additional helpers.
Host a Garage Sale and Donate Before Throwing Things Away
Usually, whenever you start packing, your first step should be decluttering your home of useless items and belongings. After all, there is no need to take stuff you haven’t used in a decade to your new home only to let them hidden in your closet for the next decade.
Thus, make sure to get rid of everything you haven’t used in a while, as well as all the stuff you’re not planning to use. This can be hard, we know, but it’s great for making your luggage much more compact (not to mention that getting rid of stuff impacts your mental health positively).
Now, there is a wrong and a right way to eliminate useless junk. You can either throw it all away indiscriminately, which will definitely not help the environment, or you can host a garage sale and earn some money in the process.
Since one man’s junk is another man’s treasure, you can really get rid of the stuff you no longer need and make some money.
So, host a garage sale and offer everything you decide to get rid of for a symbolic price. Everything you can’t sell, you can donate. There are a lot of charitable organisations that will be grateful for old toys, clothes and anything in between.
Most importantly, you will manage to get rid of your stuff in the most eco-friendly way. Reusability is the cornerstone behind sustainability, after all.
Recycle Old Electronics
Electronic waste is a major environmental problem, and while it’s way easier just to dump your electronic garbage next to the trash bin, this will not only harm the local environment but can also bring you a hefty fine, depending on where you live.
So, a better, much more reasonable solution is to recycle them. Most cities have electronic recycling programs that will accept old electronics and ensure they are properly disposed of. Some places even offer to come to your home and take your electronics for free or for a symbolic price. So, generally, you have absolutely no excuse not to do it.
Use Eco-Alternatives to Traditional Wrapping
We opt for bubble wrap or styrofoam whenever we want to secure our valuable and fragile belongings. Unfortunately, both solutions have a highly negative effect on the environment. So, to make your move eco-friendlier, you can use several alternatives.
First, you can go for old newspapers or shredded documents. Those will be thrown away anyway, so why not give them one last purpose?
If you don’t have any such papers, a much better solution would be to go for biodegradable packing peanuts. They will cost you a bit extra, but they will have a significantly smaller environmental impact.
Packing smartly can also make your move more eco-friendly. Be sure to pack efficiently, using as few boxes as possible. You can also save space by packing items inside of each other. For example, you can wrap your fragile wine glasses in your socks. Or you can use towels for separating plates from one another, rather than wrapping paper.
Moreover, you need to be careful not to overload the boxes. So if you reach the load limit and you need to fill the box with something lighter, just use clothes or other soft items to make the load more compact.
We understand that’s not optimal when it comes to organising your belongings in boxes, but on the other hand, it’s far more sustainable. It will save you a lot of money on useless wrapping paper, which will be thrown away after the move.
Use Old Clothes and Linen as Cleaning Rags
Usually, when moving out, the most significant environmental risk is hidden in cleaning the property. If you are renting, cleaning your home is essential–otherwise, you won’t get your full deposit back!
However, you can still put maximum effort into making this tedious task as eco-friendly as possible. First and foremost, try to use only eco-friendly and natural cleaning products. They cost a bit extra, but they have a significantly lower impact on the environment.
On the other hand, instead of wasting money on new cleaning rags that will get dirty just a few minutes into the cleaning, use old clothes and Linen. After you are done with them, you can wash them in your washing machine and give them for textile recycling. This will be a great win for the environment.
Pack The Kitchen Last
The kitchen is typically the room with the most items to pack, so consider packing it last.
By leaving it at the bottom of the to-do list, you will use up all perishable items and reduce the food waste you produce. Last but not least, you can also consider donating any unopened items to your local food bank.
Moreover, chances are that most of your electronic waste will be precisely in the kitchen, so leaving it last will save you time and trips to the electronic recycling centre.
Hire an Eco-Friendly Moving Company
Finally, consider hiring an eco-friendly man and van company. Many moving companies now offer eco-friendly options, such as using bio-diesel trucks or packing materials made from recycled materials.
Going the extra mile and choosing an eco-friendly moving company can ensure your move is as sustainable as possible.
Moving to a new house is surely a stressful event, but you can do plenty in order to smooth out the experience as much as possible. On the other hand, it’s also an excellent opportunity to start a much more sustainable lifestyle.
Following our advice, you will make your move much more eco-friendly and save some money on otherwise pointless purchases. So it’s a win-win.