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Think Green: 5 Steps to Planning a Successful Eco-Friendly Move

Save Energy and Resources With Green Moving Inspiration

You've done so much work to find and purchase your new home, but now it's time for the heavy lifting. Planning a move is challenging, especially when figuring out how to get all your belongings from Point A to Point B in one piece. Between all the paperwork and planning, greenifying your move might be pretty low on your list of priorities. 

Fortunately, a few small tweaks to your plans can change your move from a waste generator into a Mother Nature-approved experience. With a few eco-friendly moving supplies and planning tips, your move can be smooth and trash-free. 

Green Moving Tips

1. Start Planning Now

The key to an eco-friendly move is to plan ahead. Waiting until the last minute causes you to haphazardly pack important items and rely on packing options that create mountains of waste. 

"When planning any sort of big project, it's important to first think about the ways in which you will produce trash and then plan alternatives. In terms of moving, you should think about what you are going to use to pack items in, what you are going to do with unwanted items you purge and how you are going to transport your stuff. Once you've highlighted the areas that have a likelihood of producing trash, you can then target them by coming up with alternative plans that involve reusable and recyclable materials."
Jenica Barrett | Zero Waste Wisdom

Take time to set goals for each week up until your move-in date. Declutter, organize and begin packing items you rarely use as soon as possible. 

2. Commit to Moving Light

Decluttering before a move can save you packing materials and several trips from your current residence to your new one. There's no need to bring broken, duplicate or unused belongings. Make it a weekend goal to gather up any items that can be sold or donated and keep them from going to waste. 

3. Gather Eco-Friendly Moving Supplies

eco friendly moving supplies

This is where getting ahead of the game will make all the difference. 

"Standard packaging tape is a plastic product and isn't recyclable after use. Instead, look into purchasing a couple roles of water-activated, paper tape. Once it's used, it can be recycled either attached to the cardboard boxes or ripped off and recycled in your curbside paper bin."
Jenica Barrett | Zero Waste Wisdom

Eco-Friendly Packing Materials:

  • Rentable plastic storage bins that can be returned.
  • Sheets, bedding and towels to use as packing material.
  • Reusable plastic bags to replace Ziploc ones.
  • Beeswax wraps to help transport food from your fridge.
  • Wax markers to label moving boxes.
  • Garden twine or paper-based tape to seal boxes.
  • Cardboard boxes.
  • Biodegradable bubble wrap and packing peanuts.

When gathering supplies for your move, reach out to family, friends and neighbors to see if they have anything you can use. Most are more than willing to lend a helping hand, and this can save you a trip to the store. 

4. Research Green Moving Companies in the Area

You might be surprised to find out that a moving company down the street has rentable plastic bins and trucks that use eco-friendly biodiesel. 

"Make sure to ask whether they use reusable bins or recycled boxes and what kind of packaging material is standard. Never be afraid to request something else as well. As a general principle, locally based companies are usually more wiling to adapt to your needs than large, nationally based ones."
Jenica Barrett | Zero Waste Wisdom

5. Recycle Everything You Can

Recycling may not be the best solution to our waste issue, but when it comes to moving it's better to recycle something than ship it off to a landfill. Give your boxes to friends and family who might be moving soon, or place them in your recycling bin; add the garden twine to a compose pile. 

Keep the Eco-Friendly Movement Going

Don't stop thinking green after your move. Keep the momentum going by making your new home an eco-friendly oasis. Simple renovations can have a large impact on the environment, and help you save on your energy bills each month.