So much work goes into moving house. There’s the organizing, scheduling, packing, hauling, and finally unpacking. However, once all is said and done, there’s still the chore of removing the waste generated by the move. Whether it’s a stack of cardboard boxes or some furniture that was damaged along the way, this sizable pile of discarded materials needs to be taken care of properly. Otherwise, it could end up in a landfill, adding to the more than 8.4 million tons of moving-relating trash that gets thrown away each year.
It just so happens there are plenty of ways to either recycle, reuse, upcycle, or otherwise repurpose these items. Below, we’ll go over a few tips on how to do so. That way, you can reduce the amount of waste from your move and live life more sustainably.
A great place to start is with all those cardboard boxes. As one of the most common types of moving waste, approximately 900 million cardboard boxes are discarded annually, since over 40 million Americans relocate each year. Some households choose to reuse them for storage, hand them off to someone else who is moving, or simply save them for the next move. Still others choose to responsibly recycle the boxes so they’re gone and out of the way.
Before you break down your boxes, consider repurposing them for something useful around the house or even something fun, like a fort for the kids. One way to achieve both is to build a scratching pad for your cat. Our feline friends need something to scratch from time to time and this idea could turn out to be an inexpensive favorite.
You can put your DIY skills to the test by first cutting long strips from cardboard boxes and then curling them into a circle. Next, you need to secure it together using glue. Once the glue is dry, add some creative flair by painting the sides with pet-safe paint or attaching colorful fabric. Last, sprinkle some catnip on top and watch the fun begin.
Another way to repurpose cardboard is to upcycle it by making it into a dispenser box. Great for organizing plastic grocery bags, this easy project simply requires you to open the box, place your desired items inside in an organized stack, close the box, and cut a hole in the top. You need to be careful not to make the hole too big or it might not work. Once it’s ready, reach in and pull out the bags one-by-one for an easy-to-dispense storage solution you can keep in the pantry, laundry room, or garage.
These are just two ideas on how to repurpose materials, reduce waste, and lower your carbon footprint all at the same time. If you want to explore additional ways to upcycle the surplus moving supplies from your move, please see the accompanying resource from Moving Proz to learn more.
nfographic created by Moving Proz, a professional moving company.