Green Moving Tips: How to Make Your Next Move a Green One

By Maria Belgado
Special to

Moving is something that is not traditionally thought of as something that is eco-friendly. However, there are some easy steps you can take to minimize the impact that your move will have on the environment.

Get rid of clutter. The first thing you can do is to get rid of the clutter before you ever start your packing. Recycle everything you can, then consider donating the rest. It is pointless to take all the knick-knacks and junk you have accumulated over the years - this not only makes your move more expensive but leaves you with a useless amount of stuff. You can’t take a refrigerator full of food either, so give it to the neighbors or donate it to a local soup kitchen. Paying it forward before the move even begins will help you to stay organzied and pack less.

Use recycled boxes. Once you have eliminated all the excess, the next step is to go for recycled boxes. There are two ways to do this: either you can get boxes from stores and friends, or to actually buy boxes made from recycled materials. There are websites that offer boxes made from recycled plastics. You can also go to sites such as Craigslist where you can get boxes that are offered by people who have just finished moving. Just don’t go out and buy new boxes whenever it is possible. There is also a site online that offers to rent boxes to you.

Use eco-friendly packing materials. Next to consider is the moving supplies you use to protect your valuables. First, consider using items that you are taking anyway, such as blankets. You can use blankets, sheets, table cloths, towels and other items like this to wrap your China or vintage wines. Fill in the spaces in boxes with your clothes, wash cloths or towels. If you simply must use Styrofoam or bubble wrap, again, try to find some that is being offered after someone else’s move.

Locate green movers. Take the time to find a green moving company or a company that uses some green moving services. There are several companies now that offer you the choice of using a biodiesel moving truck. One company online offers pads made of 100 percent recycled cotton and rentable boxes. If you simply can’t do this, then ask whatever company you are using if they offer any green products or services. After all, the more people ask for things such as this, the more companies will see that they need to be offering these options.

Tips when you move in. When you arrive at your new home don’t stop there. You can greatly reduce the amount of junk mail you receive at the new address. You can put your new address down as a temporary move with the post office and this will make it so that they do not forward things like flyers and junk mail to your new address. You can also register your mail preferences with some direct marketing services online. Create a recycling center in your new home and recycle everything you can.