Moving house involves a substantial amount of work, from organizing and scheduling to packing, hauling, and finally unpacking. Yet, even after completing these tasks, there remains the responsibility of dealing with the waste generated during the move. Whether it’s a stack of cardboard boxes or furniture that suffered damage in transit, this sizable heap of discarded materials must be managed appropriately to avoid contributing to the annual 8.4 million tons of moving-related trash that ends up in landfills.
Fortunately, there are numerous ways to recycle, reuse, upcycle, or repurpose these items. Here are some tips to help minimize waste and embrace a more sustainable lifestyle post-move.
A good starting point is addressing the abundance of cardboard boxes, with around 900 million discarded annually due to the over 40 million Americans relocating each year. Some households opt to reuse them for storage, pass them on to others in need, or store them for future moves. Alternatively, responsible recycling ensures these boxes are disposed of in an environmentally friendly manner.
Before discarding cardboard boxes, consider repurposing them for practical or entertaining purposes around the house. For example, transform them into a scratching pad for your cat, providing an inexpensive and enjoyable outlet for their scratching instincts. Utilize your DIY skills by cutting long strips from the cardboard, curling them into a circle, securing them with glue, and adding creative touches like pet-safe paint or colorful fabric. Sprinkle some catnip on top to enhance the feline fun.
Another innovative way to repurpose cardboard is to upcycle it into a dispenser box for organizing plastic grocery bags. This simple project involves opening the box, stacking the bags in an organized manner, closing the box, and cutting a hole in the top for easy dispensing. Careful sizing of the hole ensures functionality. Place the finished dispenser box in the pantry, laundry room, or garage for a convenient and eco-friendly storage solution.
These are just two examples of how you can repurpose materials, reduce waste, and contribute to lowering your carbon footprint. For additional ideas on upcycling surplus moving supplies, refer to the accompanying resource from Moving Proz.
Infographic created by Moving Proz, a provider of affordable professional moving services.