Living in Austin, it’s no surprise that sustainability is on your mind. Between high prices, high temperatures, and low water levels, everyone is looking for better ways to reduce their carbon footprint and do a little more reduce-reuse-recycling. Moving is the perfect opportunity to make eco-friendly moving plans and to set up an even more sustainable household on the other side.
We’d like to share 10 great ways to do an eco-friendly move that works with your natural rhythm of packing and moving.
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1) Pack in Used Boxes for Free
Why pay for new boxes when millions of clean, sturdy cardboard boxes get thrown out every day? Check your storage spaces for folded boxes from the last move or just ask the folks out back of your local big-box retail store for to pick up a few flattened boxes off the stack headed to the recycle dumpster. You can pack your whole house in free boxes, and there are tons of sources in local Facebook groups.
2) Make Use of Your Totes and Containers
Use totes and other smaller containers to help enclose loose objects. Just don’t stack too much heavy stuff on top of plastic totes, which can crack under pressure.
3) Use Shirts and Towels for Packing Material
Why use up a bunch of trash plastic and paper to pack? Towels, sheets, and t-shirts make great padding for both fragiles like dishes and for irregularly shaped objects like toys to make a box more sturdy. Use a t-shirt anywhere you’d normally use packing paper or bubble wrap.
4) Lighten the Load for Your Eco-Friendly Move
Get rid of stuff! The fewer things that go into the truck, the smaller truck you need. The lighter the load, the less gas is burnt so you can lower your carbon footprint doubly with a garage sale or similar plan. While you pack, sort things that you don’t really need or that you’d rather buy a replacement for when you get to the new house. Example: A big couch that’s seen better days and unused appliances.
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5) Sell or Donate What You Don’t Take
What you’re not going to take: donate or sell. Use Facebook Marketplace, Craigslist, eBay, or an old-fashioned garage sale to help lighten the load. Anything left, call a nearby church or children’s center and donate it all. They’ll likely come pick it up for you.
6) Pack Essentials Bags and Picnic Meals
You can save a ton of money and prevent disposable packaging by packing for your car trip the right way. Make sure everyone has an essentials overnight bag with personal items, medicine, and changes of clothes to avoid last-minute purchases. Then, pack your road food like a picnic instead of stopping for gas station snacks.
7) Lower Emissions with One Big Move
Make plans with your movers to take everything in a single trip. One big truck trip uses less gas than two or three smaller trips, so this is another way you can lower your carbon footprint.
8) Fold and Stow Boxes When You Get There
When you get to the new house and start unpacking, fold up your boxes and stow them in a storage area. You may forget about them for a year, or several years, but they will eventually become a repeat investment in eco-friendly and free packing materials.
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9) Prepare a Green Home
The perfect end to your eco-friendly move is to prepare your home to be energy-efficient, water-efficient, and low on disposable goods. Install new filtration aerators in every faucet and swap out to an efficient yet luxurious showerhead. Put in LED light bulbs, install new weather stripping on the doors and caulk the windows. Then, put out your recycle bins and get started on your glass jar collection. Any new house can be extra green when you start at the beginning.
10) Work With an Eco-Friendly Moving Team
As an Austin moving company, we understand the importance of sustainability and we want to help you move into your next chapter! Let us know what your goals are and we’ll help on moving day, and on any logistic details your family might need. Contact us today for a green move!