October 16, 2012

Green Moving is Possible!

Whether you move across town or across the country, you can make your move a green experience. Do not give up your environmentally friendly lifestyle just to move your stuff from point A to point B. Incorporate green moving techniques and arrive at your new home without adding to your carbon footprint.

Downsize

The moving process can be time consuming and physically exhausting as you sort, pack, transport, unload and unpack rooms full of accumulated possessions. Do you really want to waste time and resources carrying 24 suitcases of clothing or boxes of unopened wedding presents to your new home? Will you have room to display all your stuff in your smaller, more efficient home? Start with a clean slate when you fill your new house with the furniture, décor, household items and clothing you really want.

Before the movers arrive to help you relocate, simplify your job and theirs by downsizing. Room by room, look for items you can live without. If you do not use it, love it or want it, do not move it. Donate gently used furniture, clothing and household goods to charity, sell them on Craigslist or host a garage sale. Make money and reduce the amount of time, energy and resources required to move items you do not need.

The downsizing process will require physical effort as you sort through everything you own. It also may be an emotionally taxing process. Surround yourself with friends who support your efforts and help you say no when packing.

Pack

After you have eliminated unnecessary items, everything you plan to keep has to be packed, wrapped and stored. In preparation for your move, utilize green packing solutions. Instead of buying Styrofoam packing peanuts or bubble wrap, secure Grandma’s china or your impressive collection of wine in towels, sheets, T-shirts or newspaper. By using these packaging materials, you save money and the environment while protecting your valuable collectibles.

Boxes remain an invaluable moving tool. Instead of buying new cardboard boxes, rent packing crates or purchase used boxes or boxes made from recycled cardboard. For greater efficiency, use dresser or curio cabinet drawers, suitcases and plastic bins as an alternative to cardboard boxes. Sturdy and reliable, these packaging options protect your household goods without adding waste to the environment. Grocery stores and other business that receive frequent shipments have tons of extra boxes and will be happy to hand them over.

Consolidate

Even after downsizing and using green packing solutions, you must find a way to transport your furniture and boxes to your new home. Making multiple trips wastes fuel and time and large moving trucks might be too spacious for your needs. After you sort and organize your possessions, rent the appropriately sized van from a rental company close to your home. Ask for a moving vehicle that uses bio-diesel and is emissions-tested. With a fuel-efficient moving van, you can efficiently take one trip instead of several trips, save fuel and maximize your resources.

While moving is hard work, it’s also a rewarding experience. With green moving techniques like downsizing, packing and consolidating, you save the environment and simplify the job. Be willing to let go of stuff you do not love, use alternative packing solutions and make fewer trips to maximize the green of your next move and prepare yourself for your new home.

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