From boxes to bubble wrap, the cost of moving supplies can become a big expense during your home move.
We’ve put together our favourite tricks for saving on moving supplies below, as well as where you might be able to find useful freebies. Looking for more ways to save? Read our top tips for cutting the cost of moving here!
Your first stop when it comes to saving money on moving supplies should be de-cluttering as much as possible. Go through your home and ask yourself ‘Do I really want this?’ and ‘Do I want this enough to pay for the materials to pack it up, a team of movers to load and unload it and find a space for it in my new home?’
If the answer is no, recycle or donate the item instead. This includes damaged or broken items you’ve been meaning to replace. Get rid of them before you move and find a replacement (if you really need one) once you’re settled in your new home.
Calculate the moving supplies you’ll need
One place movers often overspend is on buying more boxes and supplies than they need. Panic buying as many boxes as you can is likely to leave you with unused extras that you’ll likely still need to bring with you to your new home.
On the other hand, too few boxes could leave you in an awkward situation cramming your treasured possessions into whatever you can find.
Use a moving box calculator to find how many boxes you’ll need, then subtract any free moving boxes you can source (see below). The number left over is how many boxes you actually need to buy.
If you do find you’ve underestimated how many boxes you’ll need Amazon has moving boxes available with free next-day Prime delivery so you can quickly add a few extras.
Swap bubble wrap for blankets
Wrapping bulky but delicate items in layers of bubble wrap can quickly run through a whole roll – or more! Instead, wrap items in blankets and fill gaps in the box with clothes, towels or pillows.
Not only will you save money on bubble wrap or packing paper, you’re also maximising space by not having to pack your softer items separately.
See what moving supplies you already have
A quick hunt around your home might reveal that you already have some of the moving supplies you need to hand. You can use plastic storage tubs, baskets, backpacks and suitcases to pack items instead of moving boxes, especially for heavy items.
Even furniture can be temporarily converted. Fill the drawers of a chest of drawers or dresser with clothes and then tape them shut. You save on the extra boxes, and also on the time you would have spent packing and unpacking everything. Just make sure to test the tape on the furniture in an inconspicuous spot in case it damages the finish.
Shop online? Save the packaging
Start saving large delivery boxes in the months leading up to your move – store them flat so they don’t take over your home.
You can also reuse packaging paper and bubble wrap from postal deliveries. Keep one box assembled and add any extra packaging from your deliveries. Even small pieces of bubble wrap or honeycomb paper can be useful for wrapping delicate items.
The best places to get free moving boxes
The cost of moving boxes can quickly add up, but there are lots of places you might be able to source free cardboard boxes. Any businesses that regularly receive large deliveries is likely to throw out piles of cardboard every night.
Some of the best places to get free moving boxes are:
- Supermarkets and electronics stores for big boxes
- Offices or copy centres for sturdy paper boxes
- Bookshops for reinforced bookboxes
- Fruit and vegetable shops for cardboard and plastic fruit crates
- Any friends who’ve moved recently and have boxes left over
- Local groups like Freecycle, gumtree or Facebook marketplace for people trying to get rid of boxes after a move
When collecting free boxes, make sure to only grab ones that are damage-free, completely dry and clean. If you’re approaching businesses to ask for boxes then be considerate of the staff – a little friendliness can go a long way!
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