What to do with leftover packing materials? Alt text: leftover packing materials - boxes laying around
Ways to handle leftover packing materials?
Moving - such an amazing process. Okay, it rarely ever is, but you've heard and read about so many horror stories, that you don't need another one! This won't be one. So, you've gathered the family, relatives, and friends to tell them you are moving. They cried, you cried, the neighbors cried. Even the dogs howled. When the tears subsided, everyone realized you were moving just a couple blocks away, so you moved on to why you actually invited them over. To help with the move. They laughed, nagged, but they helped. Eventually, you've successfully moved to your new house. Everybody's happy again. You're thinking 'It's finally over!' Oh, what a rookie mistake. Now you need to unpack! And you need to figure out how to handle leftover packing materials! You didn't think this through, did you? Don't worry, we got your back.
So, the house is new and shiny. The furniture is new, the windows are clean. You even have enough space for all your stuff. But, you're not gonna make the same mistake as before and pile on the things you don't need. You're adamant about this. But what do you do with the leftover packing materials? What do you do with all the boxes, bubble pack, paper...? If you could just shred everything to pieces like they do in the movies. Well, you actually can. Especially if you have some documents you can't just throw out. If you don't have a shredder at home, you should find a company that does secure document shredding where you live. It can provide you with material for confetti, in case you want to bedazzle your house warming party afterward. In addition to it being, you know, a safe and responsible thing to do.
Okay, so the paper is done, what's next?
Get rid of the junk first. Alt text: keyboard with word trash written and a trash can drawn
Getting rid of the junk
We all like to be green and eco-friendly, but sometimes we are not. Sometimes, you think to yourself “I'll just throw it away”. We get it. It's tiresome, you're sick of all the work and you can't bear to do one more thing. But, hey, think about it - there certainly are some people or companies that can do this for you. So, you can get rid of all the leftover packing materials and not bother with them as much. The question is can you afford to remove unnecessary junk? I mean, if it's not only moving boxes but some leftover junk from the old house, it might be somewhat expensive. Companies charge by the pound and have some additional fees depending on the type of stuff they are taking off your hands. But it shouldn't amount to more than 200-250$ for the entire apartment or house. If you can afford it, it's the easiest option. To be clear - you should be green and eco-friendly, even if it's a hassle.
Keeping the good stuff
If your leftover packing materials, primarily boxes, are in good shape after the move, you can keep them around. You can save them for future relocation, or use them as storage. If you think in advance, prior to moving, you can hire a custom box making service to make exactly what you need. So, you will know in advance what you can use them for. Cardboard boxes are good for storing stuff or can be used for packing presents. As mentioned, think of any possibility for a future moving. An average American moves 11 times, so saving moving boxes and other material doesn't sound so stupid and unnecessary, does it? At least, you won't have to think about this part of the process next time around. Think about others and ask around if they need them. Chances are you know someone who is also moving, so be the kind Santa and provide them with boxes.
Be green and responsible with leftover packing materials! Alt text:People sorting garbage into recycling bins illustration
Recycle what can be recycled
Aside from the boxes, your leftover packing materials include Styrofoam peanuts, bubble pack, packing paper. If it's torn, don't push it, you can't save and reuse everything. You can and you should always recycle. This is a great and responsible way to get rid of them. With paper, it's the easiest. The same as with hinged or ripped boxes. Paper and cardboard are the easiest to recycle and it's always easily accessible. The problem can be plastic bubble packing because it's practically impossible for it to decompose in the soil. Same goes for packing peanuts. So, the best thing is to offer it to companies that recycle these types of materials. Ship Rite will help you protect the environment and recycle leftover packing materials. So, everything you can't and won't use, recycle it.
Be creative with leftover packing materials
Okay, so you have recycled what is ripped. You have donated what you could to whom may need it. You've stuffed items in packing boxes. You have stored the leftover packing boxes, wrapping paper, plastic wrap for future reuse. But what if you still have leftover packing materials? Or, what if you don't want to use them for future relocation. What can you use it all for? Well, if you get creative and think outside the box, you can use those boxes for all kinds of stuff.
Include kids in DIY projects alt text: kid playing with cardboard house on his head
You can always use packing material for all kinds of DIY projects! Of course, we mean once you're done with popping all the bubbles from the wrap. That's priority no 1. So, we have suggestions for you.
Boxes are a great DIY starting ground. You can make different things, and they can be used as additional house insulation. If you have kids, you can make different projects for them, and even if you don't, there are fun ways to reuse boxes:
- Dollhouse - every girl wants a dollhouse. And building it out of cardboard boxes can be fun and cost-effective. Kids like to be involved with art projects, and this can be a great way to spend some quality time with your little ones, have fun and create something they've always wanted.
- Indore maze - this is such a fun way to reuse boxes! You can connect the boxes, or stack them on top of each other, color them and invite kids to play around. And they will find it interesting.
- Pet bed - add some cushions - which you can stuff with packing peanuts and voila! A cheap and cozy bed for your pets!
- Gift packing – for all bigger gifts you don't know how to pack, now you have an endless supply of gift packing materials, so you are covered for the Holiday season!
Packing peanuts and plastic bubbles
You wouldn't think of it, but packing peanuts and plastic wrapping bubbles can be quite useful! Clearly, the first thing that comes to mind is – they can protect anything you need protecting. But, aside from this, you can use them for:
- Plant drainage - Easy absorption makes for an amazing drainage system for potted plants.
- Cushions and pillows - you can stuff a pillowcase with them and it will make a comfy and cozy addition to your sofa or a bed for your pets, even without the box underneath.
- Fun zone for kids - if you like to please your kids and are a fun-loving parent, you can make a playground for your kids! Stuff a box or pool with packing peanuts and they will love playing around in it! It will certainly be something other kids will envy them for.
Packing peanuts - almost the best part of moving! Alt text:piggy bank in packing peanuts
Plastic wrapping bubbles can be used as insulation, greenhouse insulation, and stress relief! But, there are fun uses for them as well:
- Cool your drinks faster - wrap your bottle, put it in a freezer and it will cool down much faster!
- Paint the wall - you can make a great pattern on your wall if you wrap the painting roller and paint the walls.
- Kids projects - you can let your kids make art projects in a similar fashion. Just make sure they have enough paper and don't move on to walls!
Can you have more leftover packing materials?
Now that we have told you what you can do with leftover packing materials, you want more of it, don't you? Okay, we are kidding, but, you see - it's not so bad! It can be quite fun.