Moving Season

Mid-to-late summer is when the big apartment switch goes down in Boston. August 1st and September 1st are the big moving days, but all summer long people will be moving in and out before starting new jobs and college semesters in the fall.

I'm not moving this year, but my roommate is moving to NYC and while watching her pack and taking note of how many couches suddenly seem to be lining the sidewalks, I've decided to put together a list of sustainable moving tips!

1. Plan ahead! The best way to avoid waste and need for one-time-use boxes and bags is to plan ahead. How much stuff do you have? What are you going to pack it in? Can it all fit in one car trip or would it be better to borrow a friends larger car or rent a truck? Is there a Goodwill dropoff bin nearby? Is there anything you no longer need that you can sell ahead of time? The earlier you can answer these questions, the more smooth the big day will be.

2. Whatever you do, don't purchase cardboard boxes to pack your stuff. Use reusable crates, and if you don't have enough of them, ask a friend if you could borrow a few. If you still need boxes, head to Costco or a local liquor store and ask if they have any boxes you can take.

3. Before sorting through all of your belongings and starting the packing process, make space for four piles or bins: trash, recyclables, to donate, and to sell. This will help decrease waste.

4. Use newspaper to pack fragile items instead of packing peanuts or bubble wrap. Packing peanuts are made from polystyrene...yuck! And bubblewrap doesn't biodegrade. Packing with newspaper is a good way to reuse, and can still be recycled at the end.

5. Minimize your car trips. If you can fit all of your belongings into one vehicle, great! If not, try to decrease your gas usage by renting a truck or borrowing a larger vehicle for the move instead of driving a small car back and fourth.