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Best Packing Materials that You Already Own

Unless you have piles of money just burning a never-ending hole in your pocket, you are probably looking for ways to save money with your move. It does not matter if you are moving across town or the entire country, the process is expensive. Even the most frugal person spends a significant amount of money between a deposit or down payment, movers, insurance, and other expenses along the way. Fortunately, packing supplies do not need to be added to your list of expenses. You can pick up empty boxes from a local restaurant or store, and make use of things you already have around the home for packing.

  • Sandwich Bags – If you are like many others you likely have a few boxes of sandwich bags lying around. Either you can never remember if you need them, so you buy more, or you like a variety of sizes. These can be used to hold all hardware from disassembled furniture and appliances. They are also ideal to put toiletries in, so if something leaks it will not get all over everything else.
  • Hampers – There is no point moving laundry hampers empty. These are perfect for shoes and boots, pillows, or blankets.
  • Suitcases – If you have a suitcase with wheels take full advantage of it by packing heavy electronics, games, movies, or books inside. Otherwise, suitcases are great for shoes, too.
  • Towels – These will be used to wrap plates, serving platters, vases, or breakable décor. Make sure you keep one out to pack in your overnight bag, though!
  • Socks – All balls of socks should serve a purpose. They can be used primarily to fill open space in boxes of breakables. You want items secure, so they do not bounce around. Rather than use peanuts or other costly products, use socks. Longer socks can also be used to wrap glasses and stemware. The items just slide right inside.
  • Clothing – T-shirts, tanks, and sweaters can also be used to wrap breakables. A nice soft sweater or sweatshirt is ideal to line the bottom of the box. This will provide cushioning in case the box gets placed down a little too hard.
  • Twist Ties – Use these to stop cables and cords from getting tangled.
  • Trash Pail – As long as your garbage cans are clean, they are great for cleaning supplies, detergents, and other heavy items.
  • Beer Boxes – There are three reasons to use beer boxes. First, they are heavy duty and can hold a lot of weight. Second, they have handles on the side, which makes them easy to carry. Third, you get to drink the beer to empty the box.
  • Rubbermaid – Most people have at least a few empty Rubbermaid containers lying around. You pick up extra on sale for holiday decorations and end up having way too many. Put these to use for heavy pots and pans, small kitchen appliances, food from the pantry, toys, dog bowls and leashes, etc.
  • Baskets – Decorative baskets should not be stacked and moved. These are great packing materials, too. Use them for whatever will fit. These smaller items are ideal to pack in your car while the movers are hauling out the heavy stuff.
  • Underbed Storage – There is really no reason anything already in an under-the-bed storage container needs to be packed. In most cases these should travel as-is.
  • Bags – If you have gym bags, backpacks, and even gift bags lying around, these can be used, as well.
  • Trash Bags – Typically at least 10 or more items in your closet will fit in one bag. Keep the garments on hangers, but protect them with the bags.
  • Drawers – With the exception of clothes you do not necessarily want movers peaking at, most clothes can stay in your dresser drawers. Simply cover them with Glade Press’n Seal. If you plan on doing this, do check with the moving company to make sure they don’t have rules about not handling unboxed items.
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