Packing up your home for a move is time consuming and needs to be done with planning and forethought so that when you get to your new home you can find everything and unpack easily. Having decent boxes that you can fill and label will make the job easier, but buying boxes for a house move is yet another expense at an already expensive time!
It is possible, though, to find strong, sturdy boxes for free - if you know where to look! Here are our suggestions for where to find free moving boxes.
1. Supermarkets or grocery shops
Ask at the customer services desk if you can take some of their packaging boxes. They’ll probably be very pleased to give you cardboard boxes that they would otherwise have to pay to get taken away as rubbish. Large discount stores that sell products in bulk will also usually have plenty of boxes available.
2. Specialist shops:
Cardboard boxes used for delivering books to shops are sturdy and a good size for packing smaller, heavy items. You might need to ask when they expect deliveries so that you can turn up on the right day to collect them.
This is another type of business that will have frequent deliveries of products in cardboard boxes, and will be only too pleased for you to take some of them away so that they don’t have to dispose of them.
Printers will receive frequent deliveries of packs of paper in very handy, strong cardboard boxes that are ideal for packing up your heavier belongings like books. Like with bookshops, you might have to phone and ask what day they’ll be getting deliveries to save a wasted journey.
Regular deliveries of plants, large and small, mean that garden centres will always have cardboard boxes available. Be sure that any you choose are dry and free from any signs of damp or soil so as to avoid any damage or infestation of your belongings!
Schools get regular deliveries of printer paper and stationery, and often get deliveries of classroom and office furniture. Ask at your local school’s reception whether they’d be willing to give you some of their boxes for your move.
4. Recycling centres
There is usually a separate area for cardboard at recycling centres, so these are great places to find cardboard boxes. Even if they’ve been flattened down they will be easy to reconstruct and secure with packaging tape. Just don’t take any that are dirty or damp as these may damage your belongings.
5. Family, friends and social media
Enlist the help of your family and friends who may have boxes they can give you or find for you. If you ask on social media, you may find that you have other friends who have recently moved house and can give you the boxes they used - they take up a lot of space, even folded, so they’ll probably be delighted that you want to take them!
6. Online sources
Sites like Freecycle or local Facebook groups are a great place to hunt online for free cardboard boxes. You should ask how often the boxes have been used before, because most cardboard boxes can only really handle a couple of house moves at most before they start to weaken. The last thing you need on your moving day is for all your belongings to drop out of the bottom of your boxes!
If all else fails, or if you want boxes that are brand new and a uniform size and shape, you can always buy moving boxes and packaging materials. We have a number of packaging products and boxes available to buy at very reasonable prices; you could also ask your removals company if they will provide some.