Reusing Leftover Moving Supplies After the Move

Jul 10, 2012

Once you’ve completed your move and you’re unpacked and settled in, you may begin to wonder what to do with all of the leftover moving supplies you’ve collected in the process. If you know someone moving soon who could use them, then that’s great. But, if you don’t, there are many creative and ingenious ways for reusing your moving supplies. From cardboard boxes to bubble wrap, we’ve uncovered some of the best uses for your moving supplies after the move.

Cardboard: Moving boxes will likely be the supply you have most of after the move. You can break down your boxes and place them into the nearest recycling bin, but you may also be able to find great uses for them all around your home. Here area few ideas:

Uses for Moving Boxes In the garden: This great tip from puts an end to weeds by using cardboard. The cardboard insulates the ground, maintaining a temperature that kills the weed seeds. Find out more:

Gift Wrapping: Boxes are a great supply to have on hand for gift wrapping. You can also re-use many of the other supplies you’ve gathered during your move for wrapping gifts. See some creative ideas in a past Moving Insider blog post here:

Entertainment: For more fun you can always use your boxes to make your own ‘Boxman’. Kids will have a blast for hours, maybe even days, and you will enjoy the inexpensive entertainment. Check out some great boxman ideas here: BoxMan.

Recycling: If you have no use for the ideas for reusing above, be sure to consider recycling. Some moving companies offer buyback or box exchange programs that are designed to save money by allowing the purchase of gently used boxes before your move, and reduce waste by promoting re-use after. Check out U-Haul’s box program here: Box Programs.

Bubble Wrap and Packing Paper: Bubble wrap and packing paper take up little space and have so many uses. Hang on to these materials to get some great use out of them all around the house, both for function and fun. Here are some great ways you can reuse your packing paper and bubble wrap:

Packing Supplies can be Fun


Home Insulation: Bubble wrap is a great way to insulate your home on a budget. Simply wet one side of the wrap, and stick to the inside of your window. Also wrap around pipes during cold months to help ward off freezing (source:

Games: Bubble wrap is fun, there’s no question about that. Add to the entertainment value by playing a game. Race against the clock by laying out two sheets of bubble wrap. In one minute, two people pop as many bubbles as possible. The person who pops the most wins! Color the bubbles a variety of colors and  assign points to each color for an extra challenge. For example, green bubbles are worth five points, and yellow bubbles are worth one. Assign red bubbles a negative point value for an interesting twist.

Entertainment: Make bubble wrap animals, toys, or simply pop the bubbles!  Use packaging paper for arts and crafts for the kids, or to make greeting cards for friends and family. These moving supplies can make some of the most unique forms of entertainment and can keep you entertained for hours.

Sewing Patterns: If you enjoy sewing and designing your own patterns, leftover packaging paper can be a great alternative to store-bought pattern paper. Draw your pattern in the packaging paper, cut it out, and you’re ready to go!

After your move, you can find many uses for your leftover moving supplies with a little imagination.  Before recycling them for good, think outside the box and discover the unique uses you may have for these supplies all around the house.


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