Rachel Pruette

By: Rachel Pruette on October 25th, 2022

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7 Common Packaging Materials To Use In A Move

If you are planning a move to a new home, chances are you are looking to save time, money, and elbow grease where possible. And you can save a little bit of all those things with these common packaging materials that you may already have in your house!


Moving to a new home can be very stressful. It can also be expensive, especially if you hire professional movers. 


If you choose to move everything yourself, you may be able to save a decent chunk of change. However, when moving everything on your own, you will need containers and materials to properly pack and secure your items for transportation.


This can also be costly if you plan to buy all new boxes and other packing materials to help you move into your new home.


But, with a little investigation around your house, you may be surprised to find that you already have many of the containers and packaging materials you need for your move!


It just takes some snooping around in places like your garage, attic, shed, or other home storage areas. When you explore these areas of your home, you may be pleasantly surprised to find you have much of what you need on hand.


And if you have a few months before your move, the items in this article are things that you can easily stockpile. Plus, these items are things you will likely be acquiring anyway without having to make additional investments.


So, if you want to save some time, money, and frustration, read on!


This article will explore a few different types of packaging materials that you can use to make your next move much easier and more affordable. And the best part is, you probably have some of these items right now!


packaging materials for moving


Seven Common Packaging Materials To Make Your Move Easier


It can take a lot of time to accumulate enough boxes and packaging material to protect your stuff during a move. And this may include time you don’t have if moving day is fast approaching.


The good news is that you don’t have to resort to purchasing expensive packaging materials if you’re clever about it.


In the section below, you’ll learn about seven common packaging materials you can use during your move to ensure all of your precious belongings arrive at your new home intact.


Common Packaging Materials 1: Cardboard Boxes


You can never have enough boxes during a move, but before you run out to your local shipping store to get some, take a look around your house to see if you have any lying around.


With online shopping so prevalent these days, you’re bound to have at least a handful of boxes around your home that you can use for packing.


For larger boxes, check out your local big box store or wholesale club. These stores often give away boxes they’ll recycle for free, making it easy to snag a few bigger boxes for some of your larger items.


You might also get lucky asking your maintenance department at work if you work in an office. Many times businesses have tons of extra paper boxes lying around, and they’re perfect for moving since they usually come with lids.


If all else fails, you might have to bite the bullet and pay for some moving boxes. However, you won’t need to buy as many if you exhaust the possibilities listed above.


If you’re moving out of state and using a professional moving company, it might include boxes for a small fee. The best interstate moving companies provide full-service moves, including providing packaging material and boxes.


Common Packaging Materials 2: Air Pillows


Air pillows are another perfect packaging material you might already have on hand from a recent online shopping spree.


Any time you order something fragile on the internet, the chances are high that it will come packed with air pillows to prevent it from shifting around and getting damaged in transit.


These are great for padding boxes that aren’t packed tight and are also helpful for cushioning fragile items like televisions, computer monitors, and mirrors.


If you think of it far enough in advance of your move, start stockpiling any air pillows that come with your online orders.


Having just a few of these can make a big difference and might save you a few moving day casualties.


Common Packaging Materials 3: Bubblewrap


Bubblewrap is very similar to air pillows but is better for small items like kitchenware and knick-knacks. If you don’t already have a bunch of it from previous online orders, start saving it to use for packing.


Bubblewrap is a more versatile packaging material than air pillows, so it’s useful to have bubblewrap even if you already have a bunch of air pillows.


Looking for packaging supplies? We can help!

Learn More!


Common Packaging Materials 4: Stretch Wrap


Stretch wrap (also commonly known as stretch film) is one of the world's most common flexible packaging materials. Countless companies use it to ship all types of goods across the country and the world at large.


The goods may include palleted consumer goods, electronics, and furniture boxes. And chances are if you have recently bought a sectional couch, loveseat, kitchen table, or similar piece of furniture, these items came off the truck wrapped in stretch film.


While stretch film loses its stretch after it is removed from the original load it was used to wrap, the used film can still be handy for moving from one home to the next.


One way in which you can utilize used stretch film is to use it to contain cardboard boxes with tops that must be kept closed. You can use the used wrap to wrap the box and then tie the wrap like you would a bow or shoe string.


As long as you tie it tight, despite the film losing its stretch, it will still be able to keep the lid on your cardboard box closed tightly.


And, when you are done, depending on the formulation of your film, you may be able to recycle it!


Common Packaging Materials 5: Corrugated Paper


Corrugated paper is another invaluable packaging material you might have in your garage. Still, it's worth picking some up if you don't.


It's useful for wrapping kitchen items like silverware, plates, and bowls. It can take up extra space in boxes where the contents aren't fragile enough to warrant the full bubblewrap and air pillow treatment.


Corrugated paper is the most economical way to prevent scratches and dings, but it won’t protect anything from concussive damage.


So, use it sparingly and only when you know whatever your wrapping can handle being jostled around in the back of the moving truck.


Common Packaging Materials 6: Blankets And Bedding 


Some of the best — and cheapest — packaging materials you can use to keep your possessions safe during a move come from your bedroom.


Pillows, sheets, and blankets are extremely versatile during a move. You can wedge pillows between furniture to prevent dings and scratches, wrap blankets around mirrors for added protection, and use old sheets to keep dust and dirt off your boxes, so you don’t have to spend the first day in your new home vacuuming.


Remember that using bedding as a packaging material exposes it to damage and wear, so don't use your best 1,000-thread count sheets or expensive down comforter.


Common Packaging Materials 7: Garbage Bags


Garbage bags can come in very handy during a move for stashing away miscellaneous items that don’t fit in boxes or otherwise don’t have a home. They’re perfect for holding soft things like throw pillows from your couch or bulky winter coats.


A great tip is to build on the previous advice about using old bedding and stuff garbage bags with sheets and blankets to create cushions for your larger pieces of furniture.


Stuffing blankets in a garbage bag gives them a better chance of surviving the move unscathed without decreasing their capacity for cushioning.


The best part about using garbage bags during a move is that you probably already have a bunch of them in your home. And if you don’t, they’re cheap to pick up from any supermarket or big box store.


Suppose you're worried that your thin easily-ripped garbage bags won't offer enough protection. In that case, you can opt for thicker contractor bags instead.


Contractor bags are more expensive, but they’re also bigger and thicker, making them a better choice for packing large items and anything with sharp edges.


Used Packaging Materials Are Great For A Move, But Your Business Needs New Packaging Materials!


While using used packaging materials and supplies is a great idea for moving you from one home to the next, used packaging supplies are generally not a good option for your business.


Used packaging supplies often are not as robust. They may pose safety hazards for shipping pallets of products or large items such as furniture.


For business and professional packaging applications, you will want to choose the highest quality brand-new packaging materials and supplies that are ready to take on your professional packaging applications.


Look no further if you are looking for packaging materials such as stretch film, shrink film, strapping, and other flexible packaging supplies for your company's product packaging!


Industrial Packaging has been offering the finest flexible packaging supplies for almost seventy years! If you need packaging supplies for your business, contact one of our packaging experts today!


They will be able to help you find the right packaging for your product packaging needs!


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About Rachel Pruette

Rachel Pruette is a community coordinator and content producer for House Method. She writes about all things related to the home: moving, home finances, lawn and garden, and more. Her favorite thing about work is the ability to help readers learn and solve problems. When Rachel isn’t writing, she enjoys spending time with her dog exploring nature.