When planning a move for a couple or a small family, you can expect to spend close to $250 or more on what’s needed to move your belongings. In addition to boxes, you’ll want to have tape, tape guns, packing paper, bubble wrap, box cutters, permanent markers, mattress bags, furniture pads, dollies, and hand carts on hand. With all that needs to be purchased, it’s no surprise people always seem to be on the hunt for free moving boxes.
Though you can use old boxes that are not bent, torn, or damp, Jon Hollander, an owner of Hollander Storage & Moving Company based outside of Chicago, recommends buying new boxes that are made of strong corrugated cardboard (with an edge-crush test rating of at least 32 pounds per inch printed on the box) to protect your belongings. For low cost boxes, try Boxes Delivered, a site that sells packing supplies at prices that can be 20 percent or more below those of office-supply stores and movers.
If you’re dead set on the free variety, ask family and friends, as well as local shops (liquor, grocery, and book stores often have excess boxes—especially after a delivery) if they have any boxes to spare. A simple search on sites like Craigslist or FreeCycle can also yield a number of free boxes offered by others in your area. And lastly, if your town permits it, check curbs on recycling day.
Ready to start packing? Use these packing tips to ensure your valuables come out of their boxes in good shape.