Moving out can be a stressful time for several reasons. Whether it be organising a last minute deep-clean of a property which you have neglected throughout the year, waiting in line for that one person in your friendship group who seems to have shady access to a white van or suddenly morphing into a painter and decorator who must repair bust-up walls - eroded by hardened bluetack. All of this to appease a landlord who may decide to take your deposit anyway…
Whilst these scenarios must ring true with any student that has lived in a shared house, we should not forget the environment amongst the hustle and bustle of a move-out. That’s why The Bunch has put together a list of 5 ways to be eco-friendly when moving out of your student home.
We’ve all been there - the suitcase is full up, the gym bag is bursting at the seams and then you reach for the plastic bin liners… don’t! Speak to your local supermarket and head down after delivery time. They will always have spare boxes lying around which are usually reinforced cardboard - perfect for carrying heavy household items. If you think you will be moving around a lot, you can take this one step further and invest in some foldable wooden packing crates.
Come the end of your tenancy, you may have accumulated some items that you just don’t need anymore - a chair, lamp or some ill-fitting clothing. Don’t just leave them. There are so many better options (listed below) and you will end up getting charged by your landlord who will undoubtedly put them all in a skip - which is not exactly thinking green.
Your local charity shop - whilst they might not want your manky old socks, all charity shops will accept books, clothing, jewellery, homeware and more. So, kill two birds with one stone by offloading your clutter and helping to fund a charity at the same time.
Think what you want of Zuckerberg, Facebook MarketPlace is a handy tool to sell or list unwanted stuff for free. It links with your messenger so you can get rid of stuff in minutes.
“But this garm is too sick for Oxfam” - looking to upgrade the wardrobe in a sustainable way? Look no further than ESOOKO - the app for fashion lovers who want to take action for the planet. The platform allows sellers to take a proportion of each sale and channel it into their choice of environmental initiatives.
If you are not in a situation where you can hold onto your items or donate / sell them, recycling is the next best option. When packing up your house, it can be easy to carelessly throw items into the bin without consideration for recycling but if we are honest, this is just pure laziness.
Find out where your nearest recycling centre is and what they can recycle here. It is often surprising how much can be recycled!
This past year has been incredibly tough for a lot of people and food banks have seen big surge in use. So, when moving out, you can do your bit to help families who are struggling. When you are clearing out the kitchen, do not even think about binning any non-perishable food items. Food banks will accept tea, coffee, sugar, cereal, pasta, rice, biscuits, all tinned goods and much more.
If you are unsure what they will take, find your local food bank here and get in contact.
Ultimately, the four solutions above are only necessary when we consume too much. In the short-term you can refer to points one to four to lighten your load before you move out. But how about a longer-term approach? Join the sharing economy - sites such as Fat Llama, touted as the Airbnb of stuff offer a great alternative to purchasing items which you need for single or limited use. Not only do these sites help de-clutter your life and save you money but you will see the mental health benefits from having more space. Alternatives to these websites exist in the form of 20th century activities such as using a library or asking your neighbour…
At The Bunch, we work hard to make eco-friendly choices. Our energy supplier provides 100% renewable energy and due to our business model, we are not incentivised by usage. This means that we are always striving to keep our customers' energy usage low. We understand that making environmentally friendly choices is not always easy (and that nobody is perfect!) but we do hope you can apply something from the points above into your next house move.