Eco-Friendly Relocation: Making Moving More Sustainable
It’s estimated that the average person moves 11.7 times throughout their lifetime. That’s a bit ironic, considering moving is often considered one of the most stressful life events.
But, people relocate for a variety of reasons. Sometimes, it’s for work. Other times, to be closer to family.
Whatever the case, moving is more than stressful – it can also be harmful to the environment. Most people don’t think of the environmental impact when they’re packing up boxes and heading to a new place. From big moving trucks to the overuse of waste materials, there’s a lot to consider when it comes to what kind of damage you could be doing.
But, if you’re trying to live a more sustainable lifestyle and you’re getting ready to move, there are certain things you can do to have an eco-friendly relocation.
Let’s cover a few sustainable tips you can use to make your move better for the planet.
Making Sure a Move is Necessary
Here’s the million-dollar question: Do you actually need to move?
Why are you considering a move? If it’s for work, you might not have to relocate, after all. Remote work has seen a rise in popularity over the last few years. But, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s grown exponentially over the last year and a half. There are benefits for employers and employees, including:
- Increased productivity
- More flexibility
- A better work-life balance
There are also environmental benefits to consider. Businesses can use less energy and generate less waste, while you can take steps at home to reduce your personal carbon footprint.
So, instead of automatically relocating for your job, ask about the possibility of working remotely and staying put.
If you’re considering relocation for personal reasons, take time to consider the pros and cons before you make your final decision. Are you trying to be closer to family members? Do you want to live in a different climate? Maybe you want to relocate to a bigger or smaller house if you’ve experienced some changes in your family.
Your individual needs and wants are important, of course. But, it’s just as crucial to consider the environmental impact of your move.
Build a Better Home
If you’ve officially decided that moving is the best option for you, consider building a new home or renovating an existing one to be more sustainable.
Yes, building a home from the ground up takes resources and energy. But, there are things you can do to make the process more eco-friendly now, and save on energy consumption, in the long run. Some factors that can make your construction efforts more sustainable include:
- Using eco-friendly building materials
- Installing an efficient duct system
- Purchasing energy-efficient appliances
- Optimizing your lighting
- Installing adequate insulation
- Choosing dual-flush toilets
- Installing solar panels
If you’re not sure where to get started with sustainable construction, consider working with a renewable energy engineer. They are experts in sustainable energy and can guide you on how to use technology to make your new (or existing) home more energy-friendly. Working with a contractor that specializes in sustainability will also help to ensure that your home construction is done with the environment’s best interest in mind.
Building an eco-friendly home takes time, and it can end up costing more money. But, it’s also important to remember that your energy savings will balance out those costs, over time. So, if you’re worried about your budget, make sure to factor those potential savings in, and you’ll start to see them right away once you officially move in.
Making a Smart Move
When relocating is the best option, you can still make an effort to make moving more sustainable. From packing to unpacking, put the following tips into practice as you make your move:
- Donate or sell the things you don’t want to take with you, rather than throwing them away
- Use recycled or pre-used moving supplies
- Use eco-friendly packaging materials
- Recycle moving supplies once you’re done
- Work with movers dedicated to sustainability
- Make as few trips back-and-forth as possible
Get your family involved in making your move more sustainable. Make sure everyone knows how to do their part to keep things as eco-friendly as possible. When you get your kids excited about donating some of their things, for example, you’re showing them just how positive and powerful sustainable living can be.
Moving is a part of life. Sometimes it’s necessary. Other times it’s just something you want to do. While it isn’t always environmentally friendly, there are steps you can take to make the entire process more sustainable.
Whether you’re building a new home from the ground up or moving into a pre-existing house, you don’t have to feel guilty about the impact it could have on the planet. You can make your entire move more sustainable from start to finish by implementing some of these eco-friendly relocation ideas.