Living Sustainably

Moving Guide & Renters' Checklist

When you’re packing up your belongings to move to a new home, consider this as an opportunity to clear out unwanted items. Living simply as a student is better for your wallet and makes moving easier at the end of each school year. Take the time to separate your belongings into “to keep”, “donate” and “sell” piles. You’ll leave campus with a lighter load and, possibly, more cash in your pocket.

What To Pack With

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When considering how to pack, think of what you can use around your home. Some of the old towels and recycled paper can serve as protection for your fragile items and not cost a penny. If you know you will be moving often, consider purchasing storage bins which will last longer than cardboard boxes and can be used during the school year to store items in your home. Leave purchasing cardboard boxes as your last possible option and look for other ways to hold and protect your belongings.

  • Reusable Storage Bins
    • Have some sturdy storage bins to hold your heavier items and reduce cardboard waste (and tape). You can share these with friends and use them to store less frequently used items during the school year.
  • Reusable Tote Bags
    • Use the reusable tote bags you might use at the grocery store to carry smaller goods or items that are needed for immediate use as you move in. These will save you the hassle of opening boxes and searching through piles to find what you need.
  • Old Cardboard Boxes
    • Ask around your current building or friends/family to see if they have old boxes lying around. Sometimes, local stores will have recycled cardboard boxes you can take with you at no cost. Check around at appliance, hardware and grocery stores.
  • Green Packing Peanuts
    • The color of peanuts denotes how they are made. Green packing peanuts mean they are made from recycled materials and are biodegradable. White and pink packing peanuts are made from raw materials and can only be recycled, at best. Reuse these as much as possible, give them to others moving or donate them to a school or craft center when you're done. And remember to recycle whatever was not reused or donated.
  • Recycled Paper
    • Use the paper you have leftover at the end of semester as a cushion to protect items.
  • Old towels/Blankets
    • Old rags, towels and blankets are great to clean and then use as protection during your move. Wrap them around electronic devices or furniture to prevent any damages during transportation.
What To Do With Used Boxes

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The immediate response to these boxes may be to toss them or put them in the recycling bin, but these can be helpful to keep around your home and can serve other purposes. You can unfold the boxes for easy storage and pull them out for moving next year or mail packages throughout the year.

cardboard boxes

  • Keep a few in storage for future use
  • Give them to friends/family to help them with their miscellaneous projects
  • Use them to mail packages
  • Recycle them if they can no longer be used
Where To Store Belongings

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Storing your belongings in Bloomington during summer vacation can relieve the stress of transporting everything to your summer location and back. This saves the potential trips you would need to make and keeps your items safe until you come back to campus. Try to find a storage space closer to your new home for convenience and decrease the miles traveled during your move.

Consider these local storage businesses to find what you need:

How To Transport

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If you must transport your items to another location outside of Bloomington, determine a method that saves gas, time and money. Using a minivan and moving with friends that have the same destination is an option. Minivans can often hold more than SUVs and get better mileage. If the drive is extensive, you may need to rent a truck to fit more items and reduce the miles driven.

Below are some truck rental companies:

How To Sell Your Items

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How To Donate Your Items

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Habitat for Humanity Restore| (812) 331-2660

Hoosier to Hoosier


Where To Recycle Your Items

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Bloomington Recycling Centers
Central Recycling & Reuse Center/Hazardous Materials Facility|3400 S Walnut St

Downtown Recycling Center|Southeast of 10th St. and Rogers St. intersection


EPA Reference

eCycling Center

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