Buying Boxes

Posted on July 28, 2011


We're mostly packed now. We are finishing packing up the knick knacks and kitchen items. Luckily, it has taken fewer boxes than the original estimate.

When we first had the movers come to give estimates, I was a little shocked at the sticker price.

A 3000 mile move was going to cost between $7000 and $9000.

If we wanted people to come the day before and box up our life for us, it was going to cost an additional $3000 – $5000 dollars.

The mover we decided to go with suggested to me that we pack ourselves.

“You’ve got plenty of time between now and the move to get the boxes and materials in order to pack,” he said.

He then suggested that we go to Home Depot and buy all the boxes and paper and tape there.

“It’s going to be a lot cheaper,” he said.  He showed me the itemized list of how many boxes we would need (we haven’t needed as many as he said), and then he showed me the prices of boxes on the cost sheet.

If you go to a “moving” store or buy direct from the mover, a small box costs about $2.79.  If you go to Home Depot, a small box costs 79 cents.

He also recommended NOT using “used” or “grocery store” boxes because, “You never know what will be in them.”

He described an experience where a woman had used old boxes and when they finally arrived at the new place, the boxes were filled with cockroaches.  Apparently, the boxes had been hiding cockroach eggs and they hatched in transit.

I didn’t want this happening, so I gladly spent money on new boxes and figured that the expense was well worth not having cockroaches crawling through all our clothes.

So, when we posted about this on Facebook, an acquaintance said “and when you get to California, you can put them on Craigslist!”  She suggested that this would fetch us cash.

I was a bit unsure how to respond.  I don’t like selling boxes because, well, they’re boxes.  I didn’t like the idea of trying to make money back on them, and then still claiming them on a tax-exemption as part of the “move expenses.”

I also had people tell me to go get boxes from other places that were more expensive.

Which made me realize that a lot of people were completely not reading the status update that I had posted, and were just offering moving advice when I clearly had not asked, nor needed moving advice.

We are going to a “green” school that was won awards for recycling and reusing materials.  In the “paperless” faculty orientation letter the Dean sent out, she recommended that all boxes be broken down and put out for recycling.

So, that’s what we’re going to do.  That’s what we had planned on doing.

Of course, some people may argue that “reusing” the boxes would be more “green” of us.  Certainly some boxes will be reused.  But, don’t forget that cockroach eggs are lurking in every nook and cranny.  If you’re willing to risk it, by all means, come to California and take some boxes.

When Roaches Attack!!!

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Posted in: Life