4 Moving Supplies You Don’t Actually Need to Buy

published Dec 31, 2021
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Credit: Joe Lingeman

We all know that moving can be a real pain. Between the effort of gathering all your things together, sorting out a cost-effective moving option, and then unpacking everything into a totally different space with new storage and room dimensions, it can be a difficult and time-consuming activity. And on top of all of the physical and emotional labor involved with the process of moving, it’s also expensive

Hiring a mover can cost quite a bit of money, but even cost-effective options like fill-yourself containers can easily leave your wallet feeling empty. Thankfully, moving supplies is one area of the process that you can effectively cut down on expenses. In fact, here are a few moving supplies you don’t need to buy at all. 

Bubble wrap

Bubble wrap can be expensive — and sometimes you don’t even need the entire roll, which can leave you with a lot of waste. Some people also want to opt for more environmentally-friendly options when possible. While you can collect bubble wrap from online orders over time, or let friends and family know that you want any bubble wrap that they get in the mail, you can also use soft items from around the home to wrap fragile items. 

Clothes, blankets, and even leftover newspapers can easily be used instead of bubble wrap. Plus, using soft things that you need to pack anyway might even help you save a box or two in the process. 


There are always listings for moving boxes (and sometimes even supplies) on websites like Facebook Marketplace and Craigslist. Oftentimes, these are totally free from people just looking to get rid of their boxes; sometimes they may ask for a few bucks in exchange for their time and effort. Either way, it’s far more cost-effective — and environmentally friendly — than buying brand-new boxes. 

Moving blankets

The benefit of moving blankets is that they’re heavier and you can rough them up a bit. The heavier fabric means that you can also use them to push or drag heavier items across the floor of your new place without causing damage. 

But they’re expensive. Some moving companies like U-Haul and Penske will rent out moving blankets for a fee to save you some money. Or, you can use old blankets that you have laying around the house anyway. They won’t provide the same level of protection, but they will help prevent scratches and dings on your furniture in the moving process. 

Dollies and hand trucks

When you’re not using dollies and hand trucks on a regular basis, they’re really not worth purchasing. Your local Home Depot or independent hardware store might be able to rent out these moving and lifting items for a fee based on how long you’re using them for. 

If you’re not hiring movers, but you’re using a moving container — like PODS or U-Haul — you may have access to certain moving supplies included in the fee you pay for the service, too.