How to sell cardboard boxes

Written by ryn gargulinski
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How to sell cardboard boxes
Cardboard box market (Photo by Ryn Gargulinski)

With paper prices cutting through the roof, so to speak, cardboard boxes are no longer the throwaway or even recycleable items they used to be. If you have a cache of cardboard boxes, perhaps following a move or big delivery of new items, you can actually make money from them. You're not going to get rich off a few cardboard boxes, but you will save someone else the pain of paying way too much for a simple cardboard container.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Razor
  • Pliers
  • Twine

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  1. 1

    Prepare the boxes. Break down all your boxes. Take a razor through the tape but leave the flaps and ends connected and intact. If boxes are connected with staples, carefully remove them with pliers so you don't rip the cardboard. Bundle your boxes according to size, making each bundle no bigger than an average person can lift.

  2. 2

    Look for local potential buyers. Check out moving sales in your area, asking those heading the sale if they need boxes to pack their items. Local moving companies, truck rental places, warehouses, second-hand stores, distributors and delivery services may be eager to snap up your boxes for their needs.

  3. 3

    Place ads and flyers around town. After checking in with a phone call or visit to those who may want boxes, make up some flyers to post around town. Be strategic. Good places for flyers are near the moving companies and truck rental places. Free or low-cost ads can often be placed in small, local papers, neighbourhood newsletters and bulletins.

  4. 4

    Join a nationwide network. If you are having no luck with your local efforts, you can post your information on several sites that have programs with a national reach. Both and allows your ads to reach a national audience for a small fee once your boxes are sold.

Tips and warnings

  • The better quality your boxes are, the better price you'll get for them.
  • Recycle any boxes that are soggy, ripped, missing panels or otherwise unusable. If it's not a box you would use, don't assume anyone else will.

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