Trends & Data

95M Boxes Move Home Every Year in Britain

Press Release

eBay Reveals the Average British Household Fits Into 85 Boxes, 30 Bin Bags, Seven Suitcases and Four Rucksacks

  • New study commissioned by online marketplace, eBay, found that Brits are transporting a huge volume of possessions during their move, using at least 45 sticker notes, 23 copies of newspapers, six rolls of masking tape, six rolls of bubble wrap and two balls of string on each relocation
  • In the frenzy of moving, a quarter (25%) of Brits will have left something behind, so much so that an astonishing 5% of young Brits will even forget a much-loved pet
  • 40% of those surveyed confessed moving home is the opportunity to start a new chapter in their lives
  • eBay launches their refreshed Home Move hub a dedicated on-site solution for movers and teams up with leading property expert, Phil Spencer to provide expert tips and tricks to help ease the stress of moving

eBay, one of the world’s largest online marketplaces, has revealed the anatomy of the British Home Move, in light of May being the busiest month for home moves in the UK and Brits moving more than ever with over 3.8 million[1] moves taking place every year.

An impulsive quarter of respondents (28%) procrastinate until the week of their move before kicking the process into gear, pushing back the huge task of squeezing their home into boxes. Once reality kicks in, and the move truly looms – the average household will fill more than 85 large boxes, 30 bin bags, seven suitcases and four rucksacks of possessions. This equates to 95.6 million boxes moving across Britain every year as Brits uproot their homes.

Additionally, in a bid to get organised, Brits will use 45 sticker notes, 23 copies of newspapers, six rolls of masking tape, six rolls of bubble wrap and two balls of string to protect and pack up properly.

The average Brit will move at least eight times in a lifetime and a third (32%) confess they have had to move back with their parents at least twice in their adult year, which therefore equates to a whole lot of possession shuffling.

Therefore, to combat the pressures Brits face about relocating and to encourage movers do so smarter; eBay has refreshed its dedicated Home Move hub on, to help those relocating with expert advice and nifty tips, as well as providing a one-stop shop for all home move essentials. in May alone, received over 90,000 searches for ‘moving’ and ‘packing’ - more than any other month. In addition to this, eBay is the place that home movers turn to, with over 63,000 reels of tape, 30,000 cardboard boxes and 23,000 rolls of bubble wrap bought every month[2].

Brits are self-confessed ‘doers’, taking a hands-on approach to their move; with more than half (54%) admitting that they will take on every task themselves (from packing, organising logistics, renting a removals van to even taking the wheel themselves) - however, 14% admit having fallen short trying to juggle all these mammoth tasks at once.

Most Brits (90%) confessed that they were stressed on their move date, which isn’t surprising, considering 15% of recent movers experienced their removals company being late or not turning up. Moreover, a fifth (20%) regret not de-cluttering before moving, whereas 7% were not able to fit all their possessions into the removals van.

When the move gets underway, a quarter (25%) of Brits will leave items behind by accident, and one in 10 (11%) will have something of significant sentimental value vanish or break during the moving process. Meanwhile, one in 20 (5%) of young (18-24) animal owners admit leaving their much-loved pet at their old home amidst the frenzy of a move.

The study from eBay reveals relocating is a roller coaster ride of emotions, jumping from frenzy to joy. Brits go from being stressed out (90%) on moving day, to excited (30%) and optimistic (20%) as they embark on unpacking and settling into their new home. 40% of Brits agree that moving home makes them feel like their heading into a new chapter of their life.

Most Brits feel that the kitchen is the heart of the home, with just under half (44%) unpacking to set up the kitchen first before any other room. Only a small 7% will set up the living room (including TV and game consoles) first.

eBay has teamed up with property expert and co-presenter of Channel 4’s most coveted property program, Location Location, Location, to support the Home Move campaign and help Brits move smarter. The secret to success is out, as Phil Spencer has revealed his five top tips to help alleviate some of the pressures when moving home, which can be viewed here:

Phil Spencer also comments: “Moving home shouldn’t be a chore, it should be an opportunity for a fresh start, that’s why I’ve partnered with eBay to encourage the nation to move smarter and more efficiently. Brits are increasingly moving more due to several factors; everything from tenancies coming to an end, moving back in with mum and dad to taking the leap to get on the property ladder. So it’s important to be nimble and agile when it comes to relocating.”

Rhian Bartlett, Senior Retail Director at eBay, noted: “Moving is a monumental task and it’s extremely stressful to transport a home’s worth of possessions from place to place. With the refreshed Home Move hub, we hope to help Britain move a little better by providing a simple one-stop shop at your fingertips. The Home Move hub offers a wide range of products and tips tailored for any time of move”


For more information, please contact Exposure on behalf of eBay on: / 0207 907 7130 

About eBay:
eBay Inc. (NASDAQ: EBAY) is a global commerce leader including the Marketplace, StubHub and Classifieds platforms. Collectively, we connect millions of buyers and sellers around the world, empowering people and creating opportunity through Connected Commerce. Founded in 1995 in San Jose, Calif., eBay is one of the world's largest and most vibrant marketplaces for discovering great value and unique selection. In 2015, eBay enabled $82billion of gross merchandise volume. For more information about the company and its global portfolio of online brands, visit

Home Move Hub is a one-stop shopping haven for home-movers, on It’s a dedicated on-site space for movers and shakers; with everything from expert tips and tricks, to packing essentials and storage solutions. The hub offers instant inspiration, allowing shoppers to browse the best home and interiors brands from the high street alongside boutique sellers.


[2] Data was taken from from over the past 12 months