Adam Benezra knows just what you need for your next move. By Jeanne O’Brien Coffey – photograph by Shawn Negri
Fifteen years ago, when Adam Benezra started selling used moving boxes, recycling wasn’t cool yet. In fact, many of his friends at Gentle Giant Moving Company, where he’d been putting in 60- to 70-hour weeks as a crew chief, hassled him about his business idea. But he had been helping out with his aunt’s fledgling recycling business in Melrose, and he had been raised with a strong entrepreneurial spirit, so he knew he could make it work.
“Within a year, I was paying my mortgage,” Benezra brags of his company, Winchester-based Benezra Boxes. These days, demand for recycled boxes is so high that during the busy spring and summer moving season, when he sells as many as 3,000 boxes a week, he has to supplement his offerings with high-quality new boxes–still undercutting competitors when it comes to price.
Benezra and his company take the guesswork out of moving supplies. He’ll bring a van stocked with every conceivable kind of box to clients’ homes or businesses, check out everything that needs to be packed, then unload exactly what they need on the spot—all for less money than your average chain store retailer.
“When [people] are moving, no one has a clue what to do,” Benezra says. “I can walk through a house and know exactly what they need.”
When the recession hit in 2007, people stopped buying boxes and started handing off their used moving boxes to friends or tried to sell them on their own. That’s when Benezra began offering packing services. While he won’t name names, he has packed everyone from hedge fund managers to professional athletes, along with everything from prize mounted marlins to a set of fine china that was a gift from Prince Charles and the late Princess Diana. With such A-list moves under his belt, rest assured that your most treasured possessions are in good hands with Benezra. benezraboxes.com
Pack Like a Pro Adam Benezra’s tips for an efficient moving day
Size Matters Choosing the right box size is essential, according to Benezra. “People always get the wrong-size boxes,” he says. “They’ll put books in a box even the Incredible Hulk couldn’t lift.”
Top Shelf Lightweight crushable things like lampshades, dried flowers, or baskets should be put in boxes labeled “top load only.” This tells the movers to stack those boxes on top, keeping them from being crushed by heavier ones.
Unbreakable When packing china and other fragile items, use paper to create an even layer of cushioning in the bottom of the box, then pack dishes standing on edge—not flat. “This is what I call ‘the egg theory,’” Benezra says. “A lot of weight on an egg sideways will crush it. However, vertically, an egg can withstand much more pressure.” For more tips, visit benezraboxes.com.