HiveBoxx is more than a moving company; it’s a startup on a quest to save the bees.
Eastside real estate agent Wesley Rankin is no stranger to the housing market or the needs of people on the move. The 34-year-old has been selling real estate since his early 20s, and for the past five years has led his own firm, Redmond-based Hive Realty. More recently, however, Rankin embarked on a new endeavor with the launch of HiveBoxx — a company that aims to make moving less stressful, all while helping the environment in the process.
Rankin always has worked at the ground level, seeing, hearing, and feeling what his customers need and want. So when he realized his clients needed better options for easier — and more sustainable — moves, he took it upon himself to do something about it.
“I saw in the commercial industry that they were using reusable boxes (for moving),” Rankin said, “and I always wondered why (reusable boxes weren’t available) at the consumer base level, especially for residential.”
HiveBoxx, headquartered in Seattle but serving customers on both sides of Lake Washington, offers rentable, reusable, eco-friendly box and dolly systems designed to make moving quick and hassle-free.
HiveBoxx’s website compares the average cost of a one-week rental for a 1,000-to-1,200-square-foot home through HiveBoxx against the price of its cardboard competitor, and claims to save customers more than $100. Weekly rental packages range from $99 for a studio apartment to $350 for a five-bedroom home, and come complete with everything a mover needs to get her stuff from one place to the next — various-size boxes, dollies, moving labels, zip ties, and free delivery and pickup all are included.
“Our box and dolly system is just phenomenal compared to having to buy cardboard boxes, put the cardboard together, and — especially with our rainy seasons that are prolonged — people just love our boxes for that aspect of it, because they can get wet and they won’t collapse or become hard to handle,” Rankin said. “They love that they don’t feel like they need to rush or need to have to protect the cardboard from getting wet.”
But residential customers aren’t the only clients HiveBoxx is working with. HiveBoxx also is tackling the commercial market. Earlier this year, HiveBoxx signed a deal with local leasing company Pacific Crest Real Estate, which manages properties in Seattle and on the Eastside. “We’re going to become their in-house move-in/move-out cleaners and exclusive move-in/move-out moving company,” Rankin said. “Our footprint on the Eastside and downtown Seattle is going to be expanding.”
HiveBoxx officially launched in 2013, but after a few years of beta testing, Rankin said business is just starting to buzz. As the company ramps up its client base and services, it also is focusing its attention toward giving back.
“Once I kind of knew that I wanted to be a mission-based company, I was like, ‘What can we put our mission toward, and what really needs the biggest advocate?’ And I was like, ‘the bees,’” Rankin said.
“I think people are now finally realizing the colonial collapse disorder is something very serious,” Rankin said, referring to the phenomenon that takes place when a colony of worker bees abandons its hive, leaving the queen behind.
Rankin said HiveBoxx aims to help bee populations at a local and national level. Through partnerships with local bee farmers, including Woodinville-based Crown Bees, Rankin said HiveBoxx aims to help local bee populations by investing 1 percent of HiveBoxx’s net proceeds into community hives in Seattle and on the Eastside, as well as educational programs at community farms in the area.
As HiveBoxx continues to grow, Rankin said he’s excited to make affordable, eco-friendly moving options more accessible to people across the region, all while helping the environment — and bees — in the process.