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Where to get rid of STUFF

Posted by rjvt (My Page) on
Sun, Jan 3, 10 at 14:16

I have really been trying to get rid of some of those hard to get rid of things that I have been hanging onto forever, and wondered if people had favorite places to get rid of types of things. Those categories that just keep you stalled on a whole organization project. I finally found Beanies for Baghdad this year and got rid of the kids old used Beanie Babies that I didn't just want to throw out, and I don't think consignment stores will take. This is a win win because I really thought someone could get some use out of them. The kids loved them but were done with them and I think this is a great program (I ended up adding other sporting goods & school supplies that we had around to the box). I don't have the patience to do Ebay or a garage sale. So where do you take things that you don't want to just throw out?

Things like:

LPs and music memorobilia (I just found a local place that will take this stuff, so I think I am ready to get rid of a lot of it)

Figurines I've had since I was a kid. Most of it probably not worth much, but again, I hate to just throw it out. Maybe freecycle or Craigs list?

I'm sure there are more categories. I guess I'm just wondering if anyone knows of any other of these types of worthwhile organizations that might entice me (or others) to get rid of things for a good cause. I remember seeing a place to donate used shoes either for donation or reuse. You could drop the shoes off at selected stores. I forget the program, but it's probably online.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Where to get rid of STUFF

HI, Rjvt Happy New Year. We are cleaning out cupboards and closets too. We take everything to the thrift store if it is in good shape and can be used by someone else. Furniture and other big items the thrift store will not take, we post on Craig's List. We rarely charge for the stuff we post on CL - we are just glad to have someone haul it away. For example, we recently got new mattresses and posted the old bed on CL for free - had 20 responses. It saved us the cost of having the mattress company haul it.

Our thrift store is associated with a shelter for battered women, so they will take unopened toiletries, etc. that the women can use. If you don't have a similar place, there is always Goodwill and Salvation Army.

Happy cleaning!


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RE: Where to get rid of STUFF

I've become a Goodwill champion! I bag or box things up until the container is full, then load the container into the back seat. On my first trip anywhere near a Goodwill, I drop the box at their back door donation area. Ring the doorbell and they'll come get it. If you're interested, they will give you a receipt for the donation for tax purposes.


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RE: Where to get rid of STUFF

I just take everything to my local YWCA Thrift Shop.

They keep track of what the items sell for, and they send an IRS-approved form at year's-end with the amount I can use for a tax deduction.

I really don't feel the need to play matchmaker with my unwanted things....
I just want it gone.


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RE: Where to get rid of STUFF

I've been selling some of my nicer stuff at a charity home consignment store. They keep 50% of the selling price and donate it to an outreach council that helps people in our community. I feel good about that.

The stuff that isn't worth pricing, I donate to a church thrift shop that does a really good job helping people in the community.

I don't keep any records for tax purposes.


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RE: Where to get rid of STUFF

When I decided to get rid of my dining room, I had a complete dining room set (including china and buffet) to get rid of. I gave the table, chairs and china to the animal shelter. They have a booth in the antique mall where they sell stuff and keep the proceeds.
All clothing goes to the church 'closet'. They have food and clothing give aways monthly.


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RE: Where to get rid of STUFF

rjvt, declare amnesty with clutter. You don't need to find the perfect recipients for your cast-offs. Just throw it all in the trash. If you leave it visible at the curb, passersby may take some of it,good for you and them. But the rest will end up in a landfill. It's a one-time thing, you're not exactly a serial killer. Just say goodye to it. Having the clutter gone is the best thing for you and your family. I've tried Goodwill and Salvation Army pickups, but they are very picky about what they'll take. I called them once when I had a lot of furniture to donate, they only took three pieces, and wouldn't take anything electrical (no lamps or sewing machines)or with fabric or cane.


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RE: Where to get rid of STUFF

I usually put it on freecycle and when someone inquires I will put it outside by the garage for them to pick up. When I have had many things that I wanted gone that day I put an ad on freecycle for free garage sale. Within 30 minutes everything on my driveway was gone.

Once in a while I will sell a few things on craigslist.

Sometimes I will drop off things at GW.


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RE: Where to get rid of STUFF

Habitat ReStore is an excellent place to donate all of those extras that you have leftover from remodeling like paint, doors, windows, shingles, etc. I made my wood floor guy leave the extra adhesives and leftovers and donated those too.

During my move last year, I put a lot of big stuff out by the curb like beds, big plastic outdoor toys, metal garage shelves, etc. You have to put a 'free' sign on it, but people will take it.

My area has thrift stores other than Goodwill and the Salvation Army. I like to donate to them because they aren't so picky and they will reduce prices on a regular basis until the stuff sales.


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RE: Where to get rid of STUFF

Jannie, You bring up a good point. Many of us feel guilty if we don't insure that our stuff goes to good homes. That may contribute to the clutter and confusion that we have in our own homes. It is tough to just let go of things unless we've been good stewards of our resources and sent them to people who will love and take care of them.

I finally got to a point where I would gather up a group of things I didn't need or want and then call several younger family members to shop my freebie pile. Anything they didn't take went directly to the thrift store immediately thereafter.

Nowadays, most of my young family members have their households complete, so it all goes directly to the thrift unless one of my son's friends is just starting out. However, I've learned my lesson. Now the phone call is: "I've got a bunch of household stuff to get rid of. Why don't you come by and take these boxes and, if you don't want something, you can just pass it on to someone else?"


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RE: Where to get rid of STUFF

Jannie has a good point - for years I was so deeply conscious of environmental issues that I could not allow myself to throw things in the garbage. So if I could not pass on or recycle something, I felt stuck with it - in effect, my house became a landfill. I finally realized that I was comparing my house to that of friends who threw everything away that they could; no wonder I came off looking worse! With the environmental movement now becoming so totalitarian that it is a pleasure to thumb my nose at it, I now do permit myself the garbage option for things that I really cannot do anything else with. I still prefer to recycle, and I'll sell or giveaway on craigslist if it's a big thing that someone will find worth travelling for, but ...

I don't really like to donate to charity. I find that people are starting to feel way too good about themselves when they give relative to how much good their donations actually do. Where I live, charity has begotten dependency to an alarming extent - I live in a poor area where I see first hand that to a large extent it is doing so much more harm than good. Meanwhile I know middle class and upper class people are having orgasms of self satisfaction for giving, even when they are really benefiting themselves more by giving than they are helping anyone else. Even in developing countries, it is not always appreciated. Voices are emerging from within Africa to say that aid must be focussed on building capacity and enabling self-sufficiency. When the driving force for donation is that I have an excess of something, that's not a good enough rationale for me to donate it, although there are certainly situations where I can find the perfect recipient.

Having said that, I do regularly bring boxes of stuff to my local Value Village. I like it that this is an unapologetic business, one that supports charities but where the charities have to do some of the earning. It's not perfect... if someone else were operating such a store completely as a business I'd support them too. After all, given how much trouble we all have with our excess stuff, I consider it a service when someone takes it from me, sorts it, and does the responsible thing with it. For that service (for example, what do you do with an outdated fax machine?), I happily make sure there is some pretty good stuff in every box. Oh, and I shop at all kinds of thrift stores without prejudice, so by all means donate those old LPs there :-)

KarinL


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RE: Where to get rid of STUFF

In the past year, I've listed dozens of things that I thought someone might be able to use on Craigslist for free, saying that they were on the porch of my house and giving the address. (I know lots of people aren't comfortable with this, but I am.) Everything except one item has been taken, and I've received the nicest notes telling me what they've done with the items. Definitely win-win.

Clothes, if they're in good shape, I throw in one of those charity boxes in the grocery store parking lot.

Other stuff gets thrown away, but I'll admit that I worry about the landfills, too, so I don't throw much away. Thank God for Craigslist, which is slowly helping me to clean out my house.


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RE: Where to get rid of STUFF

I'm the type that has no problem getting rid of stuff when the time comes. I don't have clutter, collections, or emotional attachments to things, so it is pretty easy for me to toss. My responses may seem harsh for the sentimental ones & I hope people don't take my responses as being rude...I'm just not one to take on or allow excess stuff in my house or in my life.

I've seen from my mother putting so much effort and concern about where to take the stuff is a huge source of delaying the purging process. They are not clutterbugs, but they have lived in the same house for 40 years. Mom has been stalled on cleaning out the basement for the past 5 years because she can't seem to decide the best approach on where the stuff will go next.

I have made it clear that all her stuff is junk (to me) and when she dies, I WILL start a burn pile. Everything that won't burn will go to the landfill.

When I want to get rid of my misc items or clothing, I take the following into consideration:

1. If it has any proper monetary value that's worth it to me and I'm willing to put in the effort, I will sell it via the best means...antique dealer, newspaper ad, consignment shop.

2. If it has some $$ value but not worth much effort, I will donate directly to the local homeless mission. They give me a receipt when I drop off, and I claim the value myself...and write off as a charitable tax deduction. Doing this...as long as your $$ are REALISTIC and TRUE, is much better than the effort of a garage sale.

3. I refuse to stockpile anything for a garage sale because I have option #2 above. I'd rather write off jeans for a couple bucks each, than mess with a garage sale and be lucky to get 50 cents & haggle over dimes.

4. If it doesn't fall into the above categories...I toss it.

I have worked for various missions and charitable organizations (not as an employee...they were clients in my line of business). You would be shocked at how much of your donated stuff THEY throw away/landfill. They want to make money too, and don't waste storefront or back storage space on junk. Lots of clothing is actually sold to companies by the pound...and the clothing is cut up into rags for re-sale to companies like mine. We use the rags to clean/sop up environmental waste...and WE landfill it. At that point it's hazardous waste and a t-shirt or jeans will never have the opportunity to decompose because of the way we bag & dispose of them. 95% of the "rags" would have been better off in the landfill decomposing naturally...even if it takes 50 years...that's quicker than after we're done with it.


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RE: Where to get rid of STUFF

95% of the "rags" would have been better off in the landfill decomposing naturally...even if it takes 50 years...that's quicker than after we're done with it.

I understand your point, Gayle, but what would you be using to sop up environmental waste if you didn't use discarded clothing?


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RE: Where to get rid of STUFF

Craigslist is great. Put anything useable/not broken out at the curb. Don't do this on rainy snowy or cold days. Then write an ad on Craigslist in the "free" section. You'll be amazed how quickly the stuff disappears. I got rid of a working mini-fridge just last week. It had been my daughter's when she was away at college. She no longer needed it and I had absolutely no use for it. I did quick-clean the outside before putting it at the curb. It was gone within an hour after I posted in on Craigslist.


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RE: Where to get rid of STUFF

Don't forget Freecycle: http://www.freecycle.org/
I haven't used it but my neighbor had, he said that they got rid of a bunch of stuff that otherwise would have gone into the trash.
Tara


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RE: Where to get rid of STUFF

Wow. That's WAY too much work--and work without a point. Just donate it all to a take-everything kind of place and be DONE.


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RE: Where to get rid of STUFF

I take everything to Goodwill. I just bring boxes/bags full of stuff. They don't even look through it, just give me the blank receipt to fill out myself. I like the idea behind Freecycle, but in my area there were just too many greedy people asking for free stuff. iPods & other expensive things. Got annoying after a while, plus no tax receipt. It's easier to me to just cart everything to Goodwill.


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RE: Where to get rid of STUFF

Obviously many answers here- and whatever works for you is the right thing.
One other suggestion which works for me--- is I put all sorts of clothing, household items etc in bags, ( I itemize for my tax purposes) and call or email vietnam vets of america.. I am attaching a link. The beige states have pick up service. I call them and schedule a day for them to come and pick up the stuff. ( I leave it out on my front steps or any designated place- garage, driveway and they leave a receipt). It's really a painless effortless way to get it out of the house.They take just about everything. The website goes into more detail.
I have also used freecycle and craigslist to offer specific things.
Occassionally I have put some bags of stuff in the charity dumpsters, or brought it to a goodwill store. Whatever works, but I find calling and scheduling a pick up is great because it motivates me to put together the stuff that I want to get rid of, and all I need do is bag it and it will be taken away.

Here is a link that might be useful: the link to some charities for pick up


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Thanks for the link, but no service in my area. Funny to see this thread brought back up to see what I was doing a year ago. I did take 1/2 the LPs and all the memorabilia (except 1 book) to the record shop & got $60 and an empty plastic storage box that's now filled up. As for the collectibles, my mother took it all and gave it to a woman she knows who does flea markets and I just got a check for that stuff. In that past year I was able to clear out the whole downstairs so that now I can tile the floor (project for January) and be able to make an office. YAY! Thanks again for the reminder.


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RE: Where to get rid of STUFF

I save nice clothing (the best goes to consignment) in a laundry basket in an out-of-the-way closet, and every couple of months my similarly-sized friends and I have a clothing swap. Unwanted stuff goes on freecycle in a big bag and we get some free, new items to wear.

We've started doing this with books, too.

Someone told me they did it with fabric; I can see that. Sewing types tend to buy more than they use, lol.


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RE: Where to get rid of STUFF

rjvt, I'm the prez of a very small nonprofit that does many many good things in our area. (recycling, food distribution, working in the schools, etc., etc.) We have a yard sale once a year for a fundraiser. If you watch your local paper for a bit you may find a small organization in your area where you can donate your things, and where your donation won't go to support executives behind desks, but straight to projects in your local area. Not all nonprofits do a good job of getting local mention in the papers, but asking someone you know who volunteers, asking at the library, etc., you may find a deserving place. Good luck!


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RE: Where to get rid of STUFF

I once went through my house and gathered up things I didn't use, mostly duplicates of things I do use and love. I had TONS of extra knives, for example. Brought everything to work, laid it out on a table in our lunchroom with A sign "Free. Take anything you want." I got rid of lots of stuff. But it was a bit embarassing. A fellow employee recognized a glass candy dish she had given me as a wedding present.


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RE: Where to get rid of STUFF

I too have had great luck with Craigslist. Just be sure you take good photos without clutter in the background, and make your description complete, with dimensions, condition, etc.


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RE: Where to get rid of STUFF

"I don't really like to donate to charity. I find that people are starting to feel way too good about themselves when they give relative to how much good their donations actually do. Where I live, charity has begotten dependency to an alarming extent - I live in a poor area where I see first hand that to a large extent it is doing so much more harm than good. Meanwhile I know middle class and upper class people are having orgasms of self satisfaction for giving, even when they are really benefiting themselves more by giving than they are helping anyone else. Even in developing countries, it is not always appreciated. Voices are emerging from within Africa to say that aid must be focussed on building capacity and enabling self-sufficiency. When the driving force for donation is that I have an excess of something, that's not a good enough rationale for me to donate it, although there are certainly situations where I can find the perfect recipient."

We donate as much of our stuff to charities as we can. Thrift stores with charitable missions, consignment shops ditto, also large pieces like furniture and bicycles to an organization that helps woman from abusive situations and their children start new lives, veteran's organizations that have collected old but functional appliances, etc. ....I've also shopped in some of those thrift stores and consignment shops, often regularly, and I've never had the sense that my donations (excellent quality clothing, books and magazines, useful household items, records, jewelry, art, rugs, even building materials, and on and on and on) has ever done anyone any harm, much less more harm than good. How I feel about donating has nothing to do with the value of the donated items to the people buying them.


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