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March 23, 2018  |  Login
Turning Your Garbage into Someone Else’s Gold
By Yvonne Jeffery, Liz Barclay, Michael Grosvenor
If you can't reuse something, you don't know anyone who wants it, and you can't recycle it, you may still have alternatives to throwing it out. You can give things away or sell them if you have access to potential customers.

If you can't reuse something, someone else may be able to.

Deciding What Others May Want

Walk around your home and pick out things that you don't need but that other people could use. If you have room, create a storage system that allows you to add an item to the "find a new home for this" box when you're done with it. When a box is full, offer it to your local secondhand book or music shop; if you don't get a sale, offer it to a local charity or nonprofit.

Some of the most popular secondhand items include:

  • Books, magazines, CDs, and DVDs: The market for these items is huge, and they can go on and on being reused.

  • Clothes: Used and vintage clothes are fashionable, and someone else may be able to make good use of good-quality clothing even though you never want to wear it - or see it - again. Sift through your wardrobe and drawers and sort out things to give away, swap, sell, or turn into rags. If your items are fashionable or desirable, check out the later section "Cashing in on unwanted items."

  • Furniture: Whether it's old or relatively new, valuable or not, in good shape or has seen better days, furniture that you want to get rid of will find a home with someone out there. All sorts of home clearance firms buy furniture; auctions sell antiques and less valuable furniture and household items; and charities often want furniture of all sorts to help furnish homes for those less fortunate.

  • Electronics such as computers, appliances, and cell phones: Other people may be able to get electronics in running order either for themselves or for charity.

  • Household items such as dishes, knickknacks, and storage containers: If these items are in reasonably good shape (not chipped or cracked, for example), there's no reason why they can't be used by someone else who may find their patterns more attractive than you do. Charity stores often accept such household items.



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