When you move to a new house, there are always a few things you don't really want to take with you. There are always a few old clothes, things you don't use, and furniture there won't be room for. Packing is exactly when you realize what is worth hauling across the country and what you could live happily without. For most people, it feels good to purge unwanted possessions during a move, but you can't just leave the stuff behind It has to go somewhere. Finding a new home for items you're leaving behind is a major part of any good moving plan.
Trash or Treasure
The first step is to decide what of your left-behind items should be thrown away. Even charities won't want anything broken, stained, or grungy. Truly worn out things should be chucked. As should anything you don't want to clean thoroughly before passing it on. Don't be shy about throwing away stuff you've been holding onto if it is no longer valuable to anyone.
That said, you might find a home for broken electronics with local repair shops or e-recycle venues that re-use useful things like circuit boards, batteries, and screws. Broken bicycles, lawnmowers, and appliances may be of similar interest to repair businesses.
Most people just donate what they don't throw away. But you might want to try for a profit instead. If you have anything worth selling, there are a few avenues to do so.
eBay is your best bet if there are only a few things you want to sell. Especially if they are electronics, collectibles, or supplies. You'll need to take pictures and write a description and be willing to wait for online sellers. There's a chance no one will buy before you move.
If you have a lot of things to get rid of, consider hosting a garage sale. Racks of clothes, stacks of dishes, and boxes of old toys are exactly the kind of thing your neighbors might pay you for one sunny weekend. A garage sale is also a great solution if you are leaving several pieces of furniture behind.
If you have a few very nice items to sell, especially clothing and accessories, consider leaving them with a consignment shop. They will pay you for your clothes, then re-sell them.
Give It Away
Next, stop and think if you know anyone who might want the stuff you're leaving behind. You might have friends or family nearby who could make use of any left-behind furniture or clothes. If you're leaving behind decorations, ask around to see if they're wanted. In fact, one great way to get rid of a few things is to share with friends and coworkers that you're moving and looking to give stuff away. They might surprise you with their interest.
For useful things, you may also try Craigslist and other community-board style websites. Look for people nearby who might need a mattress, a couch, or a box of toddler toys. You might just make someone's week by providing something they needed.
Finally, you can donate almost anything that still works and looks nice. There are dozens of charities in every city that will take clothes, toys, and furniture. Many that will take decorations, electronics, and random stuff to sort out later. The only question is which charity you want to donate to. Some people have a favorite charity. Many choose based on how they'd like the stuff to change hands.
The traditional way is to drive your boxes of stuff to the charity warehouse or church doors. Delivering your donation gives you the widest selection of charities to donate to. But if you don't have time for that, there are other options.
Many people who are moving make use of charity drop-boxes. These often only accept clothing or canned food, but it's a convenient way to drive-by donate on your way out of town. And if you have no time at all, there are a few charities that will actually pick up the donation from your house. They tend to prefer that these donations be large enough to justify the trip, but it's not necessary.
Last Minute Abandonment
Finally, just leaving stuff behind in the house only works if you're the owner. Landlords need to make sure you don't want the stuff, then will have to clean it up. Possibly at an expense. But if the house is yours, then you'll be the one clearing up the stuff later when it's time to sell or repurpose the property. If the items are valuable, and you are coming back for them, you might also consider temporary storage instead.
Ultimately, it's best to find a home for your unwanted things before you leave town. This should become a major part of your packing and moving process, ensuring that everything you lived with before finds a new home. Whether that's with you or someone new. For more great moving tips from experts who've seen it all, contact us today!
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