People tend to collect an amazing quantity of items over the years. Reasons for keeping items include an emotional attachment, an intention to reuse or fix the items in the future, or a wish to pass them on to others. However, for many items, if you haven’t used them in over a year, you probably don’t need them.
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Discard items in a useful way by donating them to a charity or nonprofit organization such as the Salvation Army or Goodwill. These items not only help those in need but some are tax-deductible.1 For items that are not accepted, call your town to inquire whether the items can be picked up. Many towns schedule this service once or twice a month.
If you have flood or fire damage, wash oil-based products and laundry soap, which have flammable ingredients and high water content, and put them in your dishwasher when they are empty.
After a year, prepare the last statement of your house saying and pulling out all the cards and decorations to dispose of. Store them somewhere safe such as in a safety deposit box.
If unsure, call the town and see what they say.
If you do not have a place to donate then look into liquidating them. This makes sense because especially after a big move, owning items on your wish list can be quite expensive. Here are some liquidation sites to find.
4 Tips for Liquidating Old Items
1. Check the retail value
Simply searching early in the search results for the potential item helps you. This gives you the upper hand when looking at wholesalers and finding items for resale.
List price is what a vendor will pay at the time of purchase. Sellers are glad to sell to a buyer at least for the amount they buy it for, and the lower the price the better. If you can find an item for less than the list price, research to make sure it is truly old.
2. No one cares about you anymore.
Marketing and social media has changed the way people connect. Those who were dear to you a year ago may no longer be but they will probably feel the mutual effects of their caring. While it may be true that you can’t keep bringing people back, you can easily keep an eye on your new neighbors. Perhaps after a while, they will remember you fondly and you’ll be able to keep bringing people back to your property again.
3. Repurpose items.
There will always be things that are hard to part with. Ripping out old books, CDs, and rushing through boxes are good examples of items you cannot keep. If you have an item that doesn’t work as a centerpiece for your property or as a decoration in a room, consider why you keep it.
If you are unsure of what to keep, take a look at the room. Is it a special place? A home is a home. Should you keep it? Could it fill a unique opportunity for a renter? Probably not.
Many house keeps and home buyers come armed with their best intentions, hoping to find a true “Perfect House”. That is a fantasy. Stay calm when collecting items and diversify your resources such as environmentally friendly eco-friendly cleaning chemicals, upside down books, and binoculars, or even stainless steel appliances. Keep track of your float and limit storage spaces, and only genuinely keep nice items.
If you know of any local organizations you wish to donate to besides the Salvation Army, do so. These organizations typically have higher standards and may accept items you want to keep. A quick internet search may point out organizations to consider.
4. Items to Avoid At All Costs
In addition to donating items, keep in mind some items simply don’t work as well as others when it comes time to give them away.
Zippers are inexpensive and can prove difficult to clean. Many homeowners toss the unused zippers out, thinking they are a nuisance. However, the flaps and fasteners between the layers can become damaged or fall off, thereby allowing moisture and dirt to seep in.
Check your local laws first, as some zip code restrictions may legally prevent you from throwing out any used clothing and thus in some areas you can’t even donate non-worn items.
Books and other Bibles
However, these unnecessary bindings can be dangerous and raise environmental concerns.
This is often a key to efficiently disposing of these hazardous items.
You can purchase “hanger bags” which have easily removable sections for most items.
Realtor Marketing Specialist & Navy Veteran
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