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So when you get rid of stuff...

post #1 of 34
Thread Starter 
do you freecycle, sell, goodwill, or garage sale it? We are ending our time with garage sales, they are pretty few and far between, it just isn't the time of year for them. So this stuff would have to sit for about 6 months. Which wouldn't be bad if they are in boxes that a labeled and organized for a sale, right? We have always made decent money on our garage sales too, but it will be a month or so after our baby is born, adn I am trying to figure out whether it will be too much of a hassle, ya know?
Freecycle is great, but I always have problems with people not showing up and all that fun stuff.
Goodwill is also great, but they are ususally really picky about what they will take, furniturewise. But I am sure we can get rid of the clothes and toys that way at least.
We have a TON of clothes. LIke, I didn't realize how much clothes we had until I took them all out of our closet. My dh is putting up closet organizers, and it is insane. And I know we could make probably some good money out of them, some of them are barely worn. But then it is the hassle...
Also, have you guys bought boxes to get rid of things in? I have tried to get a hold of boxes from freecycle, but can't. I can't think of any other way to put things away and get them somewhere. But I am pregnant and my brain isn't working. Pretty much, I need someone to say, do this and this and this and just do it. I feel like I am making excuses because I don't know where to start. I have actually started, with our clothes and dh is helping by putting in the organizers. It is helping tremendously with my girls. He put up racks so each of them can reach their own clothes. My daughter actually said tonight, I only wore this shirt a little bit, I am going to go hang it up and wear it tomorrow. : This is the one who I can't get to put away her toys, so quite a difference.
So mostly I am curious about what ya'll do so I can get off my butt
post #2 of 34
I always take everything to a local thrift shop or charity. Garage sales are not worth it for us-way too much hassle, plus I want things out NOW, not sitting somewhere waiting to be sold. When I declutter, I put things in boxes and immediately load the boxes in my car. When I'm out, I drop by the thrift shop or charity and drop it off.

As far as boxes go-we're military, so I save some of the nice boxes we get from moving and use those. I know grocery stores are usually pretty generous about giving away extra produce boxes and such.

Good luck!
post #3 of 34
For me, it's Goodwill all the way. Yard sales are WAY too much work/time involved for the money, imo. I'm not very happy with the Freecycle environment in my hometown (it was great in Atlanta, but not so much here). I had a bad habit of setting stuff aside to sell "later," but it was still in the garage years after the fact. I don't do that anymore. Whatever I want to get rid of goes into a garbage bag (clothes) or a scavenged box (I get them from work) and straight into the car. We drive past the Goodwill at least once/week, so dropping stuff off is never a problem.
post #4 of 34
I'm in the same boat as Nicole. I've been decluttering over the past couple of weeks and mainly I just want this stuff OUT! If I know someone who would want or use a particular item, I'll give it to them, but otherwise, anything in good condition is being donated.

Once this major purging is done, I will probably go to Craig's list or freecycle for whatever I want to get rid of in the future.
post #5 of 34
first i try freecycling it, (lately that has been pretty crappy) and then it goes to goodwill, unless i can think of someone that could use it. (promptly get in touch w/person and it goes!)
yard sales waste too much of my time & energy.
every once in a while i will consign something if it is super nice, that is rare. i just haven't gotten into ebay-ing or anything like that, when i have decided to get rid of something i also want it *Gone*
post #6 of 34
Thread Starter 
We are also navy, and I am kicking myself for freecycling those boxes, we just moved 7 months ago!!! I will check out grocery stores and we are Costco members we can probalby take a few extra boxes there... Thanks for the replies so far. I really want to just get things out, but there is almost guilt involved with not trying to sell things and get something out of them. But I guess the real reward will be to just get rid of it, right? So it is nice to hear that other people just goodwill stuff also.
post #7 of 34
I try consigning clothes first then off to goodwill they go.
post #8 of 34
i yardsale yardsale yardsale! i usually go to one of those big fleamarket type places though where you just set your stuff up and they charge you for however many tables you use. so much easier than setting up at home, although there is the extra cost of lugging all the stuff up there (and its an hour away) but the return is so much better b/c everybody is there to buy. my car is full right now w/ stuff i haven't unpacked yet from last time and my garage is half full of stuff that didn't get packed up to go in the first place (or got unpacked from my moms car). its just perpetual for me. i'm happy enough to have it out of the house that the garage doesn't bother me so much. the idea of giving it away when i could sell it bothers me a lot though. (too poor to let the money go like that)
post #9 of 34
we vietnam vet goodwill, they come & pick it up... then I find myself thrifting at their place... so, hmm, seems like a positive cycle
post #10 of 34
I've freecycled large stuff that has nowhere to go, like firewood and old barbecue (which one guy got, surprisingly, because he is retired and enjoys fixing them up and donating them ). I've craigslisted good stuff but that just became annoying at all the haggling and the times they don't come by and dh convinced me that I am putting mine and dd's lives in jeopardy inviting strangers over. (he's overprotective, but I love him) Garage sales are annoying, I think, and with living in the rainy pacific northwest you cannot count on weather. I did them all the time growing up in california, however, and that was fine. You keep the front door and garage door closed to keep lookieloos out. Then, take leftovers to St. Vincent DePaul's or some such organization. I've also donated old baby stuff to a homeless shelter for moms with kids. And, I've taken good old children's clothes to a resale shop that buys them outright. I don't get as much as a garage sale but it is much, much easier.
post #11 of 34
I've been Freecycling. I don't give things away one at a time, but pile them into giant lots. Recently, it's been homeschool-y stuff (mostly books). We have seven bookcases worth of kids' books (one large, six small), and I'm thinning them out. I gave away two boxes the other day (along with some assorted toys, games, puzzles and dress-up items), and I'm about to Freecycle a third.

Giving away things one at a time or breaking up a lot between different people is just too much of a hassle for me, but giving away a boxful of stuff all at once is great! I don't even have to cart it to the donation center! And, I like knowing that these things I've held onto for so long are going to someone who will use them.

For me, it's all about simplicity. I'm lazy!
post #12 of 34
Originally Posted by VnJW View Post
I really want to just get things out, but there is almost guilt involved with not trying to sell things and get something out of them. But I guess the real reward will be to just get rid of it, right?
It used to bother me too -- the guilt, I mean. It requires a change in perspective. I came to realize that whatever it was that I wanted to declutter was causing me negative feelings ... guilt, frustration, etc. By donating it to Goodwill or some other charity, or giving it directly to someone who needs it, you are blessing that person's life as well as your own. Now, I can honestly say that I don't feel one bit guilty about the items I give away -- even the really nice stuff that I could have sold.

I do have a funny story about donating to Goodwill, though. When we moved back home last summer, I went through all my clothes and donated a TON of stuff. The remaining stuff went into our storage unit or into the tiny closet. Months later, I was at Goodwill looking for toddler clothes and decided to look through the women's clothes too. I picked up a skirt and said, hmmm, this looks familiar ... I checked the label/size, and yep. It was the skirt to my one good black suit -- the skirt that I'd been missing for months and had assumed was in storage. So, I of course had to buy it back. :
post #13 of 34
Freecycle, been there, done that...it seems more like a hassle to me. People always promise to come and never show, or they email and I never hear back, so go on to the next and never hear back, so it's just easier for us to take it to salvation army. They take anything. They even took an litter box we never used...even though the guy said they aren't supposed too.
I just put everything in bags that we have saved from grocery stores etc. Once they are all gone, then we are going to start bringing our own bags etc to cut down on waste...
post #14 of 34
I mostly give to Goodwill, but some things in our old area they wouldn't take. I tried Freecycling for a while, but it was a real hassle with no-shows. I had much better luck listing it on Craigslist for a really low price or for free.

Also, for kids stuff, you should look at resale shops (where they buy it from you and resale it, not consignment), because they can give you an estimate very fast and pay you. Not as much as you would get through eBay or Craigslist (or a garage sale), but at least something.
post #15 of 34
I have a laundry basket just for taking stuff to Goodwill. I just ask them to give the basket back after they've emptied it. I generally take things to Goodwill when the basket's full, but when I'm on a decluttering kick, then I'll use the other laundry baskets and just space decluttering around needing the baskets for laundry.
post #16 of 34
Personally, I think Freecycle is the greatest idea since fire. I do the individual pick ups, and yes, it is occasionally annoying when folks don't show and my front porch begins to look like a flea market. But the idea of my crap becoming someone else's treasure and the landfill going untouched is just too appealing.

I think the better way to go is to post a first-come-first-Freecycled offer like a local girl did here recently. She made a list of the items and said they will be on the porch between the hours of 7 and noon the next day. The threat of everyone else getting the good stuff must have motivated the eager treasure hunters, because by the time I got there at 8:30, there was not one shred left. She was able to post her ALL TAKEN notice by about two hours after the frenzy started. I'm sure a few Freecyclers left disappointed, like me, but she met her goal and at least somebody left with a bunch of treats.
post #17 of 34
Okay, here's another idea I'm about to try. I think it will be great, but I can't say yet. I'll let you know after it happens. A Swap Meet.

I've invited a bunch of friends to dig through their closets and weed out whatever doesn't fit, doesn't flatter, or for whatever reason, doesn't earn it's real estate anymore. In a few weeks, we'll all drop it off at one friend's house where it will be organized. Then, the next afternoon, we'll gather for lunch, drinks, and free shopping! What has been religated to the dark recesses of Stephanie's closet will become a new favorite in Karen's. Whatever doesn't find a home will be donated to Dorcas House, a shelter for battered women and their children.

Doesn't that sound genius?
post #18 of 34
We have done so much decluttering in the past year. We went in stages. The first one, we focused on all of the large and big ticket items (i.e. stereo equipement, expensive coffee grinder, etc.). We eBayed or Craigslisted that stuff and made over $1000 in a month. After that we had 3 garage sales (over a year) and made probably another $1000 total (although I'm done having them now forever!).

We took 3 trailerloads of stuff to Goodwill, and Freecycled a few things. Now that we are down to nothing extra, I just Freecycle or Goodwill everything with the exception of a few things I know are valuable. If I can get more than $25 for something, I will usually try to sell it.

Not sure if it's been said or not...but garbage bags work well to transport to Goodwill. You could also take clothes to consignment stores and make money, althought that usually requires you to wash, iron, and hang them all on hangers. At least they require that at mine.

Bottom line, if you want it gone FAST, pack it all up and bring it Goodwill or another thrift store and don't look back.

Just a note about Goodwill. In my experience, they are not always HAPPY with your generous, large donation, and will let you know it. And they won't always take things. It has to be in good condition. We were turned down for several little things (toaster oven not clean enough, mark on top of ironing board, etc). Every location is different though. I prefer to take my stuff to a local, charity-run thrift store.

Good luck
post #19 of 34
Ugh, if I had Goodwill telling me they wouldn't take an ironing board because of a mark, I'd never go there. Fortunately the one in my town takes just about everything except stuffed animals.
post #20 of 34
I donate to the salvation army generally, they have a local drop off really close to our home. I have never done freecycle, mainly as I've always had stuff I felt should first go to a charity. A long while back I was on the list, and the person who was in charge of our local group always stressed that the stuff should always be given to charities first, and freecycle should only be used for stuff that charities won't take.

Some of the stuff I also offered to my sister, and I did ebay a few items. I don't bother ebaying for anything that I'll get less than $15 for...and I prefer to sell in "lots" if I do.
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