your household goods|
rid of other gear
Many of us grow tired or grow out of clothes that
still have plenty of wear in them. Instead of throwing them into the trash or
the rag pile, consider these options:
Throw a clothes-swap, or a used-clothing party. Bring
your castoffs and ask your friends to do the same. Everyone piles the clothes
together and then people pick the clothes they'd like. Anything left over can
be donated to charity.
Charities such as Goodwill and the Salvation
Army accept clothing donations. They also take other household goods, provided
they are still in working order. Items they gratefully take include air conditioners,
mattresses, coffee pots, blenders and stereos. As with computers, donated household
appliances must be in working order.
Nonprofits often sell
used goods including clothes, books and appliances to raise funds. Some even can
find a use for your goods. For example, a shelter for women of domestic violence
may need cell phones or work clothes for their patrons. Your best best is to call
local charities to ascertain their needs.
If you need cash,
consider selling your castoffs, particularly clothes. When selling clothes, keep
in mind the seasons. Shops are less interested in summer clothes in the fall.
They want winter clothes in good repair. Check your local Yellow Pages for stores
that sell used clothes.
Generally you'll either sell your
clothes outright for cash or stores will accept clothes on a consignment basis.
That is, they will sell your clothes for you. If the clothes sell, the store takes
a commission and you get a check. A general rule of thumb is you'll make more
on consignment, but that requires more work on your part. You'll need to check
back periodically with the store to see if your goods have sold and figure out
how to price your used khakis or other apparel. It's less of a hassle to sell
your clothes outright to a store, but it will pay you less than a consignment
The same rules hold true for selling used household
appliances. Those in good working order sell for more than items that are just
being sold for parts. Look in your local Yellow Pages for shops that buy used
furniture, appliances or other items. Keep in mind that newer items or antiques
sell better than just plain olditems.
Much of recycling is simply a matter of taking time to
rethink how things can be reused. For example, you can turn empty jars into containers
for leftover food. Or, use the jars as candleholders. Reuse boxes for wrapping
presents or to store items.
Books can be donated to charities
for book sales. Libraries often have used book stores to raise extra cash. You
can also sell used books that are in good condition to local used bookstores.
Magazines can be donated to gyms, doctor's offices, schools (for use in art projects)
and even libraries.
One person's junk is another's prized
possession. So instead of throwing away your obsolete items, do some good and
maybe even raise some cash, by donating or selling the stuff you no longer need.