If you’ve been following me at all for the past month you know I’ve been working on an organizational challenge to turn my junk pile basement into a homeschool classroom. Would you believe it…I FINISHED! Check out this amazing transformation.
Yes, this is only one picture out of many from the transformation. You can see more pictures and read some of my thoughts about the entire experience on my final post about the challenge. On this post here I want to take a look at what to do with all of the stuff I got rid of to make space for the classroom. One of the biggest lessons I learned through this whole challenge was learning to let go. Once I did that the only problem I had was finding enough boxes to pack up everything to move outta here.
I’ll be honest. At this point we haven’t moved everything out yet. No, it’s not in the basement, and it’s not going back there. It’s piled up in our garage waiting for a new home. Sigh.
Don’t worry, that’s not as bad as it seems. We’re going to be doing a garage sale, then donate the leftovers…it will all be gone in the next couple of months, so just a short amount of time left to live with this mess. At least it’s a sort of organized chaos.
I’m taking the easy road (not that a garage sale is easy…why call it a garage sale? I’m not selling my garage?). Not that pricing everything and running a sale is going to be easy, but it will be well worth the effort! I want to give you some other ideas of things you can do with things as you get your Spring Cleaning on. When I really started thinking about all of my options, I started to wonder why I didn’t get rid of this stuff sooner.
- Have a Garage/Yard sale.
- Donate gently used, good condition items to Goodwill.
- Donate gently used, good condition items to the Salvation Army.
- Donate to Homeless shelters. Need help finding a homeless shelter? Check the list on homelessshelterdirectory.org. Don’t forget to call them and ask about their donation policies before you drive stuff over to them, they may not be in need of it or may not be able to take it.
- Sell on Craigslist. This is a great way to sell items within your area, but if you do, please take safety precautions and always meet in a populated, neutral area rather then at anyone’s home.
- Donate to clothing bins. I don’t know about your area but we have bins set out all around our city with guidelines written on the side. Here is an example of one.
- Donate old eyeglasses. You can donate to organizations such as the Lions Club, or contact a local vision clinic and often they will take them off your hands as well.
- Post on Freecycle.org. This is a great site to both find things you may want and get rid of things you don’t.
- Recycle old cell phones. There are actually a lot of things you can do with your old cell phones. Donating them to Cell Phones for Soldiers, or if you’d like to see your cell phone refurbished for a good cause, how about sending it to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence. If you want your cell phone to go to someone in need, consider donating it to the 911 Cell Phone Bank, where law enforcement and victim services can get cell phones for people in need to call emergency services if they need to.
- Recycle old computers. You can take them to Best Buy or even contact www.forerunnerrecycling.com to get rid of your old computers.
- Sell on eBay. This might cost a little money for the listing fees, but if you have something worth a lot of money you want to sell, or maybe a collection you know is popular this could be a great option for you.
- Donate to animal shelters. I once donated an old futon mattress to a shelter to be used as a bed for the dogs.
- Sell on Facebook Buy/Sell/Trade Groups for your area. You can just do a search for your area with buy sell trade typed with it on the Facebook search. My advice for dealing with any of these is to sit back and watch the group you join for a bit. Is it active, does anything look shady? Get a good feel for it before you jump in, then like the Craigslist advice, keep safety in mind.
- Sell used books to book resellers. You can find resellers in your area if you have used bookstores such as Half Price Books or even local small businesses, or check online. You can use Cash 4 Books to sell online if you want, or even try selling them yourself on Amazon.com.
- Donate used books to the Library. This is easy. Just call your local library and ask what guidelines they have and if they are currently accepting donations. Even if they aren’t, they may have some other suggestions of local organizations who are accepting book donations.
- Donate used books to schools. Again this is an easy one, just call your local school and ask who you would need to talk to about book donations. Follow the guidelines they give you from there.
- Donate to Books for Soldiers. This is a great organization who takes requests from troops and helps you get a care package and books to those soldiers.
- Donate to Vietnam Veterans of America. This is a great site because you can go online to schedule a pick up, then they will come get your donation from your front door.
- Donate to Dress for Success. If you have some gently used business attire, this is a wonderful organization to help underprivileged women gain employment. The organization will train women with career development skills, provide them with attire for a job interview and offer a support system to help them get on their feet.
- Habitat for Humanity. If you’re cleaning out your garage you may find surplus building supplies, or tools, or even some furniture through the rest of the house. These are all great items to donate to your local Habitat for Humanity ReStore.
There are a lot of other places you can donate your used items, just do a quick search online for the specific item you are thinking about getting rid of. These are the ideas and locations I thought of off the top of my head.
What other ideas do you have for getting rid of the clutter you decide you don’t want anymore?