Author Topic: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)  (Read 6618 times)

FIREin2018

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https://www.becomingminimalist.com/it-is-better-to-donate-than-resell

If you do not need the money, the article says give your things away instead.
Reselling your clutter adds time and energy, anxiety and frustration.
I agree and i used to donate.
Then 2 things happened:

1) I used to be part of a local neighborhood FreeCycle yahoo group.
You list things you dont want and people respond if they want it. Then you msg them item location. (ie: curb on XYZ street)

I found a new unopened electronic item in my closet. I had no use of it anymore.
I listed it on Freecycle and i got 3 msgs almost the same from 3 different people:
- Would love <item> in my house.
- Your <item> would look great in my home.
- I could really use that <item> at my place.

All 3 mentioned using it at where they live, which i found odd.
None of my previous listings had that type of response.
it was more generic responses like "I would like that, if still available."
As if all 3 were putting an emphasis on the item not being re-sold.
Which made me think all 3 were re-sellers and were going to re-sell the item.

2) I then shifted to giving stuff away at my local Goodwill.
Till they were caught throwing away big items (furniture, cabinets, chairs, etc) at the community dumpster.
Why go through the trouble of bringing them items when i can save the trouble and throw it in trash in front of my house?
 (My items are small and are mostly clothing.)

So that's why i just throw old items away instead of donating.
How about you?
« Last Edit: November 07, 2023, 01:35:37 AM by FIREin2018 »

davisgang90

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #1 on: November 07, 2023, 01:44:32 AM »
My disabled son works at Goodwill. It gives him employment and a sense of dignity.

Many items people donate cannot be used (you'd be amazed at what some people bring) but it provides an important service to the community.

Siebrie

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #2 on: November 07, 2023, 02:13:00 AM »
I tend to just donate if the item has any life left. The local container park has a sea container for donations where you can just drop off reusable stuff. Once a week the local secondhand shop goes through it and takes whatever they think they can sell in their shop.
Works for me! I don't have time or energy to list items and then get pittance in return.
On the other hand: husband works in IT for a bank and was given permission to clear out the 'defect' IT items from their basement. The house is now full with about 70 laptops, 80 screens, keyboards, mice, printers, .... He is checking them all, and fixing and selling them. A set of screen-mouse-keyboard sells for €80; he's sold 5 sets so far.

Freedomin5

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #3 on: November 07, 2023, 03:38:58 AM »
I sell or give away larger items if possible since I have to pay to have things taken away. I “throw away” things that can’t be sold if they’re too old but still in decent condition. By “throw away”, I mean I place them neatly in an open bag and place it by the dump in our apartment complex. The ayis or security guards or other workers always take the bag before I’ve made it back to my apartment.

MarcherLady

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #4 on: November 07, 2023, 04:55:58 AM »
So you are saying that in your view all your unwanted items going to landfill is better than some of it going to landfill and some of it benefiting other people? OK.

In the case of resellers, I figure if someone wants to put in the effort to resell something I no longer value then good luck to them, they clearly need the money more than I do. 

In the case of goodwill, how much effort is it really to drop something off next time I pass the donation point?

It makes me feel good to think I have extended the working life of that item or benefited someone else at very little effort to myself.

Ron Scott

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #5 on: November 07, 2023, 05:03:28 AM »
I will sell/consign, donate, or discard depending on the value the item has to others and whether I have easy access to the market. Charitable organizations are getting pickier these days, making the decision easier.

My wife tells me I can be a bit of a hoarder. But she’s the one, not me, I swear.

BeanCounter

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #6 on: November 07, 2023, 05:04:41 AM »
I mostly give to Goodwill. Kids clothes I send to our local foster care closet or our local needy family free store. Same with some of our nicer adult clothing.
I have recently sold some furniture at a local consignment store. It doesn’t bring much money but it requires zero effort on my part and what doesn’t sell there they will donate anyway.
It pains me to let go of really nice things that I have inherited but if I can’t use them it doesn’t make sense for it to clutter up my basement. I’m sure I could get more for it if I sold on FB or something but it’s just too much trouble.

GilesMM

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #7 on: November 07, 2023, 05:05:15 AM »
I am happy to sell if there is clear value or offer for free online.  If not, I try to donate to the right place.


Last week I had some nearly brand new integrated LED ceiling dome lights.  I couldn't sell online for even $5, so I took to Habitat for Humanity Re-Store. They laughed at me and explained they had too many dome lights.  I looked in the store and they were selling horrible corroded old 90s dome lights with bulbs. So, I put them on FB MP for free and a lady contacted me, hysterical for them. I delivered them to her trailer court and she was thrilled.

BeanCounter

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #8 on: November 07, 2023, 05:09:49 AM »
When I drop off at Goodwill the sheer amount of stuff that gets dropped off there on a day basis is just mind blowing. Much of it looks like it should have actually been put in the landfill which makes my heart hurt for our environment. We all need to stop buying stuff!!

JupiterGreen

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #9 on: November 07, 2023, 05:40:08 AM »
So you are saying that in your view all your unwanted items going to landfill is better than some of it going to landfill and some of it benefiting other people? OK.

In the case of resellers, I figure if someone wants to put in the effort to resell something I no longer value then good luck to them, they clearly need the money more than I do. 

In the case of goodwill, how much effort is it really to drop something off next time I pass the donation point?

It makes me feel good to think I have extended the working life of that item or benefited someone else at very little effort to myself.

This is my take as well. It is utter madness to me that you'd rather add to the landfill rather than allow someone to re-sell. I always consider donate or sell first and almost never throw away. Clothes turn into rags, anything with metal can be scrapped, heck I put a 10 yo inexpensive mattress on next door and was surprised at how many people wanted it (made me realize the extent of the need in this town). The last thing the landfills need is more trash, I encourage you to reconsider this mindset.

Ron Scott

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #10 on: November 07, 2023, 05:47:51 AM »
We all need to stop buying stuff!!

Buying isn’t a sin. Let’s be picky here.

We should first stop overbuying clothes/fashion items. They’re the worst.

Then minimize purchasing of electronics/devices/countertop-robbing-kitchen-appliances.

By all means, buy good quality furniture. But don’t buy trendy stuff or crap you know won’t last as long as a car.(A buddy’s father just reupholstered an Eames Chair he bought in the ‘60s.)

One car per adult for non-city dwellers. Maintain the car well and keep it for very high miles or a decade.

Finally, no need for ATF: alcohol, tobacco, and firearms.
« Last Edit: November 07, 2023, 05:49:28 AM by Ron Scott »

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #11 on: November 07, 2023, 06:14:08 AM »
I make a point of being deliberate and thoughtful in what I purchase, such that I only purchase items that I will use for a long time and that are in line with my values and priorities.  I really don't buy much.  By the time I am finished using items, they are too worn out to be of any use to anyone else.  I tend to either throw things away or downcycle (i.e. cutting up a piece of clothing that has holes and using the still good parts for craft projects.)  My standards about how long something can be used are longer than almost anyone else's.  No one wants my old shoes because they have holes in the soles.  No one wants my old towels because they are threadbare.

There are exceptions to this.  When my daughter was young, she would outgrow her clothes before wearing them out, as children do, but I knew other families with girls a little younger who I could pass items along to.  Sometimes people give me gifts.  Gifts are almost always junk that I don't want.  If possible, I will try to return the items to the stores or to the giver, but that is usually not possible (the giver refuses to take the item back and refuses to tell me where the item was purchased because "you neeeed this and you need to keep it.")  In those cases, I take the brand new items to a thrift store.  At least now, this is not a big deal.  Back before I had a car and the nearest thrift store was several miles away, getting items to thrift stores was a big hassle.  If I couldn't get someone with a car to take the items to a thrift store, I would place them outside with a free sign and hope that someone else could use them.  Usually, no one took anything that I put out.  People need to learn that shoving clutter onto people who have made it clear that they do not want clutter is not an act of kindness.

AMandM

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #12 on: November 07, 2023, 06:51:13 AM »
It's true that donating items is more work than discarding them, especially if they need to go to different places (Goodwill, ReStore, church clothing closet, Little Free Library, etc.). But in my mind this is on par with cooking being more work than eating takeout: it's work that I do as part of being more financially responsible.

Selling things is more work than donating them, and usually the extra work is not worth the small amount of money to me. We have received many things for free over the years; I am grateful that we are now in a position to give things to others.  If they will benefit by selling my things, more power to them!

sonofsven

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #13 on: November 07, 2023, 07:03:06 AM »
I sell, then donate. Disposal costs money.

NotJen

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #14 on: November 07, 2023, 07:20:58 AM »
Wow.  I was hoping for some new kind of insight, but regret reading the hatefulness in the OP.

Who cares if someone resells an item you donate?

When I was downsizing, I did it all - I tried to sell what I could, which was frustrating at times, but overall worth it to me.  I donated the items that didn't sell.  I recycled some items.  I trashed items that were broken/had no useful life left in my opinion - but most were actually picked up off the curb before they made it to the landfill.  I was pretty happy with how I got rid of things, knowing a lot of my stuff went to people who wanted to use it.

(My items are small and are mostly clothing.)

If you don't want to donate, maybe look into textile recycling in your area?

kanga1622

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #15 on: November 07, 2023, 07:42:07 AM »
I will often list items for free in our city "rummage sale" group in Facebook. If it doesn't get spoken for and picked up within a couple days it either gets trashed or donated. Honestly, I don't care if something I give away gets resold. If they have the time and desire to make an income from old stuff they collect, more power to them!

If I truly believe someone would buy it from a thrift store I will donate it. If it is an older electronic thing or not in great condition, it gets trashed. I don't have a way to transport big items so either someone on Facebook picks them up or they go out with the trash. I know that there are more donations than purchases at so many thrift stores and they don't need to spend their time sorting my trash.

Truly we try not to buy stuff that doesn't have a significant purpose in our home. But sometimes we just didn't realize that new item was going to be less useful than we expected.

Tass

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #16 on: November 07, 2023, 08:21:27 AM »
Sometimes I don't know what the local Goodwill-or-equivalent is able to use. If I donate something and they later throw it out, then I feel good that at least it was considered, rather than me throwing it out without even asking. If it turns out they can't use it, I respect their decision.

I sell stuff when the value is high enough to justify the work to find buyers. Reselling wedding decor is easy, so anything over about $20 is worth it. OTOH, I've given away multiple couches for free in appreciation of whoever is willing to come pick up the thing. (Typically I also got the couch for free. I was a grad student living among undergrads for a long time, so free couches were in high supply.)

Sibley

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #17 on: November 07, 2023, 08:26:42 AM »
I will sell bigger stuff. I donate a lot. I also trash stuff.

OP, if you have a thing, you don't want the thing, why do you care if someone's going to resell it? If you want the money, then go ahead and try to sell it. If you don't care about the money but just need to get the thing out of the house, then donate or toss it. Leave the moralizing out.

ChickenStash

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #18 on: November 07, 2023, 08:52:46 AM »
For me to bother selling something, the value would have to be pretty high and that doesn't happen often. For bigger stuff I just put it out on my driveway apron with a "free" sign and it's usually gone in a day (my record is 20 minutes for an old gas grill). I suspect a lot of it gets resold or scrapped. There's a metal recycler a few blocks from here but it's not worth it to go with a small amount so if someone else can make a buck adding it to an existing load, more power to 'em. And, if someone thinks they can make a buck selling my old junk then have at it.

Clothes or assorted textiles go to Goodwill, usually. They are close and convenient. They also take old electronics and recycle what they can't sell so I prefer giving old computers and whatnot to them over normal trash or hoping to catch the rare recycling day held by the city.


TimCFJ40

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #19 on: November 07, 2023, 08:59:09 AM »
Generally, I'll sell things with a value of over $100.
Next tier, I'll give to friends if they need the item.  We have a few friends with kids younger than ours, so toys, bicycles, kids clothes, etc get offered to friends if they want them.
After that, we have an amazing local thrift shop where we donate the rest.  The proceeds go to our local social services organization, so we're also helping our neighbors. 
We also purchase much of what we need there also so the circle continues.  Are there resellers there?  Yes.  Does the social services organization get paid regardless of what happens to the item?  Also yes.  Everyone wins. 
For bulky or unusual items that the thrift shop won't take, I post on a local freebies Facebook page, first come first served. 
Finally, it's off to the recycling center or the dump with the rest. 

I could sell a lot of the stuff worth under $100, but the hassle isn't worth it for me, and honestly seeing a valuable item get used by friends or going to help others is worthwhile also.   

Flora

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #20 on: November 07, 2023, 10:56:24 AM »
I am the moderator of my neighborhood Buy Nothing group. Most of my items are given away through there, or if there are no takers then I drop them off at appropriate donation centers (appropriate depends on the item -- old blankets to the humane society, good condition household items to Goodwill, that sort of thing).

Why are you upset that someone decides to resell something you were going to throw away? We have a rule in our Buy Nothing community that it is fine to resell an item, but we ask that they are honest if that is their intent. Maybe no one needs my old jacket, but they could use the $25 from reselling it. All this means is that my old jacket benefits two people instead of only one -- the new jacket owner and the reseller. Three if you count me being able to declutter it.

parkerk

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #21 on: November 07, 2023, 12:54:42 PM »
I donate or give away, whichever's most convenient. Regardless of what happens to it once it's out of my hands at least then I'm giving it a non-zero chance at a second life instead of the guaranteed trip to a landfill if I throw it away. Plus we have limited garbage can space for pickup so throwing it away usually necessitates a special trip to the dump or recycling center anyways, and taking it for donation is just as easy/resource-intensive.

Cranky

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #22 on: November 07, 2023, 01:34:09 PM »
I am all about Buy Nothing. It can occasionally be a little annoying to arrange pickup but y’know, life can be annoying.

I don’t know that I actually own anything that could be sold for $100, so not going to worry about that. I mostly buy secondhand stuff anyway.

There is a LOT of stuff already in this world. If someone wants to make a living reselling, that is great IMO.

snic

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #23 on: November 07, 2023, 01:41:59 PM »
The advantage of Buy Nothing and similar (e.g., Craigslist "free stuff" section) is that the "buyer" comes to you to take it off your hands.

The advantage of Goodwill is that they provide a great service to the community and they employ people who need this sort of work to sort the stuff.

Generally, if I have one or a few items, I post them on Craigslist for free. If I have a whole bunch of stuff (e.g., cleaning out my elderly mother's apartment before she moved), I take it to Goodwill. In that particularly example, we took a LOT of stuff to Goodwill, but also we had a different charity shop come by with a truck to haul away the furniture she wasn't taking with her. The shop uses the proceeds for a good cause. And my mom got a small tax writeoff.

I don't care *at all* if someone takes something I gave away and turns around and sells it. More power to them! I also don't get upset if I donate something to Goodwill, someone buys it for $0.50, and sells it on Ebay for $50. Great! Everyone benefits.

Dicey

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #24 on: November 07, 2023, 01:43:32 PM »
I work at a thrift shop. It takes time, a ton of effort and money to keep the doors open. Some people give us utter crap and we have a two-step process. If it has some value, but not for us, we have a third party who removes our discards weekly. This includes items we had on the floor for at least 30 days but didn't sell, even at half off. Things that are absolute junk, or that we know from long experience won't sell anywhere go into the dumpster. Yeah, that lovely wooden bookcase that someone spilled green paint on? Not going into our store.

And yes, there are several of us who peruse the dumpsters regularly to make sure "good stuff" doesn't get tossed.

So don't be so harsh in judging Goodwill. They're not a dump site, but people treat them as such.

There is virtually no excuse for throwing away things that are still usable. It's a crime against our planet, IMO. Sift out the crap, and give the rest away. It's worth the effort.
« Last Edit: November 07, 2023, 04:15:37 PM by Dicey »

lhamo

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #25 on: November 07, 2023, 02:11:34 PM »
I use Buy Nothing for most things, and Goodwill or another local thrift shop that benefits an animal rescue for others.  There are clearly some people in our local Buy Nothing group who are major resellers, but I don't fault them for that.  I do make a mental note of who seems to ask for anything/everything without giving much back themselves, and avoid gifting them things that other people are interested in.  Using the "simmer" approach when you don't need to get rid of things urgently is a good way to make sure your giving benefits a broader range of people. 

Here in the greater Seattle area Goodwill has a few sites that consolidate the stuff that hasn't sold in the regular stores after a certain time period.  Stuff there is available at per-pound pricing.  I went a few times when we had just returned from overseas to get mostly household goods like plastic bins, storage trays, and what not.  The clothing bins are overwhelming to me, but DD and her friends got some good stuff one time they went.  I'm not sure what happens to stuff that doesn't sell in those last offer sites -- hopefully it doesn't go to the landfill.  But if it does at least they have made a good effort to provide it to people who need it at affordable prices.   There are people who just pick through those stores to make a living. 

FIRE Artist

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #26 on: November 07, 2023, 04:26:58 PM »
Single female here, so your mileage may vary.  I do a mixture of things selecting what is best for me.  Usually it looks like offering up large things like furniture on buy nothing, only accepting wants from people who will pick up.  I try to get the things moved to my garage for collection from there,  getting rid of furniture is usually a very considered thing done once per decade, and done in conjunction with hiring movers to shift furniture around my house anyway so moving stuff to the garage works.

Medium size, useful stuff, goes to my curb and it magically disappears.

Small things go to goodwill.

I never bother trying to sell anything anymore.  It isn’t worth the time or security risk imo.   Neither is putting small stuff up on buy nothing.

I am also honest about what is garbage and just throw that stuff away. I make a run to the eco-Center every couple of years at the pace I use special (batteries, electronics, chemicals etc) stuff up.

I find it helpful to thing of stuff as garbage right from the point of purchase.

Little Nell

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #27 on: November 07, 2023, 04:56:16 PM »
I compost worn clothes that are 100% wool or cotton.

Cranky

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #28 on: November 07, 2023, 04:57:40 PM »
I use Buy Nothing for most things, and Goodwill or another local thrift shop that benefits an animal rescue for others.  There are clearly some people in our local Buy Nothing group who are major resellers, but I don't fault them for that.  I do make a mental note of who seems to ask for anything/everything without giving much back themselves, and avoid gifting them things that other people are interested in.  Using the "simmer" approach when you don't need to get rid of things urgently is a good way to make sure your giving benefits a broader range of people. 

Here in the greater Seattle area Goodwill has a few sites that consolidate the stuff that hasn't sold in the regular stores after a certain time period.  Stuff there is available at per-pound pricing.  I went a few times when we had just returned from overseas to get mostly household goods like plastic bins, storage trays, and what not.  The clothing bins are overwhelming to me, but DD and her friends got some good stuff one time they went.  I'm not sure what happens to stuff that doesn't sell in those last offer sites -- hopefully it doesn't go to the landfill.  But if it does at least they have made a good effort to provide it to people who need it at affordable prices.   There are people who just pick through those stores to make a living.

It’s my understanding that after the bin store, hard goods are trashed and clothing is bulk sold to overseas vendors. I see a lot of people at the bins who are clearly resellers, and I’ve read that 60% of Goodwills sales now are to resellers, which is one reason they’ve raised their prices.

But boy, going to the bin store is eyeopening. So. Much. Stuff.

Villanelle

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #29 on: November 07, 2023, 05:21:34 PM »
So because you are afraid a donate place will throw things out, you just throw them out?  I don't see the sense in that.  They *might* throw it out, in which case nothing is worse than if you'd donated it, but they also might sell it, in which case it gets a second life.  At least if you donate, there's a chance it may not end up in the trash.

I tend to give most things away on Buy Nothing. My group, and a couple spin-off groups, are very active and have a strong community feel.  If I have a lot of stuff at one time, it depends.  I've donated to Goodwill, or I've waited and brought it to an unsale, run through my local Buy Nothig group.  Imagine a large yard sale, but everything is free.  People can drop off stuff to be (un)sold.  At the end, I think the person hosting the sale donates anything that isn't taken. 

Josiecat22222

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #30 on: November 08, 2023, 07:38:31 AM »
my buy nothing group has quarterly "Junk in the Trunk" events.  There is a meetup at a local school parking lot, everyone puts all their stuff out (either in their trunk or on a blanket) and people just take what they want.  All leftovers are taken to goodwill.  It works great.

simonsez

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #31 on: November 08, 2023, 07:40:49 AM »
OP, if the idea of a stranger benefiting in some way from your charity is such a violation that cannot be tolerated - do you at least have any family or friends or acquaintances in one of your social circles that could benefit?  You seem to be getting rid of some stuff that still has at least a modicum of value (otherwise people wouldn't be willing to acquire it) so it's not all junk.

Any children that could benefit from clothing, a college-bound teen or 20 something who could use some furniture you're throwing out, a DIYer you know that is excellent at mending things beyond your skill level?  You don't know any poor people at church or relative of a person on your softball team that just lost everything in a fire or any person you interact with that could have a use for something you're parting with?

parkerk

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #32 on: November 08, 2023, 10:08:37 AM »
my buy nothing group has quarterly "Junk in the Trunk" events.  There is a meetup at a local school parking lot, everyone puts all their stuff out (either in their trunk or on a blanket) and people just take what they want.  All leftovers are taken to goodwill.  It works great.

I LOVE this! Going to suggest it to my BNG come springtime.

jrhampt

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #33 on: November 08, 2023, 10:47:08 AM »
My local dump/transfer station has something for almost every possible situation.  If the old stuff isn't usable, it goes in the appropriate trash or recycling section.  If it's clothing/shoes, it goes in the donation bins for those (or to a relative who wants it).  If it's random household stuff that I can transport in my car and someone might want, there's a donation shed for that.  If it's something large like furniture or older working appliances that I don't feel like trying to sell (or have tried and failed to sell), habitat for humanity will schedule a pickup for $15 and someone else gets to use it.  If it's an older car that's still in decent shape and has a few more years left, I will often donate it to a relative who needs it.  95% of stuff is easiest to donate using the above venues (or when appropriate at end of life, throw out), but on very rare occasions it's worth a little effort to sell and I will advertise on NextDoor or craigslist or FB MarketPlace.

roomtempmayo

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #34 on: November 08, 2023, 11:13:44 AM »
One thing we've been trying to do more consciously as we get kid stuff is to mentally budget time and energy for its responsible disposal when our child no longer needs/wants it.

Turns out that most of the new-cheap options have a huge disposal cost.  What do you actually do with the bulk pack of the cheapest onesies once your kid outgrows them?  Or the endless cheap plastic toys from Walmart?  Nobody wants that stuff, or it's at least going to take a bunch of work to find someone who will take it.  It was garbage at the moment of purchase, and the question is just how long we're going to use it before it ends up in the trash.

Shortly after our daughter was born, we bought a bassinet from a used baby gear store.  It was $60.  We no longer use it, and it had been sitting in our porch taking up space for months.  Tried hauling it to Goodwill - no dice.  Then tried taking it back to the same used baby gear store we bought it from - nope.  Finally listed it on the local Buy Nothing group, and ended up hauling it across town to someone without a car.  So that $60 purchase cost us hundreds of dollars of our time trying to dispose of it.  It was not cheap at all once we internalized the responsible disposal costs ourselves.  This is a particular version of the Ikea furniture problem: cheap upfront costs, but a huge pain to pass on.

Last week we needed to get our daughter a new winter coat for a very cold climate.  There were no hand-me-downs in the pipeline.  The choice came down to paying $$ for a good, usable one without a particularly noticeable name brand, or $$$$ for a Patagonia.  We bought the Patagonia.  We didn't buy it because we're stupid spendthrift hipster parents, although we might be mistaken for it.  We bought it because we know she'll only wear it for a year, and it will disappear with minimal friction and be reworn when she's done with it.  Patagonia runs its own used clothing shop now, eBay has a very active market, and friends are always happy to have it.  It's worth the money in large part because it's easy to make it go away in a responsible manner and it's extremely likely to stay in circulation instead of getting landfilled.

Once you start thinking about purchases as having both a cost at purchase and a time/annoyance/angst cost in finding them a new home, the option that's more expensive on the front end can be the better deal once you consider the full lifecycle costs.
« Last Edit: November 08, 2023, 11:18:41 AM by roomtempmayo »

iris lily

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #35 on: November 08, 2023, 11:14:20 AM »
This is a great Mustachian topic because it touches on values around “stuff”, money, our valuable time on earth, and our sense of community, so it’s not surprising that not all of us will be in lockstep.

Here is what we do because we are old and retired AND we have a truck.  I make different choices now than when I was working and had far less time to goof around with “stuff. “

Because I shop at the thrift stores I try not to give them complete junk. I also trust them to weed out what they don’t want because they have to keep their stores clean and organized. . I wish people would stop giving them clothes with stains because those end up on the racks and I, while a casual dresser, refuse to buy clothes that are already stained because they become stained pretty fast in my world.

I like  what the poster above said about trying to donate to the right place. I’m not gonna take our set of furniture to any of the Goodwill stores I frequent because they simply don’t have floor space. In some  months I will drop off two big chairs plus a rug plus a matching screen at the St. Vincent de Paul store  because they specialize in furniture, they devote lots of floor space to furniture.

I bought a mirror for our bathroom that I now hate and so I think I will take that to Habitat for humanity. However, I’ve recently found a way to get rid of stuff that’s surprising, and that is…

… The local auction that happens in our village once a month. It is astonishing what people buy there. I sat through one of these auctions, and I was depressed about the amount of ugly dirty stuff in the sale that sold. WHO ARE THESE PEOPLE BUYING??!!!

  And then my husband got the brilliant idea to start sending them our ugly dirty stuff. Here’s an example: there was a bench he pulled out of the alley several years ago, a discarded wooden bench with a metal frame, it was weathered and beaten up. I hated it from the moment he brought it in. But we had it on our patio for a couple of years. Then it moved to our new place. And then I told him that this HAS TO GO!!!it’s put it out for the garbageman on bulk  pick up day.

Instead, he took it to the auction and some fool paid $15 for it. Unbeliveable.

When we moved, I sold a few things via Facebook Marketplace, the bigger items, but I donated scads of stuff to our Park Conservancy’s spring sale. Only here’s the key: I priced the stuff myself because the people who run this sale always price things too high. I priced my donations  to GET RID OF THEM. And that strategy was successful.
« Last Edit: November 08, 2023, 11:26:41 AM by iris lily »

AMandM

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #36 on: November 08, 2023, 11:46:03 AM »
my buy nothing group has quarterly "Junk in the Trunk" events.  There is a meetup at a local school parking lot, everyone puts all their stuff out (either in their trunk or on a blanket) and people just take what they want.  All leftovers are taken to goodwill.  It works great.

I LOVE this! Going to suggest it to my BNG come springtime.

My neighbourhood listserv has similar events on a random basis, when some group of friends has gotten together to do a decluttering challenge. Someone's kids might also set up a lemonade or cookie stand.

neo von retorch

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #37 on: November 08, 2023, 12:03:01 PM »
Sell
Anything valuable and not too difficult to move, we sell. Even down to $10-15 books, electronics/accessories, etc. If it's large but can be loaded, we sell it via Facebook Marketplace. If it can be shipped for under ~$15, we sell it on eBay and charge ~$10 shipping. We under price most things just a pinch to make it move quickly. We've sold a car, a garden tractor, a motorcycle, a whole couch/sofa/ottoman set, an exercise bike, a bench/squat rack. We've sold dozens of board games - those we meet people somewhere nearby for. We sold some DVDs/Blu-rays, but in general their value is approaching $0 unless it's a "collector's item" movie or TV show.

Donate
We donate clothes we don't wear any more but that are in good condition. We donate some books.

Give Away
Large, common items with low value - we will list on Facebook Marketplace for free. We gave a way some small tables, chairs, a mostly functional dehumidifier, a desk. We gave an office chair to family, and a large shelf unit to a neighbor (and helped them move it!)

Trash
If it's in poor condition and past its useful life, or cannot be donated or given away, or we tried to give it away, we will put it in the trash. Not a lot of items fit into this category. We took down a foyer chandelier and tried to give it away, but no one wanted it. After a couple weeks, we gave up.

Cranky

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #38 on: November 08, 2023, 01:20:27 PM »
In our old neighborhood pretty much anything with metal content would be picked up by scrappers. They went around the day before trash pickup and snapped up the junk!

Here, not so much. I dunno if it’s just a more affluent area? Nobody picks up discarded aluminum cans either.

FIREin2018

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #39 on: November 08, 2023, 06:55:36 PM »
I mostly give to Goodwill. Kids clothes I send to our local foster care closet or our local needy family free store. Same with some of our nicer adult clothing.
I have recently sold some furniture at a local consignment store. It doesn’t bring much money but it requires zero effort on my part and what doesn’t sell there they will donate anyway.
It pains me to let go of really nice things that I have inherited but if I can’t use them it doesn’t make sense for it to clutter up my basement. I’m sure I could get more for it if I sold on FB or something but it’s just too much trouble.
consignment store? have to research that for my area.
thx

FIREin2018

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #40 on: November 08, 2023, 07:08:29 PM »
Sometimes I don't know what the local Goodwill-or-equivalent is able to use. If I donate something and they later throw it out, then I feel good that at least it was considered, rather than me throwing it out without even asking. If it turns out they can't use it, I respect their decision.
hm.. interesting way of looking at it.
I definitely don't know if my old stuff is of any use but Goodwill should be more knowledgeable.
if they think it's junk and throw it out, then at least i tried.

Thx

FIREin2018

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #41 on: November 08, 2023, 07:14:28 PM »
Why are you upset that someone decides to resell something you were going to throw away?
We have a rule in our Buy Nothing community that it is fine to resell an item, but we ask that they are honest if that is their intent.
That's the point.
If they said they're going to resell it, and there's no other takers, then i would give it to them instead of putting it in the trash.

Just joined my local Buy Nothing facebook group. thx
« Last Edit: November 08, 2023, 07:16:42 PM by FIREin2018 »

Sibley

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #42 on: November 09, 2023, 08:12:28 AM »
Why are you upset that someone decides to resell something you were going to throw away?
We have a rule in our Buy Nothing community that it is fine to resell an item, but we ask that they are honest if that is their intent.
That's the point.
If they said they're going to resell it, and there's no other takers, then i would give it to them instead of putting it in the trash.

Just joined my local Buy Nothing facebook group. thx

Why do you care? Really, WHY? If you're trying to get rid of a pot, someone is willing to take that pot and you are ok with the terms, that's all you need. If they're going to pay you $5 for the pot and you are ok with the $5, then why do you care that they could resell it for $10? Either sell it for $10 or let it go. Once you have parted with the pot, then you are DONE. They could do anything with it and it is no longer your concern.

Instead, you're trying to control what happens to objects that you no longer have any right to control. And potentially trashing stuff that could be legitimately used. WHY?!?

neo von retorch

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #43 on: November 09, 2023, 08:37:04 AM »
Why do you care? Really, WHY? If you're trying to get rid of a pot, someone is willing to take that pot and you are ok with the terms, that's all you need. If they're going to pay you $5 for the pot and you are ok with the $5, then why do you care that they could resell it for $10? Either sell it for $10 or let it go. Once you have parted with the pot, then you are DONE. They could do anything with it and it is no longer your concern.

Instead, you're trying to control what happens to objects that you no longer have any right to control. And potentially trashing stuff that could be legitimately used. WHY?!?

100% this. Basically whoever is willing to put the most effort into selling reaps the biggest margin.

Buy a trashed thing. Replace all the broken stuff. Clean it, polish it. Patiently sell it. Reap rewards.

Or... "anyone who wants to buy this for a cheap price (or free), gets it." Whatever they do after that matters 0% to the seller. The seller saved a thing from the dumpster like a good citizen, and doesn't have it taking up space (in their home or head) any longer. Everyone wins!

DeniseNJ

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #44 on: November 09, 2023, 08:55:43 AM »
I don't care if ppl resell or return or toss or do whatever after I give it away.  I don't want it so if someone else does, that's fine by me.

MaybeBabyMustache

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #45 on: November 09, 2023, 09:05:38 AM »
my buy nothing group has quarterly "Junk in the Trunk" events.  There is a meetup at a local school parking lot, everyone puts all their stuff out (either in their trunk or on a blanket) and people just take what they want.  All leftovers are taken to goodwill.  It works great.

I LOVE this! Going to suggest it to my BNG come springtime.

Same! Absolutely love this, and would save time on the posting/pickup coordination/etc!

simonsez

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #46 on: November 09, 2023, 10:43:53 AM »
Why are you upset that someone decides to resell something you were going to throw away?
We have a rule in our Buy Nothing community that it is fine to resell an item, but we ask that they are honest if that is their intent.
That's the point.
If they said they're going to resell it, and there's no other takers, then i would give it to them instead of putting it in the trash.

Just joined my local Buy Nothing facebook group. thx
So you're bothered by the fact that what one anonymous person said would look good in their house is now going to have a cash transaction occur (that does not involve you at all) with yet another anonymous person and your trash is going to look good in that person's house?

It's still ending up in an anonymous person's house! 

Dicey

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #47 on: November 09, 2023, 11:29:22 AM »
Just thought of another option or two: a local HS has an annual rummage sale. A local museum runs a huge "White Elephant" sale. If you have enough big stuff, they will even send a truck. Best of all, every time you donate, you get two free tickets to the event. I haven't done it since the pandemic, but it might be something to put on my radar again. Thanks for the nudge!

AMandM

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #48 on: November 09, 2023, 12:07:07 PM »
I think what bothers the OP is the recipient claiming to want it for their house when in fact they plan to resell it. It's the dishonesty that bothers the OP, not the reselling itself.

Sibley

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Re: Do you Sell, donate, or throw out old stuff? (I throw out and here's why)
« Reply #49 on: November 09, 2023, 12:37:00 PM »
I think what bothers the OP is the recipient claiming to want it for their house when in fact they plan to resell it. It's the dishonesty that bothers the OP, not the reselling itself.

Except that OP doesn't know that the person will resell it. They just think that. There is a difference. So if you're correct, what OP is really doing is presuming, on little to no evidence, that an individual is lying.

Boils down to either OP is controlling or OP thinks strangers are lying as a default. With either option, OP is not looking good.