Find out about 12 great alternatives to binning unwanted items away when you’re clearing out your storage units, home or garage.
Having a clearout is always a great idea. Whether you are making space in your London self storage unit, Spring cleaning your spare room, or reclaiming your Summer house space. Clutter is known to make us stressed, struggle more with feeling satisfied with life, have issues with concentration, struggle with allergies, feel isolated and lonely, or even more likely to suffer from slips and trips.
Any decluttering is good (check out this guide to decluttering for some expert tips), but if we are to be as kind as possible to the planet, it is a really good idea to try to avoid throwing items out as much as we possibly can. Tips are helpful and quick, but if you do have time to properly place the items you are getting rid of, the earth will thank you (and you might even make some cash too).
Before you start popping all your unwanted bits and bobs in bin bags, checkout these 12 alternatives to taking your unwanted items to the tip:
1. Bicycle Charities
If you are clearing out some old bicycles that you no longer use, there are charities who will greatly receive them to utilise in the work they do. Often they do up old bikes to give to kids, or they teach kids about mechanics and bicycle maintenance using donated bikes. Some schools and colleges also ask for bicycle donations for student work.
2. Weigh Out Your Clothes
You can make a little bit of money weighing out big bags of clothes you have bagged up. They should be in good condition and should not just be rags or stained items. They can then be weighed out and you are given the money for the clothes. It isn’t much, but if you can’t be bothered to sell items individually but you wouldn’t mind a bit of cash for your things, this is a great option. The shops who do this are usually very obvious and show what they do with their signage.
3. Crafty Businesses
Crafty businesses who make money doing things up will be more than happy to buy furniture, clothing and other items from you to make them up ready for sale. You will get less for them than selling them elsewhere, but for speed and ease, it can be good to sell items in this way whilst also getting a bit of cash for your trouble.
4. Broken Pots For The Garden
Do you have some broken pots? If you have some broken pots ready for the tip, think again. Those pots could be reused for the garden. Broken pieces of pot can be used to place at the bottom of a plant pot for drainage, in mosaic projects, as part of succulent displays, and even as bases for terrariums.
5. Recycling From Opened Bathroom Bits
Rather than chuck half empty bathroom shampoos and gels in the bin, empty them out and recycle the plastic so that nothing goes to waste.
6. Decanting From Opened Bathroom Bits
Have multiple half opened bottles of shampoo and gel? Decant them all into one bottle and recycle the rest – you probably have enough combined to fill a bottle up to the top.
7. Donating Unused Bathroom Bits
Do you have unopened bathroom bits? If you do, they could be donated to a charity to be donated to people in need of toiletries. Women’s domestic violence charities, for example, often need toiletries to give to women who have come to them for refuge with nothing but a small bag of belongings, if that.
8. Upcycling Clothes
Do you have a pair of dungarees with bleach stains on? A T-shirt with food stains on? Don’t throw them away! Get creative with fabric paint, tie dye and other colourful options that will give the item a new lease of life. You could then wear them again, or sell them on, saving them from landfill.
9. Donating Gardening Tools & Seeds
Lots of gardening projects in school and communities need seeds and gardening tools donated so they can do the good work they do. Even a small donation of gardening supplies can be endlessly helpful for these kinds of projects.
10. Donating To Open Libraries
Have a lot of old books to donate? Find a local open library where people can borrow books for free, and drop them back off again when they are finished. A great resource for families who may not have access to reading materials otherwise.
11. Giving Away Free Stuff Apps
There are lots of apps where you can list free items and arrange for people who want those items to then pick them up. This could be an out of date box of cereal, seedlings you don’t need, an unused piece of equipment – the list is endless. All the apps available work differently, so you’ll have to have a look and see which one suits you best, but all provide the opportunity to avoid throwing items away that can otherwise be utilised by somebody else. Alternatively, if you want to make a bit of cash, you can also utilise the many apps available to sell your unwanted things for cash.
12. Animal Sanctuary Donations
Animal sanctuaries will often happily take tools, blankets and other items to help them continue their good work. They also often appreciate old cages and animal runs, if you have them, which they can use for their intakes.
“There is no such thing as ‘away’. When we throw anything away it must go somewhere.” – Annie Leonard
If you think you need more space at home but you aren’t ready to do anything with your belongings yet, why not consider utilising London self storage? It is flexible, affordable and you can size up or down as you need to with ease. By storing your items there until you’re ready to donate, upcycle, giveaway and more, you can clear space at home whilst also keeping your things secure until the time comes for a full declutter. And when that time comes take a look at this Experts Guide to Decluttering from the smart storage people Storing.com