Sometimes you don’t need a dumpster: part one

I just found a vendor who will buy my superfluous cell phone-service extender.  All it took was a thirty-second web search and a couple of emails and this expensive dust collector is heading out to a local used-phone dealer and repair guy.

I’ll never be inclined to set up as an Internet saleswoman and I quake at the thought of holding a garage sale.  However I have had some luck in turning a buck or two while decluttering.

Have you thought about every place you know that sells the kind of used stuff you have on hand?

I was able to sell an old guitar and an even older autoharp back to the music store where I’d first bought the guitar.  I did not get much, but I never played them myself, and I wasn’t going to have to consider how to pack and transport them across (repeat after me) the Great Plains, a desert and two mountain ranges.

These days I’m lucky enough to live near a used bookstore that maintains a buyback policy.  If they think they can resell a book, they’ll give you a dollar quote for cash and double the quote if you want to trade it in.

I haven’t ever sold through a clothing consignment shop.  But I have bought from them.  Might be worth a try if I have the time and patience….  Usually I don’t.

And there’s Amazon.  Over the years I’ve traded back more than eight cartons of books for credit with Amazon.  The next post will outline how to do this.

Have you told your pastor about anything you want to sell?

A congregant’s washer and dryer conked out just before I was to move.  From his point of view, my departure was a blessing.

My pastor also suggested that I offer any furniture I couldn’t sell to an agency which provided shelter to abused women.  Although they didn’t take anything this time, I was happy to get the suggestion.

Have you told absolutely everybody you know about the things you want to sell?

A couple of moves and several years ago, I sold some recorders and a student model flute, to lady who ran a home school.  She worked for the town newspaper.  When I handed her my ad for initial proof-reading, she laid it aside and asked whether she could look at the instruments, herself.  Saved me the cost of the ad!

Many more moves and much longer ago I bought a washer and dryer already in the house I was renting.  When I moved out, the landlord bought them back.  He also bought an extension ladder I wasn’t going to need in my newer place that had lower ceilings.

My husband, who is equally disinclined to set up as a salesman, was able to find a buyer for his unneeded vehicle simply by letting everyone know he didn’t want it anymore.

In sum, once I’ve determined what is clutter, the American Declutterer has two guidelines.

First: All clutter must be removed completely away from house and grounds.  Moving things from a closet to the rafters of the garage does not count as decluttering.

Second: Insofar as possible, both the clutter itself and the mode of its disposal should provide as much joy and blessing as possible.

Author: American Declutterer

I've had three careers, moved among thirteen states, and cleared four houses after loved ones moved on. Sometimes you just have to look at all the stuff and laugh. Then get back to discarding.

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