As you prep your home for the selling process and go through your home staging efforts, one thing that will become very apparent to you is how much of your old, unused and unwanted belongings are taking up valuable space in your house. Unused stuff may include old furniture and home accessories, appliances and electronics, clothing, shoes, children’s toys, sports equipment, mobile phones, books, school supplies, and even CDs and DVDs.

Sometimes our stuff become unused because they have outgrown their purpose or have been replaced by newer, better ones. A lot of times, they were bought because they were perceived to be useful in the long-term. Many were just not really necessary purchases and simply gather dust in the attic or garage. What do you do about old furniture, home accessories, and other items just lying around the home?

Sell them

One obvious option would be to have a garage or yard sale and look for buyers for your unwanted belongings. People looking for bargains and great finds at garage sales usually look for used furniture and clothing items, as well as kitchen items and cooking utensils. If you hold a garage sale, you can use the money that you get from the sales to help with your home staging or moving expenses.

Trade them

In some communities, there are barter or trade events where people meet up and exchange their stuff. It’s a throwback to the old barter system that existed before currencies were invented, and for many it still works. Find out if there are any barter or trade events happening in your local area, and bring your unused belongings with you. You never know what you will find, and what others would find usable among your old items.

Donate them

Here in Canada, there are numerous charitable organizations and groups that would readily receive your donations of old but still usable belongings. If you are still wondering where or how to properly dispose of items you no longer need, check out if any charitable groups would benefit from them.

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Some organizations you may want to consider include:

Canadian Diabetes Association. Their website, www.diabetes.ca, gives you information on the nearest drop box locations, or if they can come by your house and pick up your items (such as furniture for donation). Donated items are sold to Value Village locations, and proceeds go to diabetes research and education.

Goodwill. Your unused clothing, home décor, books, CDs, DVDs, kitchen accessories, and electronics may just find new owners at Goodwill. They sort and sell donated items and proceeds go to employment assistance for marginalized individuals. Many Goodwill donation centers accept furniture donations; check the one in your area.

Habitat for Humanity. Habitat for Humanity in Canada is active in over 200 different communities, building safe and decent housing for low-income families. Many ReStores accept non-upholstered furniture donations, and even windows, doors, appliances, kitchen cabinets, bathroom fixtures, and lighting fixtures. Find the closest ReStore location in your area by going to www.habitat.ca/restore.

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