Decluttering (Part 9) … What to do with the Items you no Longer Need or Want …




If you’re just joining the “Mrs Organised” community … Welcome! It’s nice to meet you! Before you read today’s post, however, you might like to catch up on the first 8 parts of my series devoted to decluttering … simply click on the links below:










If decluttering your home is an ongoing battle, I do hope some of my ideas have helped and, if you have followed my suggestions, you will have ended up with several piles or baskets of unwanted items. You can reread Part 5 for a refresher but, in a nutshell, I suggested you sort your unwanted clutter into one of 5 piles:


  • Keep
  • Throw out
  • Donate to Charity
  • Give to Family/Friends
  • Sell


Now it’s time to get rid of all those items:


  • The “Keep” pile is easy … these items can be stored neatly where you would like them.
  • The “Throw out” pile is also easy but I want you to get those items into the bin as fast as possible. In fact, if there’s any risk you’ll have second thoughts about any of these items and retrieve them, jump in your car and take them to the dump straight away to remove any temptation. Once they’re at the dump, they’re gone for good!
  • The “Donate to Charity” pile is also fairly straight forward but once again I would suggest you take these to your local Charity store or Charity bin immediately. I couldn’t tell you the number of times I’ve asked myself the dreaded “what if?” question and then pulled something out of the bag and kept it.
  • The “Give to Family/Friends” pile I would suggest delivering as soon as possible or at the very least contact the relevant person either by phone or email and offer them the item. The psychology and strategy behind this move is, that once you’ve offered the item, you’ll be too embarrassed for a change of heart and will have to give it away as planned.


  • And finally, the “Sell” pile … this one will take a little bit more work but could put some serious cash in your pocket. How much effort you go to will largely depend on the value of your unwanted items, how much time you have and how much effort you want to devote but here are some great places for you to start:


1. Garage sales

2. eBay, Gumtree or other online selling marketplaces

3. Second-hand dealers e.g. Cash Converters

4. The Trading Post

5. Classified ads in your local newspaper or magazine

6. Facebook … either share the item on your own page or on other Buy, Sell or Swap groups

7. Markets or Car Boot Sales

8. Notice Boards either at work or your local Shopping Centre

9. Other specialty websites like CarsGuide (for cars), Student VIP (for textbooks), Still White (for wedding gowns) to name a few.

10. Word-of-mouth … even mentioning your unwanted items in conversations with friends, family or work colleagues could see your items finding a new home


Just remember to be realistic with your prices, especially if you want to get rid of items quickly. With Christmas just around the corner, now is the perfect time to sell some stuff as your unwanted things might make a great gift for someone else or you could make Christmas a little more magical with some extra cash.


There is one more option that I haven’t mentioned earlier and that is to trade or barter your items, in other words trade an item you no longer want or need and replace it with something you do want or need. Remembeer, things that have little or no value to you may be worth a lot to someone else and vice versaq. The prize for the best example of bartering has to go to a Canadian blogger, Kyle MacDonald. In the space of a year, he used 14 trades to turn a single, red paper clip into a 2-story farmhouse in Kipling, Saskatchewan. His inspiration for his adventure was a childhood bartering game called Bigger and Better. It’s an amazing story and his journey looked like this:


  1. He traded one red paperclip to a young woman in Vancouver for a fish-shaped pen.


  1. He traded the fish-shaped pen for a hand-sculpted doorknob in Seattle, Washington on the same day.


  1. He traded the hand-sculpted doorknob for a Coleman Camping Stove in Amherst, Massachusetts.


  1. He traded the Coleman Camping Stove for a Honda Generator in California.


  1. He traded the Honda Generator for an “instant party” comprising an empty keg of beer, an IOU for filling the keg with a beer of the bearer’s choice and a neon Budweiser sign in Maspeth, Queens.


  1. He traded the “instant party” for a Ski-Doo Snowmobile in Quebec.


  1. He traded the Ski-Doo Snowmobile for a trip for two to Yahk, British Columbia.


  1. He traded the second sport on the trip for two to Yahk, British Columbia for a box truck.


  1. He traded the box truck for a recording contract with Metalworks in Mississauga, Ontario.


  1. He traded the recording contract with Metalworks for one year’s rent in Phoenix, Arizona.


  1. He traded one year’s rent for one afternoon with Alice Cooper.


  1. He traded one afternoon with Alice Cooper for a KISS motorised snow globe.


  1. He traded the Kiss motorised snow globe to Corbin Bernsen for a speaking role in the film, “Donna on Demand”.


  1. He traded the speaking role in the film, “Donna on Demand” for a two-storey farmhouse in Kipling, Saskatchewan.


It just goes to show that anything is possible. So tell me, if you were going to offer something to trade or barter, what would it be and what would you hope to get in exchange?