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How to Get Rid of the Stuff that Haunts You

We've all got that stuff around that we wish would just spontaneously combust.  We no longer have any need/use/want for it, and yet it lingers; cluttering, bothering, haunting

My old, slower-than-molasses-in-January laptop, for example, has stalked me from Texas to Oklahoma to Texas again and now to Colorado.  Lord almighty, I'm seriously considering filing a restraining order.  Leave me alone Dell, please just leave me alone.

Over this next month, I've offered to help my parents sort through their closets and expel some of those unwanted items that have lingered for years – a way of earning my keep while Husband is tied up in another month of training until the big move.  

Seeing as how I'm already going through the process, I thought I'd share some valuable, supernatural-stuff-fighting information with y'all and save you a bit of time, space and sanity (and maybe even make you a little bit of money too). 

I ain't afraid of no ghosts.


What to do with Old Computers, Phones & Other Electronics

The question here is: What's it worth? 

If you think that your equipment will fetch a pretty penny, then, by all means, sell it.  Sure, there's always ebay, but with hard-to-get-rid-of stuff I always opt for the easiest, simplest rout. 

These sites offer instant quotes & free shipping.  We've worked with Gazelle in the past and have been happy with the results.




Maybe your item isn't worth the trouble of selling or you are planning on replacing it.  Either way you still want it out of your house.  In this case trading-in or recycling might be your best options.

Check with your brand, but companies like Apple and Dell offer both trade-in and recycling programs that will either give you store credit for your equipment or help you dispose of it responsibly.  The EPA also has a great list of local, manufacuter, and retailer programs at stores like AT&T, Best Buy, Motorola, Sprint, Staples & Verizon.  Check it out.


What to do with Magazine Collections

I have a few theories about why it's so hard to get rid of magazines. 

  1. They are heavy.  Heavy things require more raw materials and therefore must be worth more.  You can't just throw away valuable things.
  2. They are pretty.  Pretty things are valuable.  You can't just throw away valuable things.
  3. It seems wasteful. 

Sometimes things are hard to get rid of because we assign false value to them.  i.e. Beanie Babies.  i.e. Mint-condition McDonald's toys that were supposed to turn into collectors items. 

Here are a few suggestions to ease the pain of parting with these non-valuable valuables:

  • Donate.  This is what I'm planning on doing with the folks' extensive National Geographic collection.  Schools, medical offices, and other waiting rooms are dying for up-to-date material. 
  • Trade.  Find a friend for a subscription swap.
  • Give it away at Freecycle.org or Craigslist (Free Section).


What to do with Old Mattresses

This one seems like a no-brainer: just drop it off at Goodwill.  You might be a little more than disappointed/annoyed when you get to good ol' GW and find that they don't accept mattresses.

Brian Anderson has a good list of organizations that will accept mattresses and boxsprings at hubpages, including:


What to do with Hazardous Waste

I know you don't think you have any hazardous waste, but ya most likely do.  If you have any paints, stains, lacquers, household cleaners (I hope you have these), batteries, etc., then you do.  Here's a good rule of thumb from our county's recycling center:

Anything marked “caution,” “keep out of reach of children,” “danger,” “poison,” “hazardous,” “flammable,” “harmful or fatal if swallowed,” “causes severe burns on contact,” “do not use near heat or flame,” “vapor harmful,” “eye and skin irritant,” or “use in a well-ventilated area” should be considered hazardous.

I'm always surpised at the services you can find for free.  Do a quick search to find out if your county offers hazardous waste disposal.


Got a good resource for purging evil, lingering stuff?  Share it.  I'm sure we'd all love to hear about it. 

Article publié pour la première fois le 26/10/2010