Charities play an important role for many downsizers as they start the process of decluttering and deciding which furniture and accessories are going to make the move to the new home and which will need to be sold or donated. Many people don’t realize until they’re deep in the middle of a downsizing project that a lot of their stuff won’t sell. It’s tempting to think that the grandfather clock inherited from one’s grandfather will fetch a pretty penny, and it comes as a grave disappointment when they learn there’s not much of a market for grandfather clocks these days. And if there is a buyer who’s interested, he or she is likely not going to pay as much as the seller thinks it’s worth.
In nearly every city in every state there are charities that need furniture, clothing, books, bedding, pots and pans, appliances, and other household items. (But probably not grandfather clocks.) Some will come to your house with big trucks and haul your stuff away. Check out DonationTown for a list of charities in your area. The website is a treasure trove of great links and information about charities in dozens of metro areas. .
Even in small towns, charities like Goodwill and Salvation Army have stores where they sell your items and use the proceeds to better the lives of others. Some charities set up apartments for people who are transitioning from domestic abuse, homelessness or prison to a new life. But be advised that some do not want particular items; large dining tables, well-worn and over-sized sofas, mattresses and large wardrobes are frequently not accepted. Goodwill will take many types of furniture and most other household items to sell in their stores.Check the our Resource Directory for a list of charities in your area that will accept items. Check out their websites for details on whether they have a pick-up service or whether you’ll need to arrange someone to pick it up from your place and drop it off at theirs.