7 Environmentally Friendly Ways to Get Rid of Old Furniture

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by Victoria Hill

Air pollution, deforestation and excess fossil fuel usage has become a normal occurrence in today’s world. People throw out items that are usable, causing more and more waste.

We all know that even just one piece of trash can be harmful to an environment. Recycling, therefore, is one of the most important ways you can be environmentally friendly. Many environmentally aware people recycle their glass, paper, and metal but forget about the importance of furniture recycling.

While making a single sofa requires about 32 board feet of wood, 48 pounds of foam and 70 yards of fabric, an article from Planet Save reported that furniture was the least recycled item in households.

This is not only an issue in a household. Most of the time, corporate or office waste are also discussed in the sense of using less paper and less electricity. When in reality, it’s as important that we discuss corporate furniture waste and how to manage it.

More than 8.5 million ton of office waste ends up in US landfills annually. Business owners and entrepreneurs who want to be more environmentally friendly should be more aware of this and consider how to get rid of old furniture and unwanted desks in their offices in an eco-friendly way.

So, here are some ideas about how to get rid of unwanted furniture and ways to recycle the furniture. Whether you’re a business owner looking for ways to get rid of unwanted office desks or a homeowner looking for ways to get rid of your old couch at home, one of the following ways might be helpful.

1. Donate second-hand shops

Thrift shops and secondhand stores may be the best way to get rid of old furniture as many use the profit made from the sale to support charitable organizations. The donation has value to the one giving the gift too because the retail value of the item at the time of the donation is tax deductible. Do not bring the item to the shop without asking first because these types of retail shops often have limited sale and storage space.

2. Donate to a furniture re-use network

Re-use groups are another option to help get rid of used furniture, but they operate differently than charity or thrift shops. Reuse networks accept the furnishings, make any repairs and updates and give the item to a third-party charitable group so it can go to a person in need. Networks work with reuse charities in various areas around the country, so the items can go where they are needed the most.

3. Give furniture directly to someone else who needs it

It is not always necessary to take furnishings to a shop to find someone that wants the item for their own use. Ask friends, family, and co-workers if they want the furniture for free. Advertise on social media sites or place a classified ad online for the free item. A clear photograph and willingness to deliver can often make the item much more desirable to people.

4. Upcycle old furniture

There are so many ways and so many things you can do to upcycle these furniture. You can check out sites like Pinterest for informative tutorials and how-to guides. If the furniture don’t fit in your home anymore, you can recycle the furniture and use them outdoors.

Consider powder coating metal outdoor furniture. Powder coated paint is used with metal furnishings and is typically sprayed onto the metal and cured under a heat source to strengthen the paint. Coating your furniture enables patio furnishings to withstand the UV rays of the sun and exposure to rain.

Powder coated finishes can be in any colour and can give new life to old furniture. The option enables people to freshen up their outdoor decor for themselves or to boost its resale value, without having to throw your old items away.

5. Sell furniture in good condition

Furniture that is still attractive and usable can be sold as well as donated. Advertise the sale with the same methods used to give away furnishings or add the pieces to a yard sale. Review other online offers or completed sales on auction sites to determine a fair price.

6. Try to trade in your old furniture

Not every furniture shop will accept trade-ins, but it is worth the effort to ask. Choose a replacement item from the showroom first. Ask the manager if they are willing to accept the unwanted furnishings for a credit towards the new purchase.

7. Give furniture to a local theatre group

Theatre groups have an ongoing need for furnishings for their stage sets. Most of these groups have a very small operational budget and will appreciate the donation. Theatre groups are a great option for outdated furniture that other people may find desirable. Many stage performances are set in different eras, so the groups need items from almost every decade.

The reuse of older items reduces the amount of trash hauled to landfills and avoids the need for wasted raw materials. The time and effort involved to find a new owner for used furniture are often minimal. As important as it is to know how to get rid of old furniture, it is also important to remember when to let it go too. Try to find a new home for furniture before a new model arrives to avoid the temptation to throw out the old items.

About the Author: Victoria Hill has been writing as a ghostwriter ever since she was in college. Her favorite topics are human development, business communication, modern and pop art, minimalism, and self-development.

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