- Organizing & Decluttering
Getting Rid of Your Bulky Trash After Spring Cleaning
The Spring equinox is upon us! That grouchy groundhog, Punxsutawney Phil, predicted a long winter for 2018 but for some reason this is one of the warmest winters on record in the U.S. I mean, that poor groundhog has to be sick of these required annual predictions, right? Might be time for retirement. But we’re not mad about it. His poor prediction just means extra rays of sunshine, flowering neighborhood trees (cough: allergy season), and the opportunity to begin a much needed, long-awaited, deep spring clean.
Winter is the time to load up on clothes, eat lots of carbs, and snuggle with your boo, but it’s not the best time to do a deep clean. It’s too cold for that. You just want to chill, eat takeout and watch Netflix. We get it! But now that the sun has peeked out from beyond the snow capped mountains, it’s time to ride that wave and re-energize, revamp, and redecorate. But what do you do with the piles of stuff you’re getting rid of?
Piles of trash are an eyesore for you and your neighbors. They can lead to neighborhood feuds, rental company fines, and vermin if you’re not careful. Each city has a different policy when it comes to bulk trash removal, and figuring out your options can be overwhelming. To make that process as easy as possible, here are the four steps you need to take after a spring clean to rid yourself of all that clutter and finally feel refreshed and ready to take on the year ahead.
1. Spring remodel? You can donate that trash
You have seven sets of the same jeans but they don’t fit. What do you do? Obviously, you donate. But what about things like the drywall you just replaced in your bathroom, old countertops, doors, and windows?
There is no use throwing away perfectly usable items when someone else can love them and use them. +1 for the environment, folks! Large projects like major renovations and even small remodels often come with a lot of debris. Even if you have pieces that aren’t pristine, they could be used by local artists, refurbished for new furniture use, or recycled into new material.
Salvaging items that are in good shape can even make you some money. Sell useful items that are in good shape on Facebook, Craigslist, or eBay to help recoup some of the cash you spent on new materials for that Spring remodel. These sites are also great if you’re looking for trades. Donate old furniture, appliances, and reusable materials to Habitat for Humanity. They’ll use them for house builds and you’ll rest easy knowing your sink looks great in someone else’s first family home. Plus, any donation to a local 501c3 is tax deductible.
2. Check the policies of your local landfill
So you’ve successfully donated everything you can think to donate. Now you’re faced with items that are broken, non-reusable and/or potentially hazardous. They have no resale value, and unfortunately: no one wants your old, nasty outdoor freezer. Many landfills won’t take items that are hazardous because they will contaminate the area around them over time. If you are trying to get rid of old appliances, call your local landfill or waste disposal service to check their policies. This applies to hazardous materials of all types, like motor oil, car tires, batteries, paint or other household chemicals. Some landfills will take material that may surprise you.
3. Get rid of the junk with a waste container drop off
If all of this seems more complicated that you’d like, you have options. Don’t phone a friend, call an expert. Companies like Waste Management offer dumpster and ‘bagster’ services, which act as large, bag-style dumpster pickups. They drop a waste container outside of your home, wait for you to fill it up with your unmentionables, and then come to pick it up. The drop off and pickup is scheduled ahead of time, giving you the flexibility you need to fill it within the timeframe you specify. Check the company policies before you throw your old oil cans inside because, just like landfills, they often have a list of approved and disapproved material.
4. Let a junk removal service take the lead
If a waste container still sounds like too much heavy lifting, there are companies that will literally come to your house, pick up your waste, and properly dispose of it for you. No manpower necessary. Be sure to compare costs, and reach out to multiple companies for quotes before you choose which one is right for your needs. Also, be sure to read their policies to understand how they handle items with hazardous materials, such as electronics and appliances. If you’ve already followed step 1 and donated or sold the majority of your electronics and bulk waste, you should be mostly in the clear. But be aware, a good junk removal service will recycle as much as they can before trashing your items. You can make sure of this by asking to see what their recycling program looks like. Services that pick up your bulky trash directly from your home exist to make your busy life as easy as possible. Convenience is key. Do some research to find out what’s available in your area.
Whether you are the inspired spring cleaning genius or the guy who just wants this all over with, there are options out there for you when you need to rid yourself of the post-cleanup bulk trash.
© 2018 Haley Kieser