What Happens To Items We Take?

When undertaking any FREE house clearance we sort the contents into three categories and pack our van accordingly.

  • Category 1 Keep: Items we can sell on to cover our costs.
  • Category 2 Donate: Items we can donate to charity.
  • Category 3 Recycle: Items to be recycled.

(There is no need to pack anything before we arrive as we will need to sort and pack everything ourselves into categories)

The items we can sell cover the cost of our FREE house clearance service. Since our service is FREE we get a huge amount of overflow/excess furniture, clothing and brick-a-brac which we donate on a regular basis to charity.

We donate blankets etc to cat and dog shelters, furniture we donate to charities that help people on low incomes to furnish their homes.

Charity Collection Let Down

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We donate a lot of furniture and items a week to various charities.
We donate a lot of furniture and items a week to various charities.

One of the things we come across week in and week out is the aftermath of an attempted charity donation that’s gone sadly wrong.

Here’s the usual scenario.

A family has the unenviable task of clearing a house either because of bereavement or because an elderly relative has had to go into a care home. Understandably, many families are attracted to the idea of making a donation of the furnishings and smaller items in the house to a charity. There are many charities now online which advertise house clearance services.

So one of the family will go ahead and make an arrangement with a charity they’ve seen advertising house clearing services. Perhaps over-optimistically, the person will assume that the charity will do a complete house clearance.

But when it comes down to it, many charities will pick and choose, leaving behind many items. And even worse case frequently broken appointments. That means the family member may have taken time off work, and possibly had to travel a long distance to the property, only to be let down. This is of course a very frustrating and disappointing experience at a stressful time when it’s the last thing anyone needs.


A few sample comments left online from frustrated family members


And even when appointments are kept, as we’ve mentioned, there will definatley be a range of items the charity can’t, or won’t, take. Electrical items will often be left as these have to be safety tested, beds and furniture suites may not have the requisite fire labels. Many items, like books, may just be too difficult to sell. So all of those things and other items are simply left behind and your house clearance is far from complete.

To be fair to the charities, most of them have only limited storage space. They need to be able to sell things quickly and with a minimum of trouble for the whole thing to be worth their while. To be clear, we are not arguing that you should not give to charity, far from it. But we are saying that you should be sure in advance what items a charity will actually take.

Just take note what people tell you over the phone and what actually happens on the day can be poles apart. Volunteers taking your call may well promise this or that but they are not the van drivers, rarely do the promises match the reality.

Anything we clear which we know will be of use to a charity will go to a charity.

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