Getting rid of unused stuff efficiently

The above quote inspired me to open a new thread. I also pay for a Putzfrau and feel like putting an ad to sell something for even 50 CHF is a waste of time. At the same time, I don’t like to throw stuff away if I know someone could use it. So I’d like to know how you deal with it? I have some stuff at home that is just clutter (old games, dvd movies, books, electronics), but just making an ad and dealing with questions from potential buyers (or takers) seems dreadful. I know some people put this stuff out to take for free, but I’m afraid someone would mind or nobody would take it.

And a side question: how do you deal with chores that you cannot outsource? For example, my gf is very messy, she eventually fills every available space with her stuff. Obviously, a Putzfrau can’t know where to put this stuff or what to throw away. Gf doesn’t seem to bother, but I’m bothered a lot. She’s tired after work but I am too, so I won’t organize her stuff for her.

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Everything what’s worth selling I’ll put in the Facebook marketplace. Big audience and no fees. Sold many things in the past and I think it’s the best place to do it.

Your GF is exactly like mine lol.

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Caritas / Salvation Army / … you can bring your stuff for free. They don’t accept everything but most of it. Clothes you have special bin for it.
There is also sometimes free library on the street where you could give your book.

well based on my experience, there is no solution … accept it :slight_smile:

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I start from the premise that I don’t have anything accumulated in my house because I have a minimalist style and regularly get rid of the things I don’t use (clothes, electronics, tools, books…).

When I want to get rid of something I use these options:

If it has at least a value of 50.- chf (electronics especially) I try to sell it on ricardo. (I never use tutti.ch or FB because I don’t want to argue about price or get indecent offers)

Otherwise, to make the most of my time, I get rid of it without selling it

  • Clothes, shoes: Red Cross etc (often the containers are at a Coop or Migros accessible 24h)
  • Small useless electronics: I recycle them using a service paying 16.90 chf a month (Wertstoffe) that accepts bottles, glass, copper, electronics in a monthly mixed bag so I don’t have to recycle them myself.
  • Still useful books/electrical appliances/gadgets: I put them in the landing under the house and they disappear immediately.

Try The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing: Amazon.de: Marie Kond?: Bücher it worked for my GF

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I move things that I know she won’t use into a bin in the cellar, after a year or so I throw it away. When she asks me about three years later I say ‘oh, I haven’t seen it in a long time’

when I feel like, I ask ‘where ls the place to store this?’ or ‘does it spark joy?’. I like Marie Kondo.

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That was my mindset too. However, the experience of the last months changed my mind.

We got rid of a lot of stuff in no time with the following procedure:

  • collect the stuff during a few weeks until you have a nice pile
  • wait for a sunny day
  • choose a place with a lot of frequency (no need to be in front of your place of living)
  • lay out the stuff so that it is not cluttered
  • take a photo of the whole layout and publish it on Tutti (only advertisement)
  • recommended: stay for a while (in the background) and let you surprise how other people „love“ your stuff
  • visit the place two hours later and rearrange the layout or trash what is left
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And what about the things which do not go away? I am sure you put only things which someone will find useful. And for me this system is okay only if the owner take back the things which nobody wants.

But there are people who literally put things on the side of the road because they are too lazy to bring it to the recycling station. Then it stays there until city workers will clean it with our taxes.

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If value:
.> 40 = sell it on Ricardo/Tutti
.< 40 = Ask your friends
If it’s broken → Rewag (Recyling Station), often for free :wink:

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I use tutti (for more expensive stuff) and ricardo for cheaper stuff, starting at 1 chf (given the 9% fee they take on the final price). When stuff does not sell I put it on a FB group where people give away stuff for free. If that also fails it goes to the cargo tram that comes once a month 300m from my place. It’s also surprising what people will take from the street: once I left a few big pieces of wood thinking I’ll probably get some complaints, instead they were gone after a few hours.

I started trying Facebook Marketplace last month after many friends told me about it, successfully selling/buying any sort of stuff… it’s crazy how well it works, I managed to sell even very old mattress (but still in good conditions though), not much for the money (clearly not, it was “symbolic” 25CHF) but I didn’t even want to consider having to spend time to load it on the car and go myself to throw it away. You sell it and they come to pick it up themselves, win-win.

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I had a mixed experience. I sold a smartphone once. Put it for 100 CHF. People were writing all the time, asking if it’s still available, I write yes, then they write nothing back. Weird! Then finally one guy decided to buy, I went to the train station to meet him (don’t want to give a stranger my address) and then he negotiated at the platform to push the price down to 80 CHF :smiley: . Seriously, the lengths people go to haggle. I just agreed and left with a slight dissatisfaction.

By the way, I even saw that people put flat rent offers on FB Marketplace. No possibility to put zip code or location, flat size, NOTHING, it just shows you all offers in the 60 km radius. And somehow it still has hundreds of offers! But usability is just terrible.

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I would like to share some information about the “clothes boxes”. The company that manage them is called Texaid. It is a partnership between a German company and Swiss NGOs. It is working well and it brings back some money to the NGOs. At the same time, it is not transparent about the way money is split and spent. At least it was not. The boss was taking 550’000 per year. You don’t have to be poor to work in a charity, yet there is a point where it becomes indecent in my views.

I personally now give my clothes to my Putzfrau who then shares it in her community (Brasilian and Evangelical).

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This is a very timely topic for me thanks for opening it !

We are expecting the third child but we don’t want to leave out beautiful (rented) apartment with “only” three bedrooms.
So we are switching to a more minimalist lifestyle and getting rid of lots of things.

I detest throwing away good stuff, so I prefer to give it away for free or sell it for a loss (both in time and money) .

My go to places to get rid of stuff are ricardo and Facebook marketplace.

One problem I have is with books. Since years i read only ebooks on eInk. Ans i want to get rid of ALL my physical books, to make space.
But i would loath to destroy a perfectly fine book, but I struggle to give them away because they are mostly english and german, and I live in the Romandie :rofl:

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No mention of Brockenstuben yet.

Sometimes we bring them stuff. Little things that aren’t worth the effort of trying to sell. Or things that we tried to sell but nobody wanted.

A quite particular example: At some point our cat decided that he had grown up and kitten food wasn’t for him anymore. We brought the unopened food to a nearby animal shelter.

Did you try putting them out on the street with a “gratis” sign? I regularly put books out and find some somewhere else (even english ones). Probably not the most efficient way, but since it is low effort, it is worth a try.

Only works if you live somewhat centrally. We’re close to the end of a street and not much “walk-thru” traffic there.

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Maybe ask your local public library if they accept donations

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My experience summary:

  1. Exsila.ch - good for a “living” book and DVD shelf. Low frequency, but I get rid of stuff on average. Selling books not really worth it, but I put them there for sentimental reasons.
  2. Ricardo.ch - items that are likely to sell soon (phones, computers) I put in for 1 CHF starting price with a buy now option at a price slightly above what I think I’m likely to get. Everything else at fixed price at auto repeat.
  3. Tutti.ch - Lots of stuff never sells, this I end up putting on Facebook marketplace or Ricardo. Constant price haggling puts me off. Don’t like it much.
  4. Facebook marketplace - High frequency, some stuff sells easily that was on Tutti for months. There are lots of time wasters and no shows here, though. Best for getting rid of stuff before a move. Can be exhausting to use.
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with infinite you mean, that you have to renew the action manually after the 6th time (repeat option is 5x)

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You’re right. It’s not infinite, I’ve corrected it.

It’s been a while since I put something on Ricardo that way. I do online selling in batches whenever I have a bit of time and willpower.

Anyway, I’ve always sold the items within the 50-60 days so far.

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