Not only are antiques green, but so are estate sales!

Today, many charities will not accept many of your donations: they will not take mattresses, used detergents, household cleaners, paint or solvents. They will not take them because of bedbugs or liability. They also will not take old magazines or newspapers, not saleable.

But all of these things sell at estate sales.

There are three kinds of customers at an estate sale: dealers, people looking for a bargain and (for lack of a better word) the poor.

Dealers want to resell: they are looking for your cool vintage items that they can mark up. This is not a bad thing. These guys are loyal customers who visit multiple sales every weekend and follow their favorite estate sale companies. They will also buy your old magazines and newspapers because they are cool and they can resell the ads.

The bargain hunters already know the above, but are willing to put in the legwork to find their own bargains. These guys know that dealers visit a dozen or more sales a weekend to find that special vintage item and they are willing to do so to the same to get the deal as the dealers.

Poor people actually need this stuff. I used to teach in Chicago Public Schools and two of my best students lived in a 1 bedroom apartment with their parents. The parents worked the night shift, so the kids slept in the bed at night and the parents slept during the day. A bed with a mattress can be an unaffordable luxury for a poor family. These will be the last people at an estate sale and they will buy the most practical items and need them the most. These are the items that many charities will not accept and will otherwise end up in a landfill.

Think of having an estate sale this way: you are helping the environment by not throwing this stuff out AND you are helping people in need by providing them with inexpensive household goods.

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