Decluttering can be daunting, but it shouldn’t be. The best way to start, is to… start. Using statistics provided by Gumtree, we’ve listed the top 10 unused items Brits have at home. Take a look at the list and get an idea of where to begin clearing your clutter. The odds are you have some of these things, if not all of them, at home!
10. Old Remote Controls
They’re easy to overlook, hidden under the TV or behind your DVD collection (we’ll get to that later). 27% of Brits have an old, unused remote lying around – which has been in their possession for 6 years on average! Check with local retailers, some will recycle old electronics such as remotes for you for free.
9. Old board games
Games, games, games! According to Gumtree, 27% of you have old board games gathering dust at home. We’re surprised the number isn’t higher… it’s easy to forget about that Monopoly set you have stashed on top of the cupboard! On average, these items haven’t been used for almost 10 years – get rid! Luckily board games are accepted by most charity shops and can easily be sold online and through specialist board game forums such as the Board Game Exchange subreddit.
8. Pens that no longer work
28% of Brits have non-working pens in their home, spending on average £14 on these items. Rather than building up an endless supply, we recommend you focus on keeping one refillable pen, and decluttering all the rest. While you can’t recycle pens normally, Terracycle has teamed up with Bic to offer a specialist writing materials recycling program, with drop-off locations across the UK.
Spending on average £66 on these unused items, 29% of Brits admit to having unwanted bags in their household. To prevent your collection from continuing to grow, we recommend sticking to one firm and stable bag for all your carrying duties, and ditching all the rest. Always take your own bag to the supermarket when you do your weekly shop and avoid spending extra on unnecessary 5p plastic bags – you’ll make significant savings in the long run and you’ll be helping the planet!
Unused shoes can be found in a whopping 37% of households, with an average outlay of £84. Fortunately, shoes can be very profitably decluttered. Even those too trashed for the charity shop will find a happy new owner online, do a quick search on ebay for “trashed shoes” and you’ll see there’s a huge selling market for these items.
Depending on the condition of your shoes you may even end up selling for more than you originally paid, the joys of fashion! Remember, no matter where you sell, if they’re being auctioned off, set the opening bid low and watch the offers come flooding in. Read our article for everything you need to know about selling shoes.
39% of Brits have old, unused CDs at home. In the age of free music streaming, it’s the perfect time to sell off your collection. Ziffit and Zapper will take the lot off your hands for a tidy sum, freeing up space in your living room and adding to your wallet.
Much like CDs, DVDs also sit unused in 39% of British homes. In the age of low-cost online streaming services, there’s little reason to clutter up your house with unnecessarily bulky DVD cases. On average they’ve been lying around British homes for almost 7 years! Ziffit and Zapper will take care of them and provide you with a nice cash injection. Alternatively you could list the whole collection on Gumtree and get rid of them all at once for a good fee.
Unused books are surprisingly not the number one unused item on this list. But they still make it to the top 3, with 43% of Brits admitting to owning this unused item. There are a number of ways you can turn your book collection into cash, in fact we wrote a whole article about it.
Do your research, certain books will fetch more money than others, and if you’re lucky enough to have something rare or unusual, make sure to sell it for as much as you can get. Dedicated online used book seller AbeBooks is a good place to start, but you can also try Amazon, ebay and Gumtree. You’ll be surprised by how much cleaner, tidier and unclogged a room can become without piles of unread volumes.
2. Old chargers and cables
With technology moving forward at lightning pace, cables and chargers often become outdated and unusable for your latest device. It’s no wonder that 44% of Brits have an old charger or cable gathering dust on their kitchen counter or nightstand.
When decluttering these it’s important to be safe and make sure, if the cables are frayed, that they are not connected to electricity when you handle them. Check behind your TV for any unused cables – they’re easy to miss! If your charger or cable is still working but no longer needed, list it online and turn it into cash. If it is broken, head to your nearest recycling site.
Nearly half of all British households contain unused clothes (47%). Keeping these at the back of the wardrobe is a huge space drain and waste of money-making potential. There is always a hunger for vintage fashion and used clothing and a huge market for selling your old garments.
You will be astounded by how much money some of your old dresses will fetch. In fact, sometimes the older they are, the more desirable they will be, and that shouldn’t be a problem, with unused clothes being on average 8.5 years old. Check out how to make money selling your clothes on Asos – you could even make a living out of it!