Need to Recycle or Get Free Stuff? Try!

Home Stager with Great Impressions Home Staging/Interiors


Do you need to de-clutter your house but hate to throw out things that others might be able to use? Are you looking to furnish a new house with cheap (read: free) stuff that others don't want anymore? 

A staging client turned me onto -- a recycling website with the goal of avoiding adding to landfills and finding free and useful stuff that can save you lots of $$. I'm helping my local RESA (Real Estate Staging Association) chapter furnish rooms in a new Covenant House for homeless youths being built in Montclair, NJ. I started hitting up friends and family, without much luck, for small furniture for the tiny rooms in this house. Then I went to a few garage sales and got some pretty nice stuff for $20 to $30. But that starts to add up. Then I signed up for and found a great resource for furnishing and decorating -- especially if you're willing to put in a little elbow grease. 

Here are a few photos of items I've gotten -- yes, almost all need some sort of refinishing, painting, etc. But I'm willing (I think) to put in some sweat equity to save the $$, plus as a stager, I like trying to be creative with refurbishing things. (I may be eating my words in another month, but for now, it seems almost . . . FUN.) 

It only takes a few minutes to sign up for, and then you can select either getting dozens of separate daily emails or a digest form sent 3 times a day . . . I opted for the latter to save email space. About once a day or every other day I found something useful I was looking for: furniture, lamps, mirrors, art, and curtains. There's also clothing, children's toys, small appliances, TVs, bricks, hedge trimmers, just about anything. One warning: it can be addictive! 

A few of the items I've picked up in the last few weeks:





Posted by

Home Staging Bergen County -- Amy Bly

Great Impressions Home Staging 201-390-4649  

 "Great Impressions Get Offers"

Presentation and price are critical to selling houses quickly. You and your agent figure out the best price; I make your home stand out from the competition to appeal to the most buyers, whether they are first-time buyers, move-up buyers, or down-sizing buyers. As an accredited, experienced staging professional, I know how to make your home grab buyers' attention -- on the MLS and in person. A beautifully presented house makes a great impression, stands out from the competition, and generates offers faster than a non-staged house!

For a free home staging estimate, call me at 201-390-4649. 

Home staging website:



Comments (20)

Vickie Nagy
Coldwell Banker Residential Real Estate - Palm Springs, CA
Vickie Jean the Palm Springs Condo Queen

These do look like useful pieces that you can do something with. I know I generally donate to a local charity, but perhaps I should try to freecycle.

Jul 06, 2011 03:48 PM
Ralph Janisch ABR CRS Broker
Janisch & Co. - Conroe, TX
Selling Northwest Houston to good people like you!

Good info!  We need to get rid of lots of stuff not get stuff.

Jul 06, 2011 03:51 PM
Maggie McFarland
RE/MAX Pearland - Maggie McFarland - Pearland, TX
Pearland Realtor, Homes for Sale in Pearland Texas

I use freecycle all the time! Its a great way to recycle things you don't need anymore and get things you need!

Jul 06, 2011 03:53 PM
Rosalie Evans
Meritus Group Real Estate - Sioux Falls, SD
The Evans Group, Sioux Falls, SD Homes For Sale

I have been freecycling for about a year now. Mostly giving away stuff that my husband has collected over the year since he is a horrible packrat. I also have gotten a few odds and ends that you probably wouldn't be able to find for a glass lid to my crockpot that I broke. Another lady had a crockpot that had when bad and she gave me the lid. It is really a awesome organization! 

Jul 06, 2011 04:06 PM

Vickie, If you're giving things to charity, so much the better in my book :>)   Although I have a friend who thinks the point of Freecycle is really for neighbors -to- help neighbors, to me I'd always rather give to charity first. 

Jeanne and Ralph -- yes, in my case I always need to get rid of stuff, too! Our kids are both in college and we're trying to start downsizing in preparation for a move . . . 

Maggie/Rosalie -- guess I'm preaching to the choir! Glad you both use freecycle -- I'm a newbie to it and have met a lot of people who never heard of it, so I'm just trying to spread the word! Good for both of you! 

Jul 06, 2011 11:04 PM
Janet Jones
Just Your Style Interiors, LLC - Kihei, HI
Home Staging, Interior Redesign Kihei, Maui, Hawaii

Any--I think Freecycle is awesome, as well as the "Free Stuff" on Craig's list.  Good reminder for all of us to not fill up landfills.  Looks like you got some amazing finds there. 

Jul 07, 2011 01:07 AM
Amy Bly
Great Impressions Home Staging/Interiors - Montville, NJ
Styling Homes for Selling and Staying

Yes, Janet, I did OK, but will need to try Renuzit or Rustoleum products on the furniture to refinish them. Thanks for commenting!

Jul 07, 2011 04:33 AM
Anna Dovger
Add Value Home Staging LLC, 281-704-6607 - The Woodlands, TX
Home Staging -The Woodlands, TX

Amy, thanks for the info. Looking forward for some cool finds.

Jul 09, 2011 08:44 AM
Joan Cox
House to Home, Inc. - Denver Real Estate - 720-231-6373 - Denver, CO
Denver Real Estate - Selling One Home at a Time

Hi Amy, this coming week will be helping a seller move "extra STUFF" from the house so she can move out of state!     There will be many things that COULD appeal to others....will need to put an e-blast out through my office to see if anyone might need something!

Jul 09, 2011 05:00 PM
Amy Bly
Great Impressions Home Staging/Interiors - Montville, NJ
Styling Homes for Selling and Staying

Anna, I bet you'll find some good things -- might take a week or two of checking the offerings, but I really think it's worth it to save all that money!

Joan, what do you think of me sending out an email to local brokers' offices seeking donations of gently-used small furniture from any sellers (I would go pick up)? I can only imagine how many sellers have stuff they throw out that others could really use!

Jul 10, 2011 06:46 AM
Joetta Fort
The DiGiorgio Group - Arvada, CO
Independent Broker, Homes Denver to Boulder

I love Freecycle too. A lot of times it's a neighbor who comes to pick up the item, and since I send newsletters to the neighborhood I get to meet a familiar name, and make it a familiar face.

Jul 10, 2011 03:38 PM
Amy Bly
Great Impressions Home Staging/Interiors - Montville, NJ
Styling Homes for Selling and Staying

Joetta, glad to hear you're a convert to Freecycle! Sounds like a good way to make more contacts for your business! Thanks for commenting. 

Jul 10, 2011 03:43 PM
Josef Katz
Digital and Direct Response Marketing - Manhattan, NY
{Marketing Maestro}

Glad I found this today.  As  you might have seen on my blog we finally started to redo the kitchen you and I discussed a few months back (and a few other things too...).  I have been trying to give a way a dishwasher.  If you want it donated just give me a buzz.  Hate to toss it since it still works but it "won't go" in the new kitchen. 

Jul 13, 2011 09:41 AM

Hi, Josef! How are you? Unfortunately, (or fortunately!), the new Covenant House has all-new kitchens and appliances. Offer it on! I would love to see photos of your new kitchen when it is done, Josef! 

Jul 13, 2011 10:31 AM
philip martinez


I am searching for a door frame for a neighbor. She has 3 children and recently had here front door kicked in. The door frame is unusable any longer which makes her home unsecure, she works but barely makes enough to get by.If anyone out there is or has remodeled their home rather than throw your old exterior door frame out it would be invaluable to her. in englewood, co

thanks so much for your help

Aug 21, 2012 10:57 AM

Hi, Philip,

You need to join your local and post this "wanted" item on there. It only takes a few minutes to sign up and then get approved, and I'm sure you will get someone to donate . . . or try a local Habitat for Humanity Restore as well. You might also try contacting any local remodeling companies to see if they have anything they're willing to donate -- and I bet they will! Good luck!

Aug 21, 2012 11:24 AM
michael sorrentino
hello i'm looking for a dresser for myself n hubbie
Feb 11, 2014 03:59 AM
Amy Bly
Hi, Michael, you need to go to in your area and sign up so you can get daily notifications about what people are looking to give away. You can also try Habitat for Humanity stores in your area, which sell recycled items cheaply (as well as Salvation Army or Goodwill Stores, of course). Good luck! Amy Bly
Feb 11, 2014 06:55 AM
Hi, I would like to have some yarn to crochet some hats. Any leftover or unused will be good for me. Thanks
Mar 01, 2014 10:49 AM


Mar 26, 2017 08:44 PM