Joyful DOWNSIZING Tackles What to Do With Your Decluttered Stuff

Kim Kubsch

As owner of Joyful DOWNSIZING and a Sun Lakes resident, I am passionate about helping boomers and seniors declutter to simplify their lives with downsizing unwanted stuff and organizing the remaining items.

Here are four things you can do with items you have decluttered:

1. Trash It. Some stuff that you’ve decluttered is probably ready to go straight to the dump. These may be items that are broken or damaged.

2. Donate It. Most of the stuff you’ve decluttered can probably be donated to a location like Goodwill or The Salvation Army. I recommend donating anything you have that could still be used and enjoyed by someone else. A pair of pants with a hole in them? Probably trash. Donation centers do not want your old VCR tapes or bed pillows.

3. Pass It On. Another thing you can do with items you are ready to part with is to personally pass them on to a new home. If you choose to go this route, only pass items on if you’re confident the recipient truly wants the item. You may know what it’s like to be gifted an item and then be stuck with not being sure what to do with it!

4. Sell It. Selling your items sounds like a great idea, right? Well, maybe. It takes a lot of work. You’ll either need to list the item online like on,,,, (this involves taking photos, writing descriptions, answering inquiries, and then either shipping or meeting up to exchange the item!) or you’ll need to host a garage sale. If you are permanently vacating your home, most subdivisions allow estate sales. These need to be arranged at least six weeks prior to your departure date and before close of escrow or home handover.

Consider how valuable your time is. How much would you be willing to pay someone to come to your house, take photos of your items for you, write descriptions, post listings, and take care of delivering the purchases to the recipients? Well, if you’d pay more for that service than you’re expecting to make from your sales, it’s probably best to simply donate your items. Reviewing historical online auction sites can provide pricing insights, as does the “Advanced Search” on Look for sold prices, not asking prices!

A difficult consideration is figuring out how much your stuff is worth. Truth is, we tend to over-value our items. Our stuff is worth as much as someone is willing to pay for it. You may have a nice jacket that you paid $100 for, but it’s likely you can only get $15 to $30 out of it.

With consignment shops, you need to have the items accepted by the consignment shop. Then the item needs to sell within the agreed time period, or it will be donated. In some cases, the items can be retrieved by the consignee if not sold. The split often ranges between 40% and 50% to you in the form of cash or 50% and 60% in store credit.

If you are planning to sell your items, put a deadline on the calendar to sell them by, and if they aren’t sold by that date, then donate them. Joyful DOWNSIZING assists clients with decluttering, plus all four ways to let go of your decluttering.

Contact me to learn about my free 30-minute consultation at 480-720-8566 or [email protected], or visit