How to Sell, Donate, or Dispose Unwanted Furniture in NYC

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Often times people use the moving process as an opportunity to get rid of many belongings they held onto too long. Most NYC apartments are just too small to hold onto space-taking items like furniture, especially if it is superfluous. Some stuff is easy to get rid of or turn into cash; furniture could not be considered one of those items, especially in a place like New York City. The sheer size and mass of most furniture items make them difficult to transport without large vehicles and multiple people helping. There are several kosher and sensible ways to get rid of unwanted furniture without necessarily calling upon the help of professional movers (although, we personally think that is always a good option.)


KEY TIP: Make sure you empty all compartments of the furniture before dumping it. Who knows what might be in there? Remotes, change, lost keys, etc. etc. Check inside the cracks in the furniture as well as the compartments that are meant to be used for storage.

 

Dump them

The most convenient option for getting rid of furniture is dumping it. But dumping furniture correctly and legally and without repercussions in NYC isn’t always simple. For example, mattresses need to be covered with a mattress bag to prevent the spread of bed bugs. Most buildings will have stipulations on getting rid of large trash items. People can’t just dump their stuff anywhere; NYC building managers specify these larger items have to go in a certain place. Plus, these managers may only permit these items to be disposed on certain days, to prevent overcrowding whatever area these large items would be placed in for too long.  

WHAT TO DO: Ask the supervisor of your apartment building when & where you are allowed to dump your furniture.


Donate them

Instead of just throwing out your old furniture, why not use it to better the life of someone less fortunate in the NYC area? Furniture can often be very useful for those without much means, even if it’s not in the best condition. Often charities will even allow you to schedule a pickup of these belongings, leaving the work to others. In many cases you can even use your donation to receive a tax deduction!

  • If you can’t visit one of the more than 50 Salvation Army donation centers in the NYC metro area, the charity also will pick up items for you in New York.

  • NYC-based non profit Housingworks will also pick up certain furniture items for you.

  • You can always advertise items you’ll give away on Craigslist as well. (You can even advertise stuff as you’re dumping it with a “curb alert”).


WHAT TO DO: Schedule a pickup with a local charitable organization, or post a curb alert on craigslist if you’re in a time crunch and need to dump the furniture.


 

Sell them

Since you paid for your furniture, someone else must want to pay for it, right? Even after repeated use diminishes the condition of furniture, most of it still has value, and someone unwilling to pony up for new furniture would likely be interested in buying it. There are a few options for selling your furniture before a move.

  • AptDeco is a website purposed as a marketplace for buying and selling used furniture. The site provides delivery services in exchange for a cut of the price, which makes the sale process easier for time-strapped sellers.

  • Facebook marketplace is a new function that allows Facebook users to list items for sale in their community. Facebook users selling furniture can also try and find groups where locals in their neighborhood are buying and selling furniture or other items (such as Buying and Selling Anything (NYC)

  • The “Moving Sale” Craigslist post is an old favorite. Can’t hurt to try it.


WHAT TO DO: Take a few photos of your furniture item(s), write a short description for each, and post them for sale on a few different websites.

Reuse them

Haven’t come up with a way to get rid of your furniture that makes sense for you? Find a way to re-use the furniture you already have to save money and hassle, if you can. Reupholster or refinish old furniture to make it suitable to reuse in a new home. Out of date furniture can be used in a guest bedroom or in some other less prominent part of a new home.

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