Start Decluttering with Craigslist Free Stuff

Craigslist isn’t just for finding a job, or selling something: you can also use it to get rid of excess stuff that cannot be sold.

Many years ago, I needed to clear out a stuffed garage. We did the “dump it into the trash” thing, but there was just too much trash. I called scrappers to take stuff, and also put things out on trash day, but it wasn’t enough. I decided to give things away on Craigslist’s “Free Stuff” category.

Listing individual items worked! However, I figured out how to get rid of things even faster: the curb alert.

“Curb alert” is a term that was taken from the Freecycle community. People would put something on the curb, and post a “curb alert” describing it. The receiver could go there and try to be first to pick it up.

It was extremely simple: put out the stuff a couple days before trash pickup day, and post an ad on Craigslist with the title “Curb Alert” and a description of the items, and the address. Often someone would pick it up.

Then, I got more elaborate and set up an area in the front yard that was a perpetual give-away area. I’d drag things there, take photos, and advertise.

I’d usually just replace the previous ad’s photos. People would come by to grab things. Sometimes, it would all be gone, taken by a scrapper.

I got rid of hundreds, probably thousands of pounds of junk and “good stuff” over several months. It didn’t feel like I was disposing of that much stuff, mainly because I never had to lift it into the trash can.

I’d move it outside, and someone else would take it away.

I have a free book crammed with more information about using Craigslist to get rid of your stuff.