The Holiday Season generally means gifts aplenty. Now that Christmas is over, new and unused items that were unwanted gifts turn the average dumpster into a treasure chest. Unfortunately, it’s sometimes easier for people to toss unwanted gifts in the rubbish than it is to return or exchange them at a store. And, even when an item is taken back to the retailer, it may still end up in a landfill.
Dumpsters Full of Good Tidings and Cheer
CNN Money reported $90 billion worth of goods are returned during the holiday season each year. Less than half of items returned can be resold at full price. What makes that even more surprising, only half of those returns are put back on the shelves at all. So where do the rest end up?
Through a long and expensive process, those items could be sent back with the manufacturer, resold to secondary retailers or discounted and sold to liquidators. It turns out it may be cheaper for retailers to throw out returned goods than it is to assess, repackage and ship them.
While it is depressing to think your thoughtful gift to Aunt Gertrude could end up in a landfill, it also means your local dumpsters could see a huge influx of new and like-new treasures. What better way to kick off the new year than by collecting your greatest haul yet!
Get Ready to Regift to Yourself
Before you head out, make a play. Identify which dumpsters you’d like to check and map them out to make sure your route is an efficient one.
Make sure you bring any necessary supplies. From a flashlight to containers to transport your finds, make sure your vehicle is loaded and ready to go. Be sure to add a first aid kit to your supply list, just in case.
Bring a friend with you. Not only is it more fun to dumpster dive with company, it is more practical. They can help hold dumpster lids open, load items into your car as you find them and they can even help clean up the area when you are done.
As always, be aware and respectful of any local laws and posted signs.