Sure you'd like to recoup part of your investment in that bunk bed, but if there are no takers, consider donating it to a worthy organization instead.
Schedule a pick-up for volumes of all kinds with donationtown.org. Enter your zip code and choose from charities in your area. If none are available, contact your local library, hospital, or the nearest Goodwill or Salvation Army stores for drop-off spots. You can also send fiction and nonfiction titles to Books for Africa (booksforafrica.org), which will match them with schools, orphanages, and literacy programs across the continent.*
Those worn-once prom or bridesmaid dresses take up valuable closet space. Log on to donatemydress.org to find a dress drive in your area. Affiliated organizations connect with teens who might not otherwise be able to afford something to wear for a special occasion.
Bring it to your local Habitat for Humanity ReStore (visit habitat.org/restores for locations). These shops sell donated items at a discount and use the proceeds to fund the construction of Habitat homes. You can also donate to a local furniture bank (find one at nationalfurniturebank.org), which distributes essentials like sofas, beds, tables, and lamps to families in need.
Give shin guards to youth teams in Colombia, basketballs to kids in the Philippines, or tennis rackets to students in Los Angeles through Sports Gift (sportsgift.org), which delivers gently used gear to disadvantaged children all over the world.
Keep them until the fall (most drives start in October) then search for a local coat drive on onewarmcoat.org. Sweaters, sweatshirts, hats, and gloves may also be accepted.
Try to recycle your high-tech junk (for tips, see the next slide). If you can't, consider greendisk.com, which safely recycles items for you. Ship off old VHS tapes and floppy discs to ACT (actrecycling.org), a nonprofit in Columbia, Missouri, that trains and employs disabled people. Call to Protect at Wireless Foundation (wirelessfoundation.org) gives charities the proceeds from selling phones. Cell Phones for Soldiers (cellphonesforsoldiers.com) puts the cash toward calling cards for overseas troops. The National Cristina Foundation (cristina.org) matches used tech equipment with local organizations like schools or nonprofits.
*In most cases shipping is on your dime but tax-deductible. Check websites for details.