Is your home organized and comfortable?

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by Copabanana, Dec 26, 2018.

  1. Nomad

    Nomad Well-Known Member

    I can’t see the photo clearly. But, the progress sounds wonderful. I have certainly done that before. Moved things to the garage as a first step. It’s a process. Hang in there. It’s worth it!
  2. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Thank you nomad. I added a couple paragraphs to the latter post, about the eBay items. I would so appreciate feedback.thank you.

    I'll put in another picture of the dining room tomorrow when it's light. I wanted to meet the deadline. (Smile)
  3. Nomad

    Nomad Well-Known Member

    I am not all that familiar with ebay.
    We took the attitude with our last garage sale that we would take just about anything for items. And, you might consider doing the same thing with ebay if that is the route you take. I had a garage sale a good five years ago and another right before we moved perhaps 18 months ago.
    I was pretty lenient five years ago and extremely lenient 18 months ago.
    I recall five years ago, I had hard back books in perfect shape that I spent $25 for and I sold them for 25 cents. Hysterical. Who ever bought them, got the deal of the century. What I didn't sell, I took to Goodwill. I thought to myself...hmmm.... I should limit buying so many books, try to buy them used and so forth. In the pile were books that I read one chapter and decided I hated the book.
    I digress...
    The sale from 18 months ago was when we moved and to make matters worse, the buyers closing was moved up due to their loan restrictions. The stuff had to GO.
    So, my husband and I did not make a huge announcement , but the truth was we took ANY offer. I sold a wine cooler that we barely used for $3.00. IT was seriously crazy. BUT, that was $3.00 more than I had the day before and less "stuff" that I needed to put on the moving truck. IN fact, we filled the moving truck to capacity. I fI had to get a bigger truck or two trucks from this mover, I would have been charged a lot more.
    These are crazy hard decisions.
    But, if you have made the hard decision (although some things are not as hard as others) that certain things need to GO, I think MOST things one has to accept you might get VERY VERY little money for and a decent amount of things, you might get NO money for. This includes broken items....probably needs to go to Goodwill or even the dump. You might call a computer repair place to ask them if there is a place that buys such computers for parts...maybe ones that are very new are a possibility.
    Anything of potential decent value I put an add in the paper separately.
    But, by and large, the great majority of items I sold for ridiculously small amounts of money.
    It was a shame, but STILL worth it big time.
    I will never ever let my house get cluttered again. Loving the freedom a decluttered home provides. I do think a bit longer before purchasing now. I have my Goodwill box n the car ready to go OUT as we speak.
    Hang in there.
    Remember...this stuff can be brutal...but sooo worth it.
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  4. Tired out

    Tired out Active Member

    Copa, I have sold on Ebay. I find it a PITA !!! I won't do it anymore. If it's clothes, belts, purses, I take those to the resale shop, NOT consignment, just the shops that pay me for the stuff and what they don't take I drop off at Salvation Army. As for the other stuff, see if there is a resale shop for stuff and take it there. To me garage sales are a lot of work. I did do a garage sale 1x and set up 6 or 7 tables. I everything just marked with those different colored circle stickers. If it was small stuff I put a few in a bag or box for $1, the had $5, 10, 15, 20. that was it. if it was stuff that was worth more than 5 less than 10 I put 5. I sold a lot and people of course bargained. What ever, it got cleared out. Computers.. funny you say about them. So hard to toss when they are price. I got rid of 2 laptops, I had 2 that worked but weren't up to speed for me. I cleaned them off and gave them to the homeless shelter. They were happy to take them. I had to obsolete desktops that I cleared of, pulled the hard drives and dropped off at Best charge for them to get rid of those.
    Also, here FB has on-line garage sale sites for local areas. I got rid of washer, dryer and a refrigerator on there. I gave them away (I could have sold them, but hey if someone would just come and get them I was happy!) People sell tons of stuff on the local on-line gargle sales. Don't offer delivery just post 5 things/week let people get them and go from there.
    Just ideas.
    My house is pretty much cleaned out at this point. I really could go through the kitchen cupboards again. But last summer when Ben and his girlfriend got an apartment I did a BIG clear out and gave the stuff to them. It felt so good to downsize that stuff.
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  5. AppleCori

    AppleCori Well-Known Member

    Your dining room looks great!

    Such an improvement!

    As for your front bedroom: the items you have in there served their purpose. They helped you cope with your mother’s passing. It was money well spent.

    Marie Kondo would say that it is time to thank them for their service and let them go.

    Do you itemize your taxes? If you do, donations of clothing and books are great write-offs.

    How much money can you really get by selling the items on Facebook Marketplace or EBay? Is the money worth the time spent? Those are questions you need to answer for yourself. You definitely can just donate stuff, even if you don’t get s tax write-off. You could also split the difference—sell a few things that you can get a lot of money for and donate the rest. Give yourself permission to do with the items what is best for you and let them go. Stop beating yourself up over these things. It’s all “water under the bridge” so to speak. I wonder if having the items in your house is more of a burden to you that you know. Getting rid of them could be very freeing. Give yourself permission to donate as much as you want to and don’t look back. It sounds to me like you really don’t want to spend months of your life selling this stuff. Is it worth it? Is that what you want to do with your life?

    I used to sell used homeschool items online, but I have switched to selling locally and donating/giving away more. The time spent wasn’t worth the money, to me. I have never regretted giving things away. I only sell high dollar stuff and give away/donate the rest.

    As for the computers, I would probably get rid of them all and get a new one. They depreciate so quickly that I’m not sure it would be worth putting more money into old ones. Do you really need five computers, anyway? One reliable computer is better than five junked ones cluttering your space. Again, give yourself permission to just let them go.

    None of the “stuff” is worth stressing out over. It is hard on your health, which is worth more than the money you might recoup.
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  6. Nomad

    Nomad Well-Known Member

    Hubby and I have made the decision that it’s not worth having a garage sale at our new place. Instead, I take things regularly to Goodwill. I had something a little on the expensive side I was considering putting an ad in the paper for or a FB garage sale and our son said he wanted it and I gave it to him. And he uses it. I’m fine with that.

    But, previously I had sooo much stuff plus I was in an area that for whatever reason, people attended garage sales. Soooo, those couple of dollar items added up to several hundred. It was funny as heck because my husband was grouchy as heck at the beginning but ended up having a blast. Why? Because at some point he realized these people were rapidly cleaning out his garage and giving him money to do it! Instead of him driving stuff to Goodwill, people were picking it up. Plus we met nice people and folks we hadn’t seen in years.

    But, it is a lot of work to set up and so forth.

    But, we don’t do it any more. We just take things ongoing to Goodwill and I hope my things find good homes are a blessing to someone.

    Of course older heirloom items require a little more thought.
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  7. Elsi

    Elsi Active Member

    Copa, I agree with others here - garage sales and eBay are more work than they are worth. If it was easy, and you really wanted to do it, you would have done it already.

    The things you have accumulated are a ‘sunk cost,’ and holding on to them has additional costs for you. As others have said, they have served their purpose for you. No sense in beating yourself up over them now.

    I understand the feeling that you want to get something back out of them, but recognize that you’re likely to get pennies to the dollar for things, and most things won’t be worth it. Perhaps one way to do it would be to focus only on the highest dollar items with the most resale potential - the 20% that will net you 80% of the potential value. Donate the rest immediately or take it to a resale shop where they will give you money for bulk items immediately. The remaining items, list in a local buy/sell/trade Facebook group or online board. I have found these MUCH easier than eBay. No messing with packaging or mailing stuff - you can list stuff for porch pickup or arrange to meet locally to hand stuff over for cash. Put a deadline on it. Anything not gone by X date goes to goodwill.

    It’s probably time to junk the remaining computers, or wipe them and sell them for parts, and invest in one new decent one. You can get something decent for the money it would cost to repair all those others.

    You’re making great progress already - kudos!
  8. PiscesMom

    PiscesMom Active Member

    Hi! I have been following this thread. My house is always messier than i would like - but part of that is because we do things - art, and we cook a lot.
    There is a book I want to read, and a reality show called Tidying Up with Marie Kondo that looks promising.
    I am selling a bunch of things right now on eBay - I find it pretty easy, especially since I am on a budget, and it is so much reward to have free money!
  9. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Thank you everybody. There is so much to respond to and I will do so over the next few days .I am on my cell and I hate typing on my cell.

    But already so much more clarity!

    Elsi. I had never heard the term sunk costs. I looked it up. Yes.

    There are losses in life that cannot be recouped. They are to be accepted and dealt with in one way or another. Written off. Redeemed. Acknowledged. Or carried forward.

    Analysis is required. About ones course. So as to not sink deeper.

    Each of these dispositions/decisions if about oneself, the inventory of self, the assets and liabilities of a life, at best involves conscious choice, processing and awareness that there is self definition involved in what is accrued, let go, maintained In the balance sheet that is a life.

    I have been thinking lately about alchemy.
    How one thing is transmuted into another by an intentional chemical process that is not science but not accidental or serendipity. The changing is intended and planned but at the same time magical and wondrous. Something wonderful is created out of nothing. (I will now go look it up and get back to you.)

    But what I want to say first is this: what do I want to create? ((From this clearing out, rearranging, letting go, weeding...)

    And the answer I come up with is: myself.

    What will be left, what will emerge, what will become, be transformed, transmuted is me.

    Which is what happens to people on this board who keep posting over years.

    So. Where do I go with this?

    Self forgiveness.

    The declaration I am enough.

    That I live from my own center, according to my needs and values and the greater good of all.

    And that my choices from here on out make sense in terms of my life story, with the past and the end.

    This is what the buying has given me. It was never about the stuff. I was seeking a center. My own. The stuff is neither here nor there. What I paid for I got. A self. It matters not one whit what goes or stays. I have realized the value that I needed from the transaction.

    And that is the transmutation, the alchemy. I was none of those things when my mother died. Not conscious of my needs. Nor of my boundaries. Nor of my center. I was missing pieces and parts. Mostly a mother I never had and desperately needed. And i could never acknowledge fully until now, the pain and loneliness of that lack. With the stuff I piece by piece fleshed out this emptiness and salved it's pain. Click by click

    And that was the transmutation.

    Instead of shame at the stuff, the leaking out of unacknowledged need and want and lack, hurt and vulnerability there is gratitude, even glory and pride in a sense of myself.

    Thank you people.
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    Last edited: Jan 5, 2019
  10. Lil

    Lil Well-Known Member

    When it comes to selling stuff, it's a cost/ benefit thing. There are easier ways than eBay. Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace, Let go... to name a few. Never sold on eBay, only the other ways. You have to be careful to watch for scammers and specify CASH ONLY AND the people have to meet you somewhere neutral. I personally don't mind garage sales, but they are a lot of work and people want to pay pennies for something worth dollars.

    What it comes down to is: do you NEED the money? If you can live without it, don't bother.

    You absolutly DID. And you have. But it may be time to move on. Buying things helped you. Getting rid of them may help you let go.

    Ran across this today. Thought it might be relevant to the discussion.
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  11. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    I donate but never to Goodwill. I dont think Goodwill is a real charity....i i worked there. But they DO make it easy to donate!

    But I donated to our Domestic Abuse Center and Salvation Army and would ask people that I knew were needy if they wanted certain things. I think ite a real pain to sell and with costs for mailing big items is it worth it??

    I found several sites on YouTube, which you can find too, called Horror Stores of Craigslist in which people had scary experiences with the strangers you may meet on Craigslist for selling or buying items. And while I am not that afraid of if happening to me, it was one more thing making donations seem great.
  12. Nomad

    Nomad Well-Known Member

    I will check out and consider Salvation Army!
    I have used Vietnam Vets and some other charities as well.
    Oh..when my dad died I gave a few things to our son, kept a few things and gave the rest to a group like Vietnam Vets or something similar (I can’t recall). It was vet related.
  13. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    Yeah, we gave a non running car to the vets. They use them, I heard, to teach the vets returning to work how to fix vehicles.
  14. Lil

    Lil Well-Known Member

    The lovely thing about Salvation Army and Habitat for Humanity is they pick up big items like furniture. Now that I think of it, there is a charity called Dreams to Reality that provides women with professional clothing for job interviews and work attire. I'm sure they take decent purses and such. Homeless shelters and domestic violence shelters always need blankets and coats and boots and things too.

    There are lots of places that need unused and gently used items.

    See if there is a high school or vocational school computer program that would like those non-working computers @Copabanana. Maybe Job Corps. I think auto mechanic vocational schools may take cars. They sometimes fix them as part of their class.
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    Last edited: Jan 5, 2019
  15. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    Easter Seals, for disabled children, will pick up donations.

    There are also many local charity stores that truly donate almost all its money to worthy causes. We had Bethesda Lutheran who ran a home for people with brain disorders, mainly tumors I think.

    Goodwill uses your donations only if they feel they are good enough to sell, and dont.put them out if they dont feel it the item will sell. Also they dont give the less quality stuff to needy charities, and their CEOs make a fortune. Some GWs hire a few disabled workers who make peacemail pennies. In our Goodwell they only hired a handful of disabled people who got full pay but did menial stuff for three hours every other week. 99 percent of the workers had no disabilities at all. They were for making money. For those in power. The peons made a low wage. I could go on and on but was not impressed by the Goodwill as an organazation with helping the needy.

    They throw out all glass, dishes and other like donations that dont sell rather than donate. As far as I saw they do nothing for the community. i prefer when everything goes somewhere.

    In one small oeganization I volunteered at, they gave free clothes. The people could pick out the clothing. But some donors broughtbstuff nobody wanted or were too strange for the poor to wear... They wanted at least to fit in. Most would pick out and wear even torn jeans, but not bright yellow pants! So we did have leftovers.

    All of the unchosen clothing were sent to indigent countries overseas. Nothing was wasted unless it was filthy. I loved that place. Some guys would pick up our bags and ship them to places where people are thrillef to wear anything!

    Now I wont bash anyone if they use Goodwill. Guiltily we sometimes give them bigger items because its the easiest place to donate. They make donating VERY easy ans sometimes we are not willing to haul a desk to a less convenient location. But we try not to give them much.
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    Last edited: Jan 5, 2019
  16. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Ok. Here we are. This is the eBay room.

    I already started getting packing paper and bubble wrap into bags.

    I feel waaay less frantic. Waaay more in control. I feel I can deal. The power equation has changed, inverted .I am in charge now.

    I will only fill one yard bag with wrap so I can declare this started. M and I tomorrow will work on the garage. With that there will be no more horribleness to stare down. Just jobs to do little by little.

    Except that is a lie. There is the house that is the office property. The garage is another disaster But I am doing this. Thank you.

    Attached Files:

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  17. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    We were getting things cleared out; either donated to a local thrift store or hitting the trash. But started to rain. And the laundry room flooded. There's also a leak in a corner of the kitchen. I'm stressed.
  18. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    It's raining here too. Oh gee. I'm sorry about the leak/flood. Do you have help?

    My insurance guy told me it's important to get sandbags. He says the claim can be denied if the owner does not demonstrate due diligence.

    I would try to go to Home Depot tomorrow and buy a plastic tarp for the leak and a sandbag for the door. Even after the fact it would protect you and insurance would pay for any damage.

    The agent says just put the sandbag near the door.

    What else can you do?
  19. Tired out

    Tired out Active Member

    KTMom. I hope the flood was contained.

    Copa, it sounds like you are coming to terms and making headway!
    When I put our Christmas decor away, dragged out and sorted, purged all the stuff I hadn't used the last couple of years I felt great! My hubby was so happy when he saw the boxes of stuff that was leaving and he was fine with the couple of boxes I marked "Ben?", stuff he may want to add to their Christmas decorations next year.
    It feels so good to walk in and see clean space.
    Tomorrow I am going back in the attic and finishing the last section. There isn't much there but I want to see how much can go.
    I saw you had plastic containers, those snap together things. If y ou don't want those you may want to give them to the elementary teachers donation box. Our little kids art teacher uses a lot of those to separate stuff. I had lots of new boxes of crayons and stuff like that I had gotten deals on ( I over bought, I admit it). I gave a bunch of it to the children's librarian, along with a couple of snap ware storage bins, when i go through that section of the library those containers are still there. The rest I gave to the neighborhood elementary art teacher.
    They have a craft hour and the littles can sit and draw and make cards.
    You will feel so good when that room is cleared out!
  20. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    I did make headway today. In the eBay room. I felt in command of the situation. Until I faced how much junk jewelry I bought. ItIis ugly and horrible. One bright spot is that I spent very little on most of it. But having to face how out of control I was. Disconnected from myself. Is painful and shameful. What a waste. Of money. Time. Life.

    All of the perspective I felt earlier today I feel has slipped away. For now.
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2019