As you spend another morning washing what seem to the exact same loads of clothes that you wash every week, you realize again the clutter in your home. If each member of your family continually wears the same 30 pieces of clothing, why is every closet in the house bursting at its seams with other items that are never touched? Fueled by this reasoning, you announce that this weekend will be the time that your family donates to deluttering. You plan to make a major clothing drop off on Monday morning, and your are offering a coffee gift card reward to the family member who gets rid of the most stuff.
It may not take a coffee card contest to get your family to spend time sorting through closets, drawers, cabinets, and cupboards, but if it does it seems worth the investment. Today’s American families have become collectors. Some would say hoarders. When we have reached the point where reality television shows address the need for decluttering out homes, we must realize that we have a problem.
Did you know, for instance, that the average American buys at least twice as many pieces of clothing as he or she did 20 years ago? We just love stuff, and because we live in bigger and bigger homes we think we can keep it all. Studies indicate, however, that clutter leads to stress. Unfortunately, that stress leads to hectic lives that make us lose track of what we already have and instead buy more of what we really do not need.
An Organized Plan to Donate Clothing and Other Household Items Creates a More Peaceful Home
Without a plan like a clothing drop off deadline, many families will never take the time to sort through their current inventory of clothes, shoes, and other household items. And without a plan or a deadline, many families when they do find items they no longer use simply throw these things away. Alarmingly, the average American throws away as much as 70 pounds of clothing, linens, and other textiles every year. these are materials that could be donated to helping military families and other charity foundations.
Clothing that is not of a high enough quality can be recycled. Even though a piece of clothing is in such poor condition that no one else would wear it, these same items can be recycled. Currently, textiles account for 5% of all of the municipal waste in this country. Our unused and discarded textiles are cluttering our landfills because only about 15% of them are recycled.
Throwing instead of recycling textiles is unfortunate, not only because these items remain in our landfills, but because these discarded items can serve a greater purpose. The recycled textile industry is a significant sector of our country, producing new products from recycled textiles, as well as producing many jobs. Almost 100% of household textiles and clothing can be recycled, no matter how poor their quality and condition. Having an organized plan for clothing donations can keep items from carelessly being thrown out and landing in our trash. As you sort through your clothing, you simply create a recycle pile as well as a donation.
Donated Clothing Can Also Serve a Tax Deduction
Although it is not the only reason to donate, clothing donations can provide tax deductions. All donation centers and clothing drop off sites provide receipts for donated items. Consider the value of some of the most common donated items:
- Coffee makers are generally worth $4 to $15 as a tax write-off.
- Children’s shoes are generally worth $3 to $10 as a tax write-off.
- Men’s suits and overcoats are generally worth $60 as a tax write-off.
- Women’s blouses are generally worth $4 to $9 as a tax write-off.
- Children’s snow boots are generally worth $6 to $10 as a tax write-off.
- Women’s two piece suits are generally worth $10 to $96 as a tax write-off.
- Kitchen table sets are generally worth $35 to $135 as a tax write-off.
- Coffee tables are generally worth $15 to $100 as a tax write-off.
Why not spend this weekend sorting through and getting rid of the clothing and household items that you no longer use? Clothing drop off donation sites are convenient and fast.