5 Ways to Get Rid of Unwanted Furniture

Purple couch with "free" written on it in tape and a chair on a curb

Michael Coghlan / Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0

Maybe it's time to downsize, or your son just moved out and you want to repurpose his bedroom into a home office. How do you get rid of unwanted furniture without leaving the comfort of your home? Gone are the days of hauling stuff to the curb or moving that old bed to your nephew's dorm room with a truck and some friends. Here are five nifty ways to remove unwanted furniture without lifting a finger.

1. Cool apps

There are a number of apps for selling furniture, but one of my favorites is OfferUp, which began as a Seattle-only business but has grown to a national presence since its launch in 2011. Developed by two dads who had a mountain of kids' stuff that they only needed for a short time, OfferUp streamlines the selling process by allowing you to snap a photo and list your item within seconds. Buyers can browse in their local vicinity, and buyers and sellers only communicate through in-app messaging, as opposed to exchanging phone numbers or email addresses. The app also offers ID checks; buyers scan their driver's license before making a purchase, which is then cross-referenced through public records. Another similar app to try? VarageSale, which recently began offering in-app payments to simplify the process even more.

2. Move Loot

Move Loot takes a little less legwork on your part but requires a little more patience. Originally, Move Loot would pick up your unwanted items and store them until they were sold. But the owners quickly realized the difficulty of storing everyone's unwanted stuff and abruptly changed their model. Now, you have to hold onto the item while the company lists it for you. Once someone buys it, Move Loot will pick up the item and deliver it for you. If you have a piece of furniture worth selling, this option may be perfect for you.

3. Donation pickups

There are a number of organizations that will pick up furniture that's in resalable condition — i.e., it's not falling apart and doesn't have major stains or tears. Some of these organizations will only pick up small pieces of furniture, like nightstands, mirrors and headboards, but it's worth a quick call to see if they'll accept your stuff. Some places to try include the Salvation Army, Vietnam Veterans of America or your local breast cancer foundation.

4. Freecycle

A nonprofit organization that encourages people to repurpose or give away things instead of throwing them out, Freecycle has dedicated followers in every major urban area. Some groups are more active than others, but regular posters and lurkers might be hankering to use your old stuff.

5. Craigslist 'free stuff' section

OK, so this one requires lifting some fingers, but it's a surefire way to get rid of unwanted furniture fast. Craigslist is the grandfather of the online garage sale. Though you can sell stuff on Craigslist, the fastest way to get rid of unwanted furniture is to take advantage of the "free stuff" or "curb alert" feature, which allows you to put an item outside your house and list it on the site as a free pickup. Once your item is posted in the free section, it's as good as gone. And depending on where you live, you will barely have the chance to list it before someone comes around to pick it up.