Babies require a lot of gear, and by the time a couple has finished having children they may find themselves with entire basements full of items that still have a lot of life left. How can parents free themselves from the clutter as efficiently as possible?
- Store: Big ticket items, items with sentimental value, unused items, timeless items. Before deciding to hang on to an item for future grandchildren, ask yourself if it will still have value in 20+ years. Items that tend to become outdated over time include swings, bassinet, decorations and clothing. If you invested in a top-of-the-line stroller, or inherited a beautiful antique rocking horse, set aside some storage to keep these items in the family. Gently used toys may also be useful in the future. One of my daughter's favorite things about visiting her grandma's house is being able to play with all the "vintage" toys that used to belong to her dad. They are just as fun now as they were back then! Make sure to keep up with recall alerts, however.
- Donate: Non name,brand clothes, bedding, anything that isn't in great condition but is still safe to use. Most donation sites will give you a receipt for tax savings.
- Sell: Gently used name-brand clothing, anything new with original packaging and tags, toys in good condition. Re-sale shops are convenient and often pay cash up front, but many parents find they can maximize compensation for their items by selling at garage sales, or on websites such as eBay and Craigslist.
- Repurpose: Clothing made with attractive fabrics, towels, furniture. Creative types may cut squares out of old baby clothes to make keepsake quilts, or salvage old furniture. Your child's crib could be turned into a bench, or his changing table could be turned into a shelving unit. Dressers may be turned into large dollhouses or book cases. Use towels, washcloths and old cotton clothing as cleaning rags.
- Trow Away: Anything stained, broken, damaged or recalled.