Cashing in on kerbside collection: How to turn your neighbour’s junk into treasure

Dec 21, 2019
One man's trash is another man's treasure. Source: Getty

Counting down the days until the next kerbside pick-up? The long-running tradition of kerbside collection in Australia provides a great chance to dispose of those bulky, unwanted items without even leaving the house. But, it’s also a great way to make money fast — after all, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure!

So, how can you make money?

Sweeping the streets during kerbside pick-up is an easy way to make money on the side. You’ll be surprised with what you can find, from homewares and appliances to couches and dining tables. And the best part is sometimes you stumble upon an item that’s in pretty good condition and only needs a bit of sprucing up to be usable — and it won’t cost you a thing!

Once you’ve found an item you like and its been repaired, it’s then time to sell (if you can part with it, that is). One way of selling your second-hand items for cash is to list them for sale on eBay. Another option is Facebook Marketplace which allows users of the hugely popular social media site to advertise their items for sale, free of charge. Or you could set up a good old Aussie garage sale and advertise with flyers in your local area.

If you miss out on goodies during kerbside collection in your neighbourhood, it’s always worth checking out your local ‘tip shop’ where the council or non-profit organisations sell the best items collected across the city for ridiculously low prices.

What are the rules around taking items left on the kerb?

According to a blog post on National Storage, the general rule in most Aussie cities is once an item hits the kerb, it’s free game. This means you’re free to take what you want, but practice caution.

If you wish to take things from kerbside collection, some councils advise that you should try to seek permission from the owner first. It’s also important to be respectful and careful while browsing through people’s pre-loved items — no one appreciates having their tidy pile turn into a mess, even if it’s just junk!

If you’re planning to sweep the streets the next time kerbside collection comes to your suburb, keep these handy tips in mind:

  • Take a car with a decent-sized boot. You never know what you might find
  • Some things will be dusty, so line your boot with an old sheet or curtain
  • Bring a friend. You might need help loading your car up with goodies
  • Know when to go. Check out your suburb’s kerbside collection dates online.

Important information: The information provided on this website is of a general nature and for information purposes only. It does not take into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. It is not financial product advice and must not be relied upon as such. Before making any financial decision you should determine whether the information is appropriate in terms of your particular circumstances and seek advice from an independent licensed financial services professional.

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Do you browse the streets come kerbside collection time? What have you picked up?

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