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How to Know What Items You Need to Toss Post Divorce

October 1, 2019

A home full of clutter, keepsakes and accumulated possessions can be overwhelming to anyone but when you’re faced with divorce it can be paralyzing. You have essentially four options: Toss, Keep, Sell or Donate. This blog post helps you know what items you need to toss.  

Can the Item Be Repaired? 

Only toss items that cannot be repaired by you or easily by someone else who knows what they are doing. If the current value is less than the cost of repairing it, then toss and replace. 

What Is It? UPOs (unidentified plastic objects) get 30 days. If they're still a mystery one month later, into the trash they go. Examples that come to mind can be found in the closet of almost any child’s room or in a kitchen junk drawer.

It’s Paper but you Can Digitize it. Throw away old receipts you don’t need for tax day or for items you’re not returning. Then scan the rest or take pictures with your smartphone of the receipts, bills, and other financial papers, and store them in cyberspace.

Expired Medicine Disposal

In Colorado, you can visit these medication take back locations. If there’s no drop off near you, do not flush medications as it can affect the water supply. Instead, follow these steps before medicine hits the trashcan: 

  • Remove medications from their original containers and place in a zip-top bag or a sealable container with a secure lid (make sure you remove pill labels or cross out any identifying information and recycle or dispose the bottles separately).
  • Do not crush or attempt to dissolve pills and capsules.
  • Mix with something that can’t be eaten, like kitty litter or coffee grounds.
  • Wrap the bag or container in newspaper or a plain brown bag to conceal its contents

Items That Usually Get Tossed but Shouldn’t

“No More Wire Hangers!” If you’ve seen Mommy Dearest, you know just how frightening these can be. Instead of tossing hangers, take them to your local dry cleaners. They will save money from not having to buy as many new ones and you keep them out of the landfill. 

Magazines: If they are recent, within the last year, donate magazines to your local library or take them to a nursing home. Making vision boards has become very popular so post magazines on NextDoor, Craigslist or Facebook marketplace for free so these items can find new owners. 

Craft Supplies: Rather than toss these, you can post for free on the aforementioned websites or contact a school’s art program, daycare or after school program to see if they can use them. 

Stained or torn clothing: Use solo socks for dusting, especially between blinds and for ceiling fan blades. Items that are soft and absorbent also work well as cleaning rags. 

Future blog posts from the Divorce Resource Center will cover with what items to keep, sell, and donate. Stay tuned for more helpful tips and suggestions for your post divorce life.  

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At Divorce Resource Centre of Colorado, we have a team of seasoned Certified Divorce Financial Analysts (CDFA) who provide a cost-effective, respectful mediation process that allows couples and families to rebuild a secure post-divorce future.
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