Public Education – Saving Taxpayer Money With Trash Picking

In a previous post,, Shopping The Trash Through Sales Circulars, I wrote about how I rarely buy new. However, I do occasionally enjoy ‘pricing’ items that I’ve found in the trash. Generally, I do this online, comparing new & used prices. My boyfriend’s recent obsession for a particular type of material to make a sheath for a sword has led us into a few retail stores – mainly craft & office supplies. Seeing items I trash pick available for purchase in a store with real live shoppers just blows me away – especially when I see the prices!

A good friend of mine is a teacher, and over the years I’ve found lots of stuff for her classroom & school that otherwise would have had to be purchased. Here are a few finds from within the week, now gracing a few classrooms:

Sure, the plastic file folder isn’t the most exciting, but it was in the trash when I stopped for the chairs! Items I’ve found for her school include (but are not limited to): filing cabinets, refrigerators, dry erase boards, chalk boards, bulletin boards, shelving, TV’s, drafting tables, rolling carts, outdoor patio seating….

When another teacher is looking for some items (especially common office or classroom things), they always ask my friend, “Do you think your trash picker friend could find it?”. I love being able to connect people & finds!

How about you? Do you take requests for finds from friends, family or co-workers? Have you had success?

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2 Responses to Public Education – Saving Taxpayer Money With Trash Picking

  1. Pingback: Trashfinds

  2. jenna says:

    I love those purple chairs! Even newer less exciting items can be made fun with a bright coat of paint! I just found some circa 1970’s shelf units in the trash, one is an Ethan Allen corner shelf, the other a 5 level knick knack unit, both made with real wood, the 5 level is actually really pretty, both in excellent condition. I was thinking of painting them bright colors, but I can’t bring myself to do it yet because the wood still looks so pretty. Someone took good care of them. I also recently found a great iron plant stand, a vintage round american tourister suitcase, and a wood slat swivel bar stool.

    Yes, I do pick with others in mind, and have gotten some great pieces, but some people are offended by “used” stuff, so not everyone appreciates my thoughtfulness. People are shocked to find that my entire apartment contains only 2 pieces of furniture that I actually paid for, one is my bed and the other is a “hatchcover” table, a table made from the hatchcover of a ship…very popular in nautical decor, I found it at a second hand store in one of our beach towns for $20. They are usually much more expenisve, but I don’t believe the owner had any idea what it was.

    As for finding out what the monetary value is of my found items, I love doing that too! I go right online and search for almost everything I find. It’s part of the fun!!

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