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What Happens to Office Furniture When You Throw It Away?

So you’ve decided to redecorate the office. Congratulations — there’s really nothing like refurbishing your work space to put a spring in everyone’s step. It’s essentially like giving your whole business a makeover. Not to mention how much happier and more productive people are when they’re working in pleasant surroundings.

But what about all the old office furniture? The stuff you just can’t find a home for in your new decorating scheme? Before you toss that stuff away, consider the costs, both to you and to the planet.

Throwing Stuff Away Is Bad for the Earth

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The EPA estimates that just 30 percent of all of our waste gets recycled. Every year, over 164 tons of stuff gets tossed out in the U.S., including 8,550,000 tons of furniture and furnishings.

Beyond the obvious issues of finding space for all this stuff, there are also a number of environmental issues with disposing of office furniture. Putting furniture in the landfill allows chemicals like formaldehyde, flame retardants, and fiberglass to seep into the surrounding earth and, potentially, the ground water.

Recycling, reusing, or donating your furniture can cut down on this problem considerably. It’s a relatively easy way to have a real impact on the environment and our planet.

Your Trash Might Be Someone Else’s Treasure

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If you’re totally over the furniture you have, you might considering donating it to someone else who could use it. There are tons of worthy charities who will accept your donations and give you a tax write-off in exchange. And you’ll be able to feel good about generating revenue for businesses that help people. It’s a win-win situation.

Goodwill and the Salvation Army accept furniture donations and have locations in most urban areas. You can also find a new home for your office furniture by posting it on the Freecycle Network. (Note that Freecycle doesn’t provide receipts, so donating through that site is probably best for folks who aren’t interested in the tax write-off.)

Tossing Your Office Furniture Is Like Throwing Away Money

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Finally, you can always sell your furniture to companies like us! Arnolds buys used office furniture of all kinds — whole buildings, small lots, high-end pieces, and budget items — and refurbishes it to better-than-new quality. If you’re interested in selling your old furniture and making money while you save the planet, contact us here. We’d love to talk to you.

Images: Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources/Flickr, Office Now/Flickr, Arnolds Office Furniture

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