Spring is historically a time when people consider clearing their homes of unwanted clutter, and the practice of spring cleaning is something that is prevalent within many different cultures and religions. This can also create a great deal of additional household waste, of which Americans produced approximately 250 million tons during 2010. Figures released by the Environmental Protection Agency also reported that an estimated 54% of this waste was sent to landfill sites, which reinforces the need for homeowners to dispose of their goods responsibly and in a way that minimizes waste while maximizing their potential profit.

SEE: 6 Financial Benefits Of Spring Cleaning

Trading Technology: Cashing in on Outdated Devices
Homeowners in 2011 are therefore fortunate that they can not only recycle their unwanted goods, but also trade or sell them for financial reward. Just recently, leading technology retailer RadioShack announced that its customers have managed to save an estimated total of $1 million as part of America's Mobile Technology Makeover Month, simply by trading in used and unwanted devices. As a consumer, you are rewarded with cash and up to $300 in immediate store credit when you trade in your working mobile phone and activate a new one.

This gives you and your fellow consumers the opportunity to clear your technological clutter without having to scrap perfectly functional devices or hardware, as well as allowing you to maximize the initial investment that was made when you purchased the items. Given the pace of advancement in the technological industry, and the speed with which mobile phones, cameras and MP3 players become outdated, failing to embrace the concept of trading can leave a number of goods with high resale value sitting idle in your home.

Sell Your Unwanted Clothes
The increase in social awareness and prolonged economic uncertainty has forced society to turn its back on the throwaway culture, and instead encouraged citizens to find more responsible ways of both deploying their unwanted clothes and purchasing new garments. This is proven by the sharp increase in growth among resale and thrift outlets in the U.S., which according to research by The Association of Resale Professionals reached 7% throughout 2010 and 2011. This shift in the clothing and buying culture of the U.S. is significant, and proves that the stigma of owning secondhand or recycled clothing is no longer prominent within society.

This has also made the direct resale of your unwanted clothing a highly profitable practice, and one that allows you to market and sell your garments on e-commerce websites such as eBay. With a growing market of thrifty consumers seeking significant savings and vintage fashion garments, a spring clean of your wardrobe could generate significant revenues while creating space for new purchases. It is especially profitable if you choose to sell clothes that are in season, so focus on clearing your unwanted spring and summer garments during April and May.

Resell Your Unwanted Books, DVDs and Videos
With a growing range of media types now available, you may well find a burgeoning collection of unwanted books, DVDs and videos gathering in your home. There is a significant market in which these items can be sold, regardless of whether you choose to use online e-commerce websites or attend local flea markets and garage sales. Although you will be unable to charge a high price for each individual title, if you have a high enough volume of items then you can sell them in bulk and earn a sizable sum of cash.

Such a saturated market also offers you the chance to trade titles from your library with online swap sites such as SwapaDVD.com that connects you with other like-minded individuals looking to exchange their unwanted DVDs. While this may not sound like an option that can generate a profit or make a significant dent in your household clutter, if you are willing to learn more about the market and seek out valuable titles then you can make a swap and resell the product for financial gain.

The Bottom Line
While the tradition of spring cleaning may be an established one, recent innovations in technology and commerce have made it easier than ever to trade your unwanted goods and make a significant profit. With a similar shift in buying culture throughout the U.S., there is also a soaring demand for affordable secondhand items, and this ensures that an efficient spring clean can create space within your home while affording you an unexpected financial return.

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