Maybe you’re cleaning out your wardrobe, maybe you’ve been left a houseful of things from a grand-aunt, or maybe you’re downsizing before a move. Whatever it is that got you here, it’s a good thing, as donations always make a good difference. We’ve drafted out a list of 6 charities that offer free donation pick up; from clothes to toys to books and of course, furniture pieces, we’ve listed it all out in detail.


What Is The Best Charity To Donate Items To?

The best charity to donate items to is one that is, of course, legitimate, and one that means something to you. Of course, with charities and non-profit organizations, one can never be 100% sure that all your donations are going into the mentioned causes. But the best we can do on our part is to do our research and trust them to do the right thing. Doing your homework involves thorough Google searches, scanning the website (an informative website trumps a vague one), and asking friends and family which ones they trust. At the end of the day, donating usable items is always better than sending them off to the trash.

Your Search for “Pick-Up Donations Near Me” Ends Here!

CharityAccepted ItemsFree Pick-Up
GreendropItems < 50 pounds. Clothing, shoes, blankets, bedding, tools, collectibles, kitchenware, toys, small appliances, musical instruments, sporting goods.Yes
The Salvation ArmyClothing, household items, furniture, appliances, decorations, automobiles, electronics.Yes, but limited
GoodwillFurniture, clothes, accessories, dishware, glassware and electronics, cars, lawn mowers.Yes, for large furniture
Furniture Banks NetworkHousehold items, furniture.Yes
Habitat for HumanityFurniture, appliances, building materials, vehicles.Yes
Vietnam Veterans of AmericaClothing, accessories, baby items, house and glassware, books, toys, bikes, kitchenware, electronics, bedding and curtains, small furniture and appliances, tools, jewelry, cosmetics.Yes

Top 6 Charities that have Free Donation Pick Up

  1. Greendrop
  2. The Salvation Army
  3. Goodwill
  4. Furniture Banks Network
  5. Habitat for Humanity
  6. Vietnam Veterans of America

1. Greendrop

Greendrop helps the American Red Cross, Military Order of the Purple Heart, National Federation of the Blind, and the Society of St. Vincent de Paul of Philadelphia to raise funds through donations. They accept clothing and household items, as well as toys, bedding, and small furniture.

When donating to Greendrop, you can head to one of its locations where an attendant will unload the items from your car and give you a tax receipt from your selected charity of choice. Greendrop has over 30 locations in the Mid-Atlantic region.

An interesting service that Greendrop offers is the Greendrop Home Clean-Out, a free service beneficial for anyone preparing for a move, downsizing, or generally looking for clean-out assistance. A professional Concierge is sent to your house, where they help you recycle, re-purpose and donate large volumes of clothing and household items.

Who They Help: Greendrop, through the American Red Cross, Military Order of the Purple Heart, National Federation of the Blind, and the Society of St. Vincent de Paul of Philadelphia, helps to support American veterans, the blind, and Philadelphia’s people in need.

How They Work: The listed charities sell donations to 2nd Ave, an affiliate company, and other thrift operators. Some donations are sent to developing countries, or recycled into wholesale manufacturing.

How To Schedule A Greendrop Pick Up?

Can’t find the time to locate a drop-off center? It’s all good! Greendrop also provides a free home-pickup; simply enter your last name, home zip code and phone number/email address on their website to get the process started. Or, give a call on 888-944-3767. Greendrop may also send you postcards or telephone calls from their staff, alerting you about the dates when their trucks will be around your neighborhood.


2. The Salvation Army

The Salvation Army is a relatively well-known international movement, helping people in need across the world in 130 different countries. It has been functional since 1865, and assists 23 million Americans each year. Clothing and furniture donations are only one part of what they do – they also accept donations in the form of airline miles, mutual funds, bonds, and stock securities.

The Salvation Army accepts practically all kinds of goods, like clothing, kitchenware, dishes, decorative items, computers and certain furniture pieces. They also accept vehicle donations, more of which you can find out from their website.

Who They Help: The Salvation Army extends their help to all people in need with no discrimination, regardless of sex, gender, age or sexuality. These include disaster victims, homeless people, people in rehab, older adults, human trafficking victims, victims of domestic abuse and veterans.

How They Work: All your donations that go to The Salvation Army are sold at their thrift stores. The proceeds from those fund their Adult Rehabilitation Centers.

How To Schedule A Salvation Army Pick Up?

The Salvation Army has facilities for a free pickup, but it isn’t available for all zip codes. Their website makes it easy for you to find out if you can opt for a free pickup. All you have to do is visit satruck.org/donate/choose and enter the zip code of your place of residence. The next next step involves setting a date for the pick-up and putting down the inventory of whatever you’re looking to donate. Got a last minute task that requires you to leave home right when the pick-up is supposed to take place? Don’t you worry, because you can just keep the pick-up items at your doorstep. Just make sure that you highlight SA on the things you want The Salvation Army to pick up so they know that it’s for them.


3. Goodwill

Goodwill is an international enterprise of autonomous community-based organizations in the USA, Canada and 12 other countries. Each organization works independently to design programs and services, some of which are job training programs and employment placement. The focus of Goodwill is on employment and jobs, and donations are sold to raise money for their initiatives. Goodwill has a total of 156 such organizations, 3,300 stores in North America, and their shopgoodwill.com e-commerce platform. Goodwill helped 25.7 million individuals in 2019.

Goodwill accepts a range of things, including furniture, clothes, accessories, dishware, glassware and electronics. They also accept vehicles like cars and trucks, RVs, riding lawn mowers and campers. You sure can drop off your things at a Goodwill location yourself.

Who They Help: Goodwill offers career and job assistance to anyone facing employment barriers, including people with disabilities, people who have been laid off and are unemployed due to corporate downsizing, veterans, and those with limited work history.

How They Work: Goodwill sells their donations at their stores, and the money is used to help fund Goodwill programs. Things that aren’t sold are either recycled or sold to salvage brokers.

How To Schedule A Goodwill Pick Up?

Sure, Goodwill does offer pick-up service for certain items like large furniture that are difficult to transport. However, you have to check with your local Goodwill whether or not you can avail of the service. Not familiar with the local Goodwill centers around you? Check out Goodwill.org/locator, it should help.


4. Furniture Banks Networks

Furniture banks are not-for-profit organizations and registered charities that work to help those in need to furnish their homes with lightly used second-hand household items. They could be individuals or families, and can get this assistance at little to no cost.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, Americans throw out more than 12 million tons of furniture and furnishings each year. Donating your household items and furniture to furniture banks is beneficial for the environment, and for someone with a home but no means to furnish it. Available in 34 states, Furniture banks have drop-off locations but also offer pick-up services.

Who They Help: Individuals or families with little to no means to furnish their homes are at the receiving end of Furniture Bank’s help. This can include those struggling financially, those trying to get out of homelessness, people with disabilities, victims of disaster and domestic violence and immigrants.

How They Work: A network of community agencies is the mechanism to ensure that people in need get the help they deserve; they are charged little to no money for the furniture.

How To Schedule Furniture Banks Networks Pick Up?

It’s important to know that the feature is only accessible from a limited number of locations, which you can find out by checking out the link – furniturebanks.org/furniture-banks/. So basically, it boils down to locating a nearby center and then contacting them.


5. Habitat For Humanity

The seed that was to grow into Habitat For Humanity was planted way back in 1942 in America. Since then, Habitat For Humanity has grown into a non-profit organization with presence in all 50 states of America, as well as 70 countries internationally. Their goal: “A world where everyone has a decent place to live.”

Habitat For Humanity works mainly on the support of volunteers, who help to build safe and affordable housing. However, they also accept donations in the form of new and gently used second-hand items like furniture, appliances and household goods. They sell these donated items and use the money to fund their work. When donating, make sure you call your nearest Habitat ReStore to find out their working hours and what they accept.

Who They Help: Habitat For Humanity helps people to live in one of their affordable homes, based on financial need.

How They Work: Your donations will be sold from ReStores, Habitat for Humanity’s resale locations that sell to the public. Proceeds go towards building and repairing homes.

How To Schedule A Habitat For Humanity Pick Up?

Now, you have to understand that this option might not be available across all locations. So ideally, you should get in touch with a local Habitat For Humanity center to check whether you can opt for a free pick-up. You can visit the link below and put in your area’s zip code. That way, you will know which centers are located close to you and can reach out to them.

habitat.org/stories/does-habitat-offer-furniture-donation-pickup


6. Vietnam Veterans of America

Vietnam Veterans of America (VVA) began in 1973 with a group of Vietnam veterans looking for support to aid their own. Today, it is the only national Vietnam veterans organization that is exclusively working towards supporting veterans and their families from the Vietnam-era. It is also the only one to be congressionally chartered.

VVA has centers in different locations across the country, and the profits from their thrift stores help to fund their services. They are active in a range of matters, from advocating for better laws for veterans, healthcare for veterans and the identification of military-related diseases.

Who They Help: The VVA assists Vietnam-era veterans and their families by providing them with help and assistance through their services.

How They Work: Donations are sold at the VVA thrift stores, and proceeds fund their various services.

How To Schedule A Vietnam Veterans Of America Pick Up?

Once you visit https://pickupplease.org/donation-pickup/, you will get a fair idea about how the donation pick up feature works. To narrow things down further, you can enter your zip code in the field on the left hand side.


Important Things to Remember When Donating

  • All charities have a list of items they do not accept. While we’ve listed them out in the table, we recommend contacting them to confirm this nonetheless.
  • Charities and nonprofits accept items that are lightly used, and still in usable condition. Do give everything a proper look over to make sure it isn’t heavily damaged, stained, torn, broken or otherwise useless.
  • Not all damaged items need to be chucked into the trash. Do your part for the environment by sending them off to recycling units instead. Junk collectors can drop them off for you.
  • When sorting to donate, arrange the items well and keep them in sorted groups together. Take an account of everything you’re donating and call the organization to run the donations by them.
  • Make sure to contact the charity at least 2 weeks before you plan on donating. This gives them enough time to organize a pick-up date and gives you enough time to get rid of the items they can’t accept.

Tax Deductions When Donating To Charities

Apart from the feeling of giving back to society and doing good, donating also has a small monetary benefit. Donating lightly used, good quality items to a not-for-profit charity makes you eligible to receive tax deductions at the end of the year. The best way to know all about this is to look it all up on the IRS website, which will have the latest information regarding the same. It can help you understand the value of your donated property, but only donated items that are in “good condition or better” can get you the donations. Another reason why those old, tattered things are better off being recycled.

When you do actually donate, make sure to collect a tax receipt from the organization. Most organizations will give you one without you needing to ask, but in case they don’t, make sure you ask. You won’t get your deductions without the receipts. The receipts must also contain details like the date, location, and description of the donation items. Finally, look up the free market value of the products you’ve donated.

Do Charity Shops Pay For Donations?

Some people may find themselves getting confused about what money goes where when donating. Of course, there are several organizations that pay money for a certain number of donated things, like a small fee for 50 tetra packs or plastic bottles. This is done mainly with the motive of encouraging people to recycle and discouraging them from generating waste. However, you aren’t likely to get any money for donating things to a charity shop. You will certainly gain humanitarian value, but monetarily, donations remain donations without the involvement of payment.

Who Picks Up Donations In My Area?

Most nonprofits, even some we’ve listed, will only offer to arrange for a free home pick-up if you’re donating lots of items, or large items. If you find that your donation pile is too small for a home pick-up, log on to PickUpMyDonation.com. This site can help you get in touch with junk removal companies like College Hunks Hauling Junk, who will pick up your donation. PickUpMyDonation.com aims to support independent non-profit thrift stores, and the junk removal company will donate it to a nearby center.


Conclusion

At the risk of beating a dead horse, we must reiterate that donations must not comprise old, worn, damaged and trashy things, whether they’re toys, pieces of furniture or clothes. There are several easy ways to recycle the junk lying around your house, just as easy as it is to help charities that accept donations and offer free pick up.