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From time to time, we all need to get rid of the old to make space for the new: furniture, white goods, carpets, the list goes on. But in the modern, environmental impact conscious world we live in, disposing of old furniture and household belongings isn’t as simple as it once was. If you are able to take it to your local tip in your car, you can still do so for free – for the time being at least. If, however, you need to book clearance company or man with a van, things get a little more complicated.

In this article, we have set out what “house clearance” actually means and how it works when you book it.

What Is House Clearance

House clearance is the removal of unwanted household belongings. This can be any and all furnishings from a home, from carpets to light fittings and all in-between. House clearance is not waste removal, waste produced by a home needs to be taken by a “waste removal” service. There are several reasons these two services are different but the simplest is that waste is dirty, smelly, and should be processed in accordance with local authority guidelines, i.e., separated and recycled where possible. Where as a house clearance company will work to repurpose as much of the items as possible before tipping the rest. They usually have a network of charities and upcycle workshops that take items that can be used again. Clearance companies usually perform home removal services as well, so they don’t want the vehicles to be contaminated by waste: nobody wants to use a skip to move home in.

How Does a House Clearance Work

In the past, anyone with a van could clear a domestic property of old furniture and take it to the local tip. As long as the driver stated that the waste was from their residence, there was no charge. This system had obvious loopholes and anyone and everyone exploited them.

These days, any company or person that carries out the removal or transportation of waste (waste in this context includes old household furniture) must be a licensed waste carrier. As a licensed waste carrier, they are subject to charges at waste transfer stations (more commonly know as tips) These charges are set by local authorities and not negotiable. This simply means that anything taken to a tip by anyone other than the resident of the home it came from is subject to a processing charge – and its not cheap! Check out the prices in Greater Manchester here.

When you book a clearance or removal of a single item with a clearance company, you will be charged for the time it takes to carry out the removal and process the items, whether that be to tip or repurpose them. You will also be responsible for the waste transfer station charges, or tipping costs. The tipping costs are not small, and there is usually a minimum of 500kg to pay for so getting rid of an old sofa can easily cost over £100, which is why its preferable to avoid tipping old furniture is at all possible. That and the added bonuses of someone getting a piece of furniture they need, and helping to reduce land fill waste.

For handy hints and tips on how to get rid of unwanted furniture, click here.