In 2011, the market research company, NPD Group, found that the average U.S. household has $7,000 worth of unwanted items. A lot of things may have changed since 2011, but the U.S.’ obsession with things is probably not one of them. If you have thousands of dollars laying around your house in the form of stuff, consider donating that potential money to a charity of your choice through WebThriftStore this holiday -- ahem, consumer -- season.
According to its website, “WebThriftStore turns stuff into cash for charities, tax deductions for donors, and bargains for buyers.” Their IRS-approved charities range from local to national. Some of the big names include the American Red Cross, ASPCA, PETA and the National Geographic Society. I did a double take when I saw Texas' Katy Prairie Conservancy, which upon further examination has no relation to Katy Perry or her cat, Kitty Purry.
But how is this better than donating your things to a local thrift store? Dropping off a box of stuff can feel like abandoning your memories on the side of the road. For most of us materialists there will always be some items that are slightly too precious to just give away but not essential enough to use or keep. And selling things on eBay or Etsy can become a full-time job.
WebThriftStore knows that most Internet users like buying more than selling. “WebThriftStore allows any non-profit to run an online thrift store without holding inventory, with no financial risk.” If your house has become a warehouse, it’s time you logged on.
Instead of shamelessly snapping pics of your new stuff for Instagram or Facebook, download WebThriftStore’s app, ThriftSNAP, to transmute your social media sins into charitable works. With the app it is easy to take pictures of things you want to donate, set prices and choose either in-person pickup or USPS shipping at the buyer’s expense. Sellers receive prepaid postage and tax write off documentation in the mail from WebThriftStore.
And if you find a donated item that you want to purchase, there is a 30-day money back guarantee on shipped items that do not live up to their descriptions. Even if you’re only planning to buy gift cards for the holidays, WebThriftStore has those too.
WebThriftStore itself is not a charity, but a business that supports charity; “We pay all credit card and transaction processing fess, return shipping and insurance fees and customer support costs. Charities pay us a small fee to provide these services.” This means that 20% of your sale goes to WebThriftStore and the remaining 80% goes to the charity of your choice.
The YouTuber known as Salamanda, mentioned WebThriftStore in one of her recent videos. As an avid thrifter, Salamanda is best known for her “hauls,” where she shows her viewers items she has bought at the thrift store. In the video below, however, she created a “reverse thrift haul,” that details the things she donated through WebThriftStore.
As YouTube becomes yet another medium for sponsorship and advertising it is rare to find YouTube content that doesn’t celebrate consumer culture. “You guys are constantly watching me accumulate stuff but what you don’t see is the constant purge that’s happening,” said Salamanda.