If you've recently signed closing papers on your first rental home, you're likely equal parts nervous and excited about your new venture. Outfitting a rental home for service can be an exhausting and expensive process, and you'll want to save money wherever possible -- on the other hand, you may be reluctant to try to solicit tenants with outdated or semi-functioning appliances like a refrigerator with a broken icemaker or a stove with only three burners. What are your best disposal or recycling options for old appliances, and is there any way you can generate some renovation funds from this transaction? Read on for some cost-effective and eco-friendly ways to dispose of old appliances.
Recycle them by the pound
Even selling an old fridge, washer, or dryer to a metal recycling company can help you get some cash back. Depending upon the metal content of your appliance and the current prices for metals like steel, aluminum, copper, and brass, you should be able to get anything from a few bucks to $100 or more from your appliances -- often with free pickup included. The national average price of copper is around $2 per pound, making copper-heavy appliances like dishwashers and deep freezers an especially good recycling deal. You may want to visit the websites of two or more local metal or appliance recycling plants or give them a call to check current prices and ensure you're getting the best possible price for your appliances.
Sell to a reseller
For appliances that need only a quick fix you're not willing to provide, you may be able to get a relatively high price by selling them to a local appliance dealer, reseller, or even a charitable organization that focuses on building and outfitting houses for the poor. With a bit of TLC, these appliances can be nearly as good as new, and can be sold to the public at a discounted price.
Donate to charity
Semi-functioning appliances can also be donated to local charities in many cases, with these charities fixing up and passing along the appliances to the populations they serve or customers in retail stores. In addition to getting these appliances out of your way, donating them to charity can give you a tax deduction -- a great benefit during a year in which you're incurring a lot of real estate expenses that you may not yet be able to deduct or depreciate.