Weekly bin collections are a basic human right!

The government has pledged £250m to restore weekly bin collections across the country...

Do you think it's one of your 'basic rights' to have your rubbish collected once a week?

Communities and local government secretary Eric Pickles does. Last week he said: “Every household in England has a basic right to have their rubbish collected each week", and announced he is setting up a £250m fund to bring back the weekly bin round.

According to the Government, the move is what most people want and that the cash will make a “significant difference”. The majority of English councils currently run some form of fortnightly collection.

However, only councils that guarantee weekly collections for five years and demonstrate improvements in recycling and procurement will be eligible for a slice of the £250m fund.

Labour’s shadow communities secretary Caroline Flint attacked the changes as a bribe to councils to help Pickles save face. Environmental campaigners also railed against the plans saying that fortnightly collections meant more recycling and less landfill waste.

Still no guarantee

Despite this cash offer, the government still cannot force councils to bring back weekly bin collections.

In fact, a survey by The Daily Telegraph this week found that four out of 10 councils will not be able to guarantee weekly doorstep rubbish collections; even in the short term.

Indeed, a quick Google News search of ‘weekly bin collections’ brings up several local paper articles detailing the rejections of Pickles’ plans by a host councils.

So, if you find yourself with a little extra rubbish lying around, what can you do about it?

Make money from your rubbish

Here are some simple ways to turn your trash into cold hard cash:

Sell your broken rubbish: If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. But if it is broke – sell it on! Website simplydrop.co.uk will pay good money for broken cameras and MP3 players. An alternative is to offer it on eBay, providing a fair and accurate description of the item. Many people are willing to buy broken goods and fix them up when they arrive.

Printer cartridges: Cashforcartridges.co.uk will pay up to £4.50 for some empty ink cartridges or you could hand them in at Boots for 100 extra advantage card points.

Sell your clothes: There are several online portals that allow you to swap your old, unwanted clothes or sell them for cold hard cash. Try bigwardrobe.com and whatsmineisyours.com; both sites are free to join.

Alternatively, you could give your old togs to charity. If you donate Marks & Spencer clothes or soft furnishings to Oxfam, you'll get a £5 M&S voucher back in return.

Don’t ditch your old mobile: A host of sites have now emerged that will buy up your old mobile phone. Envirofone, Mazuma and Mopay will give you an instant price, just by inputting your phones details. It may also be worth giving eBay a go, especially if you’re shifting a high-end smartphone.

Read Turn your old mobile phone into cash for some more tips.

Get cash for old CDs, DVDs and computer games: If you’ve got a stack of old films, albums and games and can’t remember why on earth you bought them – then sell them on! One quick and easy way to do this is to head to Musicmagpie, a site that allows you to send off all your old discs for a set amount of cash.

However, as we revealed in The worst way to sell DVDs, Musicmagpie doesn’t actually give you the best return on your old media – as you’re essentially paying for the convenience of quickly shifting your discs.  Try eBay or Amazon if you’re after a bit more cash for your old gear.

Sell your books: You should never be throwing out old books; not when you could be making cold hard cash for them! Greenmetropolis.com is a nifty site that allows you to pass on your books to other readers – for a price of course.

BookMooch runs on a similar set-up; however this site encourages you to trade books. Every time you swap, you’ll receive points that you can then use to get hold of other books.

Old academic text books are another potential cash cow. If you or a member of your family are heading back to university with a bag load of old books from previous modules, why not sell them on new students? Try pinning up lists on department notice boards and student union walls or even setting up a stand on the campus.

You should also keep your eyes peeled for collectables – especially if you have a lot of old childrens books. My Editor here at lovemoney.com recently found one of her childhood books (the riveting tale of Bertie the dog and his big red ball) listed for £50 on Amazon.

Check out Sell your youth to survive the recession for some more tips on making money from vintage and collectable items.

Have a car boot sale: Car boot sales are great for shifting a large range of old and unused items in a short space of time. Head over to CarBootJunction to find a list of sales in your local area.

Pass on large items: There’s no reason to pay for ditching old beds and furniture anymore – not when you can give large old items away! Sites like Freegle, Freecycle and FRN allow you to shift your old furniture for free by passing it on to other households who will come to your home and take it off your hands – saving you delivery and disposal charges.

Your tips

What are your tips for turning trash into cash?

Let us know using the comment box below.

More: 45 things you can get for £5 or less | Nine ways to make money in your lunch hour! | The 12 best places to find freebies!


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