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Vintage stereo system ready to be placed into a climate controlled self storage unitLet’s face it. We all love to have the latest, greatest smartphones, HDTVs, computers and other electronic gadgets. And, companies like Apple are all too happy to give them to us—like clockwork—each year. The problem? What to do with our old electronics. Unfortunately, some of our old tech simply isn’t worth the space it occupies in our homes. Other stuff, like vintage stereo equipment, could be worth hanging onto, donating or selling online. In this post, we’ll explore four great options for clearing out your old electronics and making room for new upgrades. But first, let’s start with one thing you should NEVER do with your used technology:

Do Not Throw Out Your Electronics

Regardless of which option you choose from below, do not throw out your old electronics. They often contain chemicals and toxins that can damage the environment. In fact, even the most damaged piece of equipment can still be recycled and made into new items. Throwing out your electronics is also a huge waste. Donating, recycling, selling and storing electronics keeps them out of the landfill and prolongs their useful life.

Four Things to Do with Old Electronics

Sell Electronics for Cash Near You: Depending on the age and condition of the item, you may be able to make some good money on it. Websites such as eBay, Amazon and Craigslist make it easy to sell your used gear online.

Donate Old Electronics to Charity: If you do a quick search on the internet, you can easily find countless charities looking for donations. Charities will do a wide variety of things with old electronics, from refurbishing old computers into computer labs in underdeveloped countries to sending video games to our soldiers oversees. Gently used technology has the potential to do so much good in someone’s life—even if it no longer fills a need in yours.

Recycle Used Electronics for Free: Many stores that sell electronic devices also offer an electronics recycling service. Efforts to increase the recycling of electronics have heightened in recent years as the mass-use of electronics continues to grow. When you recycle something that no longer works, the recycling plant breaks it down and sorts into its core components. Plastics, metals and rare earth metals are often salvaged and used to produce new tech. As an added bonus, many recycling companies offer data erasing services to ensure no one can get to your personal information.

Store Electronics You Want to Keep: If your electronics are still working and you aren’t ready to part ways with them yet, consider storing them in a storage unit. Your vintage stereo amplifier from high school. The spare TV you don’t have space for right now… Are you interested in learning more? Contact us today!

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Family preparing for a garage or yard saleMany families use the end of the summer as one last chance at a garage or yard sale to declutter their homes before the holidays and winter months arrive. A garage sale is not only a smart way to get any unneeded items out of the house, but if you do it right you can make some serious extra cash. Utilize these five smart tips to make the most out of your garage or yard sale!

Five Must-Follow Garage and Yard Sale Tips

Garage Sale Tip 1: Garage Sale Pricing Guide

The pricing strategy you choose for your garage or yard sale depends on what you hope to achieve. If your main goal is to get rid of unneeded items, price your items low to sell, or advertise that the prices aren’t fixed. If your main goal is to make extra cash by selling your items, price them higher. Be cautious with pricing items high. People come to yard sales looking for a deal. If your items are overpriced, they will just head to the next sale.

Garage Sale Tip 2: Mark all Prices

Regardless of your pricing strategy, be sure to clearly label each item with the price. A potential customer may be deterred from buying your items if the price isn’t clearly listed.

Garage Sale Tip 3: Advertise, Advertise, Advertise

Investing time and money into advertising will pay off. Put an advertisement in the Sunday paper the week before your garage sale, place an advertisement on Craigslist or create a Facebook event with pictures of the items you are selling. It also never hurts to go the old-fashioned way and print out signs and post them around your neighborhood (but don’t forget to take the signs down and check with your HOA first!). The more people you make aware of your garage sale, the more potential customers you’ll have.

Garage Sale Tip 4: Two is Better than One

Consider teaming up with another family or your neighborhood to increase appeal. Think about it: Would you drive across town for one garage sale? Probably not. Would you drive across town for a two-to-three or more family garage sales? Now that’s more likely! Pairing with another family will help increase the word-of-mouth buzz, making your garage sale a can’t-miss event. If multiple families sell from one location, to make sure each family gets their fair cut from the garage sale, have each family mark their items with different colored stickers and keep track of how much each item is sold for at the time of checkout.

Garage Sale Tip 5: Accept Alternate Means of Payment

Consider accepting credit cards. Many times, people who visit garage sales happened to notice the sale while driving by and therefore don’t have any cash on hand. Offering a convenient credit card option will makes it easier for everyone to complete their purchases and could result in better sales for you.

Still Have Some Unsold Items After Your Garage Sale?

Items not sold at your garage or yard sale can be split into piles labeled “donate,” “throw out” and “keep.” Items in good condition you no longer want can be donated, while items that are unusable by donation centers can be thrown out. Still want to hang onto your leftover sale items, but don’t have room to store them at home? Consider renting a self storage unit near your house. This is a smart way to still achieve your goal of decluttering your home, while saving items for your next garage sale. Contact ezStorage with any questions you have on a storage unit rental!

Football fans gather around the grill while tailgating If you’re a sports fan, this is the time you’ve been waiting for all year. Tailgating season! There’s nothing quite like arriving a few hours ahead of the game, grilling out and preparing to watch your team win the big game. Whether you’re a tailgate newbie or veteran, following these tips will guarantee you have a successful tailgating season!

Best Tailgating Tips to Help You Win Tailgating Season

1. Grill as Much Food as You Can Before the Tailgate Party: If you’ve ever been the grill master at a tailgating party, you know the pain of getting stuck behind the grill for hours. For some, there’s nothing wrong with this, but for others, they crave letting loose with their fellow tailgaters. Grill burgers, hot dogs and sausage before heading to the tailgate and put them on ice in your cooler. Once at the tailgate, you’ll only need to throw the meat on the grill for a short amount of time to let it reheat.

2. Check the Weather: Depending on where you live, fall weather can be extremely temperamental. Prepare in advance. If it’s going to be cold, wet and rainy, bring a thermos of soup. If it’s going to be warm, bring extra ice. Well, maybe bring extra ice either way.

3. Differentiate Your Tailgate: Be the MVP of your tailgate and bring a unique flag to help your friends find your car. Think outside of the standard team logos and mascots. Your friends will appreciate this when they’re trying to comb through hundreds of tailgaters looking for your SUV.

4. Pick Your Spot: Choose your tailgate spot strategically. If you are looking to play catch during the tailgate, choose a location near grass. If you are looking to be in the center of the tailgating action, choose a spot in the middle of the parking lot.

5. Freeze Water Bottles: Kill two birds with one stone and put frozen water bottles in your cooler. The frozen water bottles will help keep your food cold while they’re frozen, and you hydrated once they melt. And, if it’s an especially hot day and you have consumed a few adult beverages, you’ll be happy to have the extra water—both the day of the party AND the day after.

6. Don’t Forget the Basics: Don’t forget to pack an ample supply of cups, silverware, napkins and bowls. After all, how can you be the tailgate MVP if you forget plates for your friends to put their chips and dip between games of catch?

ezStorage is Here for Your Post-Tailgating Season Needs

Hopefully adding these tailgating tips to your playbook will keep you and your friends happy all season long. But, what about after tailgating season is over or in between home games? Well, here’s one last tip for you: Consider renting a storage unit! A storage unit is a smart way to keep your items in a safe location, and out of the way. Plus, if you’re one of those die-hard super-fans with a decked out tailgating vehicle you can even store your ride with us in the off season. Whether rooting on your favorite local college football team or the Raven’s and Redskin’s, ezStorage has 47 locations throughout the Maryland and D.C. region. Contact us today!

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