10 Smart Ways to Snag Free Stuff for Your Home

Maintaining a home can be pricey. Between furnishing the interior, keeping up with regular maintenance, and improving curb appeal, costs can skyrocket. But there’s no need to break the bank for a picture-perfect home. With some patience and a little legwork, homeowners can score these 10 in-demand items for free.

  1. Paint

    Paint free


    Looking to freshen your home’s interior? Check your local Household Hazardous Waste (HHW) facility before splurging on new paint, grout, or tile sealant. These facilities collect volatile compounds for safe disposal, but they often recycle unopened and unused items to others, free of charge. To find an HHW facility near you, ask your local waste management company.

    Related: 10 Unusual Tricks for Your Easiest-Ever Paint Job

  2. Appliances

    Free appliances


    Anyone renovating a kitchen probably needs to off-load a few old appliances. You’d think reselling the secondhand items would be a cinch, but finding a buyer who needs appliances with those exact dimensions, features, and finishes—and has the ability to transport such bulky goods—often becomes a headache. Enter Freecycle, a site you can search to find items that local users are trying to get rid of for free. You’ll find a wide variety of offerings on Freecycle, but appliances are frequent postings.

    Related: 9 Bad Habits That Are Killing Your Appliances

  3. Sofas

    Free couch


    Craigslist Freebies is a great resource for finding all kinds of free stuff for your home, from kitchen sinks to printers to doors. But possibly the number-one most common items you'll find on Craigslist are big comfy couches. Large-scale sofas are notoriously hard to sell, so it’s often easier to simply give them to a good home for free.

    Related: Editors' Picks: 10 Favorite Sofas Under $1,000

  4. Tools

    Free tools


    Need a hacksaw or a hammer? Before you shell out big bucks for a tool, see if you can borrow it. Your neighbor may not be the only resource; some public libraries lend out tools just as they do books, or you can search for a local tool bank through the site LocalTools.org.

    Related: 7 Tools That Contractors Swear By

  5. Plants

    Free garden


    Veteran gardeners know there’s rarely a need to buy brand-new plants. Ask your green-thumbed friends and neighbors for extra cuttings and seeds, and use them to propagate your own plants. You’ll have a zero-dollar garden in no time!

    Related: 10 Ways to Buy Your Garden on the Internet

  6. Cleaning Products

    Free cleaners


    If you’re a die-hard fan of a particular cleaning product, try turning your loyalty into savings. Sign up for the brand’s newsletter to receive free samples and coupons. These virtual newsletters can also introduce you to a new favorite household helper!

    Related: 10 Home Cleaners to Borrow from the Pantry

  7. Home Accents

    Flea market


    Swap meets, flea markets, and spring cleanups epitomize the phrase “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure.” Savvy shoppers can find everything from lamps and paintings to small-scale furniture at these buying/selling events. If you’ve got something to offer, find a like-minded buyer and make a trade, with no money required. Track down a flea market in your area through the local newspaper, or online through SwapMadness.com.

    Related: The 10 Best Things to Buy Secondhand

  8. Kids' Gear

    Free kids clothes


    Little ones grow so quickly that you may find yourself buying three different beds in five years—not to mention multiple new wardrobes. Enter Swapmamas, a site where you can swap your gently used kids’ stuff with other parents, saving you a bundle of money as your children grow up.

    Related: 8 Genius Ways to Turn Clutter into Cash

  9. Holiday Decor

    Free holiday decor


    Here’s an incentive to declutter: If someone buys your stuff through Swap.com, you’ll get credit to shop for yourself! On the site, consumers can find items like clothing, toys, outdoor gear, books, and DVDs as well as surprisingly large selection of out-of-season holiday decor.

    Related: 7 Ways to Declutter Without Throwing Anything Away

  10. Most Home Supplies

    Sample boxes


    Sign up with a sampling company like PinchMe, Influenster, or BzzAgent to receive a tailored sample box of new products. All you need to do is test the items and provide your feedback to the manufacturer. You’ll find everything from cookware to office supplies on these websites.

    Related: Let It Go: 14 Things to Trash Without Thinking Twice

  11. See the House of the Week


    Discover and admire beautiful and innovative home architecture, from grand Victorians to quaint cabins and all the styles in between. Take a look at the latest images and inspiration!