With National Crush a Can Day just around the corner, it is a great time to remember you can recycle not just to help the environment – but also to earn money!
On September 27th, people all over the U.S. will gather their aluminum cans to smash, squash, squeeze, stomp and crush, all in an effort to bring awareness to the benefits of recycling. Some will save and collect cans during the weeks leading up to the big day, while others will call on friends and family to bring their cans for a “crush party.” Not only is it fun, stress-busting, and good for the environment (recycling a single can save enough energy to operate a TV for 3 hours), but it can also give your budget a boost to keep you on track towards your financial goals.
Turning Aluminum Cans into Cash
Converting your cans to revenue is as simple as locating a local recycling facility and bringing them your cans. It does not matter if the cans are crushed already, as compensation is determined by weight. Note that reimbursement rates can vary from day to day, state to state, and by region. Typically, recycling facilities located in the same area will have similar rates, but call to compare aluminum can compensation prices at your local facilities before choosing one to recycle with.
ScrapMonster.com publishes average scrap metal prices, so you can get an idea of the going rates in your area. For example, at the time of this writing, aluminum can scrap is valued at 46 cents per pound for the State of Texas, but in the localized region of Fort Worth, Texas, it can go for an average of 71 cents per pound. If your family drinks a lot of sodas or other carbonated beverages, taking the extra step to save your cans and recycle them in bulk can provide some extra financial support.
You Can Recycle More than Just Cans
Although National Crush a Can Day puts the spotlight on the ease of recycling cans, there are plenty of other commodities in high demand. In fact, there are many unconventional ways of recycling your unwanted trash – even if it means selling items to crafters or small businesses that can make use of it. For example, crafters are often in search of goods they can repurpose and sell, such as wine corks or wine bottles. Often, these buyers wish to purchase in bulk, so carve out some space to collect these types of items as you use them. Some states even offer glass bottle compensation programs, paying as much as 15 cents per bottle or more to consumers who bring their bottles to a participating recycling center.
Other items that can be recycled include household and office items. Often, stores will offer buy-back programs, providing cash or gift cards for things like used ink cartridges, electronics, and even batteries. Contact businesses that specialize in the sale of these types of goods to find out if they or an affiliated business or organization can compensate you for your used or unwanted items. If you happen to have an old vehicle that is damaged beyond repair, car salvage yards may also pay top dollar either for your working car parts or otherwise by the weight of your vehicle.
Recycle to Save
The sky is the limit when it comes to recycling. Finding companies or individuals that offer an incentive for recycling or who are willing to pay for your unwanted items takes some effort, but also financially rewarding. This year on National Crush a Can Day, gather some cans to recycle, and then think of other ways you can turn unwanted items into cash, whether by hosting a garage sale or contacting your local recycling facility to learn about their compensation programs.