ReUse Centers and Material Exchanges
ReUse Centers – a place, such as a store or warehouse, where used items can be purchased. Thrift and consignment stores that sell used clothing and household goods are examples of reuse centers. There are also reuse centers that specialize in specific genres of goods, like art supplies, building materials and electronics.
Material Exchanges – usually this is a referral or listing service that helps connect those with unwanted materials to those looking for the same type of material. Usually, exchanges serve as a contact point or broker and do not physically handle materials. Some examples of regional on-line material exchanges include Freecycle, Craigslist, and eBay.
Consider buying goods that will have a long life; avoiding one-use items. Well made products usually can be fixed and repaired. There are professionals and artisans that will repair a number of goods including cars, appliances, shoes, leather goods, jewelry, lamps, books, and clothing. Look for them in the yellow pages or an on-line search engine.
Donating and buying reusable goods not only helps protect the environment, it also helps your local economy.
(in the Northeast)
(Computers, TV's etc.)
|Furniture & Household Goods|
|Municipal Swap Shops||Sports Equipment|
262 State Street
New Haven, CT 06510
Knack: The Art of Clever Reuse
116 Pleasant Street
Easthampton, MA 01027
Phone: (413) 529-0126
1020 Farmington Avenue
Berlin, CT 06037
Phone: (860) 828-1311
Resources for Rhode Island Education
PO Box 6264
Spooner Street at 95 Hathaway Ctr, Suite 3
Providence, RI 02940
Phone: (401) 781-1521
Everyone's Resource Depot
University of Maine, Farmington
Farmington, ME 04938
Phone: (207) 778-7150
|ReStore - Habitat for Humanity of Eastern Connecticut
82 Boston Post Road
Waterford, CT 06385
Phone: (860) 437-3422
|Reuse Center at Boston Building Material Resources
100 Terrace Street
Roxbury, MA 02120
Phone: (617) 442-2262
500 Cottage Grove Road
Bloomfield, CT 06002
ReNew Building Materials & Salvage, Inc.
Some of these exchanges limit their services to specific geographic areas or user groups. Additional listings can be found through U.S. EPA and the Northeast Recycling Council material exchange webpages.
This is a regional on-line material exchange sponsored by the states of CT, DE, MA, NJ, NY, RI, and VT and also by several corporations. This site replaced or enhanced existing exchanges within those states.
Western/Central New York Materials Exchange
GLOW Region Solid Waste Management Committee
Phone: (800) 836-1154
In Connecticut, we have a thrift stores and consignment shops in many towns that are run by local organizations and private individuals. Try the yellow pages, on-line or in your telephone book under "thrift" and "consignment".
Some on-line sources to give or receive used materials for free or low-cost include yahoo groups like Freecycle and ReUseIt Network (RIN) or on-line classifieds for free stuff or for selling goods include Craigslist and eBay.
If you have a computer that is still in good working order, you may be able to donate it to a school, or to an organization that distributes computers to schools. Some organizations provide technology not only to schools, but will also provide equipment to non-profits and/or public agencies that provide services to the needy, the unemployed or the disabled.
Each organization that promotes electronics reuse has very specific requirements regarding the equipment that they accept, so call first to find out if your used equipment is a good fit with that organization’s needs. If your computer is an older model that may not meet the needs of today’s school system, but still works well, you may want to consider donating it to a local nursery school where speed and issues such as internet access are not an important consideration. You may also want to contact other local charitable organizations such as Goodwill Industries or Salvation Army . For national computer reuse options visit the National Cristina Foundation.
Don’t trash your e-waste! Learn more about electronic waste to ensure that you are disposing of your electronic devices properly.
Thrift stores like Salvation Army and Goodwill Industries accept donations of good usable clothing and sell goods at low cost. In Connecticut, we have a thrift stores and consignment shops in many towns that are run by local organizations and private individuals. Try the yellow pages, on-line or in your telephone book under "thrift" and "consignment".
Many communities with solid waste or recycling transfer stations have Swap Shops, a barn, shed or other building where residents may take or leave useable household items. Contact your local recycling coordinator to learn if you have a Swap Shop in your community. If not, encourage them to do so. It can become a hub for community activity! Swap Shops should be in a dedicated area, shed or building at the Transfer Station. Learn more by reading CET’s Swap Depot Starter Kit.
NERC: Materials Exchanges in the Northeast – includes an extensive list of organizations and groups that handle a wide range of materials including food, art supplies, medical equipment and building materials.
CT DEEP: A Guide to Local Building Material Reuse Centers pdf color brochure
EPA: Reuse in New England – Materials Exchanges
NERC: Environmental Benefits Calculator: Quantifying the Benefits of Waste Reduction and Recycling
IRN: The Institution Recycling Network
EPA: Materials and Waste Exchanges
EPA: Surplus Inventory for Arts & Education
Recycler’s World: Information and Materials Exchange Directory
Disclaimer: The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) maintains the content on this web page to enhance public access to information and facilitate understanding of waste reduction, reuse and recycling. The DEEP is not recommending these resources over any others and recognizes these represent only a partial listing of resources on this subject.
Content Last Updated February 2020