This Spring, Host a Neighborhood Clean-up

The snow has melted, the leaves are budding, and everyone in the neighborhood has fired up their lawnmowers and leaf blowers for another season of outdoor activity. You even see some new hardware on the block – Stan seems to have gotten a new push mower, and Michael’s apparently switched over to all electric tools.

Further up the street, Mrs. Cooper has plans to take out her trellis.

As you look at the clutter in your own garage, you realize that you might need a dumpster in order to get rid of all the crap you’ve accumulated over the years. The door you took out in the remodel? There’s no place for it in the house now, it is an orphan. That last 8 feet of quarter round? It’s now warped from being under the chicken wire. And the chicken wire? Bent and a little rusted from years of anticipation but no real duties.

Then a brilliant idea forms.

You could host a Neighborhood clean-up day

You’ve noticed that other people are in the same situation you are in. Their basements and garages are cluttered. (Well, not Trevor. Trevor’s is spotless, like everything else. But that’s how he deals with his own issues.) And they have projects they would like to do, but they just need a friendly shove in the right direction.

What if you announced a date, and got a few neighbors to go in on a dumpster for the neighborhood?

Suddenly you and your neighbors are sharing the cost of waste disposal, and providing a big push towards getting your neighborhood spruced up all at the same time.

Here’s how to do it:

  • Choose a date a month from now and circulate it through word of mouth or with a door flier
  • Ask people to let you know the things they hope to be able to throw away
  • Work with local re-use agencies like St. Vincent DePaul to set up a way to donate items that can still be used
  • Work with a Big Daddy Dumpster representative to determine the right size dumpster for whatever remains
  • Ask people to provide a contribution toward the dumpster.

When dividing the cost, don’t worry about precision and fair cost – you’ll never get the math to work out perfectly, and why would you want to? Instead, just ask people for what they think is fair. What you will find in the end is that you likely recover the full cost, and you have enough to buy food for a Saturday Evening cookout.

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