Moving Offices? Here’s How to Manage Your Office Furniture Removal

2 Mins read

When it comes time to organize your relocation, you’ll have a big decision on your hands. Will you liquidate your used office furniture, or will you decommission surplus items from your inventory?

In the past, liquidation has been the most common way to handle excess office furniture. But decommission methods have been gathering steam as corporations move away from wasteful practices for more sustainable options.

Keep scrolling to find out why.

Liquidating Your Used Office Furniture

The typical liquidation service breaks your move down into the following two steps.

1. Sales

A liquidating service will attempt to sell office furniture to recoup as much value as possible. This winds up being around 20 percent of the average inventory.

2. Disposal

The remaining 80 percent of assets goes to landfill for a price that rises each year. According to the EPA, landfill tipping fees cost the U.S. $750 million each year. In Europe, corporations spend an annual €640 million to dispose of f-waste.

Although this method may provide the fastest, most routine way of handling your excess office furniture, liquidation provides no true value. It frames office assets as having a short, linear lifespan that starts in the factory and ends in the landfill.

Most liquidating services don’t provide transparent tracking to show where sold items wind up, and the majority of assets become a burden on the waste management system.

Decommissioning Your Used Office Furniture

A sustainable decommission service takes a dramatically different approach to corporate relocations. It bucks the linear economy by embracing circular economic principles that prove your assets don’t have to end their life in a landfill at a cost to your business. As a result, the process involves a few more steps than liquidation.

1. Sales

An established decommissioning service will have a vast network of companies that buy used office furniture. These strong partnerships help you track where your sold items wind up and generate revenue for your relocation.

2. Donation

While the majority of your inventory may not be salable, they aren’t worthy of the landfill either. You can donate office furniture to local charities, non-profits, and other aid organizations.

When you donate office furniture, you’re giving these charities the chance to refresh their spaces without dipping into their operating funds. They can invest their programming dollars into offering fair employment wages and building more resilient communities.

A good deed is good press. You’ll be able to work hand-in-hand with your chosen organization to create good news press releases and blog posts, impressing investors, board of directors, and employees. Your donation may also come with tax write-offs. 

3. Recycling

After sales and donations, many of the items that remain consist of metals, wood, and plastics that can be recycled. These valuable materials can re-enter the manufacturing cycle when recycled properly.

Recycling not only offsets the environmental cost of producing new office furniture, but it also keeps unnecessary items from taking up space in a landfill. It can also help you hit sustainability targets and earn you LEED points.

4. Disposal

Only those items that have no other use will go to the landfill. Through sales, donations, and recycling, a sustainable decommission service diverts 99 percent of materials from landfill.

Bottom Line

Some traditions are meant to be broken. While liquidation may be a time-honoured way to deal with your excess office furniture, it does you no favours. A sustainable office decommission service, on the other hand, promises you financial, social, and environmental cachet by tapping into the circular economy.

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