Tips for Finding Free Pallets and Other Materials

I adore all the beautiful pallet projects I’ve seen over the past few months. The pallet furniture, wood signs, and decor are so creative and made me want to build my own projects. The only problem was that I was having trouble finding affordable pallets. I went shopping at a craft store and saw some wood pallets that cost almost $20 each! That price was not good for my wallet because I knew I would need to buy at least five of the pallets to make my project. This dilemma made me put on my thinking cap to find ways to get those materials for free.

Below are some tips that have been successful for me and other people with finding free products.

  1. Ask store managers. There is a dollar store in my neighborhood that had several wood pallets lying on a dumpster. I thought the pallets were for some other purpose, but they were still there after two weeks. My husband finally asked the store manager if we could have the pallets, and the manager said “please take them”.  Now I have this free stack of pallets in my back yard!     20150928_095403 (2)
  2. Visit small businesses. Large businesses and big-box stores may already have a system in place with disposing or recycling pallets and other materials. This is not always the case with small and private businesses. Let the owner know about your project and ask if you can have some pallets that they are going to throw away. They may appreciate you helping to take the pallets off their hands.
  3. Check construction sites. It is no secret that there are lots of usable materials in dumpsters at construction sites. Ask the crew or a crew manager if you can take some the throwaway items home. If you know someone who works at a construction site, ask them to lookout for items you can have for free.
  4. Search online. Many people have found success on Facebook, Craigslist, or other online ad sites. This is a wonderful option if you are comfortable with it. If contacting people online makes you feel uneasy, try the other options in this blog post. Just remember to always be careful during any online transaction.
  5. Here is a longer list of places to find free wood materials:
  • Hardware Stores
  • Home Improvement Stores
  • Hotels
  • Recycle Centers
  • Flower Shops
  • Garden Stores
  • Restaurants
  • Furniture and Mattress Stores
  • Feed and Supply Stores
  • Flooring and Lumber Companies
  • Grocery Stores
  • Newspaper Companies
  • Landscaping Companies

Remember that if you don’t ask the answer is no. So always ask and get permission before you take anything even if it’s by a dumpster.

What are some other suggestions for finding free pallets? Please share your tips in the comment section.

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