“Scrappers” to the Rescue.

Cultivate scrap metal collectors and recyclers to reduce metal clutter around your house, writes Ilott

Clutter is made up a thousand deferred decisions. Clients tell me that facing clutter is too stressful and avoidance is easier so they’d rather think about it some other time – some distant, fuzzy, undefined time.

Wonderfully there is an easy way to get rid of a big category of clutter – metal. It is as simple as piling it at the end of your driveway and posting a big old invitation that says, “Come and get it.” For the most part the invitation is answered by a ready taker in the form of “scrappers.”

Scrappers are the hard scrabble folks who roam the back streets of your town, in bedraggled jalopies often kitted out with cages and trailers, in search of free scrap metal, old electronics, wire, pots and pans – anything worth salvaging. They turn a small return given the amount of work, gas and sweat it takes.

Within a remarkably short hiccup of time, often before you can retrace your steps back into the house, a scrapper materializes like magic, as if some subsonic horn blared alerting metal booty is there for the taking and its first come, first served. It is symbiotic and a neat way to get rid of old barbecues, bed frames, cheese grinders, lawn chairs, banged-up tool boxes, wire hangers, fridges, robots — anything that has outlived its usefulness. And not just on big item pick up day. The scrappers create great mangled piles of metal in their trucks. I often wonder why their tires don’t blow out sideways as they lurch away. They roll off to good scrap-metal yards like Peel Scrap Metal Recycling in Oakville who tell me that regular folks, not just scrappers and contractors, appear like clockwork to unload a trunk in return for gas money. So why not have someone else to do the recycling and heavy lifting for you? Save on junk removal costs, lean on the wear and tear of their car and not yours. I say wave them down, get some names, cultivate a few good scrappers.

It’ll bring a little therapy to your home.

Stephen Ilott is a professional home organizer with decluttering.ca and author of “The Domestic Archaeologist.” For more information, visit www.decluttering.ca or contact him at info@decluttering.ca or 416-460-8098.