12 ways to say no to unwanted clutter

It’s always fine to just say no if someone wants to unload their crap clutter onto you.

But sometimes you want to be tactful.

How to say no to unwanted items and declutter your home

Say, for instance, if your mother-in-law raises her eyebrows when you don’t want her heirloom China cabinet, you’ll be ready.

I asked some of the people in our community what they’d say to graciously decline unwanted castoffs.

Here are their suggestions.

12 ways to say no to unwanted clutter

say no to other peoples clutter

Just say no! lol. I try to be polite I say I have no need for that or no room. Or its something I can donate to some charity I just say “thanks” and donate 🙂
-Nena Scheidecker

“Thank you, that is amazing, but we are working on downsizing in our home.”
-Melissa Gustincic

“I appreciate your thoughtfulness, but I am going to pass.”
-Aliena Armee

I think of someone else who might need it… quick!!
-Chris Franklin

“I really appreciate you thinking of us, but we are working on decluttering and don’t have a use for that right now.”
-Lorie Mazza

I’d say, “oh thank you it’s so kind of you to want to gift me with such a wonderful item but I’ve no room as I’m getting rid of things myself.”

Then I’d suggest donating to the Salvation Army or a local abused shelter, etc., to donate to. It also depends what it is on my response ????
-Katt Anderson

“Thank you but our house is bursting at the seams right now, how about the British Heart Foundation? They are always looking for high-end donations (a bit of flattery always softens the no).”
-Donna Grant

“So nice of you to think of me. Is it OK if we find someone else to bless with these items?
-Michelle Vassallo

Last week someone asked if I mind if people give me things. I said not as long as they don’t mind if I don’t keep them.

I also suggest the local pregnancy resource center or let people know that that is where I will take it if it is not something we can use. (I have 4 little kids, so most of the hand-me-downs are things for them!)
-Beth Anne Beckenhauer

Related: Thrift stores closed? Four alternatives to offload unwanted items

Get step-by-step help

Keeping new and unwanted items from getting into the home is the best first step towards a clutter-free home.

But what do you do if your home is already full of household clutter?

step-by-step decluttering print book

Request a free copy of our book, Step-by-Step Decluttering, for help!

We’ll rush it to your door (yes, it’s a real print book!). You only pay shipping and handling. Learn more here.


How do you say no to unwanted clutter?



Keep Reading

If you have questions related to your purchase(s), please do not leave a comment on the blog. Contact our customer success team for assistance.

2 thoughts on “12 ways to say no to unwanted clutter”

  1. I have passed on lots of things from my parents’ house as they tried to downsize for possible move to other location. But they understand that we also have limited space tho’ more than they do) and will pass things on to others. (First I suggest giving to church They just give us the option of First Choice (keep it or pass it on). I am sure to keep receipts from donation centers to give to them or keep myself, for taking off on income tax.


Leave a Comment

Welcome. I’m Sarah!


I’m the creator of Decluttering School (formerly known as Early Bird Mom), lover of organized spaces, encourager to women and mom to four boys. Click here to read more!

Search Articles

© 2023 Mueller Creative Inc. All rights Reserved.                             Disclaimer