An often overlooked way to cash in while recycling is to gather up good used pallets.
Do know how much a shipper has to pay for a new pallet?
I'm not really sure, but I DO know that some of them make you leave a $15 deposit for some of the heavy duty weight bearing pallets.
And I know that for the ones in the photo above, you can easily get $3 a piece WHOLESALE for good ones and even $.50 each for the ones that aren't busted up too bad.
Who would anyone buy pallets?
There are pallet reconditioning companies that sell used pallets for $5 or so (give or take, depending on size, condition, MARKET conditions), these guys will often pay YOU $3 for bringing him good ones he can resell.
Why would anyone buy broken pallets?
Ready made already cut to order spare parts that's why.
Who in the world would need pallets so bad they'd buy used ones?
Baltimore is a port, there are two kinds of warehouses all over Baltimore, Jessup, Anne Arundel County, East Baltimore, the Philly side of Baltimore:
- Warehouses that import goods
- Warehouses that ship products anywhere
- incoming pallets
- outgoing pallets
Warehouses that get ship loads or sea containers of stuff inbound do NOT have the warehouse space to also keep pallets.
These places will give you as many as you can take away, if you brought in a tractor trailer (and I've done that too, see my CDL blog)the warehouse will load it for you with their forklifts
Warehouses and factories that need pallets do not have the floor space to keep pallets in stock, they're going out the door as fast as they can get em out the door.
These places will pay you for them, but only if you're bringing at least 50 at a time, otherwise why slow down operations for what? a measly dozen pallets?
Volume, scale of economy is the rule here.
Note from someone who has done this... a pick up by itself is insufficient, you gotta get a trailer, a landscape trailer or a car carrier trailer or else you're wearing out your truck's suspension and getting splinters for nothing.
One last item about pallets and steel.
Remember those earlier posts where I said warehouses will GIVE you Valuable scrap steel?
You go in, offer to clean out his broken pallet pile, bring him a few clean sturdy pallets for sale and you start looking more like a valuable resource than a pain in the a** looking for a handout.
I'm not kidding here... a warehouse loaded an entire broke down forklift on my trailer, then gave me $300 worth of copper... and ran off all the other guys competing with me.
Do something for him that no one else wants to do and make a friend.
Business is supposed to be a partnership, business is NOT supposed to be adversarial.