We are all guilty of returning unwanted presents and impulsive purchases. In fact, according to reports, $428 billion of products were returned from the total U.S. retail sales in 2020 alone. Perhaps you already have the same item in your inventory, not the right match, not to your liking, or you scored a fantastic bargain but ended up regretting the item later on.

Unwanted Gifts

Studies also show that 55% of Americans admitted to bringing unwanted presents out of hiding years after receiving them to avoid hurting the gift giver’s feelings and convince themselves that they appreciate the item.

So, whether they are well-intentioned presents from family or a result of a spur-of-the-moment shopping, know that there are things you can do to compensate for it rather than sulk or let it sit and wither in the back of your closet.

In today’s market, where returning items has become commonplace, it pays to consider practical and sustainable ways to get the most of those unwanted goods. Returns that are calculated carefully result in a less crowded house and a better world to live in.

Doing the obvious

If you decide on returning the item, it’s best to know the standard return policy for each store. For instance, most retailers would give you at least a 30-days warranty to return your purchase, while others may provide you less depending on the safety protocols and holiday seasons. Some policies also consider whether the item has been opened, used, or damaged after purchase.

Keep the original or a copy of the receipt, tags, and any other parts that come with the item. As much as possible, bring it in its original packing as well. If you are returning the item due to malfunction or defect, emphasize it later on with the customer service. Otherwise, ensure that the product is in an excellent state before returning it. Doing so will make the process smoother and avoid the risks of it being discarded.

Gift it back

When it comes to giving your unwanted purchases and gifts away, regifting them could be one of your best options, especially if you are trying to cut costs. Having something you can wrap anytime helps you save energy, resources, and time buying for future occasions. However, there are a few considerations to keep in mind to avoid upsetting your potential recipient.

For example, make sure you are regifting it outside your social circle. You wouldn’t want to upset your giver and your receiver and have a year of awkward encounters. Moreover, universal or generic products are better than specific ones since they have more chances to fit any recipient’s taste and preference. This includes bottles of wine, gourmet food, kitchenware, and gift certificates.

On the other hand, expensive items, sentimental hand-me-downs, and fragrances can be more difficult to re-wrap since people are usually more selective about them. At the end of the day, it’s vital to be as cautious, responsible, and thoughtful in your regifting decisions.

Sell it

Unless you are planning to come clean with your feelings toward the item you’ve been given, the last place you want to be is explaining to your sister why the dress she recently gifted to you is posted all over your social media accounts with a price tag on it. Nowadays, there is a platform for almost anything anyone can think of, so consider the venue and website you can use to list your stuff for sale.

Find the best deals, offers, and seal them as soon as you’re sure about them. It doesn’t matter if they live close by or far from you since several reputable logistics companies are available to take care of your delivery and ensure it arrives safely to your buyer.

Donating it

Giving away the shoes you didn’t mean to buy may also be an excellent alternative, especially if returning them is out of your options, and you don’t want to go through the process of selling them. You may donate your items to a charity shop or give them to a cause you feel strongly about. You may also find local families around your community who may need the items in your possession. Explore your options and go for what feels suitable for you.

Above all, remember that your loved ones give you presents to the best of their intention and appreciation of you. They may not be aware that your preferences have changed, and that is okay. Moreover, you need to forgive yourself for your mistake and know that there are ways to redeem those back. So, be grateful and understand that you aren’t obligated to hold on to these items, primarily if they don’t serve you the purpose they were meant to.