There are various options when you’re clearing a house, garden, or office, or just getting rid of lots of rubbish at once. The first is to try and fit as much as possible in your household bins for the council to collect for free. However, it’s likely you’ll quickly fill these bins and need a fresh solution.

Taking rubbish to the tip is another idea but you’ll need a big vehicle and have to make multiple trips. For an easier and more efficient method, the main choices are often between hiring a skip or using a man and van service. Both have their advantages and disadvantages and suit certain situations better.

To make things simple here we explain how each service works, the pros and cons of each, and the costs involved to help you decide which option is right for your project. Work out whether hiring a skip or using a man with a van is best to get rid of your waste.

divert purple waste vans - one off collection

How does skip hire work?

Hiring a skip is straightforward in most cases. Start by deciding what size skip you need, based on the type and amount of waste you expect to produce. Search around and find a local business that offers skip-hire services that meet your needs at a good price.

The skip hire company should deliver the skip and drop it off at your chosen place. You then fill it with the appropriate waste types and within any weight or height limits. Then the company will send out a skip loader to remove your full skip at an agreed time and date, taking the waste away for disposal.

Skip hire is suitable for long-term projects and companies will offer to rent out their skips for anywhere from a few days to weeks or months. Depending on your project you might want to hire two or more skips to accommodate the volume of waste.

How does using a 
man with a van work?

Using a man with a van to get rid of rubbish from your home or business is also fairly simple. Find a local man and van service in your area and provide a rough idea of the types and amount of waste you want them to remove. This helps ensure they use the best-sized van.

Agree on a time and date. On the day the van and one or two professionals (depending on your waste amount) will come to your home or business. They’ll lift, carry, and load all your waste into the van and drive it to a nearby waste management facility for disposal. They might make more than one trip depending on your needs.

A man and van is good for fast and effortless waste removal, as labour is included in the service. It’s good for getting rid of lots of different waste types at once with the flexibility to make multiple trips and use different van sizes in some cases to accommodate different needs.

Advantages and disadvantages 
of skip hire

Advantages of hiring a skip:

  • Great for long-term projects when waste is produced gradually over days or weeks
  • Convenient to keep adding waste when you need
  • All rubbish is removed in one go when the skip is removed
  • Large for storing bulky waste as well as rubble, soil, and construction waste
  • Choice of skip sizes to suit different uses
skip on the road next to a row of shops.

Disadvantages of hiring a skip:

  • Need space for the skip on your property in a place that’s accessible for the skip loader and doesn’t block access
  • If you put a skip on the road outside you’ll need a permit, which can be costly and take extra time
  • The costs of hiring a skip can vary depending on its size, how long you need it for, and what waste it holds
  • Only certain waste types can go in a skip, so might need additional waste removal services anyway
  • There’s a risk of other people using your skip if it’s in a public place or theft of its contents
  • You pay for a skip based on its size, whether you fill it or not, so it may be less cost-effective
  • Filling the skip with waste is all down to you, so you’ll have to do all the heavy lifting and carrying

Advantages and disadvantages of 
a man with a van hire

Advantages of using a man with a van:

  • Quick and convenient waste removal with everything taken away in one go on an agreed day
  • Permits aren’t required and the extra time and costs that can involve
  • No need for special access or space on your property to place a skip, waste can be removed from inside your home, office, garage, or elsewhere
  • Labour included so you don’t have to move and lift any bulky waste or awkward items
  • Reduced fuel usage is better for the environment – as vans only make one trip out, rather than delivering and removing a skip
  • Flexible service to remove as much or as little waste as you need with a price tailored to your specific requirements
  • A wide range of waste types can be removed together in one van

Disadvantages of using a man with a van:

  • Space is limited based on the van’s size, so it might require a few trips
  • Waste is taken away in one go, so you’ll have to store rubbish somewhere secure before the day of removal
  • Not always suitable for removing rubble and construction waste
boxes stacked up for a house move.

Is it cheaper to get a man 
with a van or hire a skip?

Using a man with a van can be a cheaper alternative to skip hire when you’ve got big and bulky items you need to get rid of quickly. If you’re clearing a house, garden, garage, or office and have everything in one place then a man and van service might be more cost-effective.

The costs of using a man and van can depend on the size and type of van, how much waste you need collected, where from, and when. Labour is included though, which can make it more cost-effective. It’s easiest to get a tailored free quote for our man and van services – call 0333 444 0118 or contact us online.

Skip hire can be more expensive if you need to pay for a permit to place it on the street outside. The costs of hiring a skip also depend on its size, when and where you need it, and how long. Unless you’re creating waste over a longer period it’s often cheaper to use a man with a van than hire a skip.

Book a man with a van near you

Find an affordable and efficient man with a van service near you with Divert. We provide solutions to get rid of a wide range of waste types from across Yorkshire and the surrounding region with our man with a van options. Get started with a free no obligation quote for a:

If you’ve got any questions or want more information about using a man with a van service, don’t hesitate to contact our friendly and expert team – call 0333 444 0118 or contact us online.

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Longer nights, shorter days, and lower temperatures across autumn and winter significantly affect the conditions and health of gardens across the UK. Getting them in good shape for the colder months is important for domestic gardens, public parks, and commercial green spaces. A garden clearance before Christmas is essential.

Winter is a challenging time for any keen gardener with less sun, more rain, and Jack Frost creeping about. Put in the work now though and you’ll protect your outdoor space so it’s in great condition when spring arrives. That’s why we’ve pulled together some advice for your winter garden clearance.

At Divert we can remove garden waste from your home or business in the UK at any time of year. Find a fast solution to get rid of a few or many bags of rubbish from your garden with our garden clearance services. Keep reading for effective tips to clear your garden for winter.

snow on leaves of holly bush.

Leave no leaves behind

Dead leaves lying on your lawn aren’t going to do your grass any good over winter, so it’s important you rake them off. You can add them to a compost pile or your garden waste bin. Alternatively, use these dead leaves to create leaf mould, which you can recycle back in your garden.

Use an empty bin or find a sheltered spot and create an enclosed container. Add the leaves and a bit of water then leave until they’ve formed a crumbly texture. Shredding the leaves and using ones from oak, beech, and alder trees should speed up the process. Spread the leaf mould on your soil to add structure and organic matter.

Cut back shrubs and trees

Trimming hedges, shrubs, and trees is much harder when frozen. The best time to cut them back is after all the leaves have fallen off but before temperatures drop below zero. Cutting back branches once winter has arrived leaves plants, trees, and hedges more exposed to the cold and increases the risk of them suffering and even dying.

Clear out your compost

Warmer weather helps organic material in your compost bin break down quicker. Over winter any food and garden waste on your compost heap will still decompose but at a slower rate. Therefore, using as much compost as possible and clearing out to start afresh is ideal before winter fully arrives.

The autumn clear-up also produces plenty of compostable material that needs somewhere to go. Spreading as much of the current compost crop as possible around your garden makes space for this. Turn the existing compost with a fork if it’s not quite ready to try and quicken the process.

Don’t worry if there’s not enough room in your compost bin for all the fresh garden waste harvested in your pre-winter clearance. You can always create a fresh pile next to it or in a different spot – just don’t mix the two, as it could slow down the first pile’s progress. Alternatively, arrange garden waste collection so it’s sent to a large-scale composting site.

fruit and veg peelings on top of compost pile.

Mulch your garden

Mulching is simply the process of adding organic materials (usually manure, compost, or bark/wood chippings) to your garden. It’s an eco-friendly way to naturally recycle such materials and protect your garden through the colder months. If you’ve got a compost heap or wood that can be shredded then it’s also a cheap option.

Evenly spread your chosen mulch over your garden beds to protect the soil and plants below. A thick layer of organic material should stop plants from freezing and reduce soil erosion from extra rainfall. This also suppresses weeds and creates a tidy appearance for your garden to make it low maintenance over winter.

Discover more advice to get rid of green waste in our garden waste guide

Read our garden waste guide

Plant new trees and bushes

Before the soil freezes is a good time to plant bare-root trees and bushes. This could be anything from a fresh rose bush to geraniums or a beech tree. Planting them now provides plenty of time for them to bed in and any summer plants to bloom on time.

The same is true for planting bulbs. It’s the ideal time to plant popular spring flowers such as tulips, daffodils, pansies, bluebells, and snowdrops before the soil freezes. Evergreens are also a good option to bring a splash of colour to your garden for the coming drab, dull, and dark days.

Protect or put away garden furniture

It’s not just the plants in your garden that need protecting over winter. The cold and damp weather affects everything in your outdoor space. So, if you’ve only got a patio or paved-over backyard, you still need to take a few steps to ensure everything survives the coming cold months.

Move any garden furniture into a shed, garage, basement, or indoors if you’ve got the storage space. You’re unlikely to need them until the temperatures reach double figures again, probably in April at the earliest. If you must leave them outside cover up any furniture with waterproof sheets and secure them.

Rain and snow can cause dampness and encourage mould that affects any wooden garden furniture and any cushions or padding. It will also potentially rust any metal garden furniture, while strong winds might blow items over (or even away) and damage them. Protecting your garden furniture ensures you can use them again next summer.

garden furniture covered in snow.

Empty your shed

Now is the prime time to clear out your garden shed. Make room to store garden furniture and barbecues while getting rid of stuff you’ve accumulated over a busy summer of gardening. Chuck out any broken tools and plant pots or donate any items you don’t use to a local charity shop.

Cleaning your tools before putting them away for winter is best around now too. A good wash and dry of any spades, forks, and trowels ensures they’re ready to use in spring and avoids mould building up. Tidying your shed also makes it easier to find everything you need when cutting the lawn for the first time in the new year.

Book garden waste collection

A big garden clearance before winter creates plenty of green waste. Even if you’ve got a compost bin the mountains of dead leaves, branches, and trimmings can be too much for it. Plus, most council garden waste collections stop over winter. Booking garden waste collection with Divert is the perfect solution.

Whatever type and amount of garden waste you need to get rid of we can remove it at a convenient time. Our licensed waste carriers will come to your home or business and load your green waste into one of our purple vans. All garden waste is diverted away from landfill and often taken to a large composting site nearby.

We can collect garden waste from households and businesses across Yorkshire. This includes garden clearance services in:

Get a free quote for garden waste collection today or speak to one of our friendly team for a fast solution to your questions – call 0333 444 0118 or contact us online.

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The Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (Defra) announced its new plans for recycling in England at the end of October. Its reforms to the current waste system aim to improve recycling rates across households and businesses and protect the environment. They also look to clamp down on illegal waste carriers.

Many industries have welcomed the proposed changes, although a few have raised some concerns. It could also be a couple of years before any improvements happen, as the first stage of these plans doesn’t have to be in place until 31 March 2026 at the latest. Defra might be able to wait but the planet can’t.

Households and businesses can do their bit to reduce waste, improve recycling rates, and simplify their processes today. Learn more about Defra’s proposed changes to recycling in England and use these tips to make recycling easier at home or work.

plastic bottle recycling.

What are Defra’s simpler recycling plans?

Defra’s ‘Simpler Recycling’ plans are a new set of proposals and changes to the current waste and recycling systems in England. This simpler recycling aims to standardise the process so people can recycle the same materials at home, work, school, or elsewhere. This should avoid the current confusion where certain items are recyclable in some areas of the country but not others.

The main changes and points from Defra’s simpler recycling proposals include:

  • All local authorities in England will be required to collect these recyclable waste streams – food waste, glass recycling, garden waste, metal, plastic, paper, and card.
  • Weekly collections of food waste for most UK households.
  • Residual waste removals from homes at least once a fortnight.
  • Waste collectors can collect dry recyclables together – to avoid excessive numbers of bins.
  • Local authorities can charge for garden waste collections, as ‘the economic and environmental case is not strong enough to proceed’.
  • Plastic film will be collected as part of the plastic waste stream by 31 March 2027.
  • All these changes will apply to businesses – except for garden waste and plastic film.
  • An overhaul of the existing record-keeping system for waste tracking with a central digital system to help better detect waste crime.

Who will Defra’s simpler recycling proposals affect?

The simpler recycling proposals are part of a large overhaul to the waste system to ensure the same materials are collected from homes, businesses, and other organisations across the UK. Therefore these plans will affect almost everyone, whether you’re recycling plastic bottles at home or getting rid of grass cuttings from a school playing field.

This is who and how Defra’s simpler recycling will impact:

  • Households – all homes in England, including flats, will eventually have collections of food waste and the same recyclables.
  • Businesses – companies that don’t already will have to recycle glass, metal, plastic (except plastic film), paper and card, and food waste.
  • Other organisations – the new proposals will apply to other non-commercial facilities such as schools, universities, hospitals, and charities.
  • Local authorities – all local authorities across the country must have plans and facilities in place to collect and recycle these waste materials from households in their area.
recycling logo.

When do the new recycling plans come into force?

The main new recycling plans don’t come into force until the end of March 2026. There is some staggering of the introductions with dates for some proposals yet to be announced. Plus, there’s a chance that the proposed dates will change. The three key dates when these simpler recycling plans should be in place are by:

  • 31 March 2025 – the required recyclable waste should be collected from businesses (excluding garden waste and plastic film).
  • 31 March 2026 – local authorities must collect the required recyclable waste streams from homes (glass, metal, plastic, paper and card, food waste, and garden waste).
  • 31 March 2027 – local authorities and waste collectors must collect plastic film as part of the plastic waste stream.

Will my home have seven bins?

No, you won’t have seven bins. Even though local authorities will collect seven waste materials under the ‘Simpler Recycling’ proposals, they can be commingled. This means most recyclable rubbish will be collected together (as is the case with most household recycling bins currently). It will be separate from general (residual) waste though.

How to make recycling 
easier at home now

Recycling in England at home currently depends on where you live, the household recycling bins your local authority provides, and what materials they accept. Most councils provide bins for dry mixed recycling such as paper, cardboard, metal tins, and some plastics, but not all. Simpler Recycling aims to improve this.

Depending on where you live you could be waiting up to two and a half years before your local authority collects all these recyclable materials. Thankfully there are ways to reduce waste and improve household recycling anywhere in the UK already for these seven waste types:

  • Food waste – compost any waste food if you’ve got outside space to build a compost pile. This is the natural process of recycling organic waste. Otherwise, make the most of leftover food items by using it in other recipes. For example, vegetable peelings can be used in various broths and even cakes.
  • Glass recycling – some local authorities already collect glass as part of their household recycling services. For those that don’t most towns, cities, and villages have at least one bottle bank where you can recycle clean and dry glass bottles and jars of all shapes, sizes, and colours. These are normally in council, supermarket, and sports club car parks.
  • Garden waste – composting is the natural way to recycle any garden waste at home. Some local authorities provide garden waste bins already (though charges may apply), which are taken to big composting sites anyway. Alternatively, see if a local allotment wants your garden waste for their compost piles.
  • Metal – most households can recycle clean and dry aluminium drink cans and tin food cans in their domestic recycling bins. For larger bits of metal, you can arrange collection of scrap metal by licensed waste carriers or visit your local household waste recycling centre (HWRC).
  • Plastic – check what’s accepted in your current recycling bin as you can recycle most plastic bottles in them anywhere in the country. For plastic bags, film, and other thin plastics you can take them to special recycling bins in various supermarkets. Here you can recycle the likes of plastic cereal packets, plastic bags, and film.
  • Paper and card – pretty much every local authority accepts clean and dry waste paper and card in their household recycling bin collections. If you’ve got high volumes you can recycle them at a nearby HWRC. You might also be able to get a rebate if you’ve got lots of old newspapers. With the likes of shredded paper, you can add it to compost piles too.
bottle banks in car park near trees.

Ways businesses can simplify recycling today

Businesses can also improve their recycling rates in England and make the processes easier now, rather than waiting a few more years. Increasing your recycling efforts helps the environment, demonstrates your sustainable credentials, and saves money on waste management costs. There are a few things your organisation can do to simplify recycling across your business:

  • Review your waste management – assess and audit your current waste management setup to see if there are any issues or opportunities. Could you recycle some rubbish that’s currently thrown away with general waste? Consider adding extra bins to your collection service if so.
  • Separate your recycling – use different bins to separate your waste by its materials. Have individual bins for any relevant glass recycling, paper, cardboard, plastics, metal, food waste, and garden waste that your business produces. This ensures as much as possible is recycled rather than all being sent to landfill or for incineration with general waste.
  • Use the best bin sizes – combine the types of bins with the best sizes based on the volume of each waste stream you create. Use big bins for high volumes of cardboard and paper recycling that can be easily compressed. If you produce other waste types less frequently consider smaller bins.
  • Arrange regular collections – daily collections are ideal for food waste especially, so it doesn’t start to smell and create unhygienic conditions. For big bins holding dry recyclables like paper and cardboard, you might only need removals on a weekly or fortnightly basis. The same is true for any waste materials you produce less often.
  • Use a waste management firm – simplify your recycling by using a professional waste management company like Divert. We can provide a waste audit, deliver free bins, and arrange collections on a timescale that suits you. All waste is diverted away from landfill where possible, and sent for recycling, recovery, and responsible disposal.

Simplify recycling for your business today with Divert. Contact us online or call 0333 444 0118 today for a free no-obligation quote for recycling collections.

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Bedbugs have been hiding beneath our sheets when we sleep, creeping along bed frames, and lurking behind loose wallpaper in UK homes for many years. They’ve even taken up residency in hotels, hostels, and B&Bs. In most cases, the owners take action after they’ve long exceeded their checkout time.

Recent rises in infestations of bedbugs in France have created fears it could spread to the UK. The good news is that bedbugs haven’t been shown to carry diseases or cause health problems, according to the NHS. However, the bad news is their bites lead to raised, itchy, and irritating little bumps.

There are various things you can do if you’re worried about bedbugs moving into your home or think you’ve found an infestation. Discover how to deal with bedbugs in the UK and ways to dispose of any furniture or other infected items in this guide.

bedbug crawling on grey bedding.

What are bedbugs?

Bedbugs are little insects that normally live on furniture and bedding. They’re around 5mm long when fully grown and can be a dark yellow, red, or brown colour. Bedbugs don’t have wings and are a flat oval shape. Young bedbugs (or nymphs) are translucent or yellow while bedbug eggs are small and white.

It’s tricky to spot bedbugs as they’re so small. Bedbug infestations happen as they move around by attaching themselves to furniture, clothing, bedding, and luggage that moves from an infested area to a non-infested environment. They’re not a dangerous pest but their bites are irritating and uncomfortable and some people may be allergic to them.

How to prevent bedbugs

Preventing bedbugs is challenging due to their small size and because they can travel around on luggage, furniture, and bedding. If you’ve been on holiday or introduced some new or second-hand furniture into your home then there could be a higher risk of bedbugs appearing. There are ways to prevent the risk of bedbugs if you’re concerned about an infestation.

A few things you can do to prevent bedbugs inviting themselves into your home are to:

  • Regularly wash bedding – cleaning bedsheets, blankets, and pillowcases reduces the presence of any bedbugs and their eggs. If there are only a few it can get rid of them before they lay eggs and increase the problem.
  • Check your accommodation – inspect the bed frame and sheets for any signs of bedbugs, including their eggs and faeces. Request a different room or accommodation if there’s evidence of them.
  • Look at your luggage – leave your bag or suitcase away from the bed to reduce the risk of any bugs hopping on. If you’re going abroad, check your bag and give it a shake when you receive it from baggage handling at the airport, as they’re a common source of bedbugs.
  • Inspect second-hand furniture – always check any used furniture items before moving them into your home, as this is a key passage for bedbug infestations. Thoroughly clean the furniture away from your home to avoid accidentally inviting any of the little pests inside.
  • Try bedbug repellents – some people try various repellents but the evidence about their effectiveness varies. Applying essential oils, peppermint leaves and oil, and diatomaceous earth are commonly tried but their success rates vary.
  • Remove clutter in your bedroom – the less furnishings and furniture near your bed, the fewer hiding places bedbugs have to start an infestation. Items close to your bed can act as ladders to give bedbugs a helping hand to reach their new home.

How to get rid 
of bedbugs

Seen a bedbug crawling across your sheets? Developed little red bites overnight? Spotted some small yellow eggs or dark spots of bedbug poo? Firstly, don’t panic. Bedbugs are common and there are ways to get rid of them without turning your house upside down. Some things you can try to get rid of bedbugs are to:

  • Hot wash your bedding – put any affected bedding and clothes on a high-temperature wash cycle of 60°C and then place them in a tumble dryer on a hot setting for at least half an hour.
  • Iron or steam-clean bedding – you can go one step further by then ironing your sheets and duvet covers, or steam-cleaning in the first place. Exposure to extensive heat kills bedbugs so this is often effective.
  • Clean and vacuum the infected area – regularly clean and vacuum your bedroom carpets and mattresses especially to remove any bedbugs and their eggs. They can live, hide, and lay eggs in the cracks of mattresses so this helps remove them.
  • Freeze clothing and bedding – if you’ve got a big freezer then wrap up the affected bedding or clothing in a plastic bag and freeze it for three or four days. Freezing bedbugs should kill them. Then you can thaw out and wash the bedding before using it again.
  • Throw out your mattress – an extreme but effective action is to get rid of your mattress. This helps remove the bedbugs from your home, but you’ll need to buy a new mattress. Bedbugs can live in the bed frame so it must be cleaned thoroughly before introducing a fresh mattress. Find out more about mattress disposal in the UK.
  • Contact the professionals – find a company or individual accredited by the British Pest Control Association. Using professionals should ensure all bedbugs are exterminated so you can sleep soundly again.
old bed and mattress next to wooden wardrobe.

How to throw away a 
bedbug-infested mattress

When there are bedbugs in a mattress getting rid of them isn’t easy. Throwing away a bedbug-infected mattress can be a cheaper and simpler solution in some cases that eradicates the problem. If you’re considering disposing of a mattress full of bedbugs there are a few extra considerations and steps to take:

  • Wear protective gear – put on a pair of gloves and some old clothes to handle the mattress. This protects your skin against any potential bites from the bedbugs and throwing away the old clothes avoids passing them onto any other clothes in the wash.
  • Wrap up the mattress – seal the mattress with plastic wrap before you move it if possible. This helps contain the bedbugs within the mattress and reduces the risk of passing them onto other furniture and carpets throughout your home.
  • Stick on a label – ensure nobody else takes the mattress wherever you put it by adding a label explaining it’s bedbug-infested. Even if you leave it on your drive for just a few hours before collection, there’s a chance someone may see it and consider taking it.
  • Check other items and areas – inspect the bed frame, the carpet, any furniture, and soft furnishings nearby, as bedbugs could have spread onto these. Conduct a deep clean of the area after removing your old mattress but before you introduce a new one. This should prevent your new mattress from becoming infested.
  • Arrange mattress collection – book mattress collection by a professional waste management company. They’ll collect your old mattress and dispose of it properly to ensure the bedbugs don’t spread. Taking the mattress to your local household waste recycling centre (HWRC) could introduce bedbugs to your car and lead to bites for workers at the HWRC.

At Divert we can help with mattress collection and disposal across Yorkshire. All old mattresses are handled and removed by licensed waste carriers and diverted away from landfill where possible. We provide a range of mattress removal services at various locations, including:

What to do with 
bedbug-infested furniture

It’s not just mattresses and bedding where bedbugs like to live, despite their name. Sofas, chairs, and other upholstered furniture make great homes for these little pests. That’s why it’s important you thoroughly check any second-hand furniture before introducing it into your home. Don’t despair if you’ve found some living in your furniture though.

To get rid of bedbugs from furniture you can take similar steps to getting rid of them from your bedding. Strip off any cushion covers, wash them on a high heat and tumble dry, or wrap them in a plastic bag and freeze. Give the furniture a thorough vacuum and steam, including along the frame.

You can install interceptors under each leg of the sofa chair, or table to prevent bedbugs coming back. These are multi-walled plastic cups that have a slick coating so the bedbugs can’t climb up the legs. If you want to get rid of your furniture to get rid of bedbugs, arrange furniture removal by professionals.

You should never donate any old furniture including beds and mattresses that you know are infected with bedbugs. Booking collection by licensed waste carriers and informing them that the item(s) of furniture is infested with bedbugs should ensure they’re disposed of responsibly. It reduces the risk of bedbugs spreading and solves the problem in your home.

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House clearances are services that involve a team of professionals removing unwanted items from a domestic property. They’re used to get rid of furniture, appliances, bags of junk and more in one go. House clearing services are common when moving home or emptying a property after a bereavement.

Given the size of the task, it’s no surprise that undertaking a house clearance in the UK can be slightly daunting. But it doesn’t need to be! Put your mind at ease and ensure everything runs smoothly by understanding how the process works, what you can do to prepare, and the items removed with our house clearance help.

Find out how house clearances work and what you need to do with our answers to some common questions about house clearing services.

an empty bedroom in a house clearance.

What is a house clearance?

A house clearance is the removal of unwanted items from a home. It can involve getting rid of everything in the home, just specific items, or waste from part of a property. House clearances are when multiple items or bags of rubbish are taken away from a house at the same time.

Normally house clearances are necessary when preparing to sell a domestic property. This could be due to a death, a loved one moving into care, or moving home. House clearance solutions are available for any type of domestic property, including the likes of a semi-detached house, bungalow, flat, or terrace.

Arrange a house clearance

How much does a 
house clearance cost?

House clearance costs vary greatly due to different factors. Specific items you want removed and their weight, the size and location of the home, and when you need it cleared all affect the price of a house clearance. The average cost of a house clearance can be anywhere between £300 and £700.

Large houses with lots of items to remove may use bigger vans or make more trips to clear them. This can require extra pairs of hands and increase labour and fuel costs, which impacts the price. Clearing a bungalow of just a few white goods might only need a team of two and one trip, which will be cheaper.

The easiest way to find out how much a house clearance costs is to get a tailored quote. Contact us at Divert and we can provide a free quote for a house clearance based on your needs. Just tell us an estimate of what you need removing, where from, and when for a no-obligation quote.

aerial view of terraced and town houses in UK.

How long does a 
house clearance take?

How long a house clearance takes depends on the size of the home, and what types and number of items need removing. This should help the company clearing the house decide on the best size and number of vehicles to use. Efficient house clearances fill their vans to reduce the number of trips they need to make.

The size of the team also affects how long it takes. Most house clearing services send a team of two or three people for the job – although it may be more for larger domestic properties. If there’s more than one vehicle it can also be quicker as fewer trips to the tip should be necessary.

Accessibility, how close vans can park to the entrance, and the size of items being taken away also speed up or slow down progress. For example, domestic properties on three or four floors will take longer to remove wardrobes, beds, and other bulky items from the top floor compared to clearing a bungalow.

Professional house clearing services should provide a rough estimate of how long it will take based on the information you provide. Generally, an average two or three-bedroom house full of furniture and bags of other rubbish could take between 8 and 12 hours with a team of two or three.

What do I need to do for 
a house clearance?

Properly preparing for a house clearance helps ensure the day runs smoothly. You can just ring up and get a team to come and move everything but without any planning, the job can take longer and cost more. A few small actions can improve the house-clearing experience for you and the team.

To prepare for a house clearance:

  • Separate items – go through the house and divide everything into four categories – what you’ll keep, donate, throw away, and recycle. Ideally, you’ll remove everything from the property except what you’re throwing away before the house clearance team arrives.
  • Speak to family and friends – ask any loved ones if they want any of the items first, especially if clearing a home after a death. Even if you’re just moving home, giving away things to others is a sustainable option, and reduces how much waste you need clearing, which will lower the costs.
  • Donate unwanted items – check everything left on your donate list and take it to a local charity shop. Alternatively, put it up for free on Facebook Marketplace, Gumtree, or other online platforms. Just ensure they’re gone before the date of your house clearance to avoid any confusion.
  • Estimate the amount of waste – work out what you’re getting rid of and write a list. Include what the items are and their rough size (take photos if possible) and send these to your house clearance team so they can send an appropriate team and vehicles for the job.
  • Move what you can – you’re paying for professional house-clearing services so don’t do any backbreaking work. However, if you can move everything easily into one or two rooms it can speed up the clearance job and make it cheaper.
  • Clear the way – check that your hallways, rooms, and any garden paths are as clear as possible. This reduces the risk of accidents and should help speed up the clearance by making it as easy as possible to remove bulky items.
  • Arrange a house clearance – find a local company that offers house clearances in the UK and get a quote. If you’re happy with the price book a time and day for the house clearance and you’re good to go.

How does a 
house clearance work?

A house clearance works by a team of professionals coming to a domestic property, removing unwanted items, and taking them away for responsible disposal. Often large items such as furniture, white goods, and electricals are removed in a house clearance. Vans are filled with such goods and driven away by licensed waste carriers.

The general steps of a professional house clearance include:

  • Prepare the property – bag up any loose waste, move any items into one room if possible, and ensure all walkways are clear so the team have easy access.
  • Stick to the plan – after getting a quote don’t add or remove any items as it could affect the price and the house clearance team’s plan. If you must change something then inform the company as soon as possible, as it could mean they need a different van or an extra pair of hands for the job.
  • Instruct the house clearance team – tell them where they can park, agree on a time and date, and ensure they know which items to remove and any to leave in the house.
  • Sit back and relax – once the team arrive they’ll assess the items that need removing and get to work. They do all the lifting, carrying, and loading into the van. You can sit back with a cup of tea (but feel free to offer the removal guys one as well!).
  • Driven to disposal – once everything’s loaded up into the van one of the licensed waste carriers will drive it to a nearby waste management facility. All items are diverted away from landfill and sent for recycling, reuse, or recovery where possible.
boxes in house ready for clearance.

What do house clearances take?

House clearing services can remove a wide variety of items from domestic properties, gardens, and garages. They mainly take bulky items such as old furniture and appliances, and higher volumes of bagged or boxed-up waste – more than you could easily dispose of yourself. Some examples of what house clearances can take include:

  • Furnitureold sofas, beds, wardrobes, and garden furniture
  • White goodsfridges and freezers, washing machines, and dishwashers
  • Mattresses – single, double, king and queen-size old mattresses
  • Electrical appliances – TVs, computers, toasters, and kettles
  • Sheds – dismantled old sheds and greenhouses
  • Bags of junk – bagged up old clothes, pots and pans, and other bric-a-brac

Where can I arrange 
a house clearance?

House clearances are available across the UK for all types of domestic properties. This includes the clearance of semi and detached homes, terrace houses, town houses, bungalows, and flats. You can book a house clearance whether you’re moving out of your own home or clearing a property on behalf of someone else.

At Divert we offer house clearances across Yorkshire for a local solution. Find out more about local house clearing services:


What size skip do I need 
for a house clearance?

You don’t need a skip for a house clearance. Our team will come and load your unwanted items into our purple vans to remove them from the domestic property. There’s no need for the extra costs, time, and hassle that hiring a skip involves – such as getting a permit or making space on your drive.

Do house clearance companies pay you?

You must pay for most house clearing services – most house clearance companies do not pay you. The costs of a house clearance depend on the types and number of items you need to get rid of, the size of the property and its location.

Some house clearance companies may pay you but only if they accept the valuables removed as payment. This could occur if many of the items you’re getting rid of will be sold or auctioned off and the clearance company can make a profit. Charity house clearances may also clear homes for free if they can sell the items to support their cause.

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A general waste bin is for many types of rubbish that you can’t recycle. This includes items like wet wipes, cling film, and chicken bones. Understanding what rubbish you should put in a general waste bin ensures responsible waste disposal – as a business or household.

There’s a big overlap between household general waste and commercial general waste bins. However, what you can put in each does differ slightly. For example, you can use your domestic general waste bin to get rid of used nappies and food scraps. Businesses might have separate nappy waste and food waste bins.

Discover what you can put in your general waste bin at home or work to separate your rubbish effectively and improve your recycling rates.

man dropping rubbish into general waste bin.

What goes in a 
general household waste bin?

General household waste bins are used to dispose of many types of non-recyclable rubbish. However, this doesn’t include very large or heavy items, hazardous, medical, or garden waste. What classes as general household waste can vary slightly between regions, so check your local council website to see what is accepted in your domestic general waste bin.

Common bits of rubbish you can throw away in your general household waste bin include:

  • Food scraps
  • Crisp packets
  • Sweet wrappers
  • Non-recyclable food packaging
  • Dirty nappies
  • Cat litter
  • Cigarette butts (extinguished)
  • Cotton wool and buds
  • Used kitchen towel, tissues, and wipes
  • Pet bedding

What can go in a general 
waste bin at work?

Most of the same types of rubbish you put in your general waste bin at home go into general waste bins at businesses. However, you might have separate bins for some general waste items such as food waste, sanitary waste, and dry mixed recycling. Such items should be kept out of your commercial general waste bins.

Common types of rubbish that can go in a general waste bin at your business include:

  • Food scraps – small amounts of waste food leftover from lunches
  • Non-hazardous cleaning items – like used wet wipes, sponges, and kitchen towel
  • Non-recyclable packaging – crisp packets, plastic wrap from deliveries
general waste bin next to road.

What can you put in a 
general waste skip?

A general waste skip is normally used to get rid of large and bulky items too big for a regular general waste bin. Exactly what you can put in a general waste skip depends on the terms and conditions of the company renting out the skip. Most general waste skips are used to store and dispose of big non-recyclable items such as:

  • Bricks
  • Rubble and stones
  • Soil (non-contaminated)
  • Concrete
  • UPVC windows
  • Garden waste
  • Furniture and mattresses

What does not go in a 
general waste bin?

Most non-recyclable rubbish classes as general waste but not all items can be disposed of in a general waste bin. You should not use a general waste bin at home or as a business to dispose of:

As a business, you should use various bins and containers to store these different types of waste separately. This helps increase the amount of waste you recycle, which benefits the environment and lowers your waste disposal costs as you’ll pay less landfill tax. It also reduces the risk of contamination for your general waste and recycling.

At home, you should recycle any cardboard, paper, and recyclables in your household waste recycling bin. Some also accept glass but check with your local council, and you might have a separate garden waste bin. Otherwise, most of these waste types can be disposed of responsibly at a nearby household waste recycling centre (HWRC) – or use our local man and van rubbish removal service.

Man and van rubbish removal

What colour is a
general waste bin?

The colour of a general waste bin depends on your location. Many councils provide household general waste bins that are grey or black, but in some cities, towns, and villages in the UK, they can be blue. Check with your local council or authority for the colour of a general waste bin at your address.

General waste bins are available for businesses in a range of colours to help separate them from your recycling and other waste types. Using colour-coded bins makes it easier for employees and customers to dispose of general waste and other rubbish responsibly.

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Britain’s crowning glory – tons of cheap plastic coronation souvenirs 
set to hit landfill

Britain’s disposable society to strike again with single-use party favours

Saturday May 6 th is the big day as King Charles III is crowned at Westminster Abbey, and the party is
expected to last until at least Monday, with one of three bank holidays that month.

And there’s one group of people not looking forward to the aftermath at all – those hardworking
teams from the UK’s waste and recycling companies charged with clearing up after the celebrations.

UK waste collection company says the worst part is going to be separating the recyclable
rubbish from the stuff going to landfill and warns there may be record amounts of the latter.

“Every bank holiday brings a spike in waste,” says spokesperson Mark Hall, “But we think we
might be up to our necks in plastic waste come the Tuesday after the party.”

“It’ll be like Christmas and Easter rolled into one”

The coronation will be, for most of us, a once-in-a-lifetime experience, and it is a very good excuse
for everybody to have a good time away from – well – everything else.

The bad news for the British economy is that every bank holiday costs the nation approximately £3.9
billion* in lost productivity.

The good news, however, is that each holiday gives small businesses such as shops, pubs and
restaurants a modest boost to profits of around £250, while people spend approximately £500m on
leisure activities.

And suffice to say that as well as the boozing, barbecues and endless coronation quiches, there is
going to be astonishing levels of rubbish to go with it.

“It’s going to be the street party to end all parties,” says’s Mark Hall, “and the big problem is
going to be a complete collapse of recycling across households and businesses.

“Nobody thinks about recycling during a celebration, so everything is going to end up in the same bin
bag; and that’s going to end up in landfill. What a waste.”

Christmas produces about 688,000 tonnes of waste but thinks the coronation will be, Christmas and Easter rolled into one.

“Rolled into one, put in big plastic sacks, and dumped in a hole in the ground at your town or city’s
landfill facility,” says Hall. “Three-quarters of a million tonnes? Not out of the question in today’s
disposable society.”

And that’s before we consider the cheap coronation souvenirs.

All the cheap plastic rubbish you can carry

“All that plastic bunting, those Charles and Camilla face masks, cheap imported crowns, the whole
nine yards,” says Mark Hall. “And the sad fact is that it’s all going to end up in the bin.”

If last year’s Platinum Jubilee is anything to go by, there’ll be no end of trashy souvenirs that won’t
make it past the first car boot sale, or the first charity bag to come through the front door.

There are whole lists of these things on the internet – Queen and Corgi car air fresheners, Platinum
Jubilee leggings, and no end of tat embossed with the unfortunate words “platty joobs” – and it’s
highly doubtful whether much of this rubbish has either survived or been sensibly recycled.

“Thank the stars that ‘corribobs’ hasn’t caught on,” says Hall, “but the fact remains that a lot of
souvenirs and bunting at the cheap end of the market will prove to be a tremendous waste of

As a country, we should be doing better, Divert says.

But with the coronation and its long weekend being an enormous hit of the UK economy, the tens of
thousands of tonnes of extra waste to be dealt with, and the possibility and the horror of the gift of
Charlie and Camilla boxer shorts, is it all worth it?

“Of course it is,” says Mark, “We need the burst of national pride, and we need a party. Get out
there and enjoy yourselves.

“But remember to separate your recyclables, in the name of the King.”

* Based on £2.9bn per bank holiday calculated by the Centre for Economics and Business Research in
2012, adjusted for inflation

Let’s turn the Earth green this St Patrick’s Day

Raise a pint of Guinness and enjoy the luck of the Irish!

No matter how Irish you are, or how far from Ireland you live, get your Guinness at the ready, as St Patrick’s Day is upon us on the 17th March.

But is our much-loved Irish holiday causing an environmental hangover, as well as leaving you with a banging headache and a mountain of waste to deal with on the 18th?

Waste collection experts Divert aren’t happy about the heap of rubbish we leave behind every year as we celebrate the luck of the Irish, with bins overflowing with empty tins and single-use fancy dress items clogging up our landfill sites.

Spokes-leprechaun Mark Hall says: “Everyone and anyone will suddenly claim to be of Irish descent and want to join in on the shindigs – but is all the rubbish worth it just to celebrate one day of the year?

“Maybe the best way to turn the town green this year is to go for the greener and more sustainable options by choosing to reuse and recycle during these festivities.”

Pints of pointless garbage

Over the years, St Patrick’s Day has become a commercial success with dressing up and drinking at the forefront as we celebrate Irish heritage.

Hazel from Dorchester says – “I’m a quarter Irish but it’s all the excuse I need to go to town every year, neck a few pints of Guinness, and pester the DJ all night to play a bit of B*Witched”.

Partiers certainly love a pint of Guinness to celebrate the beloved patron saint of Ireland, with over 13 million pints of the Irish stout being consumed on March 17th – enough to fill 3 Olympic sized swimming pools.

Aside from tins, a lot of this will come in plastic cups and bottles with approximately over 13,500 tonnes being disposed of during the festivities.

And for those who like a cheeky cigarette when they drink, over 1 billion butts are reportedly thrown on the ground, instead of disposed of in bins. 

Dublin City Council conducts a colossal clean up mission, costing a small fortune to hire staff to collect over 20 tonnes of rubbish in the heart of the city during the course of the day.

In other words, a lot of stuff gets littered unnecessarily.

Hall – “If you’re going to get the tins in this Paddy’s Day, don’t forget to put the empties in your kerbside recycling bin for collection – and the same goes for your glass and plastic bottles too.

“And don’t be a bad leprechaun, make sure you’re disposing of your rubbish correctly and it’s not thrown haphazardly on the ground.”

Dressing head-to-toe in green attire has become part of the festivities on St. Patrick’s Day, with 80% of those celebrating planning to don the colour for the occasion.

This year, consumers are set to spend more than ever before for the big day, including on their fancy dress. Britons spend around £2.7 billion on single use outfits a year, including fast-fashion fancy dress items for St Patrick’s Day such as giant green hats, fake leprechaun beards, wigs, and deely-bopper headbands.

But the problem is that most of these items will only be used once before being chucked in the bin. waste expert Hall says: “A lot of fancy dress costumes are made from polyester, which is cheap to make but a nightmare to recycle as they are made using oil and mixed in with other materials. This means if you throw them away, they can be sat rotting in a landfill for decades.

“Why not keep it simple with a classic green novelty shirt that you bring out every March, or just a few accessories such as a silly hat or bowtie that you store away until the following year.”

There are also plenty of great fancy dress shops up and down the country that you can hire outfits from if you’re looking to switch up your St. Paddy’s style every year. And at the very least, if you’re finished with an item you can always donate it to charity instead of lobbing it in the bin.

So this year, maybe instead of focusing all the attention on the Chicago River being dyed green (they use 23kg of dye, fact fans), we should think about how our actions on this merry occasion can leave a lasting green impact on our plane

World Book Day: From Pulped Fiction to greener reading

Please stop throwing your old Dan Browns and Fifty Shades in the bin

Whether you’re a fan of a thriller, a sucker for romance, or just like to stick to the facts – there is a book for everyone to get stuck into this World Book Day – but have you ever stopped to think just how sustainable the book in your hands is?

With two in five Britons reading for pleasure weekly, bibliophiles may have to change how they consume their media of choice to help save the planet says one waste and recycling company.

UK waste collection company have read up on the facts to find out how we can make this hobby less wasteful on the environment after discovering that the book industry is on-track to cut down 3.4 billion trees, an area four times the size of Wales.

Mark Hall, spokesman for waste experts, says: “The sad fact is that physical books create a significant environmental impact, from the deforestation they take to be made, to the endless heaps of Dan Browns that end up unnecessarily at landfills.”

“We need to reconsider how we can enjoy this simple pleasure in ways that can be better for the environment, while also still being able to get lost in the pages of a good book.”

Paper or digital?

Technology has created more ways for us to consume media than ever before – so reading your favourite book has come a long way from borrowing dog-eared copies from your local library.

People can now get their fix of fact or fiction in a whole range of ways from e-books to audio books, by easily downloading books to read and listen to on the go.

But just how many people are switching from flicking through the pages to these new digital options? Divert conducted a poll over 1,000 people and found that only 25% of readers are likely to use an e-book such as a kindle to read, and less than 10% would listen to an audio book.

This is significantly less than those who still prefer a physical copy of a book, with 75% of readers still choosing paperback and hardback books as their preferred way to read.

Sophia from Leeds says – “I find carrying my kindle to work is a lot easier that bringing an actual book, and I find the downloads are often cheaper too. The battery lasts for ages, and it’s like having the whole library in my pocket.”

Meanwhile Maz from Swansea disagrees – “I think I’m just as addicted to buying books as I am reading them, it’s all about having a good look around a bookshop and the smell of the pages!”

Divert’s Mark Hall says “The digital revolution is seeping its way into the book world, but it seems that people still love the feel of turning the page and holding a physical book.”

“But if you prefer the aesthetics of cultivating a beautiful book collection, there are lots of ways to build the bookshelf of your dreams in a way that is better for the planet – and your pocket – while still being able to show off just how well read you are.”

Preloved page-turners

An excellent way to get the kick of collecting physical books is to shop for preloved copies from charity and second-hand book shops.

Books are one of the most donated items to charity shops up and down the UK. And it’s not just multiple copies of Fifty Shades of Grey you’ll find, they often have a wide range spanning from the classics, all the way to recent releases and even comic books.

“Most of the time the books haven’t even been opened, so you can snap up the latest must-read in mint condition, for a fraction of the price,” says Hall.

Once you’ve read your nearly-new book, you can always re-donate it again to make room for new reading material, or you can organise book swaps with friends and family.

If you find that your battered old books are beyond the point of no return, it is possible to recycle them, but this process isn’t as straightforward as you might think.

Hall: “The glue that is used to bind the pages of books together is the biggest problem here, and the spine has to be guillotined off at the recycling centre.”

Because it’s so labour intensive, most kerbside collections won’t take books in your recycling bins, so it’s always better to try to reuse and donate them as much as possible.

“There are plenty of ways we can continue to enjoy reading without the needless binning of good books. I for one am planning to do my bit by passing on my well-loved Mills and Boon books to a local charity shop and downloading the rest of the collection on my Kindle.”

Slow down Fashion Week – Fast fashion is so last season

Why your next fashion bargain should be recycled

Fashion Week is here – and eagle-eyed fashionistas will be closely paying attention to new trends and the styles of tomorrow.

But according to one waste and recycling company which sits on the cutting edge of fashion, the age of cheap fast fashion in the shops is coming to an end.

That’s being replaced by a new era of preloved clothing, says, with consumers changing their habits away from the high street and online fast-fashion retailers.

“Fast fashion means tonnes of lower quality goods going straight from wardrobe to the rubbish tip,” says spokesperson Mark Hall, “it’s the most tremendous waste of time, money and resources.”

Instead, he says, people are turning to quality goods being sold online on Facebook Marketplace, Ebay and Vinted. “Why throw it out when you can make money on it?” he says.

The end of fast fashion?

Fast fashion specialises in regular changes to clothing lines, often with cheaply made garments and lower price tags, to keep consumers decked out in the latest wears without costing a small fortune.

But this all comes at an environmental cost, with the industry producing more CO2 emissions a minute than driving a car around the world six times.

And if that hasn’t shocked you, here are some more unsustainable facts about the fashion industry:

It takes over 2,700 litres of water to produce just a single t-shirt.
The textile industry uses around 93 billion cubic metres of water a year – enough to fill 37 million Olympic swimming pools.
Only 12% of clothing materials get recycled.
On average, every person in the UK throws 3.1kg of textiles away each year – making the UK the fourth highest in Europe.
UK waste specialists know only too well the side effects of fast fashion, with heaps of clothes ending up in landfill each year and instead of being correctly recycled.

Company spokesman Mark Hall “360,000 tonnes of decent clothing a year ends up in the dump here in the UK, mostly because fashion trends move so quickly, and once people are done with something they chuck it.”

And fast fashion being what it is, many people think the garments are too low quality to give to a charity shop.

But fortunately, a new poll conducted by found that over 60% of 1,000 people asked were happy to buy preloved items of clothing, which mirrors other consumer polls saying that the second-hand clothing market is looking to overtake the fast fashion movement by the end of the decade.

Would you consider buying second-hand clothing?
Yes – 62%
No – 11%
I could be persuaded – 27%

Hall says: “Second-hand clothing is nothing new, older generations grew up wearing hand-me-downs from friends and family, and current movements such as clothes swapping are gaining popularity on social media.

“So it’s no surprise to see that people are willing to give older garments a second life. And there are plenty of reasons why now more than ever people are making the switch. People are trying to make eco-friendly decisions, so they’re turning to charity shops and second-hand sellers to cut down their own impact on the planet and reduce carbon footprints.”

“And right now with the cost of living crisis, buying clothes in charity shops is not just a trend but a necessity for those looking to style new outfits in a pinch. And online gives people the chance of making a few pounds on their old clothes.”

But for those garments that have well and truly had it, all Divert asks is for you to look to your local recycling centres and make sure the textiles are correctly disposed of. This way they can be broken back down into their natural fibres and can be remade into new materials.

Hall: “Instead of constantly creating more and more new things, we need to be making the most of what we already have, right down to the bare bones of it. The more we can do this, the less waste we will make, and the better the environment for us all”.

But for the more ethically conscious fans of Fashion Week, make sure you check out the Oxfam show, which will feature a mix of “second-hand designer items, vintage finds and some pre-loved high street clothes”.