According to a report done by the EPA (US Environmental Protection Agency) in 2010, out of 250 million tons of trash Americans had produced, paper and paperboard accounted for 29 percent of it, making it the number one waste material in our landfills.
Thankfully, we are doing better.
More of us are learning to recycle, and that’s great news for both the environment and our wallets.
But there are still tons of papers in our landfills that can be recycled. And since there is an abundance of used paper available, its recycling makes a viable business proposal. That is why there are many centers for recycling paper.
But you don’t have to spend millions of dollars building a recycling center to take advantage of this opportunity. You can recycle waste paper that gets generated in your household, and on recycling large volumes of paper you can make a considerable amount of money. All you need to do is to collect large quantities of waste paper and carry them to a recycling center and get paid.
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Interested in getting started?
Here is what you need to know…
Can You Make Money from Recycling Paper?
Yes and no!
Let me explain…
Recycled paper sells for anything from 50 to 75 dollars per ton, depending on the type of paper. So, for an average household, I don’t think it will be worth it to recycle paper for money, but of course, you can still do it for the sake of the environment.
In another word, you have to do this on a grand scale to make real money, unlike recycling wood pallets for money that you can get $1-$4 per pallet, which makes it profitable to recycle them for almost anyone.
I know there are a lot of blog posts and eBooks that tell you you can make a lot of money with recycling paper, but for most of us, it’s just not possible. I mean, gathering one ton of paper takes a lot of time and space. So, the only way to really make this a viable source of income is to do it on a large scale. And to do that, you need all the help you can get.
Here are a few steps you can take in order to make this a profitable business.
1. Find Recycling Centers
First, you have to locate a recycling center and find out the price they pay for different types of paper waste.
There are a few different ways to find a local paper recycling center. The two that I use are:
- Phone Books: You may refer to your phone book to know the places having recycling arrangements that are closer to your place.
- Earth911.com: You’ll know how paper is recycled and also the location of recycling centers. You are also informed how it helps protecting the environments and prevents pollution.
Collection of paper in any form, from newspaper to boxes, not only rewards you financially, but also helps you make your own contribution to save the environments.
You may even collect old, used paper from your neighbors. Why not send them fliers suggesting them to dump their used paper at a conveniently located bin.
You may even consider calling upon them on pre-appointed dates and time and collect all the paper they may have collected. In fact, they’ll be happy to get rid of that. This will be particularly helpful for localities that lack recycling facilities.
It will be a smart idea to check with local businesses if you can call upon them to collect their waste paper every week.
You can expect to gather large volumes of cardboard boxes from local grocery and retail stores. Just talk to them and they may give you some more options for collecting such stuff.
You can keep gathering paper in all forms from newspapers and scrap paper to phone books and cardboard boxes, before taking the same to the nearest recycling center to collect your cash.
Also, don’t forget about shredded paper. Many local businesses and offices will have tons of shredded paper that they will happily give to anyone who’ll pick them up, for free. Although, you should talk to the people at recycling centers near you to make sure they do accept shredded papers as recycling shredded paper is a little different, so many places may not want to deal with it.
3. Sort Out
Having collected a large quantity of paper, it is time to sort out your collection as per the type of paper.
You’ll need a large space like a basement or garage for storing your sorted paper.
Naturally, you would look for varieties of paper that fetch you the maximum price.
4. Get Paid
There is no dearth of recycling centers for recycling of paper and making some money on the way. On delivering your consignment of paper to your chosen recycling center you are paid cash.
Again, you can expect anywhere from $50 to $75 per ton.
Other Things You Can Recycle for Cash
Paper isn’t the only thing you can recycle for cash. Most of what we consider “garbage” that we create in our daily lives can indeed be turned into cash. Recycling centers near you pay for a lot of this stuff.
Here are a few resources to get you started in recycling various material:
- Ink Cartridges: 10 Ways to Recycle Ink Cartridges for Cash
- Plastic: How to Make Money Recycling Plastic
- Cans: Recycle Aluminum Cans for Cash
- Tires: How to Recycle Used Tires for Cash
- Glass Bottles: Recycle Glass for Cash
- Scrap Metal: Recycling Scrap Metal for Money
- Computers: 5 Ways to Recycle Computers for Money
- Car Batteries: Recycle Old Car Batteries for Cash
- Refrigerator: Recycle Refrigerator for Cash
The Bottom Line
Of course, paper is recyclable, but do not overlook the fact that it is a very light material. And unlike aluminum which is also light material but can fetch decent money, you will need tons of paper to get a decent return.