A Guide to House Clearance

Read Time: 8 mins

What is a house clearance?


A house clearance is a general term describing the removal of items from the home – usually for charity, resale or disposal.

House clearances are often larger in scale than a typical rubbish clearance or bulky waste collection but can vary in size from just a few bulky items to an entire house needing to be cleared.

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Planning a house clearance

sofa and tv

Decide what is going

The first to do is to determine which items are to be cleared and which items are staying. This can take longer than many people expect, particularly concerning items with sentimental or emotional value. Give yourself plenty of time.

Top tips:


Choose how it’s going

This is not always a straightforward choice and it may be a multi-pronged approach is best suited.

Options for your house clearance include:

Top tips:


Choose when it’s going

The timeframe for your clearance may impact which options are available. Whilst professional services can be quite flexible and will usually offer same day house clearance, other services may require a little extra time. Either way, it is better to plan ahead of time and ensure you allow plenty of time for the clearance.

Things to think about:


On the day of the house clearance

A house clearance can be stressful and the day of the clearance is often the peak of this, particularly if there isn’t much contingency in the timetable or you have travelled to the house from further afield.


What happens on the day depends on how you are having the house cleared, but in almost all cases there is more to go than you think and it often takes longer, so plan accordingly.

DIY House Clearance

If you are doing it yourself and are hiring a van make sure you have ordered a suitable vehicle. We would recommend a Luton style vehicle for a house clearance. Assuming a lot of the items are going to be disposed of or recycled, you will need to drive it to a Household Waste Recycling Centre. These often close by 6 pm (or earlier) so you will need to make sure you’ve completed this part of the house clearance.


Check whether you need a permit for your vehicle. Many tips require vans to have a permit before you turn up to ensure you are not a commercial operator. If you don’t get this in advance, you may be turned away. Equally some waste is not accepted into Council sites – typically light construction waste such as bricks, rubble and plasterboard. Always check first.


Ensure you have help. If you’re not a professional it can be tiring and a house clearance often takes longer than expected. We would recommend 3-4 people to clear a house, ideally more.


Remember there are half measures you can take if you decide to do it yourself. You could hire a skip to cut down on driving to the tip, but in many cases, a skip gets filled quicker than expected. You could also hire a professional clearance service to clear any excess waste – either from the skip or from the clearance, or hire a house clearance service to undertake the entire clearance.


If you go for skip hire, don’t forget to order the pick up as soon as possible after you fill the skip to minimise the risk of neighbours adding to it. Equally do not have the skip delivered too early, or you may turn up to a half-filled skip which will be your responsibility. Skips can also be restrictive as they will not usually accept items such as fridges, TV’s or computer monitors. Your local council will accept these items and may even collect them for you.


Professional House Clearance

“If you opted for a professional house clearance then you should be able to sit back and relax.”


The house clearance service will include two people who will load the items from inside or outside of the property. It is important that you adequately describe what needs to be cleared in advance or advise the company that it could change, to ensure the right sized vehicle with enough time available is sent.


It is important that you select a reputable clearance company which means reviews and compliance information such as Waste Carriers Licence. Clearabee is the UK’s largest clearance company undertaking over 200,000 clearances every year. Clearabee is also the most reviewed on Trustpilot, giving you complete peace of mind

customer service

Charity House Clearance / Donating / Selling Items


Selling or donating items either directly or through a charity is a great way to reduce what you need to have collected, but rarely solves the entire problem unless you have just a few high-quality items. To ensure you are not left with items leftover be sure to clearly describe what you need removing. Sales or donations on online marketplaces do sometimes result in being ‘ghosted’ (where no one turns up). To mitigate this risk allow plenty of time.


If you are left with items you need to remove rapidly, a professional company such as Clearabee is usually able to arrive on a same-day basis. Alternatively, these items could be left outside and photographed on removal, giving you peace of mind even if you have left the property.


Clearabee House Clearance Service

Clearabee is the UK’s largest clearance company. We operate over 120 vehicles with almost 300 staff all over the country. We are the most reviewed company on Trustpilot and have featured in The Telegraph and The Sunday Times Fasttrack.

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