You probably don't have an old master lurking in your attic, but many of your surplus items could be worth something if you trade them in - it's better than leaving them to gather dust.
Gavin Littlejohn, founder of Money Dashboard, offers his top tips on raising some money by recycling your possessions.
Finding funds in what's to hand
1 MOBILE MONEY
It has never been easier to breath new life into your once-loved mobile by recycling it for cash.
Simply clear your old phone of any personal information and go online to see what's on offer - you could get up to 150. Some sites require you to take out a new contract, but that's not always the case and www.sellmymobile.co.uk, www.mopay.co.uk, and www.mazumamobile.com (voted the UK's best mobile phone recycler) are just a few of those worth a visit.
Alternatively, head for www.moneysavingexpert.com, which has developed its own mobile valuer to source the best deal for customers from a range of sites.
2 CRAFTY IDEAS
Turn your crafting hobby into a money-making venture by registering with an online marketplace such as Etsy.com. Bringing the cottage industry into the 21st century, this quirky site is home to 800,000 sellers around the world. You can sell anything you like, as long as it's home-made or vintage, and it's free to join.
3 ONLINE SURPRISE
CDs, DVDs and games can be donated to charity stores too, or recycled for cash by selling them on eBay, Amazon or specialist sites such as www.musicmagpie.co.uk, which will give you cash right away. You must have at least ten items to complete a transaction.
4 MOVE WITH THE TIMES
Gadgets are great but they can quickly be replaced by newer technology. You can cash in old iPods at sites such as www.mirrorgogreen.co.uk which will pay cash for redundant sat navs, mobile phones, MP3 players and laptops too. If you also have an old camera or games console to sell, then mobilephonexchange.co.uk is a good place to head.
5 LIGHTEN YOUR LIBRARY
Amazon is the best-known online marketplace for any books you're happy to part with. But check out www.fatbrain.co.uk too, as it will give you instant cash. Alternatively, do it the old-fashioned way and sell them at a car boot sale or find out whether your local second hand book shop is interested in buying them.
6 GO FOR GOLD
The price of gold has trebled since 2004 and there is a huge demand for it right now. So why not sort through your jewellery and transform all the broken and unwanted pieces into cash. You can respond to a TV ad, visit a local jewellers (many independent ones will buy gold) or go to websites such as www.cashmygold.co.uk or www.gold-traders.co.uk.
7 FASHION FINANCE
If you have good quality clothes you no longer need, look out for local vintageclothes stores which will give you a percentage for selling your clothes. Such stores are generally only interested in clothes with a well-known, quality label and in excellent condition, so you'll probably want to cherry pick the best items in your wardrobe and take them along.8 EVERYTHING BUT THE KITCHEN SINK
Furniture or white goods can be sold on eBay, but you may have more success advertising them in your local paper or on www.gumtree.co.uk. Some charities, such as Barnardos, will accept furniture too and a few will collect and recycle furniture and white goods that are in working order. Visit the furniture re-use network at www.frn.org.uk or call 0117 954 3571 to find out which charities would be interested in your area.
9 PAWN MOVE
If you have valuables that you don't really want to part with but need an immediate short-term cash injection, you can still use them to raise a cash loan - or even to raise cash permanently - by visiting a pawn broker. These have become much more mainstream in recent years and have seen a dramatic growth in trade. Visit the Pawn Brokers Association at www.thenpa.com or call 08456 120 640 to find out how it works and to locate a pawn broker near to you.
10 TIME IS MONEY
Consider voluntary work as part of a long-term route to earning more money. If your current position does not enable you to develop new skills or grow professionally, setting aside some time to work with a charity of your choice could be the answer.
Sites such as www.volunteeredinburgh.org.uk are a fantastic hub for volunteers, listing many opportunities, whether you want to help out for a day a month or five days a week.