How Long Do You Keep The Boxes?

Reader Survey

I still have a moment of guilt or hesitation anytime I go to throw away a box from a new product. What if I need to return it? Will they believe me that I just bought it? What if I need to mail it back to an online retailer? But more to the point, where would I keep the box if it didn't go to the trash?

In my many years of retail management I've learned one thing — if you used a credit or debit card to make a purchase, you can pretty much return anything. That said, return policies are becoming more strict, but chances are if you shop at a big box retailer that you're ok with store credit even if you don't have a box to return something in.

Martha Stewart suggests keeping your boxes and attaching a cute little note to them stating when their warranty is up, which tells you when to get rid of the box. I personally say ditch the box now and regain your storage space.

My exception to that rule is things that are difficult to move or pack without the original support from the box packaging. Computers often fall into this category or anything that's over a few hundred dollars small appliance or electronic's wise.

How long do you keep your boxes around? Do you trash them almost instantly like I do? Do you sit on them for awhile before you get frustrated and finally toss them? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

(Image: Martha Stewart)

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