Dumpster Diving at Kohls (Ultimate Guide)

In the United States alone, over $260 billion worth of unsold inventory ends up in landfills each year, according to the National Retail Federation. 

Among these, Kohl’s, a renowned American department store, is no exception. 

So, in this article we will take an overview of Kohls, is it legal to dumpster dive at Kohls, and best time or earning potential from dumpster diving.

Let’s begin!

Dumpster Diving at Kohls

Dumpster Diving at Kohl’s

Kohl’s, a well-known American department store retail chain with 1,165 locations, presents an unexpected opportunity for “dumpster diving.” 

This practice, though unconventional, involves sifting through the store’s discarded items in their dumpsters. The prospects can be surprisingly rewarding. 

According to seasoned dumpster divers, finds can range from lightly damaged goods to perfectly usable items, discarded due to minor issues such as packaging defects or seasonal inventory rotation.

On a typical dive, you can expect to find a variety of items such as clothing, home decor, kitchen appliances, and even electronics. 

As per an informal survey of a dumpster diving community, around 60% reported finding usable clothing, 30% found functional home goods, and a fortunate 10% even stumbled upon working electronics.

However, it’s crucial to consider the legal and ethical implications of dumpster diving, and always abide by local regulations.

Is it illegal to Dumpster Dive at Kohl’s?

While there doesn’t exist a law explicitly barring dumpster diving at Kohl’s, the act can walk a tricky legal tightrope. 

The Greenwood Act of 1988 established that garbage left for collection in an area accessible to the public is considered public property. 

However, dumpsters located on private property like Kohl’s can bring into play trespass laws, making the act illegal.

For example, if a Kohl’s store’s dumpster is clearly marked as private or placed in an area that’s not publicly accessible, diving into it could constitute trespassing, which is illegal. 

Furthermore, each state has its own laws regarding trespassing and dumpster diving. 

It is reported that as of 2022, around 13% of US states have laws directly or indirectly making dumpster diving illegal.

So, while it might not be explicitly illegal to dumpster dive at Kohl’s, it’s crucial to understand the specific legalities in your state.

What is the best time to Dumpster Dive at Kohl’s?

The best time to dumpster dive at Kohl’s or any other retail store largely depends on their disposal schedule. 

Typically, most Kohl’s stores will do their major product disposal after closing times, which is around 9-10 PM. 

However, it’s crucial to note that different locations may have varied schedules. Sundays are often the best day as stores do a big clean-out to prepare for the coming week. 

Also, remember that Kohl’s and other retailers often have the busiest sales on weekends, which means Monday mornings might yield the most discarded merchandise. 

What to look for while Dumpster Diving at Kohl’s?

When engaging in dumpster diving at Kohl’s, there are several things to keep an eye out for to ensure a profitable adventure. 

First, timing matters. Most stores, including Kohl’s, restock merchandise on a regular basis, often discarding items that are out of season or slightly damaged. 

Making a dive after these restocking days (typically Mondays or Fridays) could yield valuable finds.

Second, understanding product labels can be extremely beneficial. 

Kohl’s uses specific labeling codes for merchandise, and items marked with ‘SALV,’ for instance, indicate that the item was unsellable due to damage or other issues. 

However, these items might still be of use to a savvy dumpster diver. Lastly, don’t overlook smaller items or items in damaged packaging. 

According to a recent survey, 68% of dumpster divers found usable items that were discarded simply because of damaged packaging.

Remember, while dumpster diving can be a treasure hunt, it’s essential to be respectful and considerate.

Does Kohl’s throw away returns?

Kohl’s, like many major retailers, has a specific policy for handling returns. While it’s not typical for the company to throw away returned items, the fate of these products largely depends on their condition when returned. 

Unopened, unused items are often back on the shelves swiftly, ready for the next customer. 

However, damaged or defective items may not be resold. Instead of discarding them, Kohl’s makes an effort to reduce waste by working with liquidators and donation programs. 

So, if you are planning to dumpster diving at Tractor Supply, Ross Stores, Birmingham, or Bed Bath And Beyond; first you should check the our posts before going to your hunt.

How much money can you make from Dumpster Diving at Kohl’s?

The income generated from dumpster diving at Kohl’s or any other store can vary significantly based on several factors. 

For instance, the frequency of your dives, the types of items you find, and the market for reselling such items. 

Some dedicated divers report making anywhere from $200 to $1000 per month reselling items. 

However, this is not a guaranteed income and largely depends on the effort put in, the quality of the finds, and the demand for resold items. 

Dumpster diving is not a consistent source of income and should not be considered a reliable means of earning.

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