The New York Times:

Value-added junk hauling may sound like a questionable product to sell: it assumes that people will pay hundreds of dollars to get rid of ratty sofas and assorted flotsam in professional and socially conscious ways.

Its biggest selling points are friendly employees who presumably look more respectable than the local odd jobber, and who will, unlike the far less expensive city garbage collector, climb into that nasty basement or garage to haul out your junk.

Yet to the bafflement of industry experts, quality junk-hauling sells.

Take Omar Soliman and Nick Friedman, the 26-year-old founders of
College Hunks Hauling Junk, based in Tampa, Fla. The pair started the company in Washington five years ago and now employ 25 people there; they also have franchises in 15 metropolitan areas.

More than half of College Hunks’ business comes from homeowners in upscale neighborhoods who discard many items that the company takes to Goodwill Industries instead of to the dump. While some charities offer pickup services, they may be selective in what they accept and may not clean out a space, Mr. Friedman said, adding, “Calling College Hunks gets the stuff out in one sweep.”

About 30 percent of the company’s revenue comes from businesses – property managers, for example, who hire the company to clear rental units.

Photo by Gregg Matthews.

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