Home > REAL Deal Store > REAL Deal FAQ

Q: Where do the goods come from?

Q: What do you accept?

Q.  Do you provide charitable receipts for donations?

Q:  Why are we doing this?

Q:  Is REAL making money from this?

Q. Why are you only open four days?

Q. Why can’t we negotiate prices?

Q. Why do you weigh everything?

Q. Why do you ask customers where they are from?

Q.  Can I see what you have online?

Q. I have something big I can’t bring to the store. What are my other options?

Q.  Do you accept volunteers?

>Q: Where do the goods come from?

A: Goods for sale in our store are donated by private individuals, small businesses closing down, building supply stores, contractors, and demolition crews. Retailers and manufacturers can donate end-of-line, scratch-and-dent, discontinued inventory and customer returns and avoid the cost of returning them to the manufacturers.


Q: What do you accept?

A: REAL gratefully accepts donations subject to approval. Items must be clean, in good repair and in sellable condition. This is not a waste disposal service; we cannot accept items that we will have to pay to dispose of. If you are unsure, please call or consult the list. Other items may be accepted or sold at REAL’s discretion. All prices and sales are final. For items not on this list, please call (613) 283-7999 or e-mail the store manager.


Q.  Do you provide charitable receipts for donations?

A.  We are a registered Canadian charity and can provide charitable receipts for cash donations, but are not set up to give receipts for material donations.


Q: Why are we doing this?

A: We are an environmental organizations first and want to reduce waste!  We know from our experience with the Reuse Centre and from our research that there are many times when it’s impossible to find a good home for a perfectly usable product – those tiles left over from a renovation, old kitchen cabinets replaced by new, doors and windows exchanged; or when someone is relocated quickly and just has to get rid of their furniture; or is downsizing. We know too that 25% of landfill is construction waste and we’d like to put a dent in the good lumber, wallboard, insulation, electrical wiring, and other construction materials that unnecessarily go to landfill.


Q: Is REAL making money from this?

A: Funds raised through the sale of these materials will support the REAL Deal Store and REAL’s other environmental projects in our community, as well as create jobs and volunteer opportunities.


 Q. Why are you only open four days?

A. It is our goal to be open at least five days a week.  However, until we grow, our resources only allow us to be open four days. We employ one part-time store manager, a cashier and two yard staff,  but depend on volunteers and work placements to round out our staff.


Q. Why can’t we negotiate prices?

A. From our past experience, negotiating prices takes too much staff time. We feel our prices are reasonable, and they are reviewed regularly, and reduced if the item is not selling. So you can still get some great deals!


Q. Why do you weigh everything?

A. We weigh items being donated and purchased from the store so we know how much waste we have diverted, even if it is temporarily, from municipal landfills.


Q. Why do you ask customers where they are from?

A. We want to know which municipality our donors and customers come from so we can report back to those municipalities how much waste has been diverted from their landfills by their residents.  We also like to  know the breadth of the community we are serving.


Q.  Can I see what you have online?

A.  We post some of our more unique or valuable items on Facebook Marketplace, and use our REAL Deal Facebook page to mention any special promotions.  But with the variety and quantity of materials we handle, we are unable to keep an updated inventory online.   


Q. How do items end up on the free table?

A. There are plainly lots of items that do not sell, but are not ready for the garbage, so we offer them at a self-serve free table.  Items on the free table are potentially useful to someone for something. It may be something we don’t normally accept (like toys) , or something we just have too much of (like mugs).  We may decide it is not sellable in its condition (it may require a minor repair), or we may have tried to sell it but it was just not moving (seasonal items may be “freed” at the end of the season). The table is located to the right of the customer entrance.  The free items are stored in the garden shed and will be put out weather permitting.  Please just help yourself to anything you can use.  Rest assured, we are weighing what goes into free,  too!


Q. I have something big I can’t bring to the store. What are my other options?

A. Sorry, we are unable to provide pickup or delivery service, but may be able to provide you the names/numbers of others willing to do so for a small fee.  Or ask us for other suggestions.


Q. Do you accept volunteers?

A.  We happily accept volunteers, and suggest you complete a volunteer application form so we can get an idea of what you like to do.