web analytics



Iowa City Free was established to meet an unserved need for people in the Iowa City. The problem and solution are explained below.

The Problem

There are some excellent facilities in the area for donating items, such as Goodwill and Habitat Restore. Yet, some items are not accepted for donations.

Online marketplaces are time consuming for sellers, and buyers are presented with an unmoderated and possibly disorganized list of items. Selling on eBay is time consuming and items may not sell quickly. Inexpensive items take more time to sell than they are worth.

Existing online listings of free stuff have the following problems:

  • There are items that may be damaged, broken, or not useful.
  • There are listings by people wanting free removal of old broken furniture items, heavy objects, or chemical waste.
  • People will list items for free, because there would be a cost for disposal at the city landfill.
  • In general, there is a lot to wade through on those sites and it’s time consuming.
  • Some of the existing online free listings are being used by people to promote businesses or services. This creates extra clutter on the website. Free lunches are advertised that turn into a sales pitch.

The Solution

There is a need for an efficient, focused, curated service for new and lightly used free items. The periodically updated inventory list offers a concise easy to review listing of items.

Single Service Source

Having a single source for items means one trip saves time. There’s a known, well-established, trusted, accountable person you can communicate with for any questions.

Serving Various Needs

This site serves anyone needing to downsize and get rid of items quickly without the time and expense of listing items on eBay and shipping them, or haggling with buyers.

This site serves people moving to (or from) Iowa City wanting to simplify their arrival or departure without a lot of time and cost.

Non-profit groups and small businesses on limited budgets can benefit by saving money to obtain necessary items without cost.

Those wanting to be frugal with expenses can benefit from not paying for items.

Pick-up or Drop-off

The main pickup and drop-off location is on the west side of Iowa City on Melrose Avenue near Sunset Street.

We don’t have a facility or staffing to assist visitors, so pick-up or drop-off service is by appointment only. These can be arranged to suite your schedule.


The latest inventory list is posted on Fridays. Item pickup can be coordinated to fit your schedule.


When we spend money in stores as consumers, for every $100 we spend, there’s an economic cost to earning that money. When items are free, this greatly reduces the environmental impact. When we choose items that are previously owned and lightly used, this helps reduce the impact of manufacturing more new items.

Learn More

Visit the “Learn More” page for additional information. [View]