All unwanted items are brought to Take My Junk’s warehouses in Ajman. Image Credit: Virendra Saklani/XPRESS

AJMAN: A UAE-based junk collector says 2018 has been his busiest in 10 years.

Faisel Khan, who runs the Ajman-based Take My Junk, said, “Since 2008, we have been visiting an average of 300-350 houses a day during the months of May and June. But the number has doubled this time round.”

As the trend continues into July, the Indian Canadian said he cannot tell if the calls to clear junk have to do with people moving house within the UAE or relocating outside the country. “A large number of expats who call us are from Dubai. People here are always looking for better opportunities. The summer rush may also have something to do with the fact that schools are closed, so it’s easy for families to move homes,” he said.

Khan said the largest number of requests comes from Bur Dubai, Deira, Al Barsha and Jumeirah Lake Towers. “Almost every day we visit at least 25 houses in Bur Dubai. The number of items to be cleared may range from just one fridge or mattress to an entire house of belongings. On an average, we get around 5,000 items every day.”

The most common items that are junked by people include furniture, pillows, men’s shirts, fridges and laptops. “You won’t believe it, we have collected more than 5,500 pillows since January.”

The junk collector claimed his company has helped clear more than one million homes across the emirates since 2008. “That’s about 250 million kilograms of unwanted items. Since this is a community service, people call us. We appreciate a tip to cover the cost of fuel.”

A visit to one of the three warehouses of Take My Junk at Ajman’s Jurf area revealed just how massive the collections are.

The two-storey warehouse spans 75,000 square feet. Khan said, “Once the loaded trucks arrive, we segregate the items, refurbish them if they are in bad condition and then display them in different areas so people who need them can take them.”

Khan said more than 1,000 people walk in every day to pick up furniture, white goods, toys and a host of other items which are sold at nominal costs. The money raised is used to run the operations.

“One man’s junk, is other man’s treasure,” said Khan.

Any particular favourites?

“The waitlist for VCRs is long. Many people come down here looking for a VCR as they want to watch an old tape. We currently have 12 people waiting in line for a VCR,” he added.