How to Make Money Selling Wood Pallets

Some products in this article are from our partners. Read our Advertiser Discloser.

One interesting way to make extra money is collecting and selling wood pallets. Wood pallets are used all over the country and the world. Companies use them to help transport goods from one place to another.

Some companies simply discard these pallets. They leave them outside their business for anyone who is willing to pick them up. People like you and me then gather them and haul them to another location for resale.

Anyone looking for ways to make extra money can collect these pallets and sell them to other companies. Yes, you’ll have to put in a little time and effort. However, the money you make may be worth it.

Here are some answers to questions you might have about recycling wood pallets. Learn how to do it and how much you can make. If you have access to a lot of wood pallets, this could be a viable side hustle for you.

How Much Do They Pay for the Pallets?

The price you’ll get for your pallets depends on a few factors. If the pallets are in good condition, you’ll be able to sell them for more. Pallet prices range anywhere from 50 cents each up to $4 each.

The price you’ll get per pallet depends on these factors:

  • What area you live in
  • How many recyclers are in the area
  • What local recycling companies are willing to pay

If you deliver quality pallets, you may be able to get yourself a few clients who are willing to pay a decent price for them. By finding the right clients, you can earn some valuable side hustle money.

For instance, let’s say you can get two clients willing to pay $2 per pallet. If each client buys 100 pallets a week, you can make $400 per week selling pallets. You might be wondering why companies would want to buy pallets from some guy (or girl) off the street.

Companies in need of pallets for shipping will be eager to save money by purchasing recycled pallets. If you can help them cut their costs in half, you’ll be saving them a lot of money.

Remember that the companies you service will want to know you can keep up with their needs. They’ll want you to be able to meet their daily or weekly pallet demand and provide good service too.

If you’re committed to doing these two things, companies may want your business on a regular basis.

Bonus: In most cases, pallet reselling is handled on a cash basis. This means you have the money you’ve earned in hand as soon as you drop the pallets off at their specified location. No waiting two weeks to get paid as you do at your 9-to-5 job.

Where Can I Find Wood Pallets?

There are a few places you may be able to find wood pallets. Local businesses are likely one of your best bets for finding wood pallets. And check your local Craigslist site as well to find pallets to re-sell.

In my local area, there were several listings for free wood pallets on Craigslist.

Also, I know of two local businesses in our small town alone that give away wood pallets. They have piles of wood pallets available for pickup with a “free” sign alongside them.

Another option would be to check with local manufacturing companies that receive a lot of supplies. Stop by and see if they have wood pallets you can take off their hands.

If they pay a company to remove the pallets, they’ll likely be glad to have you take them for free.

Who Buys Wood Pallets?

If you want to make money recycling wood pallets, you’ve got several options for selling them. Of course, the number of clients you’ll have depends on where you live.

It’s likely that the bigger the city you live in, the more places you’ll have that buy wood pallets. Here are some options for finding places to sell your wood pallets.

Sell to Local Manufacturers

Do you live in an area that has a lot of manufacturing companies? If so, this might be a good avenue for selling your recycled wood pallets.

Visit various company headquarters or call them on the phone. Explain that you’re a seller of recycled wood pallets. Start negotiations for a price that will make you a profit and save the company money as well.

Sell on Craigslist

On my local Craigslist site, several people were offering to buy wood pallets. They might want the pallets to resell themselves. Or they might want the pallets to use for wood art or other projects.

The prices they were willing to pay ranged from 50 cents apiece on up. So check your local Craigslist listing to see if there are buyers available in your area. They might want to purchase the pallets you get for free.

Sell to Pallet Brokers

Pallet brokers exist all over the US and Canada. They work to make sure that wood pallets avoid a lifetime in the landfill. Sometimes the companies repair and reuse the pallets.

Other times they might resell the pallets. In cases where pallets are beyond repair, they often grind them up into wood mulch and resell them to those needing mulch.

There are a number of pallet brokers that could be a viable option for you as a pallet recycler. Here are a few to choose from:

Kamps Pallets

Kamps Pallets has locations in nearly all major metropolitan areas. They have a contact page on their website for those interested in selling pallets to Kamps.

North American Pallet Recycling Network

This is another prominent company that could be willing to buy pallets you collect. They have locations in many of the 50 states including Alaska and Hawaii.

The North American Pallet Recycling Network is eager to work with pallet recyclers. Their goal? To help redistribute pallets for long-term use.

National Wooden Pallet Container and Association

The National Wooden Pallet Container and Association works differently. It has a directory of companies on its website that will buy and sell wooden pallets.

Recyclers can use the directory to find contact information for companies in their area that may be interested in purchasing the pallets they have for resale.

The website has a section specifically for people who buy and sell wood pallets. This site might be a good place for you to find buyers for your pallets. Or places where you can pick up pallets for free.

Local Pallet Companies or Furniture/Woodworking Schools

These two options might also be viable places for you to sell the pallets you collect. Check local technical college listings for woodworking or furniture making schools.

Or check your local phone book in the yellow pages for pallet companies near you that may want to buy your recycled pallets.

What Will I Need to Get Started?

The costs to start recycling wood pallets can vary. If you’ve got one of the main items already in your possession, they’re minimal.

The main things you’ll need to get started are a truck and a trailer. Of course, the start-up costs will be cheaper if you already own these things.

I wouldn’t recommend purchasing these items unless you’ve already done your research. If you are certain there’s a market for recycling wood pallets in your area, it might be worth the expense.

Or if you were planning on purchasing a truck or trailer anyway, it could be worth the expense too.

You’ll also need a decent pair of work gloves. Along with that, you’ll want to have a drill and some nails for repairing any broken pallets. Remember the better shape they are in, the more money you’ll get for each pallet.

It’s likely the biggest expense you’ll have is the gas needed for hauling the pallets. You can save money on gas for your pallet recycling business in many ways.

  • First, you can plan your trips so that you’re hitting businesses near one another on the same day.
  • Second, if your truck has a topper or sides installed on it, or if your trailer has high sides on it, you’ll increase the number of pallets you can haul. This can minimize the number of trips you’ll need to make which will save you money on gas.
  • Third, knowing where you’re going in advance (so that you can avoid extra driving) will save money on gas. Use your GPS to plan your route.
  • Fourth, keeping your truck well-maintained will help it run better and use less gas.
  • Fifth, knowing where the cheapest gas prices are in your area will also help you save money on gas.

Combine these tips to maximize the profit you make on your wood pallet recycling business.

Related: 16 Ways to Sell Cardboard for Cash

The Benefits of Recycling Wood Pallets

There are several benefits to recycling wood pallets. One great thing about recycling wood pallets is that you choose the hours you work. You can plan your work around your schedule and your client’s schedules.

Also, you get to choose the clients with whom you work. If you find that a client’s attitude isn’t worth the money you’re earning, simply move on.

Being your own boss also means that you choose how much money you’ll make. You can work ten hours a week or fifty hours a week – the choice is yours.

Note: When you earn money recycling wood pallets or any other “on your own” job, know that you’re considered self-employed. This means you’ll have to keep track of your income and your expenses.

When tax time comes around, you’ll need to report your earnings on your tax reporting form. Keeping track of expenses helps reduce your taxable income. However, if there is a profit on your business after expenses, you’ll need to pay taxes on that income.

For that reason, we suggest putting aside some of your side hustle income in a separate savings account. Keep this money untouched, so you have money to pay the tax man in the spring. Saving 20% is a good number to start with.

After you get through a year or two of side hustling, you can adjust your tax payment savings accordingly.


Whether it’s recycling wood pallets or one of the many other awesome side hustle options available, having a side gig is a great way to increase your income and achieve your financial goals.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


  1. Last bit of advice. As one in the same place as most you, just starting a pallet business, I spent 3 months reading and learning about the pallet business. But I discovered t most of the information was general information and not specific I am learning through the training I invested in.
    What I have learned so far my education i invested about the pallet business that I will share with you is.
    1. Run as a business, take care of your customers because the will depend on you especially if they want 100 pallets or more each week.
    2. Do a business plan.
    I hope this has been helpful.

  2. Wow I’m starting already coz I do have truck and I know where to get pallets. Thanks

  3. How do I grade my pallets to be sure that I get the price they are worth, I know that the 48”X42” are in the most demand. But what about the other odd size & very light weight pallets I have for sale. Thanks, Ken H.

  4. Pallets Hub says:

    nice information

  5. Nceba Lincoln says:

    I’ve just started a wooden pallet recycling business and need more buyers and some leads can be helpful as well. I am based in Gauteng and I also deliver to North West as well.

  6. Youlanda Colley says:

    Thanks. I’m becoming a secretary for a recycled pallet company for my brother.

    1. Glad this could help!

  7. Bretland Blackstone says:

    I have a question. When do you consider a pallet, or pallets, scrap? I had a friend show me some pallets behind a strip mall stacked up around a dumpster. He said they were giving them away. So, I took some right along with him. Now I’m in trouble for taking them. I was wondering if I have any legal excuse for this. Normally I would have made sure it was OK but he had given me the information on some other pallets and it turned out alright.

    1. This sounds like a question that you might need professional legal advice about. I urge you to consult with a legal professional as this questions is out of my scope of knowledge. Yes, to be safe you should probably always ask first, but I know that won’t help you after the fact. I hope you have good luck getting the situation resolved with minimal legal repercussions.

  8. mzamo khoza says:

    I used to recycle pallets. It’s worth it. The problem is that I lost my pick-up truck and I want to start again and get a list of buyers.

    1. Perhaps you can use some of our posts to make some extra money and buy another vehicle. Then, use this post to help you get started again. I hope it works out for you.

    2. I am starting a pallet business but getting educated first from a veteran of 25 years doing the business. If you want some information on it let me know. But as for a truck go to Home Depot and rent one for $19 a that is what I am doing.

  9. Wade Majors says:

    I worked with a guy for a month and it sucked with him. He had no license and really screwed me. He told me this was his business and that he was the only one pallet buyers would take. Boy, I was naive, and soon he would pick a fight when someone else would come along, like they were stealing from him. He was greedy, and soon I racked up bills. Then, he would blow off and I would never hear back. I thought something isn’t right and I found this. Y’all are a blessing, and now I can use this as a tool and proof. Thanks

  10. Becoming a scrap pallet collector can be a great self-employment idea to generate a primary or supplementary income. The pallet collector makes money by picking up unwanted pallets and selling them to pallet recycling businesses or pallet end users.

  11. Michael Morgan says:

    I’m in. I just need to research where to sell. Thanks!

  12. Danny Fortes says:

    Who even knew you could do stuff like this and get paid cash to do it. Thanks for the info. I learned a few things just checking this out.

    1. Deacon Hayes says:

      I know! It’s crazy, right?