You have some old carpet, a piece of furniture, a tree in your back yard, or simply junk to get rid off. What to do about it? In the age of the internet your options are more plentiful than the city dump.
Here is a quick list of places that will take your trash. They are ordered from the simplest, to the most inconvenient.
1) Post an ad in the 'Free' section on craigslist
You would be surprised what people will take off your hands. Old carpet you would not want to use again is perfect to soak up oil in someone's garage. That wood floor may be a treasure to some woodworker somewhere.
Post in the free section. If it works, someone will drop by your home and pick up what you no longer want. How nice is that.
A fallen tree in the backyard is a classic. Often you can find people who will take it away for free in return for the firewood. Just make sure you make it abundantly clear that they must take the small branches too.
2) Your trash can
Simple, just throw the stuff away. If you have a lot, you might have to do several loads over several weeks.
3) Your neighbor's trash can
If you are friends with your neighbor you can ask to use the unused space in their garbage can on trash day. It only takes 2-3 neighbors to get serious capacity together.
4) Garbage collection events
Most cities have them. Residents can bring their trash to these events for free. My city has one twice a year. You might have to store that old fridge for some time, but you'll save the dumping fee. These events often take almost everything.
You utility company may provide incentives for replacing your appliances. Often this includes haul-away of your old appliances. You may even get money out of the deal.
5) Recycling companies, junkyards
Construction debrief and other types of valuable materials can be dropped off at a junkyard free of charge. Try to find one on the web.
6) Transfer station
At this point you have to bite the bullet and pay. Take your trash to the local transfer station and save on transportation costs. Most places charge a modest dumping fee per pound of waste.
7) Pickup events
Once or twice a year your local garbage company might do a special curbside pickup event for special types of trash. A lot of municipalities have these events. Check the city and county webpage for your area.
8) A container
If you made it this far down the list, you have a lot of stuff to get rid off. You will need to rent a garbage container. A container offers a lot of space and convenience, but it comes at a price.
I strongly recommend you start with the internet. It is very easy to dispose of unwanted stuff without ever leaving your home. If that fails, the power of community and the street's combined trash bin capacity can get rid of a lot of waste.