I have been interesting in trying out bartering for quite some time. I have done it a little in the past- I have had two different music teachers who were willing to teach me for some things that I could barter to them but I thought it would be fun to try it more. I had tried to figure out an easy way that it could be organized online but hadn't really figured anything out so I had not done anything about it.
Then at our weekly baseball game towards the end of August or early September, one of the other ladies was telling us about this facebook bartering site that was for our area. I went home and checked it out and was quite excited about the possibilities!
I quickly joined the group which them allowed me to be able to post pictures (of things I might have available for bartering) and make comments so that I could barter with the others on the site. It has been quite fun but also rather addicting so it could be an incredible time waster. I am trying to be careful to not waste time on there but it isn't always easy.
It can be easy to loose track of what deals you are working on so I decided to keep a notebook where I write down everything that I list for barter on the site and then when a barter is agreed on then I write down what I am getting, who I am trading with, when and where we are meeting and then often what they will be driving or how I will identify them. After the barter is complete I then check it off.
Just for interests' sake I thought I would share with you the barters that I have done in this first month of using the site:
~My very first barter that was accomplished is also one of my favorite ones so far. I was looking for apples and I had extra cucumbers and zucchini. On the site I found somebody that was just the opposite. We have really enjoyed these yummy apples.
~I bartered Ladies Ice skates (one too small for Mara that we had 2 set in that size) for shoes (her next size up- for later) for Megan and some peanut butter.
~I bartered 2 games for little kids for some more cross stitch bookmarks kits. Mara has been having fun making them and then using the finished product as a gift.
~I bartered the clothes below and got some jars of peanut butter.
|I bartered the extra shirts in this photo for a jar of peanut butter.|
~I bartered a bicycle tire inner tube (which had been given to us and didn't fit any of our bikes) for 10 8x10 picture frames with glass.
All in all I am enjoying this new hobby. I find it more fun and less work than holding a garage sale and it still helps me to get unused stuff our of my house. I am trying to be careful that I don't just bring a bunch more junk in but so far I have for the most part gotten either consumable goods or clothes that we will use or things we can use as gifts.
Meeting to do the exchange does take some time but two times I have been involved in large group barter meets and so I get 4 or 5 exchanges done at the same time and place and it doesn't take long at all. And always when I do a barter I combine that trip to town with other errands anyway. I have also had someone come to my house which was very nice.
Since I love figuring out ways to use less money (and be able to save it for things I find more important) this has been an enjoyable way to do that.
Have any of you been involved with a bartering group before? What were your experiences? Do you have any great tips?
I am linking this up for frugal Friday over at Life as MOM.