25 April 2014

How to Save Loads of Money by Swapping Services

The swapping or exchange of services and/or goods in exchange for equal services and/or goods is the age-old system known as bartering. Bartering is the very earliest form of trade, carried on before money of any kind was ever invented. It's still as popular today, in 2014, as it was centuries ago.

Exchanging goods and services for equal and like goods and services is an excellent way to save money. You are probably already bartering and not even aware of it. Has someone given you jars to make jam and you've paid them in a jar or two of the finished product? Have you swapped silverbeet for tomatoes with a neighbour? Perhaps you have chickens and swap the excess eggs with a friend who bakes beautiful cakes? Or maybe you bake delicious bread and swap it with a friend in exchange for some small mending tasks? Wayne swaps small repair jobs in exchange for materials for his hobbies.

There is a bevy of ways that you can exchange goods and services without ever having to put your hand in your pockets.

1. Basic activities of daily life – Perhaps you have a colleague who doesn't have a car. You could offer to drive him or her to and from work each day. Aside from obviously splitting the cost of petrol,  in exchange for the added wear and tear on the car, you can exchange a service such as cooking or cleaning. This will offer you the benefit of more time and more time almost always equates to more money.

2. Free Rent – If you are renting, try to find a place to live where you can rent just a room or two. An elderly person living alone may be in need of services such as lawn mowing or gardening. If this is the case, you may rightfully ask for a steep discount on the rent in exchange for services rendered. If this person has to pay a gardener or cleaner, they can offset the cost by offering you a discount of the same and equal value off your monthly rent. Steph and her husband "rented" two rooms from an elderly family friend for three years in exchange for cleaning and lawn mowing while they saved every cent they could find for their home deposit. Over the three years they were able to save a 50% deposit, cutting their mortgage considerably and giving them instant equity in their new family home.

3. Share your talents and abilities – If you are handy with tools or happen to be an expert cook, you will be amazed at the many opportunities to exchange your services for services that you may need. There is never a shortage of the need for a handyman’s skills. People would rather offer a friend, neighbour or relative a swap in exchange for some minor repairs than to call a handyman or serviceman who will charge them two or three times as much. Jan is a hairdresser and a stay-at-home mum with two little girls who she loves to dress stylishly. She cuts and styles a friend's hair in exchange for dressmaking for the girls. James is an electrician who swaps car services with a mechanic friend - a win-win for them both. James gets a qualified mechanic to work on his car and his friend gets a qualified electrician to fix small electrical jobs on the house he is renovating.

These are only a few ways to use bartering to save loads of money by exchanging services. Think about your skills and talents and what you need. Then think about the skills and talents your friends and family have, and if they would suit your needs. Do they perhaps need your skills? If so then you have the perfect opportunity to set up a barter and keep your cash in the bank.

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1 comment:

  1. LETS as in Local Exchange Trading System/s have been around since 1982 and now with internet don't cost to join.
    Do a web search to find one near you --- Lily B living south of Perth, W. Australia


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