Bartering – trading good or services without the exchange of money – is a great way to save on expenses. Your time and skills cost nothing to share, but can be bartered for services you would otherwise have to pay for!
My friends and I frequently do babysitting swaps, saving each other $10/hour. I also recently traded homemade dinner for a hair cut, saving $25+ over salon prices.
You might be surprised at what you have to offer once you sit down and think about it. Get the entire family involved – even kids have skills they can trade. Here are some bartering ideas to get you started.
- Child care
- Pet care
- Music lessons
- Golf, Tennis or other sports lessons
- Personal shopper services
- Errand running
- Home improvement
- Handy man skills
- Mechanic skills
- Yard work
- Hair cuts/salon services
- Carpooling or rides
- School pick-up/drop off
- Professional skills (accounting, marketing, financial planning, advertising, legal, secretarial etc)
- Website building
- Graphic design
- Language tutoring, teaching, or practice
- Resume building
- Sewing, mending or alterations
- Home-cooked meals or freezer meals
- Canned goods
- Duck or venison meat
If you don’t know anyone you could barter with, there are many locals websites that use time as currency. “Time Banking” websites keep track of the time you’ve given to other members, and allows you to redeem your time for others’ services.