Social Pages

By Olivia Cross

Do you have clothes, books and more cluttering up your closets while you struggle to make ends meet? The concept of bartering has been embraced by people all over the globe. With the ability the internet has to bring traders together, a whole rash of bartering sites and communities have sprung up. Swap stuff you do not want for items or services you do want and save money.

On some of the larger websites, people can post all kinds of items and offer many different services too. There are also niche websites dedicated to exchanging particular items like books or clothing whilst others offer only services such as pet sitting or baby sitting. Some websites only serve a particular area and people can meet up with one another more easily.

All trades are carefully monitored by reputable websites and rules and regulations are put in place to protect both parties. When swapping expensive items, particular care needs to be taken and shipping such items off to somebody without having seen what they are exchanging is asking for trouble. Inexpensive items can be posted or shipped without too much risk.

Users of such sites can arrange to meet in person. When doing so, it is better to arrange a neutral meeting place for the transaction. A coffee shop is a good location and taking someone along is an added safety measure. Once both parties have examined the goods and are satisfied, swapping occurs and each party walks away satisfied.

Many people are addicted to sites like those swapping clothing. They provide a way for them to indulge a desire for new clothes without having to part with any cash at all. Some of these sites even offer exchange of accessories and cosmetics. For parents with children who grow out of clothing so quickly, websites provide a way for them to connect with other parents in the same predicament and exchange clothing that still has plenty of wear. Book lovers can easily exchange books in the same way and video games are another popular item for exchange.

Sometimes the time at which swaps are posted influence their popularity. Posting Christmas decorations for swapping in January is not a good idea but if they are posted in November, they are far more likely to get attention. The same goes for Halloween costumes and other items specific to a particular holiday or season.

Membership of many of the websites is free. Some use a points system whereby you receive points and then spend them on what you want. On some websites, members do not even have to come into contact with each other at all to set up swaps as this is arranged for them. Some communities are closed and require another member to recommend someone. Many are open to all and the more members the better.

For those who are cash strapped but possess many unwanted goods, this is the perfect solution. They can easily replace the goods they do not want with those they do want without parting with any money at all. The popularity of such sites is growing all the time, indicating just how many people appreciate bartering.

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