Barter Bay · Buying · sustainable living

15 Second-hand Items That Make Great Gifts

15-second-hand-items-that-make-great-giftsWould you buy someone a second hand gift?

Would you be pleased to receive one?

Second hand gifts are a contentious issue. Many of us feel that only new items carry the weight of a generous spirit. Second-hand can come across as stingy if it’s not done right.

Personally, I think buying second hand is not only a great way to save money, but a way to cut down on all the stuff we buy that just ends up as clutter.

When my mother was young, just before Christmas her doll would take a trip to the doll hospital. And then for Christmas, she would be gifted the same doll, all fixed and dolled up.

When I think of all the toys my kids have that never get played with, and the statistic that the average kid owns 238 toys but only plays with 12 daily, doing up a favourite dolly makes so much sense.

It sounds nice in theory, and maybe second-hand gifts would be fine for the immediate family, but what about extended family and friends? What about that fussy relative with the high gift expectations?

There’s a trick to pulling off second-hand gift giving: like any gift giving, you have to match the item to the recipient. You can’t just give any gift, it should be something your recipient will love, be it brand new or pre-loved.

And you need to start planning early to give yourself time to source that perfect item.

The shops start early. By September, all the decorations are out and the trees are trimmed.

They want you to start thinking about Christmas early so that you spendmore money. But you want to start thinking about Christmas now so that you can save money.

To start planning now for second-hand gifts, write a list of all the people you need to give a gift to. Then write down some gift ideas that you think that person would like.

Now prowl. Second-hand stores, Gumtree, Facebook Buy and Sell pages, garage sales, classifieds. It won’t be long until you find the perfect item. And thanks to technology, this doesn’t mean weekends spent in op-shops (although that’s always a fun way to pass the time), it can mean browsing Gumtree on your phone, on the couch, in the ad breaks.

Last year, Australians spent $45 billion dollars in the period leading up to Christmas. That’s an average of $2,500 per person over the age of 14.

Do those stats blow your mind, because my mind is still reeling? How much of that is debt? While it’s great to be generous towards others, digging yourself into debt to do so is crazy.

If you cast your mind back to last Christmas, how much of what you and your family received ended up as clutter? Even if we all just bought one second-hand gift, that would be millions less ‘stuff’ produced and kept out of landfill.

15 PERFECT PRE-LOVED GIFTS

1. Pre-loved games: Whether it’s a game for the Xbox, a game of scrabble in good nick, or a jigsaw puzzle, a good way to save on games is to buy them second-hand. A lot of Xbox/ PlayStation games are only ever played once. When the player has reached the end, the novelty of the game is over – their boredom is your gain.

Things to look out for: make sure the game doesn’t need a code or key to unlock. PC games are more likely to be locked to one user only (what a waste!). Some PlayStation and Xbox games have extras that can only be unlocked with a password.

Before buying, check the disc for scratches.

If you’re buying pre-loved board games, check that all the pieces are in the box. You may need to download instructions for play.

While it may not be possible to check that all puzzle pieces are in the box, especially for big puzzles, go home and do the puzzle to make sure there’s no pieces missing. There’s nothing more frustrating than a large puzzle with a piece missing! I’ve had great success buying kid’s puzzles second hand. They are some of the most loved puzzles we own.

2. Classic Books: We have a lovely 1970s edition of the Complete Winnie-the-Pooh that we purchased for the kids second-hand and that I wouldn’t hesitate to gift to someone else. When book stores are full of Disney franchise merchandise, it’s hard to find really nice books anymore, unless you get them second-hand.

But you don’t need to stick to classic books or first-edition books to gift second-hand books. Imagine giving (or receiving) a whole series instead of just the first in the series and buying it for the cost of a single book!

3. Vintage accessories: Not used darling, vintage! What girl doesn’t like a little vintage bling? It’s amazing what you find in pawn and second-hand shops. Stunning jewellery for a fraction of what you pay for it brand new.

Don’t just think jewellery though. Handbags, vintage suitcases, hair accessories, fountain pens, stationery or desk sets, jewellery boxes, perfume bottles, silk scarves can all make great gifts for the right person.

4. Antiques: Finding genuine antiques at frugal prices requires a bit of ingenuity and scouting, which is why it’s a good idea to keep gifts in mind when you’re op-shopping. But bargains are there for the savvy buyer. The key is to look for quality at your price point.  And of course, match the gift to the tastes of the recipient.

Garage sales can be the best place to pick up cheap antiques, because sellers don’t always know what gems they have on hand. But you have to get in early and beat the trade buyers who know what they are looking for and can sniff out a bargain at 50 paces.

5. Collectibles: Know a collector? I know a person who collects plates (the ones you hang on your wall) and always welcomes more plates to her collection. Sure, you can pick up a plate in one of those little kitsch shops, but a vintage plate, particularly a limited edition one, would be all the more welcome.

6. Fabric Remnants: If you’re a sewer, fabric remnants can be turned into gifts! Quilts, placemats, cushion covers, children’s clothes, dolls clothes, table cloths, napkins…The fabric remnant bin at our local Salvation Army store is the first place I head when bargain hunting!

7. DVDs: If you look for DVDs in good nick, then you won’t even be able to tell they are second-hand. Like games, DVDs are often only watched once, sometimes not even that, if the DVD in question was a poorly chosen gift.

Before buying a second hand DVD, always open the case and check the disc for scratches or damage, especially if it’s a kid’s DVD!

8. Hamper items: Personalised hampers can make a lovely gift, and you can pick up some great hamper items second-hand. A tea hamper could include a vintage cup and saucer. A wine hamper could include wine glasses. You could use some of the ideas below to couple second-hand, up-cycled tableware and linen with homemade preserves and baking.

At the very least, an op-shop is the best place to look for hamper baskets, but I like to think outside the basket, and pack hampers on serving platters or even in bags that can be used again.

9. Linen and Tableware: Why pay full price for a serving platter, salad servers, cake sporks, tea pots, wine glasses, table cloths or other tableware you can probably pick lovely ones up second-hand.

A nice tea set for the right person, for example, will always be appreciated, whether brand new or second-hand (and you probably won’t be able to tell it’s second-hand).

Think about ways you can take second-hand items to the next level by adding your own crafty touch. This video tutorial on how to add beads to serving spoons and other flatware is a lovely example of how you can improve on and personalise the second-hand items that you buy.

You could embroider a tablecloth or stencil placemats, paint a vase or decorate a serving platter.

10. Autographed items. There are some things you often can’t buy brand new. A special addition or autographed item can be a very welcome present for the right person. But you have to keep your eyes peeled for these rare finds. Garage sales are a great place to find under-priced autographed items.

11. Classic or quality toys: If you look in the toy section of a second-hand store, it’s often filled with ratty, broken, plastic Fisher Price toys. These are not the type of toy that makes good gifts. Instead, classic or quality toys like wooden toys in good conditions, Barbies in good condition (here’s how you can restore a Barbie doll; you can also make it an awesome gift with a whole bunch of homemade clothes and accessories to go with the doll), Lego (here’s how to clean Lego), Melissa and Doug*, Plan Toys*, HABA* (these are some of the quality toys we have loved – keep an eye out on Gumtree for them!).

Don’t forget to keep an eye out for second-hand clothes and accessories that would make great dress-up sets, maybe with a little up-cycling!

12. ’New’ Second-hand items: Here we come to the re-gifted item. The unwanted present from last year that hasn’t even been opened. You could really say these items are not even second-hand at all.

Look on gumtree and Facebook groups straight after Christmas for a whole host of re-gifted items. Just be sure not to make the same mistake – buy something your recipient will like so your gift doesn’t get re-gifted!

13. Bikes: ALL our bikes, when I was a kid, were second-hand. My grandfather built them from bits and pieces and when he died, my father built them. A bit of tender loving care and a new coat of paint and bikes can look and ride as good as new.

14. Sports equipment: ‘For Sale: Kayak. Used once. Perfect Condition. $50.’  Second-hand sports equipment can be a great way for a loved one to get into that sport or hobby they’ve always wanted. Encourage them by getting them the equipment they need at a fraction of the cost of brand new. And if you sparks a passion, they can always upgrade their equipment as they progress.

(Warning: Do not buy your wife an exercise bike. Just don’t.)

15. Art: Art can be a difficult gift to give unless you know the tastes of the person you’re buying for. Second-hand stores, garage sales and eBay are great places to pick up old artworks. And who knows, you may be lucky to pick up a genuine collectable stashed at the back of someone’s garage.

At worst, you can pick up some good frames to up-cycle. Framed scrapbooking paper, wallpaper or fabric can make lovely art, especially when you group more than one frame together. Or you could up-cycle the frame into something else, like this serving tray from a picture frame.

Gifting second-hand items doesn’t have to be tacky. The key is to always, always match the gift to the recipient (this holds true for brand new gifts too). If it’s still in good shape and it’s something your recipient loves, then it won’t matter how many people have pre-loved it.

What are your thoughts and tips on buying second-hand gifts?

Original article from: http://www.frugalandthriving.com.au

Barter Bay · Buying · Selling

Is this a scam? 4 tips to protect yourself from scammers

Online buy and sell platforms like Barter Bay allow you to reach out to thousands of people to buy or sell. Besides the convenience, we enable you to save on merchant fees by cutting out a middleman to handle the purchase.

Here at Barter Bay, we work hard to keep our platform safe. However, as with any other online spaces, there will always be a small number of malicious users. We try to identify scammers early and ban them, but hey, we’re not going to pretend that none of them can slip through the cracks.

You can take steps to protect yourself from scammers. Here are some tips on how to recognize and avoid scammers’ tactics.

conversation (1) General

  • Do not give out your personal information lightly, including your phone number and email – use the Barter Bay chat to communicate with the other party!
  • Be wary if someone insists that you make a quick decision. They may be trying to trick you into making mistakes.
handshake (1) If you are meeting up with someone

  • Meet up at a location where you know there is people traffic. Never meet in small alleys or empty areas. Use “Suggest a location” in Barter Bay to see a list of trusted trading locations.
  • If possible, bring a friend or family member along.
  • Buyer – Check the item before leaving, to ensure that it is the same product as what the seller had posted.
  • Seller – Count the amount of cash that you receive before leaving.
parcel If you are mailing

  • For any confirmation emails from payment or delivery services, check the sender’s email address. Be extra careful of confirmation mails that come from a free domain (e.g. @gmail.com, @hotmail.com). These may be sent from someone pretending to be a business that you trust.
  • Hover your mouse over links in email to check their actual URL. If the URL is suspicious, do not click on it.
  • Buyer – Request for the tracking number of the package and use trusted payment services such as PayPal. They provide a channel to open a dispute, and you may be able to get your money back in the event of a scam.
  • Seller – Ask for a deposit for your item. When the buyer says that they have sent the payment, check your payment service’s official website to ensure that you have received it. Do this before sending your item out!
robber What to do if you identify a scammer

  • Stop all contact with the scammer. Block them on Barter Bay so they can no longer message you.
  • Report the user to us so that we can investigate and ban them.

 

By Jessi Huang, Designer, Barter Bay.

Icons made by Freepik from www.flaticon.com

Barter Bay · sustainable living

Genius Repurposing Ideas For 11 Disposable Household Items

Repurposing-Ideas.pngMy mom was raised during the Great Depression, which had a big impact on the way she makes, uses, and disposes of things. Firstly, it made her very resourceful. She always prefers to make something from scratch instead of buying it at a store, which I’ve always admired about her. Secondly, she has always been a proponent of “using things up.” She always aims to use something until it is completely gone, or completely beyond repair. And finally, she hates throwing things out. She’d much rather give something away or donate it if she can!

It’s more important than ever for each one of us to be more conscious of the resources we consume. And to aid you in that effort, I’ve got some great ideas to share with you! This list is packed with dozens of bright ideas that will help you repurpose 11 common household items. This is a great resource for anyone who’s looking to cut back on waste, and I hope you find it as helpful as I do! 🙂

Genius Repurposing Ideas For 11 Disposable Household Items

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1. Cereal Liner Bags

  • Make a piping bag for frosting. Rinse and dry the bag, then scoop frosting into one of the bottom corners. Snip the corner off with a pair of scissors, then pipe!
  • Cut the bag into small squares, and use the squares to keep burger patties separated in a stack. Stacking up the patties like this is an easy way to save space in your fridge or freezer!
  • Use the bags to wrap up homemade bread, rolls, and buns before storing them in your freezer.
  • Use the bag to store leftovers or to portion out other foods. Seal it with a Foodsaver or other vacuum sealer to keep it fresh.
  • Use a cereal liner bag to crush up crackers, cereal, nuts and more without making a mess. Cereal liner bags are thicker than regular ziplock bags, which makes it less likely that any sharp bits will tear through it.IMG_0704.png

    2. Mesh Vegetable Bags

    • Use a mesh vegetable bag as a yarn holder. Place your yarn inside the bag, thread the end through one of the holes, then pull it through.
    • Use it as a scrubber for cleaning jobs around the house. Just wad it up and use it to scrub dishes, countertops, and more!
    • Stretch the mesh bag over an old picture frame, staple it in place, and use it as an organizer for your earring collection.

    3. Butter Wrappers

    • Once you remove the wrapper from a stick of butter, place the wrapper in a ziplock bag and keep it in the fridge. You can use the wrappers later on to grease baking pans!
    • Use individual butter wrappers to separate burger patties in your fridge or freezer. They won’t stick to the patties, and you’ll save space in your fridge!
    • When a bread or roll recipe calls for a final brush of butter on top, use a butter wrapper! Just lay it butter-side down on top and let the butter residue on the wrapper melt into the surface.IMG_0009

    4. Glass Jars

    • Keep any empty glass jars you use, wash them out, and remove the labels. They make great flower vases that you can use around the house!
    • Use an empty glass jar to collect cooking grease. It’s not good to put it down your sink! Just collect it a little at a time, and then when the jar is full, you can just toss it in the trash.
    • Use an empty jar to make a beautiful water candle. These will look great around the house, or as decor for your dinner table!

    5. Disposable Razors

    • When your disposable razor gets too dull for shaving, you can still use it to remove pills from sweaters! You can also use it to remove pills from hats, scarves, t-shirts, and more.IMG_0717

    6. Egg Cartons

    • Keep any of those clear plastic egg cartons. They make the perfect packaging for mini cupcakes and muffins!
    • If any of your friends or family have chickens, ask if they’d like your old egg cartons. They could usually use the extras! (And who knows, you might get a few fresh eggs for your efforts!) 😉
    • Paper egg cartons can be split up and used as seed sprouting containers. Once the seedlings get big enough to plant, just wet down the whole egg carton cup and plant it right in the ground. The soggy paper will break down over time in the dirt.
    • Use an old egg carton to organize and protect small Christmas ornaments.
    • You can also use an egg carton to organize other small stuff. Use one for jewelry, beads, office supplies, buttons, nuts and bolts, and more!IMG_0688

    7. Tissue Boxes

    • Use an empty tissue box to store your plastic grocery bags. And there’s even a way to make them pop up just like tissues! Slide the bottom of each bag into the handles of the next bag, then insert them all into the box.
    • Use an empty tissue box as a tiny trash receptacle on your desk. You can also place one in the living room as a handy place for discarded treat wrappers.
    • Cut the tops off a few old tissue boxes and use them as drawer dividers. They can help keep smaller stuff more organized instead of rolling around in your drawer.
    • Use an old tissue box as a small trash receptacle for your bathroom counters. It’s the perfect place to toss out cotton swabs, cotton pads, and other single-use cosmetic items.
    • Use a tissue box as a trash receptacle in your car! You can either toss it out when it’s full, or empty it and reuse it again.

    8. Newspaper

    • If you park outside in the winter, you can use old newspaper to prevent icing on your windows. Just lay a few pieces of newspaper over your windshield at night.
    • Newspaper is surprisingly good at absorbing odors! Stuff a balled-up piece of newspaper in shoes, a diaper bag, or even your fridge to help eliminate yucky smells.
    • Use old newspaper as packing material when moving, or to protect a package you’re shipping.
    • Use newspaper as a paper towel when cleaning glass and mirrors! Newspaper won’t leave behind any fibers or residue, just a streak-free shine!

    9. Tin Foil

    You can use tin foil to soften rock-hard brown sugar, shine silver, and more! Check out 15 amazing uses for tin foil at the link below.

    10. Cardboard Tubes

    Don’t toss out the tubes from toilet paper and paper towel rolls! Use them to keep pants crease-free, make fire-starters, and organize extra cables. Check out 10 smart ways to use cardboard tubes at the link below!IMG_5853.png

    11. Paper Bags

    And finally, don’t toss out paper bags either. Use them to ripen fruit faster, make homemade popcorn, serve snacks, and more! Check out 9 useful things you can do with paper bags at the link below.

     

    Original Article from: www.onegoodthingbyjillee.com

Barter Bay

Closet Clean-Out 101: How to Decide What to Keep & What to Toss Out

There’s a line in the film Fight Club where Tyler Durden tells The Narrator, “The things you own end up owning you.” This is later reinforced in the Chuck Palahniuk novel/David Fincher movie when members of the chaos-driven group of radicals Project Mayhem are instructed that two black shirts, two pairs of black pants, a pair of black boots, two pairs of black socks, and a black jacket are the only personal effects a person needs in their life.

While Project Mayhem was a destructive group of anarchists, something about that quote always stuck with me. That isn’t to say I’ve lived a minimalist lifestyle since first watching the film. Rather, I’ve noticed how I rationalize keeping things that I don’t really need, much in the same way Edward Norton’s character dealt with his insomnia through retail therapy. More often than not, when life gives people problems, they reward themselves with things. But ultimately, these items will never fill the void in your life.

Over the years, my closet became particularly problematic. I discovered that most of my wardrobe was a series of uniforms for tasks, social situations, and bygone eras that no longer reflected who I am.

When therapists start to counsel those hoarders who collect to extremes, their cognitive therapy begins with simple, non-judgmental questions such as, “When was the last time you looked at that newspaper?”

I figured that was a good jumping-off point for my closet clean-out. Instead of asking, “Do I like that piece of clothing?” — which opens up feelings of guilt based on where, when, and from whom I acquired an item — it was more valuable to ask, “When’s the last time I wore that piece of clothing?”

Here are the other major takeaways for those wanting to hit the reset button and clear out their closet.

Rule 1: Accessibility is key

One of my earliest revelations was that I was only wearing about 10 percent of my clothes. And not surprisingly, they were most often on the shelves and hangers closest to the front, meaning I prioritized how easily I could access something over what I actually preferred. Put simply, if you like something and you want to keep on wearing it, place it front and center after your closet clean-out.

But people should be aware that ditching items isn’t as easy as it seems. In 2012, researchers at Yale discovered that two areas in your brain associated with physical pain — the anterior cingulate cortex and insula — are also impacted by ditching clutter (even unwanted clutter). That isn’t to say the initial purge was like getting my finger jammed a door. It was more a feeling of emotional ineptitude for having let my closet get into such disarray in the first place.

Rule 2: Ask yourself, “Where do I go?”

If you go to the gym every day, it would make sense to have lots of athletic-type clothing. Conversely, if you’re a lawyer, it would make sense to have more suits than the average Joe. Once you recognize where you go with frequency, it’s easy to understand what you actually need.

There was a time when I went to an office five days a week. While the atmosphere was decidedly casual, it still required a bit of dressing up. Many of my shirting options were traditional Oxford button-downs in a variety of different colors. But when I ditched the office job, the Oxfords still kept their place in my closet despite no longer being a “uniform” that matched my lifestyle. For a while, I reconciled that those shirts still had a purpose, when the truth was, in the back of my mind, I figured I’d once again have to slink back into office life when freelancing didn’t work out.

A 2011 study by the Journal of Consumer Psychology reveals that objects you struggle to get rid of are likely tied to your self-worth. In my case, the notion of “stability.” Sub-consciously, the shirts were a reminder of what I could go back to, instead of what I wanted to do moving forward. While we often think of items in our closet as being sartorially dated, even stylish contemporary pieces can become “old” depending on your situation.

So I’ve now learned that when a life milestone occurs, your closet should reflect that.

Equally problematic is the opposite feeling. Whereas much of my clutter stemmed from my past, psychologist Kit Yarrow has suggested that another leading cause of unwanted clothing is a “misperception, or self-deception, [which] allows us to psychologically rationalize the purchase of products that would otherwise seem inappropriate or foolish.”

Yarrow wrote, “When we shop, we visualize our future selves. That’s why so many people love to shop — it’s an exercise in preparation. Shopping stimulates our imaginations. As we consider different items, we imagine how others will respond to us, how we’ll feel wearing it, and so forth.”

Rule 3: “Multiples” can crush you

Many publications that dish out fashion advice often add “get multiples if you can” as a way to illustrate the timelessness of a piece and how several color choices would be a wise investment. Items like jeans, crewnecks, polos, bombers and so on all fit the bill.

This was probably my biggest problem. I’d found pieces I really liked and then took the idea of “multiples” to the extreme. I had unwittingly become a collector. In turn, I often found myself feeling like I was always wearing the same thing. I now understand that just because something is a different color, it doesn’t mean it warrants a purchase.

Rule 4: You need fewer pairs of pants than you think

When packing for a trip, I often go overboard on shirts but rationalize my pants selection by saying, “I can get away with the pair of jeans I’m wearing to the airport and an emergency pair in case I spill something on them.” This attitude shouldn’t be reserved for short excursions, it should be the mantra for your trouser game, period.

Jeans don’t need to be washed regularly like other items. A single pair can keep its place in your rotation for several weeks. Mix in another pair of jeans, a pair of chinos or two for diversity, two pairs of slacks, and a guy should be fully equipped for all social occasions with just six pairs of pants.

Rule 5: Give up the gifts

Whether it’s Christmas, Hanukkah, or a birthday, there are several events a year when you can expect to receive gifts. Even if you and your loved ones swear off anything major, smaller items such as T-shirts, socks, or other accessories are still pretty common gifts — especially if you’re lacking inspiration.

This was another huge problem for me when dealing with my closet clean-out. Gifts are problematic on two levels: they come unprompted and they’re picked out by someone else. This creates a scenario in which you feel obligated to keep something when there’s also a good chance you probably don’t even like the item to begin with. This is the perfect storm for clutter. And as research suggests, clutter competes for your attention and leads to decreased productivity and unwanted stress.

GQ has even suggested that a person should take any unwanted gift and “hide it in a closet somewhere if you can’t get rid of it and also can’t bear to use it.”

A better suggestion would be to consider asking for “experiences” instead of things. Go out to eat or to a movie. Strengthen your bond with someone who values you enough to show you a token of their love or friendship.

Rule 6: Donate

More and more, we’re moving toward a concierge-style economy in which people are placing convenience above all else. Charities such as The Salvation Army were collecting donations many years before ride-sharing and deliverable groceries became all the rage.

Those who have successfully completed their closet clean-out can simply schedule a pick-up. Box or bag up your unwanted goods — although I recommend skipping on the old underwear, socks, or items with permanent stains — and leave them by your door. Not only is an act of charity good for the soul, but it’s also tax deductible.

If you believe that your unwanted clothes warrant a return on your investment, consider looking into options on how to resell hyped goods, exploring the sneaker aftermarket, and identifying the proper marketplace for used items.

Tips moving forward

1. If you’re unsure about how much you actually wear an item of clothing, arrange all your hangers so they’re facing in one direction. When you wear something, turn the hanger in the opposite direction. After a month, you should have a good sense of what has made the cut.

2. Follow the “one in, one out” rule. If you buy something, the natural reaction should be to get rid of or donate something to balance it out.

3. Would you buy it again? Pretend you’re shopping in your own closet. If you love something so much that you’d buy it again, keep it.

4. Closet upkeep should be a weekly task. You wouldn’t clean your bathroom once a year or vacuum once a month. While there is decidedly more change in terms of household cleanliness per week, you can also use that time to reassess your closet. Perhaps you’ll realize that the shirt you thought you wear all the time hasn’t passed your hanger test. Perhaps your shoes have been knocked around and need to be rearranged. Take five minutes while you’re already in cleaning mode and you’ll never have to do a major closet clean-out again.

Original article from: www.highsnobiety.com

Barter Bay

The Origins of Barter Bay

The modest barter store

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An antique store.

In a small dinghy alley, there sits a store that deals in an unusual business. Interesting and unique items are cramped side by side with modern products in this tight space. A beautiful antique lamp stands in a corner, complemented by a well-kept gramophone. At the other end, iPhones, laptops and other electronic devices are displayed in a glass cabinet.

A white-haired man nods at a customer over the phone. “Yes, he’s interested to trade. Would Wednesday at 7pm work for you?” he says.

The old man’s name is Joe. He owns the store, which facilitates bartering. Customers put their items in the shop, and tell him what they want in return. When he receives an item that matches what they want, he calls up both customers and sets up the trade. He has known most of his customers for a long time.

There is a lot of work to be done – categorizing the items, keeping them clean, and negotiating with customers. It is back-breaking work for the old man, and at the same time, he also has to worry about how to get the word out.

I chanced upon Joe’s store during a trip to China, and was intrigued by it. I chatted with Joe, and he told me that it was difficult for him. The shop is not on a main road, so it doesn’t get much exposure. It is hard for new customers to discover it.

However, I was really impressed by the concept – swapping items with people to get something more useful to them. At the same time, it also reduces the number of items being dumped and sent to landfills. It’s a win-win situation for both parties and for the environment.

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Growing landfill volumes is a worldwide problem. We should not discard things that are still in working condition!

Using the web as a platform for bartering

I got the idea for Barter Bay from my chat with Joe. What if people could list their unused items over the internet? Then others can see it no matter where they are. Someone will have a use for it, and be willing to give up something in return. They can directly contact each other over a chat, and set up a suitable time and place to meet at their convenience. Instead of throwing things into the bin, the items can get a second lease on life with a new owner. One man’s trash is another man’s treasure – that is the idea behind Barter Bay, our trading platform for modern-day bartering.

 

By Tony Liu, founder of Barter Bay.

Images from Pixabay