Not Buying It? How to Trade the Stuff You Already Have

In light of the current economic woes, some internet sites have discovered the way to our collective hearts is not through our wallets but instead through community. Below are a few creative (and free) solutions to save a bit of coin and feel good while doing it.

1. Craigslist
How it works:† This “classified-type-site” allows you to list anything you have for sale or want to trade at no charge.
Pros: They have a “Free Stuff” category where you can find everything from moving boxes to used dental equipment (hey, I’m not judging) and a “Barter” category that allows you to post your skills or goods for trade.
Cons: Craiglisters are notorious flakes and are not terribly proficient at returning e-mails. It’s always best to speak to someone on the phone before making the trek to their house.

2. Freecycle
How it works: The name says it all. Everything on this site is, you guessed it, free. Their goal is to keep stuff moving throughout the community and out of landfills. Got a rusty BBQ or half empty can of paint? Chances are good that someone wants it.
Pros: Freecycle has facilitated over a million trades since its inception.
Cons: The site isn’t terribly easy to navigate and you must sign-up to browse their selection of free stuff.

3. Favorpals
How it works: Their motto is “A world without money” and right they are.
Trade your skilled labor for someone else’s.
Pros: It’s one of the only sites that converts your unique skills into a commodity.
Cons: You must join before you’re able to see if there are even people in your area to trade skills with. It’s limited to urban communities.

4. I donít need it, you can have it
How it works:† People donate items they no longer have use for.
Pros: Very parent-friendly. There is a lot of stuff on here thatís new or nearly new and they have an international scope.
Cons: They’re limited to big cities and some categories are pretty sparse.

5. Garden Web
How it works: Green thumbs from around the world keep in touch to trade plants and seeds.
Pros: Easy to use and a great opportunity to find illusive strains of heirloom plants.
Cons: You must pay for shipping.

6. Swaptree
How it works: Using their simple form, just enter the bar code on the books, video games, CDs or DVDs you want to trade.† They then apply an algorithm to your item and list thousands you are able to trade for it.
Pros: Very easy to use, lets you make a wishlist for future “wants” and many of the items are brand new.
You may have to monitor often as popular items go fast.


William C
William C1 years ago


W. C
W. C1 years ago

Thank you.

Jessica A.
Jessica Anlauf4 years ago

Awesome site to buy/sell/trade is Find both services and products. And get suggestions from the site for what your preferences of looking for and have are. it's global and tons of advanced search options etc.!

Ganaisha Calvin
Ganaisha C5 years ago

great info thanks

LMj Sunshine
James merritt jr6 years ago

Useful info, thank you for sharing.

LMj Sunshine
James merritt jr6 years ago

Useful info, thank you for sharing.

Donna Hamilton
Donna Hamilton6 years ago

Thanks for the info.

Dana W.
Dana W6 years ago

Some useful info. I've looked at Craigslist but found it difficult to navigate and have signed up for Swaptree and at least one other book trading site although I haven't yet traded any books because I can't find the ones I want unless I buy it on the site from a seller.

Michele Wilkinson

Thank you

Marianne Norgan
Marianne Norgan7 years ago

his is very useful to know. Thank you for posting