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Blog Posted in avatar   Kevin Fitzgerald's Blog

Bartering for a Bargain

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By Kevin Fitzgerald
Posted Oct 11, 2011 in Lifestyle
Many times in life you will come across a product or a service that strikes your fancy. But usually one main problem arises: You don't have the cash to put down for the goods. Whether it be a necessity or merely a luxury, we usually just simply go without because of the lack of funds. But, there may be another way to get the item or service without having to fork over the cash. Enter the concept of bartering.
Simply put, bartering is when there is a service or product that you want, and in exchange you will trade a service or product that you are able to provide without either party having to pay any money. This practice has been around for centuries, but surprisingly many people are not too familiar with the concept.
A few years ago I wanted to get some fitness sessions with a personal trainer in order to get in better shape. Since I am a trained massage therapist, I found a trainer who was willing to trade some sessions for a few of my massage therapy sessions. Though the deal eventually dissolved due to personality conflicts, it was nice to get at least a few workouts with a trainer and not have to pay any cash.
You may even be able to get services which are considered more of a necessity. A few years ago I saw an ad of a dentist who was willing to provide free dental work in exchange for some landscaping in his yard. I'm not sure about the authenticity of the dentist's credentials, but it certainly would have been worth looking into had I had any landscaping experience.
For all of you commitment-phobes out there, bartering does not have to require a long term business relationship. Perhaps it is just an exchange of products, like electronics, which can take place in a one-time meeting.
A word for the wise would be to establish a barter contract with the other party, especially if you are in a barter relationship for services over a period of time. You don't want to get stiffed by someone who merely wants to take advantage of your services, and then merely "not have enough time" or have scheduling conflicts when it is your turn to receive their services. Be very specific in the contract as to the number of times and the duration of each time that they will be providing their services for yours. Set definite dates and times so that each party knows when they should expect to provide and receive their services.
You can find bartering offers online on places like Craigslist. You can even try approaching someone if they have a product or service that you want and see if they are willing to work out a bartering agreement.
So, if you're short on cash, don't despair! Consider bartering as a means to get the things you want in life.

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