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Frugal living tip #21. May 28, 2009

Posted by ourfriendben in Ben Franklin, homesteading, wit and wisdom.
Tags: , , ,

Silence Dogood here at last with this week’s Frugal Living Tip here at Poor Richard’s Almanac. (We’ve been a little distracted this week, and besides, our friend Ben has been hogging the airwaves. But better late than later, right?) This week, I promised to share an interesting item I found in the Wall Street Journal on “Sites [that] Let You Swap Till You Drop.”

[Totally unrelated rant: WSJ, “till” is what you do to the soil. The correct spelling of the short form of “until” is ’til. As in, “Swap ‘Til You Drop.” Shame on you!]

The Journal reviewed three websites that primarily feature clothing and accessories swaps. (Swapped items can be “gently used” or new.) Basically, you upload a photo of the item you want to swap, review offers of swaps from folks who are interested in your item, and if you like something that’s offered, agree to the swap, ship off your item, and get the item of your choice in exchange. Like eBay, comments and ratings help keep transactions aboveboard and prevent “swaplifting.”

The sites are Swapstyle (www.swapstyle.com), Rehash Clothes (www.rehashclothes.com), and Dig’N’Swap (www.dignswap.com). The author of the article, Nancy Matsumoto, put up items to swap on each site and reported on her experience with each site in the article, as well as providing an at-a-glance comparison chart. (Look for the article, “Sites Let You Swap Till You Drop,” under “Cranky Consumer” on the Wall Street Journal website, www.wsj.com.)

The point of these sites is that they let you exchange that too-big sweater Great-Aunt Ethel bought you last Christmas (okay, it was handmade and probably pretty pricey, but just look at that color!) or the too-small shoes you absolutely couldn’t resist but only managed to limp to work in once for something you’re pretty sure you’ll love.

Yes, of course you could just take the stuff to your local Goodwill or Salvation Army, but the chances of finding something really good there aren’t so great. These sites let you feel like you’re shopping without spending any money, or at least any more money than it costs to ship your stuff. So if you love to shop but are in a money crunch thanks to our faltering economy, here’s a way to shop for (practically) free and get rid of unwanted stuff. Sounds like a deal!

              ‘Til next time,