10 ways to save by swapping and sharing
- Which? reveals 10 great swapping and sharing tips
- Smart ways to get books, clothes and event tickets
- How to swap skills you have for skills you need
Check out our top money saving tips, which could help you save bundles through swapping and sharing.
1. Car sharing
There are plenty of websites to help you link up with other travellers to save money on petrol and cut your carbon footprint. Nationalcarshare.co.uk, Rideshare.co.uk and Liftshare.com are all free to register with and can help with the daily commute or for lifts to specific events. According to Liftshare, the average car-sharer could save £4.43 on a 20-mile return journey - a significant saving over the course of a year.
2. Share with your neighbours
Lending website Streetbank.com is a nifty idea designed to help you to share and borrow things from your neighbours. It aims to save you cash and make your community a nicer place to live by bringing it closer together. It’s free to sign up and you can lend anything from old gardening equipment to back issues of magazines.
3. Swap your books
Sites like Bookmooch.com and Readitswapit.co.uk let you swap unwanted books for ones you want in exchange. With BookMooch, every time you give someone a book, you earn a point and can get any book you want from anyone else at BookMooch. It's free to sign up, and once you've read a book, you can keep it forever or put it back into BookMooch for someone else.
4. Nanny sharing
If you're paying for a nanny to look after your children, the costs can soon mount up. However, it may be possible to find a nanny-share with a like-minded family. This could halve your out-goings and make a new friend for your child. Try Nannyshare.co.uk or Thenannysharers.co.uk, or post a free ad on parental advice site Netmums.com to find someone nearby. You'll need to make sure you're happy with the other family and draw up clear contracts before going ahead with any childcare arrangements
5. Clothes swapping
Websites such as Swop2shop.co.uk and Bigwardrobe.com allow you to upload pictures of your unwanted clothes and sell them in a similar way to auction websites like eBay. A premium membership to Swop2Shop allows you to sell your clothes in exchange for points to spend on other items on the site. This costs £10 a year and then £9.99 for every Freepost bag of clothes you send in.
6. Swap your home
Sites like Intervac.co.uk, Homelink.org.uk and Homeforexchange.com are international home exchange services which allow you to swap your home with other homeowners across the world. Yearly membership to Homeforexchange.com starts at £39 but if you don't arrange an exchange in the first year, your second year is free. A great way to holiday abroad while saving hundreds on accommodation costs.
7. Save on gardening
A great website for saving money on gardening is Seedypeople.co.uk. The site lets you swap seeds and plants with other gardeners and it also runs Seedy Sunday (Seedysunday.org), which is ‘the UK’s biggest community seed swap’ – check the site for dates and locations.
8. Ticket swap shop
Concert tickets can be hard to get hold of - for example, Glastonbury festivals tickets for 2011 sold out in just four hours this year. Nevertheless, try to avoid auction sites or expensive secondary sellers. Online ticket exchange site Scarletmist.com introduces buyers and sellers to one another to avoid overpaying on gigs and find tickets to sold-out events. Be sure to get proof of purchase from the seller when you’re buying.
9. Swap your skills
Ever wanted to learn a new skill? Check out the Local Exchange Trading Scheme (LETS) in your community. Offered and wanted lists are created, through which scheme members swap skills or services in a way that suits both parties. For example, DIY could be swapped for cookery lessons, or childcare for language lessons. To find a LETS group in your area, visit LetslinkUK, the body supporting all UK LETS schemes.
10. Grab freebies
It’s also worth checking out community freebie sites like Freecycle.org and Snaffleup.co.uk aiming to keep a whole range of usable items out of landfills. Because you can get something for free without giving anything in return, these aren’t strictly swapping sites. However, it’s always best to try and give something back to these communities if you’re able to.