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Monday, October 19, 2015

Trade your cow for these magic beans...

TRADE... Your cow for these magic beans, My kingdom for a horse, Anything for a golden touch.

Bartering has never gone away but today, money has become its most popular medium of change.

Money gives an exact measurement, 3 for a dollar, $2.399 for a gallon of gas, etc. The value is set.

However, a new day is dawning with the realization that perceived value of this for that is often in the eye of the beholder and cash is a finite commodity. Trading (and bartering for value) is perhaps the greatest way to create a win-win and save the bucks for something else.

In days past, commodities could be traded for services--a massage for a chicken, shoe my horse and I'll plow your field, Thanksgiving turkey for three haircuts, scratch my back and I'll scratch yours. I saw how well this can work by watching two of my children who barter whenever possible.

A winning 200-word essay for this charming two-centuries old New Hampshire Inn was a great barter opportunity. The owner decided to sell in the same manner she acquired the property 22 years earlier. At the cost of  $125 to enter the contest, you too could have been a winner at better than lottery odds. This is a legal contest of skill however--not a lottery--and comes with its own complications as you can see.

An Alabama couple offered their farm (sheep and goats included) for a winning essay and $1. A similar contest for a  Maryland home allowed the winner to acquire for $100 and a chocolate recipe. 

But say you don't want this valuable Inn for $125 and have something simpler in mind. There are web sites that specialize in this even beyond Craigslist and eBay.

A few years back 17-year-old Steven Oritz bartered a used cell phone a friend gave him for a 2000 Porsche Boxer S Convertible. It took him two years and 14 carefully planned trades but he did it by following the pattern of Canadian Kyle MacDonald.  Here's his story. 

In 2005 MacDonald began with a red paper clip and ended up with a two-story house. Wanna see how he did it? Click here.


WORSE BARTER OF ALL TIME? Without a doubt, Adam and Eve gave up Paradise for a bite of an apple.

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