One of the ways to save money when shopping is to look into the second hand market and come up with creative ways to get what you want without necessarily spending cash – in other words, barter or swap what you already have (or a service you can provide) for what you want.
The biggest challenge to conducting a successful swap is finding an exact match for the haves and the wants. A multi party swap may actually help increase your chance of getting what you want.
A multi party swap is essentially a swap transaction between more than two parties.
Try and picture this scenario – Charlie likes playing golf, Gopal is an avid photographer and Ben has a vacation home in the Hamptons.
Charlie would like to take up photography and needs a good camera. Gopal would like to do a vacation trip in the Hamptons and he needs a place to stay at. And Ben has decided he wants to take up golf and needs golf clubs.
Instead of all three guys spending cash to get what they want, a simple swap transaction might be: Charlie gives Ben his golf clubs. Ben lets Gopal stay at his house in the Hamptons and Gopal gives Charlie his camera.
This transaction is a lot easier to visualize on a screen or on paper.
The next challenge is keeping track of who gets what. Transaction participants should find a way to keep track of who gets and gives each item, noting these details in an app or on a website.
Everyone should also agree on whether the swap is permanent. If it is not, everyone should agree on the timeframe that their respective items will be on loan for. And of course there should be a gentleman’s (or woman’s) agreement that everyone will act in good faith, return the items on time and in good condition or be responsible for damages in the unfortunate event that anything happens to the items. This is why swap transactions work best with the people you know.
You don’t even have to limit yourselves to swap transactions. Multi party transactions can also be in a combination of forms. Gopal could sell his camera to Charlie. Charlie could lend his golf clubs to Ben and Ben could let Gopal stay at his Hamptons home for free.
With a little out of the box thinking and a dose of fun, everyone could get what they want without having to spend a lot of money. And that’s what will make the world go round.