As the barter system is becoming more popular, the number of resources is also growing. For general searches you can look at sites like Craigslist or Freecycle.org.
Craigslist has an area labeled “free”. Freecycle is a whole website dedicated to only free items. Both of these sites have items listed with the understanding that nothing is needed in exchange for them. It is as simple as setting up a time to pick up the items. Services
Gardening: If gardening is something you would like to do but, you just do not have the land or space to do it you can check out this website. On this website you will find people that have the space for gardening but, may not have the time or talent for it. In exchange for letting you use their space they ask for a portion of the produce.
Babysitting: Babysitting is another popular service to be traded. For my husband and I we will sometimes opt out of a date night because of the cost of a sitter. It just seems easier to stay in. Instead of paying for the sitter why not get together with your family or good friends and trade babysitting time. This not only allows you to get out but, also will allow others participating to get out as well without the worry of paying for the sitter.
Yard Work: Yard work can be a very helpful service to exchange as well. Everyone is busy these days so, offering to do some of their yard work in exchange for an item they may have can be very helpful.
Cleaning: House cleaning is another popular service that is bartered. This is particularly awesome if you love to clean. You can offer your cleaning service for those who do not have the time or, those who just don’t like cleaning (like myself).
Bartering for services doesn’t stop at these things services. Your services can range from dog walking, to grocery shopping to running errands for someone. Be creative and use your skills to your advantage.
How do I get started?
Getting started can sound tricky (or even scary). It doesn’t have to be though. You simply find someone who needs (or wants) the goods or services you are willing to trade and make the offer.
Both parties need to agree on the taxable amount and, if needed the boundaries of the service(s) to be provided.
I highly suggest that you take the time to write out the taxable amount of the items or service provided to be signed by both parties. If it is a service being provided I also suggest that the boundaries of the service be laid out on this paper as well so everyone is on the same page. This signed paper will help you both keep track of anything that needs to be filed on your taxes when it comes time.
IRS.gov says that even though money is not physically exchanged for goods or services, the fair market value still applies. It also states that the amount needs to be claimed by both parties involved. The type of form that needs to be filled out and filed depends solely on the type of bartering that took place.
If you are picking items up that are listed for free there is no need to claim those as income as those were just going to be donated or tossed anyways. This is only used if you are swapping goods or services with someone else. The options for bartering are endless. Be creative and have fun with it.