No BS Barter Guide
Updated: May 5
Here is the no BS facts of a barter exchange:
Don’t expect to find very specific things within the network We will look, but if you want specific size rims for your truck, or a specific sized filter for your air conditioning system, the network may not be able to provide it. Think of barter as an auction house where you can look for goods and services and say “hey I could use that,” or “hey I like that restaurant.”
Transactions might take longer than when using cash. Usually instant gratification is possible but not always. Sometimes we need time to sign a new member or print a new certificate. Even if there is a member who can help, often they will need time to integrate your business to complement their cash business. This brings us to...
Generally, don’t do anymore then 30% of your business in trade. Barter is a way of supplementing your cash business not replacing it. You will never be able to pay for your electricity with barter, but maybe your office space. You will never be able to pay for your groceries on barter, but maybe the furniture you eat it off of. Different businesses have different ratios depending on their cash overhead. Know your limits and you will get the most our of our network.
Members will sometimes say no to more barter business. Hey cash is king - I know it - you know it. We won’t sugar coat it. If you could get cash tomorrow for your unused capacity or excess inventory you would - and we would be happy for you. But this is the real world and every business has some level of unused capacity or inventory, otherwise they wouldn’t be growing. Each member decides for them self what is their optimum level of trade business.
Taxes can sneak up on you. When you are doing transactions within the network HST is charged but paid in trade. If you are using your trade dollars for business expenses the HST comes out in the wash - all good. If you are spending trade dollars on personal expenses you will end up paying that HST, eventually, in cash. Still a great deal but be aware as you become more active buying and selling.
Think of it this way. Outside the network it's hard to find business but easy to spend the cash. Inside the network it's easier to find business but harder to spend trade dollars.
Savvy barter members know how to utilize barter to fulfill their needs and save themselves serious cash. That's why, across North America, over 100,000 businesses belong to a barter network. If you are the type who requires instant gratification all the time and can’t stand not getting what you want when you want, than you may not be suited for a barter network. LBN members are deliberate, thoughtful, and patient, which is probably why they are also the most successful business owners.
Visit www.londonbarternetwork.ca to learn more.