First of all let me begin by saying that this information comes from several Internet sites on bartering and bartering networks. I’ll post links to these sites at the bottom of this post.
One of the first things you will need to build your Barter network, besides having one or more of the skills or abilities to supply goods that we covered in the previous post, is a way to let others know what you have to offer and then a way to document those items. One of the more common and established ways to accomplish this is by putting together a barter resume. On this resume you would want to put details on the skills or the products you have to offer the community.
Do you produce a product or goods that in good times is a necessity for people to have? One thing that comes to my mind immediately is soap. If you know how to manufacture it and have the tools, and very few other people in your local area know how, I’d say you got a valuable product for the community.
Something else to look at would be what things are consumed rapidly during a disaster event and are difficult to replace. Things like alcohol, tobacco, chocolate, gasoline or diesel may be things you want to store in bulk as barter items if you have the storage space.
In some of the lists I’ve seen they have listed ammunition as a barter item. Myself I’m not sure I’d be willing to swap bullets with somebody for bag of beans or anything else since that would give them the ability to come back and take my bag of beans by force, but that’s just me.
Another valuable skill not commonly thought about would be someone who has deep connections in the community and almost knows everyone in town in one fashion or another. They would be valuable in the respect that they may know where to find things and who has raw materials or equipment that might be use if times get bad supplies get tight.
By posting goods or services you offer on your barter resume it will be almost like a classified ad advertising which you have the offer to your community. And by offering the payment option of barter, you may greatly expand your market for your product, even now while things are somewhat stable.
In continuing to think of this like a classified ad, you would also post the items that you’re looking for or services you need. Below is a rough, (and plagiarized), sketch of what this resume my look like.
|Barter Market Resume For:||William Tell|
|Location:||Middle Tennessee, La Vergne|
|Items For Trade:||Seasonal strawberries, 10 acre field of hay to be cut and bailed, seasoned firewood.|
|Skills For Trade:||Diesel mechanic, welding, woodworking and ham radio communications.|
|Items Wanted:||Free range chicken, beef, pork and silver or offer what you have for trade.|
Once you’ve had a chance to fill out your own personal resume, the next step is finding a group of friends and friends of friends that might be of the same mindset and have an interest in participating in your barter group. At this point in time the Internet can be our friend, or an enemy, but that’s for another discussion entirely. If you feel confident advertising your barter group on the Internet, there are certainly numerous sites websites out there with local or regional boards that you can post your information on. I know for a fact that both frugal squirrels website and the survival podcast website have regional boards that people post meetings and get-togethers on a regular basis.
One thing to keep in mind regarding bartering in an organized group is there can be tax consequences due according to IRS guidelines. Do your own research and investigation to make sure you’re in compliance with your state, local or federal laws regarding bartering and taxes. In most cases if it’s a like for like exchange or there is no value added to one person on the other good exchange there should be any profit and therefore taxable event occurring. At least that’s what I’ve read on the Internet true, false or none of the above, it’s up to you to decide.
Links to Bartering Info: