It seems everyone I talk to now is trying to stretch their hard earned dollars to cover more with less. While attending a women’s business meeting last night, a table mate inquired if I had ever tried bartering.
I’ve been a member of a barter organization, ITEX, for over 15 years now. I’ve traded goods for goods directly, also, but joining an organized barter organization like ITEX allows more opportunities to use your trade dollars.
The big question…How does it work? Think of ITEX as the bank where you have your account. You have a service people pay for. Let’s say you’re a restaurant. An ITEX member has dinner at your restaurant and pays with a trade draft that draws from the trade dollars they have banked in their ITEX account. You deposit the draft, just as you would a check, into your ITEX account.
You now visit an ITEX member, a dentist, to have some work done and pay him with trade dollars in your account. You’re also in the process of renting a vacation beach house in Mexico that is owned by an ITEX member that lives halfway across the country. You pay for the rental with trade dollars. All the while, fellow ITEX members continue to dine at your restaurant, helping grow your trade dollar spending power.
Sign up fees for ITEX vary from office to office. My broker is running a new member campaign now and you can sign up with no fee. The usual sign up fee can vary. Each month, you’ll pay a cash maintenance fee and 6-8% on each transaction—coming and going.
People have bartered practically since the beginning of time. In these challenging economic times, barter might help you take care of business even when cash flow is tight or maybe you’ll be able to take that much needed vacation after all. If you have questions, I’d be glad to answer them and put you in touch with my trade broker to explore your options. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call me toll free at 1-866-638-1115 ext 3.