We live in a much more efficient society than our parents. While things are easier and more convenient, at the same time if something goes wrong, it goes really wrong. How many of us know how to fix these tightly put together vehicle engines, or how to identify and fix what’s wrong with the beastly computer again, or repair the winding wiring/plumbing in your house. So many of us don’t know the first thing about doing these things, so we have to resort to hiring the expert in that area. But there is an alternative to the high expenses that come with these experts… the barter system.

On the weekend a friend of mine had trouble with one of their computers again. She called me for help (I’ve been able to help them with this a few times in the past as well). She was very grateful when I was able to identify and fix her problem that day. She thanked me for the service and said I have a standing offer for free babysitting whenever needed.

It certainly pays to grow your network of friends to include some of these professionals (and to offer your abilities as a service to others). A friend of ours was able to identify a water leak in our house a few weeks ago… a free consult which would have cost at least $80 had we called a plumber – and he may not have found the easy to solve solution that our trusted friend did.

I’ve seen informational videos on the cost of getting so-called expert opinions and their fees seem outlandish in the first place. They are also inconsistent and the “expert” doesn’t always identify the true problem but charges you a high price for an unrelated/unneeded fix.

What skill/service/item have you found is valuable for people to barter in return for what they’ve offered to you?