Sometimes I can’t imagine life before Craigslist; how did we ever sell furniture without it?  As much as I love Craigslist, I am starting to love Freecycle even more.  Are you familiar with Freecycle?  If not, you should definitely pay attention because Freecycle can save you a lot of money and a bit of hassle too.

Basically, Freecycle allows people to post things that they would like to get rid of and request things that they would like to get for free.  The posts are shared on a listserve that serves a particular metropolitan region.  It’s great for the environment because it diverts unwanted items from the landfill, and it’s great for your budget because it can help you save some serious cash if you’re smart.

I’ve had excellent experiences with Freecyle on both ends of the exchange.  When our microwave bit the dust  I knew that I couldn’t fix it and I was less than excited about figuring out how to dispose of it.  Fortunately I didn’t have to!  I posted the microwave on Freecycle (with a clear explanation that it was broken) and someone with mechanical skills took it off my hands.

As a person who hates wasting anything, I find that Freecycle allows me to get rid of things that might be hard to unload otherwise.  For example, I had lots of scrap paper that I didn’t want to toss or even recycle, so I posted it and a woman with young children took the scraps for art projects.  Beauty products, like body sprays, are often popular too.  I am a much better declutterer thanks to Freecycle.

I have also picked up some great items because of Freecycle.  After playing Bananagrams with some friends, I decided that I really wanted to own this game.  It’s compact (great for traveling) and lots of fun.  However, I wasn’t really excited to drop $16 on something that definitely isn’t a “need.”  I posted a request for Bananagrams on Freecycle and almost instantly had an offer.  All I had to do was go pick it up!  I was also able to acquire about 30 Ball mason jars for my wedding using Freecyle.

I am trying to do a better job of turning to Freecyle first.  It is very hard to break the impulse to go to the store to get something that I “need,” but I have found it so rewarding when I am victorious that it is quickly becoming addictive!