Friday, December 11, 2009

The Power of Free Classifieds

When I was in my first year of seminary, my friend Dylan told me about a great deal he got on something. "Wow, where did you find that at such a good price?" I asked. "Used Winnipeg, " he replied, "That place is like crack and I check it out every day." That was my introduction to the wonder of free online classifieds.

Jobina and I have used free online classifieds to do the following:

1. find clients for my practicum (and even now for my counselling practice)
2. find garbage haulers, painters, handymen, and other skilled trades people for my rental property
3. buy a collection of Transformer comics
4. purchase several movies and DVD series
5. bought outdoor equipment like my new mountain bike, a GPS, and (yesterday) a brand new water filtration unit (retail MEC $89 - my price $40)
6. buy and sell furniture
7. drive traffic to our recent Comfree.com online house listing
8. find 3 sets of renters for our rental property
9. buy and sell a vending machine business
10. sell a house we flipped

There's probably more but that's all that comes to mind. We can't remember if we bought our van off of free online classifieds but probably. Jobina and I have literally saved thousands and made thousands of dollars by using these free sites.

There are three main online classifieds that I use:

kijiji.ca (my favorite and very popular with lots of things for sale)
craigslist.ca
usedwinnipeg.com

Once you get used to navigating, searching, and posting these sites become indispensable. There are deals everywhere! And once you learn how to figure out people's level of motivation to sell (desperate=good) you can find some exceptional deals. I often will offer less then half on things - you never know what people will go for unless you ask! We needed to move some junk from our property so we just called people - found someone willing to pick it all up and take it all to the dump for $40. They were there in half an hour, I payed them in cash, and they were gone. Same thing when we needed an electrician for our property the day before our open house. Called him Friday afternoon - he came in Saturday morning. I wanted a painter to paint our rental property and after looking through several ads emailed one and asked for a ballpark quote. He just happened to be between jobs and a little desperate so he offered to paint my 1404 square foot rental for $1500. That was pretty good but I didn't get back to him as I was busy. He emailed me again and dropped the price down to $1000!

Most people are honest and as long as you use some discernment you are pretty safe. I thought I would just share the good news for anyone who wasn't aware that these sites existed. Use them to promote yourself/your services, find good deals, or advertise the things you want to sell. Just be careful - you can easily get addicted!

5 comments:

Jobina said...

plus I've bought and sold a pile of kids stuff online. I've learned though that it's all in the price. If you don't price things right they're gonna be online forever. Garage sale prices people, garage sale prices. If people can get it for less at Walmart, they will!

Lindsey Dueck said...

Kijiji is awesome. I use it ALL the time!

Coach Dueck said...

jobina that isn't true for everything. Some people will pay MORE because they thing they're getting something of value. We heard this to be true of selling animals (however, it didn't work for us)! That might depend on the product though, probably an exception to the rule.
Eric

ira said...

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