More people than ever are using the internet to get rid of their old stuff and pick up replacements for free.
Below are five websites that allow you to trade items with other users, at no cost to yourself other than potential delivery expenses. These are just a few of the host of so-called swapping websites out there - share others you have used below.
1. Swapshop.co.uk allows users to swap unwanted items for points, which can then be used to ‘buy’ items offered on the site. You have to register to take part, but it is completely free to do so. Items on the site include mobile phones, music, furniture and jewellery but DVDs and videos dominate the product list with over 10,000 on offer.
2. Snaffleup.co.uk is a recycling website, which enables you to give away unwanted items and acquire new things from other users. You can search the website or opt to receive e-updates about new items. Products offered include prams, car parts, furniture, clothes and homeware. The website is free, with delivery or collection the only cost to you.
3. Freecycle.org is a network of over six million people from across the globe who offer items they no longer want to people in their area. It’s free to use, and you will receive emails alerting you to new donations. The site is American but there are groups literally all over the UK – all you need to do is register and enter your postcode on the site, and you can start searching for free things.
4. Gumtree.com describes itself as offering community classifieds, with everything from flats and houses, pets and jobs advertised online. Although most things on this website are for sale, it does have a freebies section. Scroll past the sponsored links and ads, and you’ll find a wealth of listings mainly for furniture and household items. The site is, however, restricted to the London area.
5. Swapz.co.uk doesn’t cost anything to join and allows you to search for items being offered for free by other users. You can also respond to items wanted by other users. Products up for grabs range from antiques and collectables, to DVDs, stamps and musical instruments, as well as clothes, furniture and toys.