One of the most frequent tips that I see about saving money is to go find whatever you are looking for on craigslist. They would write about all of these amazing deals that they got on craigslist for all these popular items they were seeking and how much they saved over buying from a flea market or some other used source. Typically the deals were amazing, but whenever I read those posts, I’d say something like
That will never work for me. For craigslist to work, you need a lot of people with a lot of stuff, and wyoming doesnt have a lot of people. Those people that I do know with a lot of stuff very rarely get rid of it because they fix it or repurpose the parts, so I doubt there’s a lot of stuff on there either.
This was said everywhere, in comment on those posts and in my own head. It was also said with our really doing any checking whatsoever on craigslist for the things I needed (though I did look at cars a few times, and that justified what I thought). I kept this up for quite a while, until recently. When we replaced our washing machine and dryer we just moved the old, inefficient ones out of the laundry room and into what will become the third bedroom, but was some old bar (maybe?) and is now just basically a room full of our junk. Lots of it is stuff that we have yet to unpack (after almost a year – apparently we dont need it that badly) and a few of my supplies for homemade hard cider. So, for about 5 months, it has sat, unused, in the empty room.
The room started to pile up with stuff and H and I decided that we needed to slowly but surely drawdown the supply of things in there. We gave a bunch of stuff to the salvation army, and I finally got off my hindquarters and listed the washing machine and dryer on craigslist. I was honestly only expecting to toss them in the alley and wait for them to disappear, so getting any amount of money for them would be a bonus. So, I started looking on craigslist to see where I should price the units so that I could move them quickly (as a pair, hopefully) and get the most money I can for them. What I found however, was a total gold mine.
I had been completely wrong about craigslist in wyoming (we only have 1 for the whole state). There was some awesome stuff in there! Now that I’ve spent some time tooling around on craigslist, H and I have found 2 different sources for local chicken eggs in cheyenne. Not only are the eggs from locally raised chickens, but they are also cheaper than the eggs that we buy at the grocery store that are “organic and cage free”. We havent picked up our first batch yet, but I’m really excited. Since I started training for the race, I’ve been eating a lot of eggs (hard boiled and otherwise) to work on my fledgling diet (which I’ll be writing as soon as I muster up the inner strength to admit that I failed, miserably). In addition to the eggs on craigslist, I found a ton of other stuff that would have helped H and I when we were doing our housework all summer.
So now that I’ve actually looked through craigslist – it’s nice to have it as a resource. Obviously, wyomings craigslist has a lot more goats and horses for sale than the average craigslist, but even then – those are still things I’d like to buy. Unfortunately, craigslist wont solve all of my problems when I need a tool or something of the like, but it’s a great option to have when I need something am looking for a great deal.
One thing though, is that this craigslist is for the entire state – some parts of which H and I are 7+ hours away from, and that’s one way. There’s a few other local craigslists that are closer, but for some smaller items where the savings isnt that great, it wont be worth it for a 1.5 hr round trip (or more) to go pick up something that will end up saving just a few dollars. There’s actually something that I found recently that I really wanted (a free trailer) but it would have been a 7+ hour round trip to get there and get back home. It’d be nice if everything was a bit closer, but other than that small complaint, it’s nice to know that craigslist is actually active in my area.
For anyone curious about the washer, I sold it in about a day.
Readers: Is there something that you brushed off initially but later found that it had great value to you, like I did with craigslist? Why did you dismiss it right away, and what made you give it a second look?