Photo by Elaine Casap on Unsplash

If there are items that you use infrequently, it makes more sense to rent that item rather than buy it. Better yet, and if available, there are community/neighborhood sharing clubs that makes these items available to anyone in the club that needs the temporary use of that item.

If you don’t have a sharing club close to you, consider starting one.

How it works

Typically, each member in the sharing club already owns or will purchase a specific item that is infrequently used by one member. An inventory list of available items are distributed to each member. Some common examples:

Extension ladder(s)
Unique hand tools
Power tools
Lawn tools
Garden tillers
Carpet cleaner
Small large-capacity kitchen appliances (coffee maker, heavy duty mixer, etc.)
Tables and chairs
A pickup truck or trailer for moving large objects
Drop cloths for painting
Totes for moving
Large-capacity ice chest

The list of available items grows as the sharing club membership grows. I belonged to one club that even included services.

Photo by Katya Austin on Unsplash

Responsibility of use

One of the down sides of the sharing club model is that members may borrow an item without the know-how or skills to use it. To avoid physical injury or damage to the item being shared, make sure the borrower knows how to use the item and maintain it while being used.

The borrowing needs to understand that if the item borrowed is damaged when it was in their custody, that he/she (the borrower) is responsible for item’s repair or replacement.

Over the last 15 years or so, I’ve had four items damaged. Accidents or misuse of a borrowed item happens. It’s important for all club members to understand their responsibility.


Sharing and borrowing can save you a lot of money over the years and that is what being frugal is all about.

Published by W. M. Brown

I am a retired U.S. expat living in Ecuador. I was a business owner for 32 years before retiring in 2012.

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