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I've just discovered Ecomodo and think it's a great idea.
What is it?
Ecomodo is a website which lets people lend and borrow everyday objects, skills & spaces with the people around them in their community. People can lend and borrow...
Everyday objects like tools, tents, books, bikes, party gear, sports gear
Skills like handyman, IT help
Spaces like storage, spare rooms
Basically Ecomodo connects people who have things with others who want to use them for a short period of time. People can lend for free, or for a fee and they can ask for the proceeds to be given to charity. Ecomodo lets you see and search what is around you and then takes you through the whole lend to make sure everything turns out well in the end.
If you join (for free) you get a regular email with things in your area which are available for you to borrow and things people are asking for.
Why do I like it?
In the past I've bought things like a router and ski clothes which I only needed for a short time because I didn't know who around me might be able to lend theirs. Now I can see who has what I want near me and request it using Ecomodo. I can pay through the site and leave a deposit with the site (if the lender asks for it) with confidence that my money is safe. It could save me money , save storage space, might lead me to do things I wouldn't have done otherwise and certainly helps me be greener whilst still having fun.I could also make quite a bit of money and probably raise a fair bit for some local charities by lending out the stuff I have lying about. And I'll be doing someone else a favour at the same time.
I love the fact that Ecomodo lets you control who can ask for your things by setting up or joining lending circles (groups of people such as friends, colleagues, parents at your childrens school etc), and that you can take out insurance to protect the things you lend out. I really liked the way I could choose how precisely to tell it my location incase I am worried about security. I live in a city so it's not a big deal but I can imagine that in some places you'd really need this feature.
I found it easy to use once I'd understood the idea. There's nothing else like it so I was a bit confused at first. The first page you arrive at makes it all pretty simple to understand. I think it looks great.
It's still new so some areas are a little thin on the ground. Once more people start adding more stuff it will be a fantastic resource though. The prices vary a lot. I guess they'll be more consistent once there's more there.
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