Saturday, January 28, 2017

The things on Gumtree that won't cost you a dollar.

So today I'm singing the praises of Gumtree again. Because I'm writing this from the corner of my brand new office, most of which I got for free. Thanks Gumtree!

Yes if you haven't perused your local Gumtree 'Freebies' section yet then quickly open another browser, head there right now and scope out what useful things people are just giving away because they no longer have any use for it, need the space or are moving out and downsizing. Oh and then come back and finish reading this post. Maybe even throw a comment my way too? I don't mind ;)

Yes because we're currently in the situation where we're paying both rent AND a mortgage until the house sells (it's on the market currently so hopefully not too much longer) after food and bills, there's really nothing left. So wanting a few things including stuff to set up a work office for both my wife and myself, we kept an eye on the local Freebies section and bided our time. Firstly we found a dusty glass outdoor table with four chairs near my work. After playing Jenga with all the pieces in the back of the wagon I finally got it home where it was fully operational after a quick wipe down and a tablecloth. I love having breakfast out there now and all it cost me was a a couple of kilometres more on my ride home from work one afternoon.

My wife's monstrously heavy desk came next and while the woman who was giving it away was helping me put it into the car, she explained that it was built by a cabinet maker years ago and now that her son had moved out she no longer had any use for it. Which explained why it weighed three tonnes, it's built to last a direct hit from an anti tank shell. It also came with a big double shelf section and rather than bolt it back to the desk, we now use it as a handy set of shelves next to the desk. Apart form a couple of missing screws (which I fixed with some random ones from my toolkit) it was good to go and after my wife re-coated the top of it with some marble looking wrap it's taken on a whole new lease of life.

With the desk and the shelf set up the way it was there was just a little area left over for a mini desk in the other corner and I kept my eyes peeled for anything that would fit in the space with a total cost of zero dollars. And while I enquired about a few (and missed out on just as many) eventually one popped up that not only fit the space, it also came with a swing out out table section giving me an extra space to store all of my crap on!
Originally it had some kind of black covering on it (judging by the 1% left on it) but soon we'll be getting some more wrap (maybe some black marble to contrast the faux white marble on the other side?). It took me only 20 minutes to spill my first coffee on it so some kind of coffee-reflecting covering would be an idea. Personally I am more than happy with my little nook which now allows me to write, blog and do Youtube stuff without having to use my aging laptop while on the couch. Thanks Gumtree!

Now we just have to find a dining table and we're all good to go...


-A queen sized mattress
-A solid wood round table with four matching chairs
-Moving boxes and bubble wrap
-A trampoline
-Three seater sofa
-Vintage duffle bag
-Holden VZ car parts
-Horse manure
-A bit of everything...


- Sometimes you'll see something you want or need desperately but you'll miss out for some reason. The owner decided to keep it, gave it away already and forgot to take the ad down or never got back to your messages. Don't give up looking, you never know who might be giving away something similar only a few days later.

-Don't ask for delivery. You're getting something for free, the least you could do is go round there and pick it up. You want it? Go get it.

-Don't expect it to be 100%. Bits like screws might be missing, furniture might be a bit rickety, your outdoor furniture might come with it's own set of spiders for etc. A little TLC might be required but sometimes that's half the fun of fixing something to get many more years out of it.

-Be courteous. I always make a point of thanking people for what they give away, even if they just leave it outside their house for me to pick up. If you can't thank them in person, send them a message and tell them how much you appreciate your new whatever.

-If it turns out unsuitable for your needs and it's not rubbish, give it away to someone else yourself. Don't junk it when there may be someone else out there looking for the same thing you once were.

-If you're cleaning up yourself and spot stuff you no longer need that isn't really worth anything but you think someone might need or enjoy anyway, put it in the Freebies section. Depending on your area (and I live in a big area) sometimes things are snapped up pretty quickly which it great for everyone involved.


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