Craig Saves Best

Whoever said nothing in life is free really needs to check out craigslist.

Last week at a hair cuttery, a woman told me about her daughter who moved to California and furnished her entire apartment with free furniture she found on craigslist. As a loyal Ebay user, I’ve been reluctant to give craigslist a shot, but this evoked my curiosity enough to at least visit the site.

I got on the site, found the Virginia link, clicked on Harrisonburg, and sure enough my attention was immediately drawn to the free link. At first, I was pretty disappointed by the selection. The only things people seemed to be giving away were cats and large appliances. Unfortunately for me, my apartment complex does not allow cats and already came equipped with the appliances I need. However, I checked for more free stuff today and someone was trying to unload a year’s worth of the magazine The Economist, so I sent an e-mail and am now crossing my fingers that I’m the only person in Harrisonburg who saw the ad and who would want a year’s worth of the Economist. I think the lesson here is be persistent; there are diamonds in the rough.

I also had success when I clicked on the Northern Virginia link. I figured I’d check out this location since a lot of Virginia college students (including myself) come from the area. There were more listings here for one day than Harrisonburg had in an entire month. People were giving away quality things too- couches, desks, big screen TVs, clothes, and all sorts of other useful items. If your heading back to Northern Virginia for Thanksgiving break, this could be a good opportunity to scrap up some free things from your community.

For those of you with the mindset “if it’s free, there’s something wrong with it”, craigslist provides an ample amount of “for sale” categories. There’s listings from electronics, cars, clothes, furniture, and tickets to more obscure things like musical instruments and motorcycles. I did some browsing today and saw a mint condition laptop for only $75 and a new loveseat for $10.

If you haven’t jumped on the craigslist bandwagon yet, I’d go ahead and do it because the saving possibilities on this site are endless. Besides giving you an opportunity to accumulate more things, craigslist also provides listings for jobs, housing, and events in the community.

Let me know what you guys stumble across. In the mean time, I’m going to continue stalking my e-mail until I find out if I got those free Economist magazines or not.

-Tina

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11 Comments

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11 responses to “Craig Saves Best

  1. Meriden

    I’m kind of slow when it comes to buying and selling stuff online, like I’ve never even tried to buy anything off ebay because I have no idea how it works, and it kind of scares me. So, needless to say when I first heard of craigslist I wasn’t even interested because I figured it was just one more website I wouldn’t understand. Your advice might be the push I need to finally explore craigslist. I actually feel kind of giddy thinking about all the possibilities, I might even check it out right now. But to be honest I’m hoping for something a little better than the Economist.

  2. matt grundy

    i’m a craigslist junkie, and although i’m more of a fan of missed connection lurking and “best of craigslist” reading than freebie hunting, i can attest to just how valuable craigslist can be. just this summer i helped my friend heidi pick up and move several pieces of quality, free, (heavy) furniture that were all up for grabs on craigslist to her apartment. this is a great recommendation tina, and good luck with that economist subscription.

  3. Monica Wilder

    Tina… you’re killin me smalls… Northern Virginia/any major Metro area has a REDIC selection of craigslist stuff.
    My friend Breanne (you may recall such a name) got her ChinChilla from there PLUS all the fixings (not to cook for dinner but for it to live in), and same for her last gerbil.
    I got my blender there… and it’s BALLIN’, and only 5 dollars. FURNITURE=the best deals ever.
    But WATCH OUT FOR SCAMS. Craigslist has ALOT of scammers.
    In some cities (richmond/vcu/emotownusa) people will use this section where you write in about a missed connection with someone you saw on the street or you met and didn’t get their number. It’s quite amusing for the artsy tight panted folk, but our Ugg/Northface community hasn’t seem to catch on yet.

  4. alex

    Loved it Tina. Great post good idea. I converted this summer…well I along with Meriden was never a big Ebay user so I technically didnt convert from anything. Ive found excellent deals on Bikes. and i frequently browse CL to pass the time, searching Missed connections like Grundy and other areas for goods I might be willing to travel to get.

    As a matter of fact, since I am sitting in the airport at this moment and your article has inspired me I am going to browse since I havent checked it recently.

  5. geoff

    I usually don’t shop online too too often because i’m usually too broke to risk buying something i can’t see or try out in person. That is why this is such a big eye opener for anyone who is afraid to take a risk, you really got nothing to lose in getting a free couch, i found just about all of my apartment furnishings in under 2 hours at a church community yard sale. i liked the couch i got for 20 bucks so much that i don’t even sleep in my bed at night. the thing i like most about ideas like craigs list etc. is that it takes a step back from the complication of credit card numbers and pay pal accounts. it’s barter system, easy caveman-style. gotta love it.

  6. Matt H

    Tina, great writing, I can’t wait to see more of what you’ve got to say. I think you are right when you say there is a stigma attached to something when it is being given away for free. To me, I think people are reluctant to get things for free from Craigslist because rather than seeing it as an online yard sale, which it is, they see it more as a less-celebrated version of Ebay. Ebay is more for people who want to go out and make a profit and get as much money from people as they can. Craigslist is…like I said, a yard sale, for those who want to get rid of their stuff and not discard it. In this harsh economic climate, I find almost downright irresponsible for one to not check on Craiglist before furnishing their apartment. A college student doesn’t need to spend $150 at Ikea to purchase an ornate neon colored coffee table designed by some snobby artist in Germany. In fact, you are doing a good thing by acquiring stuff from Craigslist in H-Burg because it is essentially keeping the goods, money, and services within our own community. Good stuff Tina. Yay Craigslist.

  7. Robin V

    Tina!

    Nice article!
    This definentely grabbed my attention since I have never really looked into Craig’s List.
    That is where my roommate got our dining room table/chairs and I didn’t believe her for the longest time since it was pretty nice.
    However, I’ll be honest, I am a little intimidated by how to use it, but I think I may just have to go for it!
    Now I kinda feel bad for making my parents spend money on stuff I could have gotten for free…
    Nice to know! YAY TINA! : )

  8. Colby

    wow. i’ve heard about people talking about it but i was really sceptical (sp?). maybe you’ve just pushed me to look at it a little closer. perhaps i can find something amazing and wonderous on that site 😉

  9. Nick

    I will never shop at a real store again, craigslist has everything I need! This is a really good idea.

  10. Molly Rossberg

    WOAH love it! Thanks Tina!!

  11. Keaton

    I’ve had an urgent need for a mini fridge to keep my good-for-nothing roommates out of my food, and what do you know!? Some dude is selling one for $50 and he’s only 20 minutes away from my apartment. Good one Tina.

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