11.17.2006

transactions

Our new place doesn't have a washer and dryer - the tenants have always brought their own. That certainly seems odd to us, but the house was great in almost every way, including lower rent, so we decided it wasn't a deal-breaker.

I normally don't buy anything used, but in this case, any washer-dryer we'd be using in a rented house would be used anyway, and we don't want to make a huge investment, so it seemed logical.

Turns out there are dozens of people in the GTA selling washers and dryers on Craigslist. We had our pick of several. Also through Craigslist, we hired a guy with a van to transport it for us. The whole deal, including transportation, came to $300. We've also found dog-walkers on Craigslist. Craigslist is so convenient, and it's everywhere.

I'm usually on the other side of these transactions. In our last months in New York, I sold tons of little things on eBay, a great way to earn a bit of cash and get rid of junk (junk being in the eye of the beholder).

Then just before we moved, I gave away a lot of great stuff on Freecycle - a couch, some very old furniture, some air conditioners. Professional long-distance movers charge by weight, so when it came to stuff that was old and kind of beat up, there was good incentive to buy new in Canada. And through Freecycle, your stuff goes to someone who needs it, rather than the first person to spot it on the curb. I've Freecycled a few things here, too. There are tons of Freecycle communities in Canada. The one in Mississauga is very active.

The few things I'm getting rid of now, though, I won't Freecycle. I spent way too much money on beautiful fabric window shades, thinking we'd be in this house a long time, and needing something for the oddly-sized windows. I totally love these shades and it's killing me to part with them, so no way I'm giving them away. But they'd be a good deal for someone on Craigslist who might just have the same weird-sized windows, and if I could make a bit of the money back, I'd feel better.

Has anyone ever used Sell.com?

14 comments:

James said...

I'll have to look into Cragslist. We've got tonnes of stuff that's too valuable to toss but to esoteric to donate. (Anyone here need a Bluetooth Macintosh keyboard?)

L-girl said...

Uh-oh. Should I be writing "tonnes" instead of "tons"? Is that the accepted Canadian spelling?

Anonymous said...

I'm aware of Craigslist and I browse there occasionally but haven't bought or sold on it yet. EBay and I go way back and we did unload hubby's old futon sofa there for what I thought was a remarkable price. We also purchased a table and chairs which I love from some nice folks locally.

Freecycle was new to me until I got here. Combining two households into a tiny apartment was a real trick and we freecycled a ton(tonne) also. Yes, the Mississauga site is quite active--in fact, had you wanted to hold out, you night have scored washer and dryer there!

On the subject of Canadian spellings, perhaps you could point me to a good source? I need to update the resume now that I'm finally able to start a job hunt. Are there not some diferent gramatical rules also?

L-girl said...

We go way back with eBay, too, as both buyers and sellers. I haven't done anything at eBay since moving to Canada, though.

I don't think I'll ever take anything from Freecycle. For me it's just a great way to get rid of stuff. $300 including delivery for a 5-year-old washer/dryer set is a great deal as far as I'm concerned. Plus we're thrilled to get that task off our list.

I don't know any sources for Canadian spellings. I just picked them up from reading - mostly the -our (honour, neighbour, colour, etc.), and the random change like paycheque and chequeing account.

I'm not aware of any grammatical differences.

Anyone?

M@ said...

I don't know of any grammatical differences either -- unless you count "eh?", eh.

One subtle spelling difference is the doubling of consonants before -ing in some words -- the Raptors would be travelling at home, for example, and traveling on the road. Or the Blue Jays season might be unravelling at home, while also unraveling at other parks.

There are many Frenchisms (Francoisms? Francophonisms?) that are retained too, like centre and litre.

There are also really inconsistent rules about the -ize suffix versus -ise. You might say "categorise" in Britain and I think you'd definitely say "categorize" in the USA, but Canada can swing both ways. I've searched and never found a consistent rule for -ise vs -ize, even in British spelling. If anyone has one, I'd like to know it.

As for "tonnes", I'm not certain but I think that's mainly used as a literal metric unit. I would say
"tons o' fun" when referring to my dogs, but "precisely two tonnes of fun" when receiving a shipment of two pallets of individually-wrapped funs.

I hope that's all sufficiently clear. I'll be back next time to explain how a "regular" coffee somehow gets cream and sugar in it up here.

L-girl said...

Good wrap-up, M@! I forgot about centre and litre, which I use all the time, Canadian spellings. At home, we jokingly pronounce that "sentry" (as in "Sports Sentry").

The -ize vs -ise does seem to be very inconsistent.

There's also licence and defence and those related words.

but "precisely two tonnes of fun" when receiving a shipment of two pallets of individually-wrapped funs.

Hee hee.

I'll be back next time to explain how a "regular" coffee somehow gets cream and sugar in it up here.

In many US locales, regular coffee is cream & sugar. It's a ridiculous expression, so imprecise.

James said...

I probably just use "tonnes" 'cause I spent all my school years up to Grade 4 in a French language school, and took French every year from grade 6 to 13. (Grade 5 I was in Newton, Massachusetts -- the school there didn't have French).

L-girl said...

(Grade 5 I was in Newton, Massachusetts -- the school there didn't have French)

Foreign language instruction usually starts in Grade 7 or 8 in the US. Had you gone to middle school in Newton, you would have had a big advantage. :-)

The Waghorns said...

My husband swears by Craigslist for hard-to-find items, however, in a pinch we used it to find an apartment when we were moving from Ottawa to Washington DC on 3-weeks notice. Unfortunately the place has wound up being a total nightmare. So, I'm Craigslist wary.

On another note, my parents moved around a lot when I was younger and rented. I remember no matter where we were that the washer/dryer conveying was always an issue. When Noel and I moved to the states every apartment we looked at had a washer/dryer standard.

The finer points of cross-border real estate.

L-girl said...

Interesting! I've had just the opposite experience. In NYC, most apt rentals do not have washer/dryers. The laundromat is a way of life.

In the GTA, every house or apartment we saw had a washer/dryer - except this one.

Re Craigslist, I'd be very wary of using it to find a place to live, too. But I suppose with three weeks notice, you didn't have a lot of options.

Nice to see you here! I've noticed you link to wmtc but I think this is your first comment.

James said...

Foreign language instruction usually starts in Grade 7 or 8 in the US. Had you gone to middle school in Newton, you would have had a big advantage. :-)

My siblings went back ten years later (these were sabbatical trips for my father), and went to Newton North high school, where David Macaulay taught. That HS had a Latin program.

Of course, across the Charles River, the schools didn't have Latin programs or famous illustrators teaching; they had metal detectors and armed guards...

M@ said...

In many US locales, regular coffee is cream & sugar. It's a ridiculous expression, so imprecise.

Yeah, I guess I'm just irregular. I didn't realise this phrase was common in the USA though. A friend of mine from Saskatchewan was also angered by the practice, so maybe it's a north-east thing?

L-girl said...

A friend of mine from Saskatchewan was also angered by the practice, so maybe it's a north-east thing?

It might be - and it's even inconsistent within the Northeast.

Of course, these days, with coffee being either self-serve at mini-mart places, or a ritual/ordeal at Starbucks and similar places, the meaning of "coffee regular" might be moot.

The Tim Hortons format, where you specify how you want your coffee and the counter person makes it for you, is not very common in the US anymore.

L-girl said...

Of course, across the Charles River, the schools didn't have Latin programs or famous illustrators teaching; they had metal detectors and armed guards...

Yes, the standard US divide, perhaps a bit more pronounced in that town. (Or not.)