Online "swapping" sets up shop on Facebook

A new way to buy and sell

Garage sales can be an unpredictable and complex experience. As a buyer, you have anticipation of the unknown find, the joy of unavoidable conversation with the seller, and the thrill of scoring an underpriced piece of tangible heaven. As a seller, you hopefully end the day with a bit more room in your house and extra change in your pocket—just by skillfully putting things you don”t want on display. Time spent on your feet selling or buying can really be fun and profitable.


Savvy swapper, Heidi Morris

But sometimes it”s not such a poetically blissful experience. It rains. It snows (yes, we live in Michigan!), or winds blow away your signs. You might search 17 garage sales and only end up gaining a mental index of the various patterns available on crock-pots from the last 30 years. Or perhaps you just don”t have the time to go. The logical answer that most people would suggest is to search Craigslist for that elusive item. Unfortunately, Craigslist can be a potential for your email to be flooded with spam, or for encountering a shady business deal. It”s a disappointment considering it is potentially a great resource and idea.

Gallantly galloping in to save the day is the newest way to buy and sell—Facebook swap groups. Groups are often organized by location, and sometimes divided by what they are selling. For example, children”s items or automotive parts. Some groups are public and open anyone, but more often they are closed, which means you have to ask to join them. The positives about these groups are that people are using their personal account to buy and sell items, so you don”t have to be so concerned about spam. Also, if there is a problem with the person”s dealings, other people with notify the group to avoid them. And the posting process is simple: just post a picture on the group’s wall with your description and price. If you see something you want, comment on it and send a private message, known as a “PM” to the seller. From here you can arrange a way to meet and complete your transaction.

Just recently I “swapped” with a lady who bought a mini-fridge from me and commented, “Forget garage sales! This is so much easier!” It”s true, Facebook Swap groups can be an easy way to supplement your garage sale adventures, and occasionally you may even make a new friend. Be careful to be extra polite and have a thorough description of intentions when swapping, as it is easy to misunderstand tone online. Each group has rules to follow, so be sure to read them before diving in.

If you”re interested in trying this new “swapping” thing out, search Facebook for the local groups, like “Rochester Michigan Swap.” There are groups for most cities and larger areas for Oakland and Macomb County. Then swap away!


About Heidi Morris

Rochester Hills mom of three. Loves life, loves family, loves to share new and interesting things with everyone. Contact her today at


  1. Great article Heidi. Love your writing.
    Also, glad I joined the Rochester Hills children’s group!

  2. Just wondering if you know of a Facebook site that I can post a sale of some items in Rochester area!

  3. Yes, just do a facebook search for Rochester Michigan Swap 🙂

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