think about IT

Tap tech­nol­ogy for new ways of mak­ing or sav­ing money

Whangarei Report - - MONEY - By Frank and Muriel New­man

It’s amaz­ing how many money sav­ing and money-mak­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties are spring­ing up from the IT rev­o­lu­tion. The buzz word is ‘con­nec­tiv­ity’. It’s now so much eas­ier to con­nect with folk with­out mov­ing our lips, which is a re­mark­able thing! Here’s a ex­am­ple.

Har­riet from Bris­bane writes, “Use the Kerb app to park or lease a space to save money on park­ing or earn money rent­ing a space you don’t use!”

This Kerb app is new to us, so we did some snoop­ing on www.kerb.works.

Es­sen­tially it works like any mar­ket that brings buy­ers and sell­ers to­gether. In this case the “prod­uct” is a park­ing space. Usu­ally it’s some­where to park a car or mo­tor­bike, but it could also be a ma­rina berth, or a he­li­copter pad — no doubt many oily rag­gers will be ei­ther look­ing for space to park their he­li­copters or have he­li­pads avail­able to rent!

The way it works is very sim­i­lar to Airbnb, but for park­ing spa­ces rather than liv­ing spa­ces.

It will be of par­tic­u­lar in­ter­est to those with a park­ing space but no ve­hi­cle, as well as busi­nesses that may have sur­plus car parks as part of their of­fice lease.

It’s a great idea. It will be of par­tic­u­lar in­ter­est to those with a park­ing space but no ve­hi­cle, as well as busi­nesses that may have sur­plus car parks as part of their of­fice lease. We know of one com­pany, for ex­am­ple, that was com­mit­ted to tak­ing six car parks as part of their lease, but af­ter chang­ing the na­ture of their work only needed two.

Kerb started in Aus­tralia but now op­er­ates in a bunch of cities, in­clud­ing Auck­land. Their web­site shows that in down­town Auck­land there are car park­ing spa­ces avail­able from $10 a day. Book­ings may be for one or more days, with dis­counts for the longer term.

It’s a great idea and shows how de­vel­oped the “shar­ing” econ­omy has now be­come.

The big play­ers in this econ­omy are, of course, Uber and Airbnb.

Although Uber was the first rideshar­ing cab off the rank, there are now a num­ber of com­pa­nies op­er­at­ing this type of ser­vice, so those want­ing to earn some ex­tra money as a driver have op­tions. Zoomy is al­ready op­er­at­ing in Auck­land and Welling­ton, and a com­pany called Ola is about to en­ter the mar­ket of­fer­ing a lower per-ride com­mis­sion rate.

While snoop­ing around the shar­ing econ­omy we came across a bunch of other not-so-well-known shar­ing sites, in­clud­ing one called Dog Buddy. It’s a dog­mind­ing ser­vice where those with pets that need to be minded, con­nect with those who have the time and de­sire to mind them. For pet own­ers it’s a great al­ter­na­tive to kennels (which is a lit­tle like a board­ing house and you never quite know what your pooch gets up to!) and a great way for peo­ple who love pets to spend time with a pooch and get paid for it.

Now to a cou­ple of oily rag ques­tions. Trudy from Napier asks, “Does any­one have a recipe for dish-wash­ing liq­uid?”

And JO from Wai­mate is try­ing to avoid plas­tic. “I have made a se­ri­ous ef­fort to re­duce the plas­tic I buy. I no­ticed that nearly ev­ery­thing is pack­aged in plas­tic, es­pe­cially in the su­per­mar­kets. I now take a re­cy­cled plas­tic con­tainer to the butcher, who is very happy to fill it for me. I have found a farm, where I can buy loose milk and pro­vide my own bot­tle. A one litre bot­tle with flip-top cost $4 at the Ware­house. I pay $3 for a litre and each time it feels great to have one plas­tic bot­tle less go­ing to waste! I’m now us­ing more jam jars to put in the freezer. I have bought cheese from a cheese fac­tory, still in pa­per, which con­tains a thin layer of plas­tic! I wrapped it in a beeswax wrap but I no­ticed it still dries out the cheese. Any other sug­ges­tions?”

Let us know if you have ideas to help Trudy or JO — and we would be happy to pass them on. To share your tips — or ask your ques­tions — please drop us a note via oilyrag.co.nz or write to Liv­ing off the Smell of an Oily Rag, PO Box 984, Whanga¯rei.

Photo / Getty Imges

The Kerb app works much the same way as Airbnb but for park­ing spa­ces rather than liv­ing spa­ces.

Photo / Getty Imges

The Kerb app works much the same way as Airbnb but for park­ing spa­ces rather than liv­ing spa­ces.

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