People who prefer to spend cash

A few times along my journey I’ve run into potential trading partners that have gotten lost along the way and would choose to spend cash over barter for the things they need.  As much as I love barter, I’d always prefer to receive cash.  And in turn I’d always prefer to make purchases on barter and preserve my cash.  It’s not really complicated is it?

A couple times now I’ve spoken with folks who have felt that the deal really didn’t fit barter and that they would rather just pay me in cash.  And to those people I would suggest that you always say:  “YESSSSS!!!  I would be more than happy to accept your cash as payment!”  It does beg the question though…what in the world was going on in these people’s heads when they decided that it was better to pay in cash?

I think these people break into two groups:

  1. People who just don’t understand barter
    I ran into this a while back with a laundry service I was talking to.  Because what I wanted from him was on-going and what he wanted from me was more of a one time thing, he didn’t feel that barter was appropriate and preferred to pay cash.  Ultimately the deal never happened.  He wasn’t motivated enough to go through with the deal on a cash basis and I could not explain barter to him well enough.  There are simply some people who WILL NEVER understand barter.  Probably it’s best to identify them early and move on.  I should do an article about that some time.
  2. People who think they will get into trouble with the IRS
    I had an interesting case recently when I offered to have my company build a $7k website for a potential client on 100% barter.  One of the client’s concerns was that they wanted to write off the expense of the website and were concerned that if they did that large of a trade that they would run into tax trouble.  I told them that I would be happy to accept partial or total payment in cash, however, I also report all my barter income to the IRS and that there is absolutely no problem with their claiming a large barter expense on their taxes.  Furthermore I told them that they should definitely send me a 1099 which would back them up on the legitimacy of the expense.

One thought on “People who prefer to spend cash

  1. I’ve given hundreds of barter presentations (sales appointments) over the years and the biggest problem that business owners have is that they over-think-it. They assume there’s some catch, or gotcha at the end. It’s also an industry they’ve never heard of,

    “If you had $1000.00 worth of dental work, and you could pay the dentist with gift certificates to your restaurant, would you do that?”


    “Because you obviously have a profit margin right?”


    “Well that’s the beauty of trade. You’re buying the things you want & need with your gift certificates. Sounds like we’re in business.”

    Well … uh, I better check with my wife.



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