You can save considerable money when you barter for items that your business needs. Although the process of getting involved in it does take time, it can actually save you hard dollars. For example, let’s assume that you are a public relations professional who will soon launch a new business. You might be able to supply public relations services to a local lawyer in exchange for legal services. Or perhaps you can work out a deal with an accounting firm to give you advice on how to set up your business financially, while you help the accountant set up a public relations campaign to get new clients before the upcoming tax season.
Another way to use barter, if you have employees, is to "swap" the time and talent of one employee for the time and talent of another employee at a different company. Let's say that a business owner you are familiar with has an employee who is a wiz and setting up online surveys while you have an employee who has a real talent for setting up effective websites quickly. Both of you could utilize this talent without having to pay out any additional dollars.There are many examples of how this can work. If you have a business that owns construction equipment, you can often trade its horsepower for something you need in your business. If you are launching a new business and have a special gift yourself, you could trade that talent for other work that you need done. It is a remarkable process.
One entrepreneur who we know "swapped" his unruly child to another firm for the other owner's less-than-perfect child. Why? Both entrepreneurs wanted to bring in their children into the business, but given some parent-child relationships, they both felt that working with their own children, at least while they were in their early 20s, would be difficult. By "switching" children for a few years, both business people were able to have their children trained well, they just didn't have to work with their own child for the first few years of training. At both children matured, they switched into the family business with great business skills ready to work closely with dad.
Regardless of how you do it, however, be it through an exchange, a swap arrangement, or trades, you must consult with an accounting professional to determine if you have any tax liability.