Which shareable services are most useful in Manhattan? Dense populations like New York are the perfect testing ground for the new sharing economy. People are stacked on top of one another and expenses are high. In some ways, NYC is a model city for the future. Current trends tell us that people are moving toward urban epicenters and out of more remote/out of the way areas. Jobs are in cities. Other people are in cities. When you have population density, sharing is easier and in a city like New York, every last penny counts.
In New York, you can share everything from a cab down the street with a stranger, to a blender with your neighbor and if you have extra space, you can rent it to Airbnb guests to stack up some extra cash. Plus, in summer of 2012 you'll be cruising the streets by bikes --- you'll know what it's all about and can tell your friends how it's done. Need office space? If you're a startup, an entrepreneur or a freelancer like many these days, you can find a shared workplace to defray costs.
Time Bank NYC
Time Banks are interesting. The whole point is to reduce our dependency on currency, while making sharing skills and services social. The idea is that you put one hour in the Time Bank by helping a neighbor with their garden, their kids or by giving them professional advice as a naturopath, architect, lawyer or marketing consultant. Once you put an hour or more in, you can draw from the Time Bank by making requests to other people near you that possess the skills you need to lead a more productive life. The Time Bank NYC is open for you to join... you can join as an individual or as an organization.
While Airbnb has had it's setbacks in New York City, the service gives you to potential to defray the high costs of rent by selling unutilized space in your house, apartment or studio. Whether you're cool with randoms crashing your couch or like the idea of earning upwards of $100 a night when you're out of town, Airbnb certainly gives New Yorkers the ability to save money on rent by earning extra cash from travelers and those who are in the process of relocating.
SHARE GOOD DEEDS
It's time to meet the people next door. And if you've always wondered how you meet people that you have things in common with that live a few doors down or maybe in your same building, Hey, Neighbor! is for you. You can post microtasks that your neighbors can fulfill (need a cup of sugar anyone?) or items that you have for sale just like on Craigslist. You get a profile where you can list things like what you like about your hood, favorite restaurants, etc. You'll also be able to list activities you're into and skills you can share. Sort of like a non-stop shop cross between Craigslist and Skillshare.
New York City Bike Share
Scheduled to roll out in summer of 2012, this program will provide 10,000 bikes at 600 strategically placed locations all over Manhattan and Brooklyn, giving locals an alternate means of two-wheeled transportation. Annual memberships will cost less than $100 per year and as long as you return the bike to another station within 45 minutes, no other fees will apply. What's cool about this is that you can run all over town, faster -- get exercise all without releasing any carbon emissions. Plus, riding a bike is damn convenient and cheap. Bike share programs have already had succsess in Portland, Boston, Paris, Amsterdam and Copenhagen. By the way, if you know anyone with a major brand that needs a ridiculous amount of exposure, sponsoring the New York City bike share is an unparalleled opportunity. The city is planning the endeavor, but won't bankroll it... Anyway, look for bikes on the streets starting in a pilot program this spring of 2012 with the full blown program hitting the streets of Manhattan next summer.
Coworking rocks! And if you don't know what coworking is, visit Loosecubes website or stop by their Brooklyn location, pull up and chair and get to work. With the revolution of shared office space and work space, Loosecubes brings you a social portal for finding the next great spot to work. Whether you're a startup, a freelancer, entrepreneur or consultant, you can find office space and communities that match your vibe, location and professional endeavor. Loosecubes has covered the city --- there probably isn't a space you can't find gorgeous photos of. Plus, you can see who else works at each location and get a feel for each physical space. And --- If you have large home office, startup or space that other people can work out of, you can become a host just like you can on Airbnb.
You don't need the drill - you need the hole in the wall! So SnapGoods, a New York based startup gives you the ability to rent or lend assets you own to people who live near you. The best things to list are those that are high value and portable such as electronics like SLR cameras that can be ported around and used to derive value. For example, a photographer may not be able to afford a Cannon 7D, but a job may require the use of it. The photographer can rent the camera for a day, deriving value from the transaction that might not have ever taken place if she didn't have access to the equipment.
TaskRabbit started in Boston when founder Leah needed dog food and didn't have the time to go out and get in between social engagements. Now, anyone can post a task and get what they need done by people who are either underemployed or have extra time and could use a slush fund. Many of the tasks involve cleaning and organizing, but you can also request more technical work like computer repair, spreadsheets, graphics, and more. And on the other side of the equation, if you have extra time, you can sign up to be a TaskRabbit and respond to odd jobs earning between $8-20 per hour or more.