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TimeBank Hurunui

Frequently Asked Questions

What can I offer?

This is only limited by your imagination! TimeBanking works best when you offer services you enjoy and are good at. Sometimes we don't realise how valuable our skills are. You can offer any skill except what you do for your taxable income. Some of the skills being traded by TimeBank Hurunui membersare:

  • cooking, preserving, baking
  • sewing, knitting
  • gardening and pruning
  • child minding
  • dog sitting & walking
  • odd jobs
  • painting
  • working bees
  • wood stacking
  • computer help
  • music, art, ESOL/foreign language lessons
  • marketing advice
  • basic accounting help
  • listening, companionship
  • spread sheeting, proofreading
  • knife sharpening
  • rides for shopping and appointments
  • home help, help during illness, motherhood support
  • photography
  • meditation, yoga
  • graphic design
  • cleaning, window washing
  • building
  • use of trailer
  • bicycle maintenance and much more!

Can we join as a couple or as a family?

Yes you can. You can join as a couple or family. If you decide later on that you would like your own accounts, it is easy to transfer time credits to another account. A family can all use the same email address and have different accounts. Ring the coordinator to set this up.

What if I trade with more than one person at a time?

It doesn't matter how many people you trade with at one time, (eg one person teaching a group of six people for one hour), you can only claim a one hour time credit. The remaining five hours will go into the Community Chest. Every person's time is equal to every other person's time.

What is the Community Chest?

The Community Chest is a community TimeBank Hurunui account that is used to pay members and community groups for helping with community projects. Community Chest credits will also be given to members or groups who are in need of them, for whatever reason, at the discretion of TimeBank Hurunui's coordinator. You can donate your time bank dollars to the chest at any time, especially if you feel that you are accumulating too many credits and would like to redistribute your “wealth”.

Can the TimeBank Hurunui system be abused?

It hasn't as yet. Every time a member makes a transaction on TimeBank Hurunui, the transaction is available for review by coordinators and the management team. If the coordinator has any concerns about a particular member, that member can be placed on 'Guardian Angel Mode' where they are "flagged" for regular monitoring.

However, TimeBanking is about building trust in the community. If our coordinator notices that a member was receiving what appeared to be an excessive amount of hours then she will call the member to enquire if they were OK. Perhaps they have broken a leg or are going through some tough times? Perhaps they need more help? This is where the Community Chest can assist.

What if the trade was only 15 minutes?

Time can be put through in increments but we encourage you to round them to the hour. You can discuss the exact amount of time to credit with the person you are trading with.

Why put up a photo?

We encourage a photo as being able to "see' someone encourages more of a community feel to the website. It is also a way of identifying the person you will be trading with.

How safe is TimeBank Hurunui?

New members are asked to attend an orientation, provide two referees and a police check is carried out to ensure members' safety. It is still advisable to take the same safety precautions you would take in any transaction with someone you have not met before.

How do I go about my first trade?

After attending an orientation, you will know how to go about setting up a trade. If you need help, just call the coordinator who will guide you through the process.

What about liability? What if a member is injured during a trade?

As part of the on-line registration process members must read and agree to the Terms and Conditions of time banking. One of these conditions is that the TimeBank Hurunui “shall have neither liability nor responsibility to any person or entity with respect to loss, damage, or injury caused or alleged to be caused directly or indirectly by information contained on this web site or any other Time Bank resources”.

Can members be compensated for expenses?

TimeBank Hurunui members are compensated for travel expenses and any materials they have had to purchase as a direct result of a trade because TimeBanking is all about sharing time and this is what you are banking i.e. TIME.

Sometimes there maybe a monetary cost when trading:

  • Transportation - you are providing transport, perhaps to the airport, a medical appointment or grocery shopping. There will be a fuel expense.
  • Baking / Cooking - you are baking / cooking for a member. There will be an ingredients expense.
  • Massage - you are giving someone a massage. There may be expenses involved in oils etc.

For trades where there are expenses involved we encourage you to discuss and agree these with the member you are trading with, PRIOR to the trade happening.

Can goods and tools be traded?

Wouldn't it be great to have a Community Tool Box? You can with TimeBanking. For any trades associated with loaning goods and tools you can claim one hour, regardless of the time the tool is loaned out for. Why is this? Because you are not actually giving of your time, you are loaning a tool. The only time you are giving is the time taken to actually organise the loan of these tools. Sometimes this can be 5 - 10 mins, sometimes 30 mins. Therefore, it is TimeBank Hurunui's policy to round goods and tool trades up to one hour.

If there are any expenses involved in the loaning of goods / tools these should be agreed between the members before the trade takes place.

What if I don't have any Time Credits?

TimeBanking is not about balancing the books. It is about trading skills in the community and reciprocity. You can still trade if you have not yet earned time credits. In fact, for the system to work properly, most traders will move in and out of debit and credit at some point. For more information, please read TimeBank Hurunui's Welcome Booklet.