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What happens if TSHTF and you don’t have everything you need? There are a number of reasons that this could happen, even to the best preppers. A miscalculation, a bizarre unanticipated event, storage failure, an extended crisis, or changing needs could all lead to a bad situation. You need something and you don’t have it. So what do you do? How do you get it?

The short answer is that you will need to barter, and in order to do that, you will have to have something the other person wants in return. Be prepared for any situation and get ahead of the curve by stocking hot bartering items, the things that most people would practically give you their left arm to have.

Many preppers make it a point to stock up on gold, silver and paper currency. While these can be good preparations, it is important not to rely on them completely if you need to obtain new and much needed supplies.

So, let us start our list of hot bartering items.

Food and water. This is number one and so important that it needs its own emphasis. No matter who you are dealing with, anyone who finds themselves in the middle of a disaster will be desperate for food and water, or will be eager to add to their supplies.

Of course, there are some foods that are more desirable than others. Easy prep meals that are carefully preserved top the list. Make sure to have an extra supply of these in small portions. You don’t want to give away a lot of food for little gain. The upside of having a good supply of small sealed meals is the fact that, if needed, you can consume the meals yourself. No waste.

Here are some other items, both food and non-food choices, that will be of great value in a bartering situation. For the thrifty minded, choose items that are currently easily available and inexpensive. They will still be invaluable later.

If you think I have missed anything, please add your own list of items in the comments.

  • Aluminum Foil. There are so many uses for this item, which will make it highly desirable.
  • Baking Soda
  • Bleach. Stay away from scents and fancy additives, since its main use will probably be to sterilize and disinfect water and wounds.
  • Hard Candy. From being a source of quick energy, to giving a moral boost, stock a bunch. Click here for some candy selection and storing tips.
  • Knives such as box cutters, kitchen knives, and multi-use tools.
  • Books. Click here to see why.
  • Infant formula
  • Oil lamps, wicks and oil
  • Coffee, Caffeine Pills and Energy Shots (liquid drink)
  • Candles
  • Gas cans
  • Hand Warmers
  • Condoms
  • Disposable Lighters
  • Drink Mix
  • Toilet Paper
  • Small Sewing Kits
  • Propane
  • Rope
  • Vinegar
  • Socks
  • Plastic Sheeting
  • Water Purification Kits
  • Olive Oil. This can be used for cooking, as a source of good fat, or as a skin or hair softener.
  • Powdered Milk
  • Shampoo
  • Batteries
  • Ammunition
  • Vodka for drinking and sterilizing
  • Honey for eating and for wounds
  • Matches (wind proof if you can get them)
  • Pain Relievers, Antibiotics and Other Medications
  • Paper and Pencils
  • Toothbrushes and toothpaste
  • Duct Tape
  • Lip Balm
  • Plastic Garbage Bags
  • Sunglasses
  • Seeds
  • Playing Cards
  • Small Tool Kits

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