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Archived » ArmLETS

ArmLETs stands for Armidale Local Exchange Trading System.

Check out our Facebook page here

LETS operate throughout the world and are a means of formalising non monetary trading of goods and services at the local community level.

The trading unit of Armidale LETS is the Gem. Gems can be traded, saved and used to purchase goods and services. Initially, only services may be traded  on the ArmLETS website, with goods to be traded on special Trading Days.

LETS systems helps you to meet like minded community members and access a network of friendly, generous, caring people who value trading locally in just about anything.

Why join LETS?

  • non-exploitative, non-profit, community-based trading
  • unlocks local human resources and promotes local self-sufficiency
  • a good way of meeting like-minded local people
  • builds local community

An example of how trading in LETS works:

For instance, you might fix Member A’s fence for 20 Gem’s, then use those 20 Gem’s to get a massage from Member B. Simple. No cash needed – as long as you’re willing to provide services to other LETS members in return.

Negative balances are an essential feature of the system, so they are not to be viewed as bad and wrong (ie debts). Negative balances simply mean members have received more goods and services that they have given out.

You can buy something with your first trade. If you wait to earn before you spend, you could find it slower to start trading. If everybody had to wait to earn before they could spend, nobody would get started!

The most successful members are those with a high turnover because that means that the system is working for them.

Time is valuable – and everyone’s time should be of equal worth.

In the “real world” a masseuse can charge $65 an hour because that is what the market will tolerate. The man who mows the lawn can charge $50 because it is considered ‘hard’ work. But that same masseuse or lawnmower man will balk at paying their babysitter $25 an hour.


Isn’t the care of your child worth equally as much as getting a massage? Do you value your lawn more than your offspring?

LETS gives you the opportunity to think beyond the materialistic, monetary value of services and instead, honours people for their energy and commitment to helping create a closer community.

Leave behind the entrenched ideas of money, profit, credit, debt, greed & poverty.

Start thinking in terms of time-dollars.

One hour is worth 20 Gems.

Whether you are skilled or unskilled, whether you have spent 3 years at Uni getting a piece of paper, or 20 years as a seamstress perfecting your skills – your time is valuable.

Some transactions involving material costs may include a dollar component – see the Information booklet for more details


The first LETSystem was developed by Michael Linton in Canada’s Comox Valley, in 1983, where some people adapted the ‘barter’ network model and turned it into a full scale community system with greater advantages.

LETSystems began to grow worldwide. Since 1987 some 70 LETSystems have been established in New Zealand and almost 200 in Australia. In Britain the number rocketed from 7 systems in early 1991 to 150 by the end of 1993.

More Information

LETS is a concept that is not always easy to understand. The ArmLETs Benefits Info Sheet has been gathered from various sources including Michael Linton (the originator of LETS), economists and LETSystem managers in an attempt to explain the philosophies behind LETS. Also see the Information booklet, the Community Exchange System (CES) website and the Trading sheet.

Members will receive quarterly newsletters and also have access to a full member list of offers and requests available within the group.
In the future we will be holding Trade Days where members can meet and trade in person.

Inaugural ArmLETS Meeting Minutes 21 Nov 2010


click here to join ArmLETS

(this link takes you to our terms and conditions page, which, once you click on ‘accept’ will take you to the registration page).

Latest Wants for ArmLETS

Latest Wants for ArmLETS

Please visit our main site at http://www.communityexchange.net.au/ for more details full article »

Building a Creative Economy – Feedback from Conference

Cathie Lamont and Christopher Gleeson attended the “Building a Creative Economy” conference held in Sydney on the last week of November, and provide their feedback here. “The conference offered a wide variety of views on the pressing global crises (economic, ecological, social and spiritual to name a few), their causes and possible solutions. There were […] full article »

ArmLETS Get-together

ArmLETS Get-together

[ Wednesday, 2 Feb; 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm. ] Now that we have exceeded 20 members, we thought it would be nice to have a get together. If you are wanting a job done, it’s much easier to ask someone you know than a stranger, and a get-together would be a great way to introduce ourselves. full article »

ArmLETS: A Gem of an Idea!

ArmLETS: A Gem of an Idea!

LETS is active in Armidale again and is looking for new members! ArmLETS has been chosen as our new name, with Gems as the name of our new local currency. Would you like help getting your vegetable garden going, chook pen built, a hand on the farm, babysitting, or house painted for example? Can you teach a foreign language, make and or decorate cakes, tutor children, write resumes, walk a dog or anything at all that people might find helpful? It may just be that you are a good listener and can make a good cup of tea – this can be as valued as any other service in a LETS system. Whatever your needs and wants and whatever skills you have, LETS is worth looking into. You can join ArmLETS now by going to www.slaati.org and clicking on ‘ACTION GROUPS’ then ‘ARMLETS’. You will be taken to the homepage of our newest SLA action group, and on this page you will find a great deal of information about LETS as well as a registration link at the bottom of the page. There is no cost to join so why not go ahead and join this fantastic local trading system! full article »