5 Things: Sharing Economy


Nice Ride introduced us to the sharing economy in 2010 with its citywide fleet of rentable bicycles. More new technologies are building on the Craigslist concept to link Minnesotans with goods and skills to neighbors in need of a service.

  1. DogVacay: Booking a vacation can be a chore when you have to figure out what to do with Fido. More than 100 local pet sitters are registered on this site, offering their homes, time, and affection to your pooch as an alternative to kenneling—plus customers give ratings and reviews.
  2. Lyft and UberX: Standing on the curb to hail a cab is so 2007. These ride-sharing services turn car owners into part-time freelance drivers, connecting them with folks who need to get from point A to point B with just a few taps on a smartphone.
  3. Plowz and Mowz: A welcome midpoint between a weekly date with your mower and an expensive contract with a landscaping service, Mowz allows you to find local, independent mowers (with commercial-grade equipment and insurance). Plowz does the same with snowplows, and both services can be scheduled or on demand.
  4. Parking Panda: That empty space in your driveway could be earning you extra cash, especially if you live near the University of Minnesota, the State Fairgrounds, or other high-demand parking areas. Or, if your garage is full, park an extra vehicle at your neighbor’s.
  5. Fun2Rent: If your boat, snowmobile, or ATV spends days at a time sitting in a garage, offer it up to people who are in the market for a little outdoor recreation and maximize the value of your toys.