hOur Exchange

Frequently Asked Questions

Our members provide almost any service imaginable; health care, dog walking, legal advice, cooking, accounting, sewing, computer services, home repair, tutoring, gardening, photography, the list keeps growing. Everyone has valuable skills to share. Search our list of available services.

Everyone! Our membership is open to people of all ages, abilities, and backgrounds. Over 3,000 families, organizations, businesses, groups and individuals in the greater Portland region have already participated over the years. New members attend a Zoom orientation to familiarize them with the Hour Exchange and begin meeting other members. See the orientation schedule.

You can log your hours and search for services online using hOurworld's Time and Talents web application originally developed by fellow member Stephen Beckett. Accessing Time and Talents is simple and easy and will be covered in your orientation. We also have E-buddies who can assist you with your account. To learn more about the software, click Help on any page go to get help for that page.

Paticipating in the timebank frees up time for you, giving you more time to do the things you enjoy. Many of the services members provide are things they do everyday or would like to spend their time doing more of. You already go to the store for groceries, why not help someone get theirs who may not have the mobility you do? You already walk your dog, why not make a doggie date? It doesn't really take extra time, and it can be fun! Maybe you've always wanted to learn another language, but could never afford a private tutor. Or maybe you've been meaning to repaint your room, but would like some help with the job. We all know chores go quicker with a helping hand, and working together can feel like play!

In a timebank, everyone's hour is equal no matter what the service. We value your time. When it comes down to it, time is all we have. Our time is priceless. We value people. Everyone has value, everyone has something to offer. The real economy is all activity of all people. We value effort. We value the work it takes to raise healthy children, create a prosperous community, and a sustainable future.

Nothing. We do need to raise funds to support the timebank and keep members insured and welcome donations of cash or stuff we can sell.

A timebank fosters a complimentary economy. It enables people to give and receive as equals, regardless of their social or economic status. Hour Exchange liberates us from the traditional economy based on scarcity and provides benefits that can't be bought, and experiences that are valuable in themselves. Time banking provides a way to spend more time doing the things we love. Time banking embraces and amplifies our humanity.

hOur Exchange provides a unique way for a business to access member experience, expertise and services and expand their client base, interacting with our Greater Portland area members. Participating in Hour Exchange does not exclude you from participating in the money market economy, it's complimentary to it. Hour Exchange strengthens local community relationships which strengthens the community's economy in general. Our members provide hundreds of services in all walks of life, anything from office cleaning to accounting or computer support, services that can be especially useful for any business with limited financial capital.

Not in the conventional sense. We believe in Reciprocity (it's one of our core values), not in separating providers and receivers. We all have needs, but we all have value and something valuable to offer the community. Rather than asking 'How can I help you?', we ask 'How can we help each other build the world we want to live in?' accomplish so much more.

No. Barter is the exchange of goods or services based on cash value, between two people. We are a non-profit 501c3 service exchange organization. Our currency is based on time, with no relation to market value and there are no direct trades between two people. If an Hour Exchange member gives an hour of their time they may receive an hour of anyone else's time within the Hour Exchange member community. There is no binding contract, only a moral rsponsibility to give back to the commuity. Unlike barter, the IRS has determined that exchanging time is non-taxable! We are simply Neighbors Helping Neighbors (and keeping track).