Time the Biggest Barrier to Growth of Second-Hand Economy, Study Finds

Time the Biggest Barrier to Growth of Second-Hand Economy, Study Finds

Scores of young people are being put off buying and selling second hand due to being time poor, a new study has found.  

Gumtree Australia’s annual ‘Second Hand Economy Report’ reveals how over 40 percent of Generation Y / Millennials and Generation X feel time pressures are leaving them unable to participate in a greener lifestyle. 

Consequently, half of respondents revealed that they had thrown away items in the last 12 months instead of selling them or donating them to charity. 

Safety concerns were also cited by a third of respondents as a reason why they didn’t take part in the second-hand economy. 

Working longer hours  

The media often portray Millennials as being work shy. That representation couldn’t be further from the truth, according to a survey of 5,000 workers by Project: Time Off.  The organisation found that these young people are much more likely to see themselves as “work martyrs” – those who rarely take time off from work or vacation time – than other generations. 

Related Post: Our Culture of Overtime is Costing Us Dearly

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As a result, they’re much less likely to use their vacation time than other age groups. This finding was also one of key takeaways from the Allianz Travel Insurance Vacation Confidence Index. Their data suggested that nearly half (48%) of Millennials aren’t taking their full amount of paid time off each year. 

Australians in general, have one of the worst work-life balances in the developed world, according to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. Their two-year study into personal well-being found that one in five male Australians works 50 hours or more a week. That puts them in the bottom third of nations for time devoted to leisure activities and personal care. 

Financial incentives

Some young people are happy to work overtime. They naturally link working longer hours with climbing the career ladder and earning more money. Gumtree’s survey findings, however, show that having more spare time could help any age group earn a substantial second income.  

They estimate that on average, Australians are currently sitting on a potential jackpot of $4,200 worth of unwanted goods. Aussies also have more unwanted items, 25, than any other country in which Gumtree operates. 

Participating in the second-hand economy could also help Millennials save on their expenditure. Used furniture, vehicles and clothes are among some of the most popular item searches by Australians on Gumtree. 

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Make extra dollars and help save the planet S

Buying and selling second-hand goods is arguably one of the easiest ways for consumers to reduce their carbon footprint. 

The Swedish Environmental Research Institute ?recently looked at the environmental benefits of five second-hand marketplaces currently operating in Europe. They found that shoppers buying used goods on the platforms prevented 12.5 million tonnes of carbon dioxide finding its way into the atmosphere each year. That’s equal to flying an Airbus 380 around the world over 1,000 times!  

Whether that figure will increase in the years ahead could be down to work trends. Automation promises a world of shorter working weeks. If this becomes a reality, the second-hand economy and the environment could be two of the biggest winners. 

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by EAK Digital. For more information about our policies, visit this page.

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