Renting or sharing
We haven't done much of this, except for the occasional borrowing (I guess the old-fashioned word for "sharing") and, of course, the public library.
I noticed that Zilok (see sidebar) had a ladder similar to the one we have, that rents for $20 a day, but it wasn't in Syracuse. It would be a good deal to be able to have the use of a ladder for $20, then not have to store it the rest of the time.
It points out, though, the importance of a critical mass of people and available stuff for these arrangements to work.
For items smaller than a ladder, I guess they could be shipped, which would very much enlarge the pool of available items. And apparently, from my quick perusal of the Zilok site, you can ask for a quote to rent something that isn't currently on the list.
Of course, the public library is itself a perfect example of a community sharing resources. And it's one that we've taken full advantage of. Having a strong library system makes a strong community, and many of these other new arrangements could be equally as beneficial for individuals and communities.
One local library experimented in the past with a tool and fishing equipment lending library. This program was discontinued, though. I don't know why, but perhaps it was because people sometimes don't take very good care of publicly-owned items or maybe it was just too expensive in these days when library budgets are getting cut.