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Old February 17th, 2010, 07:58 AM   #1
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Ebay question (0% feedback buyer)

I recently sold a $1000 Canon GL2 on ebay. The bidder paid my "Buy Now" price. Awesome, right?? But now I noticed he's got 0% feedback?!

Is this a scam? Are there things I should watch out for? Basically, once I get my money via Paypal is it mine? Or is it possible it's fake somehow & my bank doesn't clear the transaction & I'm out $1000 bucks & a camera.

Thanks all for the feedback, I've really never sold much on ebay, only bought a few things.
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Old February 17th, 2010, 08:18 AM   #2
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Zero feedback could mean that he's brand new to Ebay... maybe. When I was brand new to Ebay, I bought nickle and dime stuff -- usually less than $50 per item -- while I tested the waters. $1000 is a big purchase for an Ebay first-timer in my opinion.

Don't ship until the funds have cleared your account.
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Old February 17th, 2010, 08:24 AM   #3
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You may need to check with PayPal to find out at what point the money can't bounce.

The problem with eBay newbies is that somebody has to start somewhere and if no one gives them an OK, then eBay is useless. Some people will make small buys or sells to build feedback but that just promulgates useless purchases.

You may need to contact the buyer and let them know that you have to wait for the money to clear. Of course they may not like that but assuming you've established a good feedback rating they'll be understanding.

Personally I've used eBay infrequently and I may go over a year or more between uses and if that raises suspicion then it just means eBay is useless to me. There's something wrong with the "frequent or bust" method of doing business. Some people have even used that as a scam by building up good feedback on small exchanges and then doing the ripoff on a high ticket item.

Protect yourself for sure! Communicate with the buyer and tell them you need to be cautious and see if they accept those terms.
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Old February 17th, 2010, 08:30 AM   #4
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Interesting, I just saw this post:

"I recently bought a Canon GL2 on eBay. I paid his "Buy Now" price. But I noticed he's only got 8 feedback, with 0 feedback as a seller?! Is this a scam"

Of course, I'm kidding, but my point is that everyone has to start somewhere. Just because your bidder has no feedback does not mean you're being scammed.

eBay is no longer the "wild west" flea market it used to be. There are a lot of protections for both buyer and seller. Just make sure you follow some common sense rules:

Ship only with a true trackable shipper (UPS, FedEx, DHL - definitely *not* the USPS for $1000 items.) Always insure, even if the buyer did not opt for insurance. Only accept PayPal for payment. Keep all receipts.

I've sold hundreds of items, big and small, to zero feedback buyers. I just followed the established procedures and everything went fine.

As far as Chris's advice not to ship until the funds clear your account - it's doesn't matter because PayPal can go back to your bank account and take that $1100 out *even if the transaction has "cleared"*
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Old February 17th, 2010, 08:41 AM   #5
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The plot thickens....

Wait - you said your buyer has zero feedback - I looked and your buyer has their feedback set to private. That is a huge difference. You need to ask your buyer why they have hidden their feedback and they better have a good explaination.

Quote:
You may need to check with PayPal to find out at what point the money can't bounce.
The problem is not with a "bounce" - once PayPal says they have the money, they have it. The concern is that your buyer will make a bogus claim after they've received the camera. They could tell PayPal that you shipped a box of dirty diapers and try to get the transaction reversed. It doesn't matter if you already withdrew and spent the money, you have given PayPal the authority to take the money back out of your account (you did read the agreement before you checked "I have read the agreement", didn't you?) If PayPal thinks the buyers claim is valid, they will take $1100 out of your bank account and you'll be the one with checks bouncing all over.

I like eBay and have used it continuously since 1996, but it's not for the faint of heart.
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Old February 17th, 2010, 08:41 AM   #6
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Ah so. Thanks for pointing that out, Chris. I've never had a PayPal transaction disputed, hope it never happens.
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Old February 17th, 2010, 08:52 AM   #7
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The question is what is the period in which PayPal can retrieve the money. I can't believe that it can be indefinite or one could have claims years after a purchase.
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Old February 17th, 2010, 09:14 AM   #8
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Thanks for all your posts. Seeman, like you, I use it infrequently. I wouldn't mind if the buyer did also, but the 0 buys before just screamed to me that the "Please ship this to Nigeria as I am out of the country and I will Western Union the money. " was coming.

Davis, thanks for noticing that. I wasn't aware, I'll check further into it. Myb he had some bad reviews, we'll see but as someone said myb I should insure it to be safe.

Davis are you sure Paypal can take the money back?? Someone at work told me they can't. Well, to clarify, they said the money is good (ie not like a bad check or insufficient funds). I suppose if the buyer was upset & thought I sold them a piece of junk they can. That's not neccisarily my concern, as the camera is in good shape. My fear was the buyer would put a fake $1000 check into his bank account, buy the item, I ship the camera, then 2 weeks later my bank says the pymt bounced & I'm out $1000 bucks and a camera. From what I understand that part cannot happen. Paypal verifies the amount when the buyer deposits it into their paypal account (from what I'm told). EDIT: Just reread your post, you seem to say the same thing. However the claiming of a box of junk or whatever certainly is another another fear to be midful of. Thanks for informing me.

Thanks all, I'll keep you posted. I was excited, but then became suspicious especially since they just Bigfooted down on everyone else & used the "Buy Now" whereas the recent bid was only around $400 (although I wasn't selling for that low anyway, had a reserve price on it).
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Old February 17th, 2010, 09:22 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Davis View Post
Wait - you said your buyer has zero feedback - I looked and your buyer has their feedback set to private. That is a huge difference. You need to ask your buyer why they have hidden their feedback and they better have a good explaination.
Are you sure? It looks like it would still show the feedback:

"Private Feedback - This member, XXXXXXXX, has decided to make his/her Feedback comments private. Feedback can still be left for this user and the Feedback ratings left are shown above in summary format."
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Old February 17th, 2010, 10:32 AM   #10
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To be honest, I rec'vd this email question from the buyer:
______________________________________________________________________

hi
i want to know if the item is in good condition
before making the payment through paypal.
I await your soonest response.
cheers


_________________________________________________________________

A) People in Ohio don't speak like this "I await your soonest response." (sounds like verbage from the Nigerian Businessman scam)
B) Americans don't say "Cheers"
C) They say a generic "item" not "camera"


I'm sorry, I gotta bail on this transaction. Understandably I'll probably have trouble & reflect poorly on my account, but walks like a duck, talks like a duck, it's probably a duck.
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Old February 17th, 2010, 10:36 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Craig Seeman View Post
The question is what is the period in which PayPal can retrieve the money. I can't believe that it can be indefinite or one could have claims years after a purchase.
As a buyer you have up to 42 days to register a claim with PayPal if there is something wrong with your purchase e.g. not delivered, not as described. So in theory after that period you should be assured that the transaction will not be reversed. In practice just as soon as they have left positive feedback on Ebay you can be confident that the payment is good. In fact I guess that is the reason why some sellers are so keen to get feedback that they keep sending emails reminding you to leave feedback.
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Old February 17th, 2010, 10:48 AM   #12
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I've been around the eBay block and unfortunately, since the purchase of PayPal, eBay corp is way more about the buyer now than the seller.

They've recently implemented a policy to hurt sellers. If you do not have a seller rating over 100 and/or 5 detailed seller ratings, PayPal will hold the funds (while withdrawing their fees) for up to 21 days. They also will implement this for "High-Risk" items, such as digital cameras / camcorders.

It is a terribly frustrating policy for a seller. Having just sold my XL2, the funds were held until I received positive feedback from the buyer. Ugh.

Not for the faint at heart, indeed.

On to the buyer: I'd agree they they are over-seas. Probably Europe. Or they have recently immigrated to the United States. Your best bet is to be very direct with the seller. Respond with something like this: "It concerns me that you have 0% feedback for such a large ticket item, my camera is in excellent condition but I'd like to confirm a couple of things with you first:

1) I only ship to confirmed PayPal address in the USA
2) I only ship once PayPal payment has cleared
3) What are you using the camera for?

You'll be able to decide from the buyers response whether they are legit.
Hope this helps,
-C
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Old February 17th, 2010, 11:16 AM   #13
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I sold a Canon GL1 on Ebay last year and Paypal likewise placed a hold on the funds until the buyer acknowledged receiving the camcorder. I shipped it via UPS. I was a little worried as 4 days went by. Once received, I got the UPS delivery notice and the hold on the funds was released.

I will add that this was the second time I sold the camera on Ebay. The first time the buyer did not pay. I sent him numerous emails and filed a dispute. Finnaly, I was able to relist the camcorder. He actually had a pretty good buyer rating but on closer inspection he was using a mail drop in Texas and was actually located in Brazil where he was reselling the equipment.

All in all the whole process was tiresome and I will probably only sell lower priced items on Ebay in the future that don't requre a hold on the funds.
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Old February 17th, 2010, 11:18 AM   #14
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Thanks Chris it should. I was on with ebay chat to no avail. Just going in circles because to cancel the transaction the buyer apparently needs to agree with it. I kept asking what if they don't & the rep never gave much of a straightforward answer.

It sucks because earlier I wrote yes it is a great camera but now I responded again saying No, it's not working I have to cancel & fix it.


It sucks, to be honest I don't care about my account or feedback, I just don't want to lose $1000. Trying to be proactive with ebay & Paypal & look where it gets me.
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Old February 17th, 2010, 11:26 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David Barnett View Post
To be honest, I rec'vd this email question from the buyer:
______________________________________________________________________

hi
i want to know if the item is in good condition
before making the payment through paypal.
I await your soonest response.
cheers


_________________________________________________________________

A) People in Ohio don't speak like this "I await your soonest response." (sounds like verbage from the Nigerian Businessman scam)
B) Americans don't say "Cheers"
C) They say a generic "item" not "camera"


I'm sorry, I gotta bail on this transaction. Understandably I'll probably have trouble & reflect poorly on my account, but walks like a duck, talks like a duck, it's probably a duck.
I agree that this sounds very fishy but don't just back out of the transaction as I am guessing that no payment by PayPal will ever be made. Buyers have seven days in which to pay you & if they don't then you lodge a claim for non-payment with Ebay. You need to do this otherwise you will be charged the Ebay fees.

I know all this stuff as I just recently attempted to sell an item on Ebay for the very first time even though I have been a buyer for many years.

I have just upgraded my iPhone 3G with a new iPhone 3GS at a bargain price from my phone operator so was looking forward to selling my old iPhone at a profit. The auction ran for seven days & there were several bidders eventually the winner was someone with zero feedback. I made it very clear in my listing that I would only accept PayPal as a means of payment but after the auction finished the buyer claimed that he had only just started on Ebay & had to wait a few days for the PayPal account to be verified & would I accept a cheque instead. Immediately alarm bells rang for me & I insisted that it was PayPal or nothing. There was an exchange of email with promises of payment with the final email claiming that he had been taken into hospital for an operation on his back & that his father would settle the payment. Needless to say no money ever arrived. I had already entered a claim for non-payment & as this was an auction Ebay has the so-called Second Chance option where you can offer one or more of the losing bidders the opportunity to purchase at their highest bid. Sadly the two highest losing bidders had by then bought a similar iPhone from another seller.

In my failed sale I don't know whether it was an attempted scam & that when I refused to accept a cheque he just strung me along so as to make it appear that it wasn't a scam. Maybe he was just some kid who wanted an iPhone but didn't have any money. Alternatively he just got some kind of thrill from mucking me about & screwing up the sale for genuine buyer. Who knows? Anyway it has left me rather jaded with the whole business of selling on Ebay especially as they are still charging me for the cost of the listing (less than the equivalent of $2 & not the final sale fee which was refunded).

I do see listings on Ebay that say that bids from buyers with zero feedback or less than ten will be refused. I don't know whether this is within the Ebay rules but I shall certainly add that caveat when I re-list my iPhone.
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