How Not to Get Burned Using Online Auctions

How I look at not getting burned by eBay sellers. I normally look for good deals, the description that is clear enough that I can see it in my mind. I look at the price of the item and how much is spent on shipping. If I think it is too expensive for the shipping, I will skip it. Honesty and feedback rates must be high. I look for people who state they want the experience to be one of complete satisfaction.


If I list something, I go into great detail about it and its condition. I do not overprice or add extra money on the shipping price for supplies and or handling fees. I feel like handling fees are not necessary. I will skip items I really want because the fees are outrageous.

So in order not to get burned:

  1. check shipping fees
  2. look for complete details
  3. email them if you are not clear on something
  4. don't be afraid to say the picture was not as described if you buy something
  5. consider the person as a merchant and don't buy if you feel the rates are high
  6. check Google for pricing on staple items and see if you are getting getting a fair deal.
  7. always use or ask for a confirmation number for the item you wish to buy or sell.
  8. always leave feedback. The next person coming along may not be able to see that you had problems that were not solved if you do not speak up.
  9. don't let people bully you around. Be honest and straight forward and if necessary contact eBay or paypal to open a claim.

Lastly, I got burned on a deal. It was a wedding dress from China and the wrong color was sent. The dress was returned and they refused to send us an exchange. They asked us to remove our negative feedback and say we were at fault. We refused. They claimed they never got the item back from us, but the claim form had been signed in China stating they did get it back. The PayPal time had run out on the claim for the dress so we contacted the bank and presented them with documentation and emails from the seller. After a full investigation (about 3 weeks), we got our money back and bought a dress that was just like the first one but cheaper.


By gem from Gordonsville, VA


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