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I recently posted an item for sale on Craigslist. I was contacted by a potential buyer with an offer. After negotiating the sale price, the buyer stated they would contact me the next day. A few days later they contacted me again asking if the item was still available and if I accept PayPal. After responding yes, the buyer asked about my schedule over the weekend to meet. I provided my schedule and then the buyer said the weekend wouldn’t work but asked to put a deposit down and pay the rest upon pickup. I agreed and they sent the payment. Shortly after sending the payment, the buyer emailed me that they now had to pass on the item and asked for the deposit back. If this person is legit, I want to refund their money. However, a lot of red flags are going off in my mind. Anyone have experience with anything like this?
Red flags everywhere - Craigslist, PayPal, wants to pick-up item, wants to put a deposit down and now wants it back, etc. !!!
For Seller Protection, the item must be something you can ship, track and insure if applicable. If you're selling something that has to be picked up by the buyer or delivered by you or a 3rd party service, there's no seller protection. As the seller, providing the buyer with your email address and letting them send you money is risky. The safer method is to send the buyer an invoice with the item description and price, they pay, you get the money, you then purchase and print a shipping label, enter the tracking number in the transaction details and then ship the item - USPS or UPS.
Don't refund the money as I'm guessing you never actually got the deposit in the first place - when someone sends you money, PayPal will send you an email notification and there will also be a notice in your account activity. Most likely neither has happened other than the details the buyer has sent you. Just guessing here about your concerns but, that's how this type of scam works.
I am the potential "scammer". I spent the week looking for tents and this gentlemen's looked to be a good fit. On Friday I asked if he accepted PayPal, because it is more justifiable to spend Ebay money instead of grocery money in my home! I thought that I would be in town over the weekend and plans did not allow that. When I knew that I would not be able to connect I asked if he would take a deposit and the remainder of payment on pick up. He agreed and I instantly sent him the $, this was on Saturday. On Sunday evening I let him know that plans changed and I would need to cancel our arrangement and if he could refund my money. On Monday afternoon he informed me that he feels this is a scam. Now I am left lighter in the wallet and he is the one talking about a scam? C'mon now......