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Thread: How to setup PayPal so you don't get conned on eBay & such?

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    E500E Guru JC220's Avatar
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    How to setup PayPal so you don't get conned on eBay & such?

    Hi all,

    I had seen this discussed before on the board but cannot recall where....

    I am selling w124 parts on eBay and volumes are ramping up of late which is a good thing for the most part. However the risk of getting "stiffed" on eBay by someone messing around is a higher risk.

    One such transaction is a OM606 to Sydney of all places..... buyer paid etc but is setting off some alarm bells with me on a couple of small things.

    Anyway, how would one effectively ring fence their bank account funds that someone can't file a false "didn't get my items claim" or similar since they know eBay will roll over and take MY funds back without question? Should PayPal be linked to a separate bank account with no overdraft facility for example?

    To be clear I have no issue with a genuine problem and a genuine buyer... it's the ones out there who buy something just to get it for free and waste your time
    1987 w124 200 - 3.6 AMG build | 1990 w124 300E-24 | 1992 w124 500E

    1994 320CE Sportline | 1997 w140 S280 | 2007 w211 E220CDI

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    E500E Guru JC220's Avatar
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    Re: How to setup PayPal so you don't get conned on eBay & such?

    To give an example of what I mean – this particular transaction Scared the heck out of me:

    1: Buyer said he was from Sydney but ebay account showed a UK Name and address on payment
    2: The delivery name he stated via ebay messages before buying was also different to the delivery address in ebay account
    3: Bought the engine via ebay first – all good. (Besides the obvious issues above that is)
    4: Refused to pay for the shipping cost to Sydney by bank or paypal. Insisted that I created a new additional Ebay listing instead and he pay that way for shipping outlay. (Also costing him more allowing for ebay fees on top)
    5: Gave a mobile number for courier and picked up when I rang it!!… guy is in London as I thought..... says he lives in Sydney but in London at present.


    So I would be required to pay out of my AC to the shipping agent and send the engine to Sydney – 45 days journey on the hope he wouldn’t flag up a b$llsh%t reason for cancellation or dispute on ebay in which event I would have my trousers firmly around my ankles and MY engine half way around the world……

    Needless to say I just cancelled the whole thing – WAY too sketchy for my liking. Ebay favours the buyer period – therein lies the problem. The unfortunate thing is I am out hours of time washing the engine for export, emailing the buyer and shipping agents. But Id rather still have my engine and not out of pocket to the tune of 1k
    Last edited by JC220; 2 Weeks Ago at 07:51 AM.
    1987 w124 200 - 3.6 AMG build | 1990 w124 300E-24 | 1992 w124 500E

    1994 320CE Sportline | 1997 w140 S280 | 2007 w211 E220CDI

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    Re: How to setup PayPal so you don't get conned on eBay & such?

    Hi Joe,

    I've had some nightmarish experiences with eBay/Paypal.

    From this I've (a) vowed to never offer high-value items on eBay, so if things do end tits-up, and eBay comes down in favour of the buyer (which seems to be their norm), one isn't out of pocket for huge sums. And (b), i limit my Paypal only to the funds available in that account, l.e. I don't link it to any credit or debit card, or to any other bank account.

    You're wise to have cancelled the transaction purporting to be from someone in AUS.

    eBay is a great medium - but only (I believe) for smaller value items - hence if anything does go wrong, its no too painful for the seller.

    I guess if you're a big eBay user, then like any high street retailer, you have to accept some pilfering - and write if off against profits made?

    S

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    Senior Member LWB250's Avatar
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    Re: How to setup PayPal so you don't get conned on eBay & such?

    Here's what I do:

    Since PayPal insists on having a linked bank account to function, I have a bank account set up for PayPal and nothing else. It's not linked to any other accounts I have for something such as overdraft protection, for example.

    I can easily move money in and out of this account electronically through my bank, so when I'm going to buy something I fund it for the amount, and when I sell something I'll immediately cash out my PayPal account to the bank account and move the money out of it.

    I had an issue a few years back with eBay and their insane seller's policies that allow buyers to come back well after the sale and make claims of fitness, where they'll put a chargeback against your account for the amount of the transaction. In this case they got bupkis. They emailed and called me with all sorts of threats, which I ignored until the issue was resolved in my favor. Once that occurred they unfroze the account and it has been business as usual since.

    It really boils down to they simply don't care. That's whether they freeze an account or get their money. Once they're happy they continue on like nothing ever happened. And I don't sell to anyone outside of the US, period. It's simply not worth the hassle.

    And one other thing - NEVER use PayPal gift, where you can send funds. You forfeit their buyer/seller protections when you use this service, meaning if you use it to circumvent their fees when you buy something, you're screwed if the deal goes south. I insist on paying the fees when someone I have never dealt with asks for PP gift.

    Dan

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    Re: How to setup PayPal so you don't get conned on eBay & such?

    I think that ebay requires paypal as an option and their policies are becoming less and less vendor friendly. I shipped an R129 door to a buyer who wanted it shipped even though i said local pickup only and I had told the seller that my responsibility ends when I drop it off at the Fedex office. The door arrived damaged even though I packed the crap out of it and I was made to refund his payment and eat the shipping costs both ways (which is more than the cost of the door).

    If you're shipping large items like that, I would suggest western union or bank wire transfer. If you're using paypal, you give them the authority to claw the money out of your account.
    Last edited by alabbasi; 2 Weeks Ago at 10:28 AM.

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    Senior Member LWB250's Avatar
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    Re: How to setup PayPal so you don't get conned on eBay & such?

    Quote Originally Posted by alabbasi View Post
    I think that ebay requires paypal as an option and their policies are becoming less and less vendor friendly. I shipped an R129 to a buyer who wanted it shipped even though i said local pickup only and I had told the seller that my responsibility ends when I drop it off at the Fedex office. The door arrived damaged even though I packed the crap out of it and I was made to refund his payment and eat the shipping costs both ways (which is more than the cost of the door).

    If you're shipping large items like that, I would suggest western union or bank wire transfer. If you're using paypal, you give them the authority to claw the money out of your account.
    Exactly. Which is why I do it the way I have set it up. The minute the payment hits my PP account I transfer the funds out and remove them from the account it's linked to. PayPal is getting pretty efficient in this regard in that they'll do ACH transactions usually within the same business day.

    Dan
    Last edited by LWB250; 2 Weeks Ago at 10:08 AM.

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    Re: How to setup PayPal so you don't get conned on eBay & such?

    If your going to offer a return policy (to get the largest discount on seller fees you need to), set up a restocking fee of say 20% and state that buyer must pay for return shipping. This will eliminate most buyers from returning items, BUT many buyers have figured out that if that just state the item is "defective", EBay will allow them to return it as YOUR expense and you can't charge a restocking fee. This has happened many times to me, each time the item arrives back and it is not defective.

    As for Paypal, EBay is distancing themselves from it and are working on their own payment system. When EBay freezes funds in your PayPal account, if you have no money in it, it just stays in a negative, they don't pull money from your bank account in these cases.

    I have mostly quit selling on EBay for all the reasons posted in this thread and their fees, coupled with PayPal fees eat way too much of your profit.
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    Re: How to setup PayPal so you don't get conned on eBay & such?

    Quote Originally Posted by LWB250 View Post
    Here's what I do:

    Since PayPal insists on having a linked bank account to function, I have a bank account set up for PayPal and nothing else. It's not linked to any other accounts I have for something such as overdraft protection, for example.

    I can easily move money in and out of this account electronically through my bank, so when I'm going to buy something I fund it for the amount, and when I sell something I'll immediately cash out my PayPal account to the bank account and move the money out of it.

    I had an issue a few years back with eBay and their insane seller's policies that allow buyers to come back well after the sale and make claims of fitness, where they'll put a chargeback against your account for the amount of the transaction. In this case they got bupkis. They emailed and called me with all sorts of threats, which I ignored until the issue was resolved in my favor. Once that occurred they unfroze the account and it has been business as usual since.

    It really boils down to they simply don't care. That's whether they freeze an account or get their money. Once they're happy they continue on like nothing ever happened.
    All very good points so far by everyone! I do sell quite low volumes of low value w124 parts on fleabay so it's not a huge issue for the most part. I have had no return listings and of course people still apply for (& get) a return via ebay no questions asked. In those instances I just agree to it and refund etc as required provided the part is returned to me.

    Describing things very accurately keeps me out of trouble – but still, no matter how explicit you are in listings and the terms therein all it takes is one idiot and the best laid plans crumble.

    I think Dan’s suggestion is very good and that is what I am going to do regarding all ebay sales moving forward. Leave it that if someone really does try to fool around they shouldn’t be able to pull an instant refund via ebay’s hopeless system which will buy me time to at least clarify matters. I would never knowingly stop someone getting a refund if me or my courier F'd up or if there was a genuine reason for return of course. But too many people now exploit ebay's system and know they will always win.

    The way the ebay system is set up is pretty criminal that someone's personal possessions can be written off with the stroke of a key from a buyer.

    The aussie order is cancelled and refunded. He said he would pay me by bank transfer instead right away..... that was 9 hours ago so I guess my gut was correct since nada has arrived ever since.
    Last edited by JC220; 2 Weeks Ago at 02:33 PM.
    1987 w124 200 - 3.6 AMG build | 1990 w124 300E-24 | 1992 w124 500E

    1994 320CE Sportline | 1997 w140 S280 | 2007 w211 E220CDI

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    Re: How to setup PayPal so you don't get conned on eBay & such?

    While were on the topic of EBay and PayPal. Have you ever done a EBay search for a specific item, resorted by lowest to high price, chose the lowest price and bought the item? Most sales are done this way, over 90% to be exact. You ever wonder why there are so many of the same products all separated by .01 cents? That is done via 3rd party app integration (subscription service) that allows the seller to tell the app to search for other like items, analyze the price and adjust your price so that it is the lowest price on EBay. Sounds great right? Well not so great for sellers in the long run, it creates a war between sellers to see who can sell their item for the lowest price. If your not the lowest price on EBay, guess what? Your item isn't going to sell, even if its .01 cents more. You can't opt out of these searches either, so you are forced to get/pay for the same service. In the end, you end up giving away all of your profit margin just to make the sale. The only winners are EBay and PayPal.

    Oh, if you run a business and sign a agreement with a manufacture to sell their product, most will state you can't advertise the product under MAP (manufacture minimum advertised price, which is not the retail price) and they have stipulations about using options like "add to cart to see price" etc. This screws you when trying to sell via EBay and Amazon. Most manufactures though, will specifically state you can't sell their products on EBay or Amazon, for the exact reason mentioned in the first paragraph.
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    Re: How to setup PayPal so you don't get conned on eBay & such?

    Quote Originally Posted by 2phast View Post
    EBay, guess what? Your item isn't going to sell, even if its .01 cents more. You can't opt out of these searches either, so you are forced to get/pay for the same service. In the end, you end up giving away all of your profit margin just to make the sale. The only winners are EBay and PayPal.
    Unfortunately, they're taking advantage of the worse part of human nature. About a decade ago, I set up wholesaler accounts with a few of the big wholesalers that deliver to mechanics 3-4 times per day and started selling new parts. While I limited my selling to local only, I ended the initiative after about 6 months as I found that people would call me for free technical support on how to troubleshoot, remove and replace parts, then go online and buy there because it was $1 cheaper.

    I still sell used parts mostly on ebay. I do this because I usually buy parts cars to fix cars and end up with a bunch of parts left over. I consider the cost as sunk cost so whatever I get for the part is basically extra money used to feed the hobby.

    The whole selling business was quite a souring experience, I was well into the 'community' back then and was happy to let people use my tools and lift etc. For that and a few other reasons (mostly tools and parts mysteriously disappearing), I've lost interest in the community service aspect of the car hobby and prefer to mind my own business.
    Last edited by alabbasi; 2 Weeks Ago at 06:13 PM.

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    Senior Member LWB250's Avatar
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    Re: How to setup PayPal so you don't get conned on eBay & such?

    Quote Originally Posted by JC220 View Post
    I think Dan’s suggestion is very good and that is what I am going to do regarding all ebay sales moving forward. Leave it that if someone really does try to fool around they shouldn’t be able to pull an instant refund via ebay’s hopeless system which will buy me time to at least clarify matters. I would never knowingly stop someone getting a refund if me or my courier F'd up or if there was a genuine reason for return of course. But too many people now exploit ebay's system and know they will always win.

    The way the ebay system is set up is pretty criminal that someone's personal possessions can be written off with the stroke of a key from a buyer.
    Do understand that the last time that happened to me (a reversal well after the sale) was a couple of years ago, so they may very well have changed their policies or procedures. That being said, I still prefer to keep my accounts sandboxed to prevent chargebacks or debits that I am not expecting. Pretty much anything and everything I've sold on eBay in recent history has been a used part of some sort, and I offer no refunds or returns. Period. I've found this to be the safest way to do things, and it gives me the best position to deflect any efforts from a scummy buyer to return or change back something.

    And yes, the dispute process is heavily skewed in the direction of the buyer. I knew someone who sold an Apple laptop on eBay back in January or February and the buyer came back in MAY and tried to return it. That's just wrong.

    Dan

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    Re: How to setup PayPal so you don't get conned on eBay & such?

    Quote Originally Posted by alabbasi View Post
    Unfortunately, they're taking advantage of the worse part of human nature. About a decade ago, I set up wholesaler accounts with a few of the big wholesalers that deliver to mechanics 3-4 times per day and started selling new parts. While I limited my selling to local only, I ended the initiative after about 6 months as I found that people would call me for free technical support on how to troubleshoot, remove and replace parts, then go online and buy there because it was $1 cheaper.

    I still sell used parts mostly on ebay. I do this because I usually buy parts cars to fix cars and end up with a bunch of parts left over. I consider the cost as sunk cost so whatever I get for the part is basically extra money used to feed the hobby.

    The whole selling business was quite a souring experience, I was well into the 'community' back then and was happy to let people use my tools and lift etc. For that and a few other reasons (mostly tools and parts mysteriously disappearing), I've lost interest in the community service aspect of the car hobby and prefer to mind my own business.
    I had to remove my phone number from my eCommerce site for the same reason. So now I only provide it to customers with a history of actually making purchases
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    Senior Member LWB250's Avatar
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    Re: How to setup PayPal so you don't get conned on eBay & such?

    Just an FYI:

    I just bought a blower controller for my R129 from an eBay seller on the west coast, and eBay would not accept PayPal, only a credit or debit card. There was a button on the checkout page for Paypal, but when you click it you get a pop-up telling you that the seller only uses eBay's "new" payment system.

    I'm not sure if this is good or bad. Since you're using a credit card you'll have all of the protections built into a credit transaction. This is good for a buyer, but probably not for a seller....

    Dan

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    Re: How to setup PayPal so you don't get conned on eBay & such?

    I didn't know about this. Apparently it's rolling out through the next year or two:

    https://pages.ebay.com/seller-center...s-on-ebay.html


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    Re: How to setup PayPal so you don't get conned on eBay & such?

    Interesting as this is like eBay going back to its roots. When I started on eBay in 1999, you could pay via credit card and this newfangled PayPal. Then eBay bought PayPal and proceeded to eliminate any other way of paying for things except using their platform (and completing a double dip in fees to the seller of the item).


    Robert

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    Senior Member LWB250's Avatar
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    Re: How to setup PayPal so you don't get conned on eBay & such?

    Just snagged a cheap turn signal assembly for the eldest son's 95 E300D, as he lost one last week. Another seller who does not have PP available. eBay says they'll have PP back in the system in the future, but they're concentrating on CC payments for now.

    Dan

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    Re: How to setup PayPal so you don't get conned on eBay & such?

    I was speaking to a guy recently about ebay. He was delighted and quite proud to tell me that he claims for lost item and gets full refund from ebay for every item he buys which has not been sent by a recorded courier service. Indeed he is quite disappointed when an item turns up via a recorded courier and he has to actually pay for the item……. This made me very angry to hear someone say this first hand – and a pretty foul way to exploit the system and honest sellers.

    Most of the items I sell on ebay I send via recorded post –but not all if it’s a low value item. However after that conversation every single item I sell on ebay moving forward will only go out as a fully recorded service requiring a signature. Considering the layers of fees and odds stacked against a seller I will be limiting what I sell on ebay to only low value items
    Last edited by JC220; 6 Days Ago at 08:51 AM.
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    Re: How to setup PayPal so you don't get conned on eBay & such?

    Quote Originally Posted by JC220 View Post
    I was speaking to a guy recently about ebay. He wasdelighted and quite proud to tell me that he claims for lost item and gets fullrefund from ebay for every item he buys which has not been sent by a recordedcourier service. Indeed he is quite disappointed when an item turns up via arecorded courier and he has to actually pay for the item……. This made me veryangry to hear someone say this first hand – and a pretty foul way to exploitthe system and honest sellers.
    That's lower than low. He probably thinks he's screwing eBay, but eBay takes back all the $$$ from the seller. So he is flat out stealing from the honest seller.




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