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what kind of red flags do you look for..

Dancing Fire

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 3, 2004
Messages
32,399
when shopping on E-bay?

a guy posted a $20K watch with "no reserve", so i Emailed the seller asking for some pics,of course i didn't get a reply.the watch eventually sold for $10,700.i felt sorry for the winning bidder,then after a week i went back to check and there were no history of the auction... SCAM! SCAM! SCAM!
 

Amys Bling

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jun 25, 2010
Messages
11,025
what a shame.

I try to buy from pawn/auction/estate shops with feedback as opposed to individuals.
 

TristanC

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jun 6, 2011
Messages
995
I always speak with the seller if it is a high value item.

Big ticket items must be through vendors with really high transaction counts and good reviews/feedback. It always smells fishy when a new account lists a huge item for cheapish.

Expensive items MUST have a reserve. Makes no sense otherwise.

I check similar listings to see if images are over exposed. Especially for unique items.

I look for image watermarks. Occasionally you'll see other company watermarks in the picture that just don't belong.

Funny terms of delivery (some scam you though pre agreed delivery costs)

Unwillingness to accept credit cards or paypal, or insistence on wiring money
 

Gypsy

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
40,198
Feedback. I usually expect a minimum of a few hundred transactions. With 99 or better feedback. Returns accepted. I usually email a vendor before I bid just to see if they are responsive as well. Especially if it is a large ticket item.

LOTS and LOTS and LOTS of REAL LIFE pictures. And detail in the description... and I look to see if there is anything "missing" in the description. For example... most of seller X's listings say that what the diamond clarity is, and then all of the sudden there is one listing by seller X where it just says, "Lively bright H color stone"... um. Yeah, that stones got inclusions. Sometimes what a seller doesn't say is as important as what they do.

I also look to see what else they sell, and have sold. I like to see similar items. It's always a red flag if a guy who is selling cheap ipods suddenly starts selling a 20K ring, ya know?

I look to see how long they've been in the ebay community.

I usually buy furniture on ebay though, not jewelry. And with furnture, the kind I like... I look a lot for damage. If the seller has documented it well, and explained it... and I can live with it... AND the price reflects the damage. I'm good. I usually stick to sellers I know, or have bought from though. Just because repeat business gets you better "Best Offer" acceptances.

Big ticket items either have a reserve or the auction starts at a reasonable amount.. not at a buck. If the item is worth 1000... they've started the bidding at 500... okay, that's fine.

If I do buy jewelry... a couple of my friends are more active ebayers than I am in that respect, so I stick to vendor's I know they've bought from.

Stuff like that.
 

centralsquare

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jan 18, 2009
Messages
2,201
I automatically ignore any listing that has stock photos...if there aren't real photos then I assume it's fake. Even if they are bad real photos, I'll take a look
 

lyra

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jul 13, 2007
Messages
5,203
I do a search of the vendor on toolhaus.org no matter how high the rating. That gives some idea of what the past problems were and whether you're likely to have similar problems on similar items.

I only deal with vendors who accept returns. I've never spent over $2000, but I would be okay with up to $5000. Any more than that and I'd want to see impeccable references, reports, feedback and of course email correspondence.
 
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