Frequently MINI2 members highlight suspect vehicles listed on eBay. They're usually MINIs that are sold at "too good to be true" prices, and generally avoid PayPal or other reputable escrow service p...Read full report
Firstly, eBay is only good when things go smoothly - I have had a few occasions where there were problems with transactions and even though these were paid for using PayPal neither eBay nor PayPal did anything to resolve the issue.
Fortunately they were low value items - buyer beware with anything you purchase on eBay, "buyer protection" is the biggest scam going!!
In the case of the Mini scam mentioned in the article - as harsh this sounds, anyone who didn't smell a rat firstly with the price (£3,500 for a Mini??) and then with the behaviour of the seller obviously has no common sense whatsoever. Has this individual actually passed their driving exam?
As always in life people who want to take the easy road get stung and then moan to the world about it.
A Mini for £3,500 has S.C.A.M written all over it in letters 20 feet high.
Well, as a potential Mini owner, looking on ebay (UK) regularly, I've already sussed out that a 2007 Cooper S convertible auto for £12,000 buy-it-now may well be dodgy - looking at the other cars the guy has for sale for equally daft prices suggests it is indeed a scam - question is, how? Do you buy it now, then pay a deposit (which you'll never see again), or am I missing something?
A 2007 Cooper S Convertible is a £20,000 + car!!
Go to the Mini configurator and put one together yourself - I managed to come out with a total of £22,500 for a nice spec.
Why would anyone bother to sell such a car on eBay for £12,000?
The guy could walk into a dealership, throw the keys on the counter and ask the sales person to have a cheque waiting when the returns from the men's room.
Guess what?? It would be more than £12,000.
As the saying goes - a fool and his money are easily parted.
I have to say I'm a big fan of e-bay. Yes there are scammers on there but just use your common sense and don't go for any sellers with no feedback and dodgy ads etc. I have sold one or two cars on there with no problems and bought virtually all my electrical goods from the powersellers with no probs either, also I usually find the good sellers always get the goods to you in double quick time. I also buy alot of antiques and if you know what your doing you wil pay alot less than you would in the some fancy antiques shop. The only problem I have had is pillocks trying to hack into my paypal account and e-bay account so it pays to change passwords etc weekly, apart from that no probs. whether I pay £12,000 for a car off e-bay would need some consideration but 1k on a TV saving a few hundred quid was worth the effort.
i sold my previous car on ebay 13500 for my bmw but for my sake and the sake of the buyer i insisted on cash and no-deposit, the price i got was 1000 more than any dealer offered me.
the guy came with one of his friends to my office in glasgow where we met in the confrence suite, allowed him to inspect the car in the car park to make sure my listing was correct then we both acompanied each other to the relevent banks for collection of the money and then delivery to my bank., that way we could be sure the cash was genuine. everything went great and both parties were very happy
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Nothing wrong with buying online, it's very safe and I've never had a problem.
Recently I've done extensive house renovations and all the fittings, window/door hardware, electric sockets, taps, venetian blinds etc were purchased online - saved a small fortune as you will always find sites with sales on, wholesale prices etc.
I always use my credit card and you are insured against problem by your credit card provider.
Ebay is another kettle of fish altogether and not safe in any way as far as I'm concerned - very much buyer beware.
Don't worry, I know it's dodgy - it is a 20 grand car, but the ebay ad is a classified ad - so no buy-now, just an 'email the seller' - item number 190138660629.
Amongst his other cars are an M3 cab for easily 5 grand under book, a RR Sport for peanuts - I really don't get how he is going to make money, unless it's just a scam to gather peoples email addresses to send viruses to?
Are you supposed to meet him in a deserted carpark at midnight with 12 grand in a Tesco bag, ready to be hit over the head by a gang of 'car dealers'?
Don't get me wrong, I wouldn't even email the guy, I've used ebay for well over 600 transactions, both buying and selling, and been ripped off once to the tune of £200 - on balance it's saved me a fortune. Met some really really nice people and one total _______!
That car for that price is there for a reason - I just get this niggling feeling that someone is going to bite
I know for a fact that using PayPal really increases the level of safety for eBay buyers, which is why eBay encourages the use of PayPal in the first place. Some people view the strict verification procedures as an inconvenience... however, for people who are legitimate buyers and sellers on eBay, it is actually quite easy and it takes very little time. PayPal has made it possible for me, a Philippine resident, to purchase authentic Classic Mini Cooper stuff from the UK with very little hesitation on the seller's end. Reading eBay Fraud FAQs also helps guide the new eBayer on what to avoid and how to detect fraud.
Sometime ago, when I was in the market for a Mac Book Pro (probably the third most-scammed item out there), I came across a few dozen great deals, from warehouse-clearance sale products to "my mum needs money for medicine" sales. None of them would take PayPal because of various reasons. I know for a fact that PayPal invests a lot of money on customer service to get all the problems resolved quickly, albeit it's not perfect, contacting them via phone or email does help when problems regarding use comes up.
I have to say that buying off the Net is such a valuable thing. I could not buy a lot of original Mini items here in the Philippines, and had eBay and PayPal not been available, I would be out a few Haynes manuals, and a couple of other nice-to-haves that just aren't available locally.
I agree that the Net is an entirely new platform; just take care and don't be impulsive and we should be alright buying from "complete strangers". Also, invest time in reviewing their reputations. It's dang hard to get 'em.
Lastly, the more you use eBay, PayPal and the Internet, the more familiar we become and less prone to getting ripped off. That includes this forum
Well, that's my 2 cents' worth. I hope it helps.
Have a great week, everyone!
Last edited by exx; Aug 9th, 2007 at 01:33 AM.
Reason: corrected some phrases
Sorry, complete *ollocks..
Lets see you have an eBay / PayPal transaction that goes wrong and then stick by that comment.
Example: About a year ago in the course of my business I had to acquire 6 identical early 90's keyboard sound modules for a client.
All 6 came from eBay - 5 of them from the UK, all mint cond and easy transactions, average price of £250.00.
The 6th unit came from Germany, seller had good feedback and described unit as "mint".
When it arrived it had been shipped in nothing but a thin, dirty cardboard box and as a result was severely cosmetically damaged. It also had a faulty LCD backlight and audio faults (both of which I'm sure existed before shipping).
I contacted the seller who was immediately hostile and considering my German isn't good enough for complex debate I let my girlfriend communicate with him (she's German).
The seller was a complete *rick and refused to accept any liability, so the only option was to involve eBay and Paypal.
I'll save you the boring details but the bottom line is they did NOTHING!!
I ended up out of pocket to the tune of £250 with what was effectively a paperweight.
The Internet is great for shopping - companies such as Amazon are brilliant and your credit card provides good coverage if problems arise.
eBay is great if things go smoothly - when they don't, bottom line - you are screwed!!
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