The Online Sales Zoo

soulman969

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I swear all those critters who used to just scam on Ebay have begun to populate every online resale sight out there. Reverb was good for a few years until they discovered that. CL has always had it's share and lately they've even been attacking via Facebook Marketplace. They must have spawned.

My favorite one from CL of late is the response that asks me to respond to a different email address because they don't monitor whatever email address they responded to the listing from. It had to come from somewhere so why have separate emails for sending and receiving? If they're actually interested in buying they'd leave contact info as requested. Are people still falling for this phishing scam? My delete button is more than happy to accommodate their request.

On FB Marketplace their modus operadi is now to at least ask a question or maybe two like condition (which is already give) and how long have I owned it. Then they typically agree to the listed price and tell me __________ will be picking it up but they will be paying me via Venmo or Zelle and asking for my account because sis, brother, buddy doesn't have the funds. I don't have either and these days only use PayPal to receive money from friends or family.

The last one yesterday agreed to my price then wanted to send me $100 more asking that I overnight it to his daughter in NC as her birthday gift. And all this even after I've listed local pickup only, no shipping, and cash on delivery. The "suspect" before this one was having his buddy FedEx it to him but somehow couldn't arrange to send the cash to him to pay me. Each time I list something on FB Marketplace I get at least two or three of these deals often right before my listing expires.

One guy refused to send cash to his sister via PayPal but wanted me to accept it for payment. So I told him I would need his sisters name and her address and phone number so I could make out a bill of sale listing her as the purchaser and that she would need to provide a photo ID and sign a receipt saying the guitar was delivered to her. I would also need his contact info as well. Never heard from his again. Same old scams but I have to admit they are getting more creative.....LOL.

I'm curious what experiences others may have had lately. Is payment via Zelle or Venmo becoming a "thing" now? Do any of you deal that way with local listings?
 

Davis Sharp

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I haven't used Zelle or Venmo for P2P deals, but i hear that others do. They are secure and you get your $ instantly, unless it's >$1K then a bank might delay it. There's no account #, just your mobile phone #. I would never use it for eBay or Reverb sales.

Those other deals that the seller brings a 3rd party into are a fraudulent. Dude told me once that his "daughter" will bring me a money order or something. I said that I don't take money orders, but I will trade the guitar for his daughter if she... then I mentioned a rather crude sex act.
 

Lancpudn

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After the last items I sold on ebay dealing with clowns & tyre kickers everything I sell now is for local cash on collection, You want it you come get it with cash. Granted that really limits your range of buyers but it's less hassle. :thumb:
 

soulman969

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I haven't used Zelle or Venmo for P2P deals, but i hear that others do. They are secure and you get your $ instantly, unless it's >$1K then a bank might delay it. There's no account #, just your mobile phone #. I would never use it for eBay or Reverb sales.

Those other deals that the seller brings a 3rd party into are a fraudulent. Dude told me once that his "daughter" will bring me a money order or something. I said that I don't take money orders, but I will trade the guitar for his daughter if she... then I mentioned a rather crude sex act.
1654179241794.png

LOL......
 

soulman969

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I haven't used Zelle or Venmo for P2P deals, but i hear that others do. They are secure and you get your $ instantly, unless it's >$1K then a bank might delay it. There's no account #, just your mobile phone #. I would never use it for eBay or Reverb sales.
So a payment via Zelle or Venmo needs to go to a bank account? How else would someone get the $$$ instantly?

If that's how it works I guess that's one more reason not to use them for receiving payment from total strangers. And on top of that they'd also need my phone number?

With PayPal at least I can either withdraw the cash or use the balance to make another purchase which is more typically what I do when a friend sends me funds to make a purchase for them.

At any rate it just not worth the added risk and complications. If a prospect likes what I'm selling they can show up at my place, look over what I have, confirm it's all that I've said it was, hand me the cash and take it home. In my world that's a win/win for both. I've sold dozens of things locally that way and a trustworthy buyer always shows up.
 

soulman969

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After the last items I sold on ebay dealing with clowns & tyre kickers everything I sell now is for local cash on collection, You want it you come get it with cash. Granted that really limits your range of buyers but it's less hassle. :thumb:
Agreed Ian. I also believe that while it has it's limitations it also eliminates the suspects leaving only the true prospects who are interested enough to check something out in person before forking over their cash. IMHO that's as it should be.

The only time I ever get interest from those who won't come by to evaluate something are resellers who are only interested in my listed price and getting it for far less than that. Had one just the other day who wanted to know why I was asking more than new.

Well....because it's a discontinued model in a highly desirable finish with others in a similar condition selling (not listing) for more than new on Reverb. I even linked the most recent transactions for him as evidence also highlighting those prices didn't include shipping or sales tax.

I always research the current market value of things I sell and price within the market so I know my pricing is fair for an interested buyer but it will never be fair for a reseller who needs to buy for what GC would offer me so they can make a profit selling my gear for me.....LOL.

That I don't need and never have. I've stopped selling bigger ticket stuff on Ebay and Reverb due to their policies that require I attach a bank account to my Ebay or Reverb account where I can receive my funds. They will not credit those funds to my PayPal account any longer and I will not allow them a back door to a bank account where they can both deposit and withdraw funds. IMHO no one should give them that.
 

Davis Sharp

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So a payment via Zelle or Venmo needs to go to a bank account? How else would someone get the $$$ instantly?
Zelle is bank to bank. I use Zelle (through my bank app) all the time to pay contractors or reimburse family/friends. Venmo is kind of like PayPal in that you can leave $ in your Venmo account as long as you want and use it elsewhere, or transfer it to your bank account.
 

soulman969

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Zelle is bank to bank. I use Zelle (through my bank app) all the time to pay contractors or reimburse family/friends. Venmo is kind of like PayPal in that you can leave $ in your Venmo account as long as you want and use it elsewhere, or transfer it to your bank account.
Thanks Davis. So with Zelle if a person wants to make a payment to you how is that done without exposing bank info? Just curious.

I don't use a regular bank account now anyway because PayPal screwed up once and charged a Credit Union account I had for a purchase that should have been paid for with my PP Balance. They sent it through multiple times which resulted in my being charged each time the transaction was declined due to the amount being more than my balance so I ended up with over $100 in charges against my CU account. I closed the account and have not used one since.

Ironically while I was typing this I received two "suspects" wanting to buy a guitar I have listed on FB Marketplace. One would only pay with Zelle. Up to that point his grammar was fine but when I said I don't accept Zelle his response was "I got only Zelle". Oops, your slip is showing. LOL In another response to only accepting cash he responded "I can't hold huge amount of money". Oops again. Sorry Boris, no borscht for you.

The price is less than $800 so it's not like we're talking thousands here and I just sold another guitar less than two weeks ago for $600. That buyer had no problem meeting in person with cash.

Like I said those on FB are getting more creative yet they use pretty much the same story. In fact I would not be at all shocked if the two responses I've gotten came from the same guy since one stopped responding altogether but the other continued pushing Zelle.

What I'd like to know is this. How does using Zelle make it easier to pull off a scam? We know that on PayPal a buyer who send an "agent" or someone else to pick something up them says he never received the item and asks for a refund which PayPal will then grant with no prior notice. That why they want a link to a bank account so they can retrieve the funds.

So how do they work it with Zelle? I have no problem saying no to that kind of transaction whenever it seems sketchy but I'm still curious how a scammer uses Zelle to pull it off. What's the catch that I'm missing?
 
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Davis Sharp

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Thanks Davis. So with Zelle if a person wants to make a payment to you how is that done without exposing bank info? Just curious
on your bank's website, you link your phone number and/or email address to Zelle. Buyers do the same. You give them either contact and they never see your account info.
 

soulman969

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on your bank's website, you link your phone number and/or email address to Zelle. Buyers do the same. You give them either contact and they never see your account info.
So maybe it's more of a phishing for email or phone # than a scam?

I don't use a local bank account any longer and that account only receives my SS deposit so I have no bank account to link anyway. Any other income I receive by check which I cash and keep elsewhere.

But the other issue I'm trying to figure out is if they are scamming what's their game? They want to pay with Zelle telling me it's so I'll hold the guitar 'til they arrive to pick it up usually the next day or two. I tell them I'll do that anyway provided we confirm my price, set a time, and they bring cash. No legit buyer has ever refused to do that.

If everything is legit once I've confirmed the money is in my account via a Zelle deposit I could withdraw the cash from the sale before delivering the guitar right? So what's the scam? Does the bank confirm the transfer is legit before I can with draw the funds? If not and the transfer is phony couldn't the bank then do a charge back against the account?

The main reason I'm trying to figure this one out is that I've had several of these kind of responses and all through FB Marketplace. One was actually legit and brought cash when I said I didn't use Zelle or Venmo. Three others insisted on Zelle and would not pay in cash so I can only assume they weren't legit. But I'm still puzzled how their scam works.
 

Davis Sharp

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I don't really know how the can scam you with Zelle. Maybe they will tell you that Zelle isn't working on their end, but you should send them $50 as a test to see if it works.
 

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On a slightly diffrent tack I ordered a USB C Hub on the 1st from Amazon. It gives me a trial of Amazon Prime apparently. First indications were that it would arrive the next day but then when I checked tracking the date was revised to the 10th. 8 or 9 days delivery isn’t that compelling a reason for me to stay with prime. We don’t buy enough anyway.
 
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"On FB Marketplace their modus operadi is now to at least ask a question or maybe two like condition (which is already give) and how long have I owned it. Then they typically agree to the listed price and tell me __________ will be picking it up but they will be paying me via Venmo or Zelle and asking for my account because sis, brother, buddy doesn't have the funds. I don't have either and these days only use PayPal to receive money from friends or family."

I currently have a Fender acoustic listed on a local NZ sales site called TradeMe.
I've had emails asking questions just like Soulman mentioned above then saying they'll arrange a courier to pick-up and pay via PayPal which was never offered as a payment option.
The same day some coq juggler hit the BuyNow option then disappeared off the site completely so I lost all the followers and had to re-list the guitar.
Piss me off!
 

soulman969

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I don't really know how the can scam you with Zelle. Maybe they will tell you that Zelle isn't working on their end, but you should send them $50 as a test to see if it works.
Someone suggested something like this in another forum.

They will claim they attempted to make a transfer which failed then ask for more information they can use that will gain them access to your bank account. Or having stolen someone else's bank info they will pay by transferring funds from the stolen account if necessary.

Whatever their methods none of it passes my "smell test" anyway so I just keep telling them it's cash on delivery from the actual buyer or a verified 3rd party to whom I will make out a bill of sale and a receipt they must sign indicating they received the guitar FBO the actual buyer.

One other tell tale indicator of a scammer is they tend to appear either right after the listing is published or right before it's due to end or be renewed. The CL ones always come within hours of the listing being published and always ask for a response to a different email saying they don't monitor their CL email. I just report them as a scam and trash 'em.

I believe most legit buyers are well aware of these types of scams and will always respond in ways that indicate they're truly interested and that they are a legit local buyer. But whenever I see a new approach I like to ask others about their own experiences with it just to gain knowledge for myself that I can also spread to others via these forums.
 

soulman969

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On a slightly diffrent tack I ordered a USB C Hub on the 1st from Amazon. It gives me a trial of Amazon Prime apparently. First indications were that it would arrive the next day but then when I checked tracking the date was revised to the 10th. 8 or 9 days delivery isn’t that compelling a reason for me to stay with prime. We don’t buy enough anyway.
Prime is great if you're buying from Amazon frequently but otherwise no. It's like Stew-Mac wanting someone to pay $40 to join their "club" in order to get free shipping.

If you're a luthier or a tech who uses them frequently and can only get what you need from them it's worth it but for most of us it isn't. With the prices they charge they should ship for free anyhow. JMHO
 

soulman969

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"On FB Marketplace their modus operadi is now to at least ask a question or maybe two like condition (which is already give) and how long have I owned it. Then they typically agree to the listed price and tell me __________ will be picking it up but they will be paying me via Venmo or Zelle and asking for my account because sis, brother, buddy doesn't have the funds. I don't have either and these days only use PayPal to receive money from friends or family."

I currently have a Fender acoustic listed on a local NZ sales site called TradeMe.
I've had emails asking questions just like Soulman mentioned above then saying they'll arrange a courier to pick-up and pay via PayPal which was never offered as a payment option.
The same day some coq juggler hit the BuyNow option then disappeared off the site completely so I lost all the followers and had to re-list the guitar.
Piss me off!
The re-sale market places for musical gear are laden with scammers and just plain jerks which also includes some sellers as well as buyers.

I have a buddy who bought a guitar from a Reverb seller. It arrived with damage that could never have happened during shipping and was never disclosed in the listing. When he tried to contact the seller he was ghosted. He had just disappeared from Reverb completely.

Since a buyer can't file a claim for shipping damages anyway and it was obviously a scam eventually Reverb did refund the money my buddy paid for the guitar but it took several weeks and prevented him from bidding on another guitar to replace the damaged one he'd received.
 

Raiyn

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On a slightly diffrent tack I ordered a USB C Hub on the 1st from Amazon. It gives me a trial of Amazon Prime apparently. First indications were that it would arrive the next day but then when I checked tracking the date was revised to the 10th. 8 or 9 days delivery isn’t that compelling a reason for me to stay with prime. We don’t buy enough anyway.
To be fair, the delivery 'roo was on holiday. In city delivery is nice, we can have stuff delivered same day or faster, but sending stuff to my sister takes a few days. Due to my schedule, Amazon is one of the main shopping outlets for me.




Stew-Mac wanting someone to pay $40 to join their "club" in order to get free shipping.

If you're a luthier or a tech who uses them frequently and can only get what you need from them it's worth it but for most of us it isn't. With the prices they charge they ship for free anyhow. JMHO
I haven't found anything I've needed so badly as to order it directly from them. Mandatory FedEx shipping ($8 IIRC) for example a set of brass pickup height gauges?

Nope.

There are plenty of other resources.

Back to the main topic though: I sold my Katana to a friend that's been griping about their pawn shop practice amp. A marked upgrade for them, cash back in my pocket, and I didn't have to deal with selling it online. Didn't take too much of a hit on the price either - though I'll bet mine was in better shape than most. Still had the original box too.
 

Davis Sharp

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@soulman969 I just read a Zelle scam alert on Nextdoor. Scammer offers to buy an item for X dollars and claims that he sent the $, but says that seller can't receive it because the seller does not have a "business" account. Then says seller should refund the $ and create a business account that the scammer will then send money to.

So that's one trick they use.
 

soulman969

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@soulman969 I just read a Zelle scam alert on Nextdoor. Scammer offers to buy an item for X dollars and claims that he sent the $, but says that seller can't receive it because the seller does not have a "business" account. Then says seller should refund the $ and create a business account that the scammer will then send money to.

So that's one trick they use.
Thanks Davis. I knew there had to be a slant to it somehow I just didn't know enough about Zelle or Venmo to understand how. We've long since figured out how they work it on PayPal but these are newer.

FWIW I sold both guitars I had listed for cash at my listed price. One a couple of weeks ago and the other this past weekend. Both were Epi models which is only somewhat unfortunate as both are no longer offered but that also helped me get my price. Both buyers were thrilled to get models they sought in the condition mine were in.

While I loved both guitars unfortunately both had the "D" profile necks I did not like all that well. One I won't bother to replace but the ES339 P90 Pro probably will eventually be replaced with a model with a "C" neck profile that I prefer.

Thanks again for this followup. :cheers:
 

Raiyn

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Last thing I sold online was a DiMarzio strap. Now I get to wait for eBay to send me tax documents for selling a strap at a (slight) loss.
 


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