Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Using Paypal... too risky?

I received an email this week from an online auction newbie. She wants to try buying on eBay, but she is hesitant to put her trust in Paypal, as it requires linking into your bank account.

The problem is that eBay’s current payment system leave buyers with few options. With eBay’s new rules, sellers are not permitted to advertise their willingness to accept alternate payment options on their actual eBay listings. However, sellers can still accept checks or money orders for payment if a request is made by the buyer.

While I did not explain that option in my response to Cyndi below, for those uncomfortable with Paypal it could be worth a try as well.

Hello Karen,

I was glad to find your blog. I'm starting to learn more about antiques and antiquing.

I'm interested in purchasing some items on ebay, but I don't want to be involved in pay pal or anything that would connect to my bank account. Do you know of anyone or any businesses that will do the purchasing for you on ebay? Or do you have any suggestions for someone like me who doesn't want to take financial risks like pay pal?

Thank you for your time.

-- Cyndi


Hi Cyndi,

While some eBay sellers may have the capability to accept credit cards themselves, Paypal is really the way to go if you want to buy or sell on eBay. Your bank account is not at risk, as Paypal will only access your account if you exceed the balance you have in your Paypal account.

I have been using Paypal for years and never experienced any problems using it as a buyer. As a seller -- yes. They will freeze your funds if there is a dispute over the item purchased. If you only want to buy, that policy only serves to protect you.

I do not know of any services that will buy for you. If you really don't want to try Paypal, maybe you can ask a friend or family member to do a favor by purchasing for you. Or link your Paypal account to a separate bank account that doesn't carry a large balance as a way of testing the waters.

Good luck in the online marketplace!

-- Karen

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I have been an Ebayer since 1999 and have used Paypal to receive and send money since it's inception and with no problem whatsoever. I link a debit card to my Paypal account. This insures that I will only have a certain amount of money in the account at a certain time so that theivery is almost avoidable alltogether. I also have a Paypal debit card that I use to take out monies from my Paypal account. Plus, Paypal has a feature that allows you to generate a one time use 20 digit card number with date when you want to buy something online. It's a great tool for someone that wants the extra security when online shopping. And it's free!