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-   -   So, you're thinking about trading or selling on TTW? (http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=319779)

meowmix 12-27-2009 05:43 AM

So, you're thinking about trading or selling on TTW?
 
Original Thread:
http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=303732

Recently, given the large number of transactions gone wrong, myself, Bud, SteveI, diredesire, Fearsome Forehand, and others have decided to write up a user's guide to trading and buying on TTW. The following is what I have come up with.


So You're Thinking About Trading or Selling on Talk Tennis Warehouse?

Before you read any further, read this following thread. It contains vital information that you NEED to know. It should clear up some confusion that you have.

http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=217121

TTW has been up and running for more than a decade now, and for most of the time, scams and problems were almost unheard of. We traded and sold based on trust. We trusted each other, each others ratings, each others listings. Back in the earlier days, scams were unheard of.

While most transactions will not result in you getting scammed, more and more these days are resulting in unfavorable situations for one or both parties. Here are some helpful tips that I recommend you implement in the way you trade.

1.Check references. Check references. CHECK REFERENCES!!!!! I cannot emphasize this enough. We have a section on the forum dedicated to references. Use it to your advantage! If somebody has a lot of positive references, then you can be pretty sure that making a transaction with him/her will be safe. You can be relatively certain that you will receive your rackets, strings, or money in a timely manner, and the equipment will be as it was listed. If somebody negative references, or simply doesn't have references at all, BE ON YOUR GUARD! Be intelligent, and protect yourself with the following.
-moderator side note- When checking references, be sure to look deeper than "one level" of references. If someone has 50 references, but all of the references posted are from new traders with 0 posts, proceed with caution. There have been cases in the past where new traders will create new/false accounts just to pad their reference count, and falsely increase trust in their usernames. Do your research, and do it properly!

2.Unless making a transaction with somebody with many positive references, NEVER USE CASH. Money orders, checks, and Paypal are acceptable forms of payment on the boards, but they are NOT the most secure method of payment. The best way is for you to pay using your credit card. That way, if your deal goes south, you can just pick up the phone and call your credit company and reverse the transaction. This protection is not inherent in money orders or in checks. Paypal does offer this sort of protection, but it is less secure. An “intelligent” scammer can easily remove the money from a Paypal account after payment. Paypal is also notoriously slow. Do yourself a favor, and pay using a credit card. To elaborate on this, the reason cash and money orders are not desirable (in general) in online trading is because they are essentially impossible to recover (and in the case of cash, trace). There is also no "receipt" or proof that payment was ever truly sent/received (by the correct person). In the case of personal checks, it is not desirable to accept personal checks without references due to the fact that checks do take time to clear, which is annoying to both the seller and buyer. There is also opportunity of scamming due to this latency. A shady buyer could have $0 in their checking account, which would create a "bounced check" situation, and the seller would be out their product, and receive no cash.

Paypal is the most popular form of online payment. Other payment modes include Google Checkout. Alternatively, if a user does have lots of E-bay feedback, there are cases where it is beneficial to both parties to sell their racquet through e-bay (once the deal has been finalized on the board) just to add a layer of accountability to the transaction. Of course, both parties will have to agree upon the fees imposed by E-bay. This is rarely done in "real life," but is seen in cases where a party does not have much feedback in person to person online trades. Paypal allows a seller to accept credit card payments, but requires an "upgraded" account that also requires a fee per transaction. Due to the paypal rules and regulations, sellers are NOT allowed to request a $/% fee above the asking price to "cover" paypal fees.

3.In all transactions, make sure that you secure some kind of personal information. Get the other person's phone number in addition to his/her address and name. Always make sure that you have multiple ways to contact the other person. We understand that things might come up. Maybe Verizon decides to knock out your internet for a few days (hey, it happens). When this kind of thing happens, you want to have some other way to reach the person you're transacting with. It also makes tracking down people a LOT easier in case the deal goes south. A home (landline) telephone number is recommended. This step is largely ignored by most traders, and can be the single pit-fall that most people fall victim to. A shady and/or dishonest trader is not going to be willing to provide this information, so this adds a layer of security. Do note, however, that some people are not willing to provide detailed personal information about themselves. Please respect this, but proceed with caution. Protect yourself if you decide to proceed in other ways listed.

4.If you insist on using Paypal and are planning to be transacting using a large amount of money, you can protect yourself by getting all of the other person's information. Request that the seller send you a small amount of money using Paypal ($1 will suffice). This gets you the seller's information, and helps protect you. Later, when you're sending your payment, you can just return that $1 payment.
-moderator note: This is uncommon in "real world" practice, but not a bad idea. In general, paypal isn't inherently flawed, it is the transaction that is flawed. If you protect yourself properly to begin with, and have decided the other party you are dealing with is honest and on the "up and up," this step is not generally necessary.

5.CONSTANT COMMUNICATION! Keep the other person notified of everything. Keep in touch, answer those emails, call back. A lot of things can be avoided if you just keep in contact with the other person. Again, we understand that things may come up. Maybe your brother suddenly becomes very ill. Maybe your grandmother dies. It happens, and we can understand. But when it happens, tell the other guy. Don't leave him hanging. Poor communication is one of the most complained about issues in trades.

6.When shipping anything, get tracking. For the most part, getting tracking doesn't cost anything in addition to shipping fees (if you're using a carrier like Fedex or UPS). If you're using USPS, tracking usually costs an extra quarter. A tracking number can erase a LOT of problems that might come up in a transaction. Not to mention, tracking is a proof of delivery, and can help alleviate problems that are encountered in the future.

7.When trading, whomever has fewer references should ship first. This should be more or less common sense- if you have no references, we don't know if we can trust you. This makes things a little more secure for everybody involved.
-moderator note: this should be stressed when one party does not have any references, HOWEVER, many, many people on the internet are not comfortable with this, so please proceed accordingly. I would personally not ship first as a new trader unless the other party was well established (2+ years trading, with several good references that check out). This isn't generally a straight "rule of thumb"/commonly accepted practice everywhere on the web.


This should give you some help. If you think you've been scammed, first contact the person you're transacting with. If he/she doesn't respond within 48 hours, tell the TTW community IMMEDIATELY! Begin by posting an alert thread, and if the user does not respond within a reasonable timeframe (3-4 days, 1-2 business days), post a negative reference. Tell us your story, and we may ask you for more information. NEVER post the person's personal information, it is a violation of their privacy rights.

-moderator note: I edited the above a little bit, many users are very "gung ho" about calling out trolls and bad traders, and as a tight knit community, we have good reason to be. However, there is NO NEED to go on a personal crusade. The purpose of the reference section is simply to inform other users, so that they can utilize this information for future trading. The first step to protect yourself is to put a "stop" on the payment you sent. If you sent a personal check, contact your bank and arrange a stop payment to cancel your check. This is generally possible with money orders as well. Paypal also has means to do this. If you do this within approx 96 hours, you generally are able to recover your cash. (At the very least, the seller will have his/her account frozen). It generally takes 3-4 business days to withdraw money from your paypal account, so please keep this in mind when deciding what kind of time frame is reasonable before blowing any whistles.

If you're sure you've been scammed, things depend on the method of payment. If you took my advice and used a credit card, call up your credit card company and get the payment canceled. If you paid using cash... you're out of luck. If you used Paypal, open a Paypal dispute IMMEDIATELY.

Fearsome Forehand 12-27-2009 12:48 PM

-moderator note: As this entire thread is a user submitted guide, please read it accordingly. Many of the guidelines here are based in personal experience, so take the advice as you see fit.

Fearsome Forehand's Guidelines For Buying and Selling on TT

1) As a buyer, avoid sending cash unless you trust the seller completely. Avoid paying with PP balances or paying through PP using your bank account. Pay with a credit card if at all possible. Be extra cautious when buying or selling big ticket items; $200+. Scammers like the bigger deals.

1A) If using Paypal, never agree to send payment as a GIFT unless you completely trust the seller.
PP seller/buyer protections do not attach to gift transactions. Only send/receive payments FOR GOODS.

2) As a seller, if payment is received via PP, only ship to PP confirmed addresses with online tracking/ proof of delivery. Insurance is a good idea. PP requires signature confirmation as proof of delivery for goods sold for over $250. Avoid local pickup for goods paid for via PP as PP only recognizes online delivery verification as proof of delivery. Therefore, only accept cash for local pick up deals.

3) Trust your instincts. If you are getting a bad vibe, act accordingly. If the seller or buyer seems evasive, seems flaky, or if the deal seems too good to be true, there is probably a reason.

4) Be very cautious about international deals. The risk of such deals often exceeds the rewards as evidenced by the number of problems documented in the reference section. Be USPS Delivery Confirmation system overseas is very iffy. I have about a 25% failure rate, meaning delivery is never confirmed.

5) Avoid deals with minors. Almost all of the problems have been with posters who are 25 and under (especially 22 and under.)

6) Completely avoid international deals with minors. The rate of problems with such transactions is extremely high.

7) As a buyer, agree with the seller on a shipping schedule and a shipping method BEFORE paying. Agree on tracking and insurance, etc. Don't leave it entirely up to the seller's discretion. Shipping within a few business days after payment is rendered is the norm. Insurance is for the seller's benefit if something goes awry with the delivery.

8) Deal only with known sellers and buyers. If someone has no references, very few, or mixed references, be extra cautious.

9) Communicate; confirm payments, shipping and receipt. It only takes a minute to send a confirming email to keep the other party comfortable.

10) Do your homework and due diligence up front. Ask questions, get detailed descriptions and good pictures, check out the other persons references, email address and TT profile.

11) As a seller, don't overstate the condition of the merchandise. Just because you want to sell something, doesn't mean you get to enter a different reality than the rest of us. Take a thorough look at what you are selling and describe it accurately. Avoid terms like pristine and mint since they have become trite from misuse. Use terms such as like new, excellent, very good, good, fair, poor; simple terms everyone can understand. Clear pictures and very accurate detailed descriptions save much grief. As a buyer, always be somewhat skeptical of descriptions and cautious about the lack of pics from certain camera angles. A seller's 9/10 may be more like your 6/10. (I have purchased more than a few "mint condition" rackets that were very good to good condition 7/10 rackets at best.)

12) If using PP, familiarize yourself with PP's terms regarding buyer and seller protection. The devil is in the details. PP "protection" comes with lots of technical twists and turns. You are probably not as protected by PP as you might assume as many have discovered the hard way.

13) If you have a bad experience with someone, post what happened so others are forewarned. Be factual and fair not emotional and histrionic. Don't be afraid to leave bad feedback if it is truly warranted as you will probably be saving someone else from dealing with an idiot. (The best indicator of a poster's future behavior is their past behavior.)

Conversely, don't leave unwarranted negative feedback lest you appear to be an overly picky, Boy Who Cried Wolf, nightmare-to- deal-with-buyer/seller. (Jeremy said the racket had 6 paint chips and it really has 7; The grip was more worn than I expected; The seller said the racket was an 8/10 and I think it is only a 7.5/10, etc.) Unless you have been clearly scammed or substantially lied to about the condition of the racket, don't be so quick to go into bad feedback mode. Don't make a big deal about small things or you will make yourself appear so petty that others will be hesitant to deal with you. (If I posted negative feedback every time a deal didn't go perfectly, I would be leaving negative feedback more than 50% of the time.)

However, if you feel someone has scammed you, or attempted to scam you, or if you feel a seller has purposely left out substantial details about a racket, a factual account of the transaction will serve as a warning to others. (Good examples are a buyer says I never got the racket even though the tracking says it was delivered or a racket has a small crack that was "never noticed" by the seller. In both cases, the other party may be being truthful but the circumstances are somewhat suspect.) Leaving bad feedback involves some judgment so try to be reasonable about doing so. If you are not certain whether bad feedback is warranted, neutral feedback will usually suffice just as well; it isn't as condemning and still serves as a warning to others.

14) As a seller, treat money orders like personal checks. (Make sure the piece of paper clears before sending out the merchandise.
It can take 3 to 4 weeks for a check or money order drawn on a foreign bank to truly clear. Yet another hazard of international deals. Stateside, USPS money orders are the best because you can cash them at the Post Office.) As a buyer, never agree to send wire transfers unless you fully trust the seller.

15) Trades seem to have a very high rate of problems, especially international trades and trades with minors. Be very careful with whom you trade.

16) Take the time to read a few of the the train wreck reference threads. Besides the sheer entertainment value of such threads, they provide excellent case studies on what not to do.

In summary, follow a few simple, common sense procedures and you will minimize problems. The people who get taken on TT always wish they had been much more cautious after they realize they have been scammed or misled. Learn from their mistakes.

diredesire 01-06-2010 03:00 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by vkartikv (Post 4251832)
Since you've covered most of the important points, let me just add that always be courteous when you communicate with someone. This is the internet and yes, emails are meant to be informal, but sending someone a message like this 'I'll take it for 50', without a signature or a hello, especially when the item has been listed for a much higher price is an instant turn-off.

I think this is a little bit of a misconception when it comes to e-mails. Yes, e-mail is an easy, and accessible method of communication, but it doesn't mean it has to be informal, especially when it's with someone you don't know (too well). My rule of thumb is: If you're conducting business, show that you can take your business seriously. It's that simple.

diredesire 03-27-2010 02:01 PM

Sticking, let me know if you think this belongs elsewhere. I'll be removing all comments and locking this in the near future, get your final input in!

tenshock75 04-07-2010 09:14 AM

I am new to TW selling. How can I get good references if I can't get people to sell with? Great information!

SteveI 04-10-2010 05:51 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by tenshock75 (Post 4544646)
I am new to TW selling. How can I get good references if I can't get people to sell with? Great information!

Hi,

If you are a new seller or trader, you may have to be willing to ship your frame (other gear) 1st to the TT member with good references. The member then will inspect your shipment and then sent his/her cash or items back to you to complete the transaction. I have done this a few times with new members, all went well and helped them gain refs on TT.

Good luck and be careful... great place to do business.. but there are some to be careful with. Use common sense. :-)

Regards,
Steve

tenshock75 04-12-2010 07:39 AM

Thanks Steve

MAXXply 04-12-2010 09:24 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Fearsome Forehand (Post 4508578)
-moderator note: As this entire thread is a user submitted guide, please read it accordingly. Many of the guidelines here are based in personal experience, so take the advice as you see fit.

Fearsome Forehand's Guidelines For Buying and Selling on TT

4) Be very cautious about international deals. Be doubly cautious if dealing with someone outside the USA.

...Thanks very much for impugning the integrity of TW's many non-US members. We "outsiders" are the ones who'd open up our wallets and PayPal accounts in a heartbeat to buy your stuff, when no-one else will.

Standupnfall 04-12-2010 09:48 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MAXXply (Post 4557152)
...Thanks very much for impugning the integrity of TW's many non-US members. We "outsiders" are the ones who'd open up our wallets and PayPal accounts in a heartbeat to buy your stuff, when no-one else will.

I don't believe that statement is meant to disrespect members outside of the US, rather to warn them that the consequences of international sales are more risky as the tracking of delivery can be less reliable.

Perhaps the original post could be edited to reflect that all members (US or not) should be cautious dealing outside of their own country.

I am always cautious but have had a few great international deals recently.

Fearsome Forehand 04-12-2010 10:22 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MAXXply (Post 4557152)
...Thanks very much for impugning the integrity of TW's many non-US members. We "outsiders" are the ones who'd open up our wallets and PayPal accounts in a heartbeat to buy your stuff, when no-one else will.

Everyone is a critic. It was not my intent to impugn anyone's character. However, I am very guilty of always seeing everything through an American lense and make no apologies for it. And if you don't like it, tough ***** and go do a kangaroo. :)

The international problem goes both ways. There have been dinkum Aussies ripped off on this very board by people in North America. (In my defense, I helped an Aussie who traded rackets with an evil Canadian kid last summer to get his racket back. It seemed a hopeless case at first but when I gave the Aussie the kid's dad's business email address, home address and phone numbers that seemed to do the trick. Suddenly, the kid saw the light once the threat of daddy's involvement in his scheme hung over his head like an axe blade. Funny how that works.)

If both parties have great refs, and if the seller is willing to go through the added hassle of international shipping then good on ya, mate. To me, it isn't worth the extra hassle unless the buyer really makes it worth my while. I would just as soon confine myself to state side buyers and sellers. I have done international deals with mixed results. As a seller, I can assure you that the tracking/delivery aspect is often wanting and when you are dealing with PP's antics besides, that is no small consideration. In addition, if there is a problem with the merchandise, returns are a giant hassle and cost prohibitive.

I hope I have averted an international incident. I can assure you that I have nothing against Aussies. Rafter, Hewitt and Scud are among my favorite players. I even miss Stoltenberg.

I have reworded the offensive passage in hopes of fostering an aura of international brotherhood and peace among men. Shrimp on the barbi for all, say I.

MAXXply 04-12-2010 06:25 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Fearsome Forehand (Post 4557338)
I hope I have averted an international incident. I can assure you that I have nothing against Aussies. Rafter, Hewitt and Scud are among my favorite players. I even miss Stoltenberg.

I have reworded the offensive passage in hopes of fostering an aura of international brotherhood and peace among men. Shrimp on the barbi for all, say I.

...cheers FF, thanks for clearing that up. :) Your concerns are understandable. There are many trustworthy non-U.S TW members out there who don't deserve to be tarred by the same brush as a few bad apples.

SteveI 04-14-2010 11:26 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Fearsome Forehand (Post 4557338)
Everyone is a critic. It was not my intent to impugn anyone's character. However, I am very guilty of always seeing everything through an American lense and make no apologies for it. And if you don't like it, tough ***** and go do a kangaroo. :)

The international problem goes both ways. There have been dinkum Aussies ripped off on this very board by people in North America. (In my defense, I helped an Aussie who traded rackets with an evil Canadian kid last summer to get his racket back. It seemed a hopeless case at first but when I gave the Aussie the kid's dad's business email address, home address and phone numbers that seemed to do the trick. Suddenly, the kid saw the light once the threat of daddy's involvement in his scheme hung over his head like an axe blade. Funny how that works.)

If both parties have great refs, and if the seller is willing to go through the added hassle of international shipping then good on ya, mate. To me, it isn't worth the extra hassle unless the buyer really makes it worth my while. I would just as soon confine myself to state side buyers and sellers. I have done international deals with mixed results. As a seller, I can assure you that the tracking/delivery aspect is often wanting and when you are dealing with PP's antics besides, that is no small consideration. In addition, if there is a problem with the merchandise, returns are a giant hassle and cost prohibitive.

I hope I have averted an international incident. I can assure you that I have nothing against Aussies. Rafter, Hewitt and Scud are among my favorite players. I even miss Stoltenberg.

I have reworded the offensive passage in hopes of fostering an aura of international brotherhood and peace among men. Shrimp on the barbi for all, say I.

FFH,

Thanks for your efforts in helping to create and maintain this thread. This issue has been beat into the ground. In general, there are more risks for sellers/traders/buyers when doing an international deal (BOTH SIDES) for all the reasons stated in your post. Again...common sense seems to work best.

Regards,
Steve (One of guys who helped start this thread) :twisted:

edman9898 03-09-2011 07:44 PM

.........................

eliza 03-10-2011 04:31 AM

Gosh You got me scared, but thank you!!!!

SteveI 03-10-2011 05:57 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by eliza (Post 5475862)
Gosh You got me scared, but thank you!!!!

Hey Eliza,

Nothing to be scared about just use good sense. Most of the time when folks get taken or have problems it is just a lack of doing a bit of homework.

The ref section can tell you most about buyers/sellers.. traders here. 99% of the folks on here (TT) are great. Good luck!!!

Steve

Birdinhio 06-09-2011 12:28 PM

hey, i can't see the email button on threads so that i can email people through their profile, any ideas?? i've ticked all the necessary boxes on my user CP but still can't see the email link...:-?

edman9898 06-09-2011 12:36 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Birdinhio (Post 5734025)
hey, i can't see the email button on threads so that i can email people through their profile, any ideas?? i've ticked all the necessary boxes on my user CP but still can't see the email link...:-?

You do not have enough posts yet. I think you have to have at least 50 or 100, not sure. Leave your email on the thread and let them contact you.

diredesire 06-09-2011 01:02 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Birdinhio (Post 5734025)
hey, i can't see the email button on threads so that i can email people through their profile, any ideas?? i've ticked all the necessary boxes on my user CP but still can't see the email link...:-?

I don't think there are restrictions for new users, but I could be wrong. (I can't check board settings). The way to e-mail a user is to click their name, a dropdown menu should pop out. If the user has e-mailing enable, you should see a link in this dropdown menu. You can test on my username, i have e-mailing enabled. If you don't see it, it's a new user restriction.

Birdinhio 06-09-2011 01:08 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by diredesire (Post 5734124)
I don't think there are restrictions for new users, but I could be wrong. (I can't check board settings). The way to e-mail a user is to click their name, a dropdown menu should pop out. If the user has e-mailing enable, you should see a link in this dropdown menu. You can test on my username, i have e-mailing enabled. If you don't see it, it's a new user restriction.

must be a new user thing, as when i click on your name i get, view profile, add to buddy list and view other posts.
any idea how many posts or whatever are required to progress on from a new user?

diredesire 06-09-2011 02:40 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Birdinhio (Post 5734147)
must be a new user thing, as when i click on your name i get, view profile, add to buddy list and view other posts.
any idea how many posts or whatever are required to progress on from a new user?

hmm, interesting. I don't remember seeing that limitation, that kind of sucks, but at the same time, new user permissions were created to deter spammers (from competitors, etc).

50 posts is the new user limit.


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