How safe is Craigslist for buying MBPs?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Pngwyn, Oct 20, 2008.

  1. Pngwyn macrumors regular

    Oct 20, 2008
    Just curious..

    I have a guy on CL who is trying to sell a new-model MBP with 4GB for $1700, including original packaging and reciepts and wants to meet locally. Now all of this is in check, but the really good deal makes me skeptical and I've heard a lot of sketchy stories about CL.

    What do you guys think? Anything I should check when I meet with him in specific?
  2. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
  3. MazingerZ macrumors 6502


    Aug 22, 2007
    If its too good to be true... :p
  4. e12a macrumors 68000


    Oct 28, 2006
    i sold my 2.33 for 1.5k last year on craigs.. The deal went down at starbucks.
  5. cshale210 macrumors member

    Nov 8, 2007
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 2_1 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/525.18.1 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/3.1.1 Mobile/5F136 Safari/525.20)

    I work a lot with craigslist. Try to create a mini relationship via email (see if they seem like a legit person) meet in a very public place. Look at the product, turn it on etc. Be skeptical but this could be a deal
  6. bushbaby macrumors 6502a


    Aug 12, 2007
    When you say "new model" do you mean the one that just came out last week or the previous model? If it's the brand new model, then I would be very cautious about this. There's no reason someone should be reselling one of the brand new models unless it was hot. I'd prefer to buy direct from Apple.

    If it's the last model, you can get a refurb or clearance machine from the Apple website and get a warranty. I personally would not do that now due to this known problem with the graphics card discussed in this thread:

    "Apple says some MacBook Pros affected by faulty Nvidia chips"

    Craigslist in and of itself is just a bulletin board. It can be fine or it can be trouble. But in your particular case, I think you're better off going through Apple.
  7. dwdrums macrumors newbie


    Oct 14, 2008
    Pa, USA
    craigslist isn't the question... are the people on craigslist safe. You'll never know.
  8. marvel2 macrumors 6502

    Jun 27, 2007
    This is what I do.
  9. rkdiddy macrumors 65816


    Mar 19, 2008
    OC Baby!
    As long as the thread doesn't start out with MSM and has an erotic photo attached to it, you're probably good. :p

    Just make sure to meet in a public place, and thoroughly check out your purchase before any money exchanges place.
  10. Steve686 macrumors 68040


    Nov 13, 2007
    US>FL>Miami/Dade>Sunny Isles Beach>Condo
    Ask to have the dealer email pics to you of the receipt and computer (w/o serial number of course), and the guy selling it so you will recognize him when you meet. You can do likewise also.
  11. virtuatony macrumors regular

    Mar 9, 2008
  12. Son of Matrix macrumors regular

    Son of Matrix

    Jan 9, 2008
    Not safe. Why not safe a few more months and get refurbished item? It's not worth it. I got cheated before in eBay. I haven't buy another macbook pro since then... :(
  13. KingYaba macrumors 68040


    Aug 7, 2005
    Up the irons
    Meet at a bank. Demo the computer for a couple minutes. Buyer withdraws the cash and exchanges it for what ever is being sold. The seller can then go right to the bank teller and deposit the money.
  14. sk47 macrumors member

    May 28, 2008
    Best indication/red flag for craigslist. Period.
  15. jdwingnut macrumors regular

    Feb 18, 2008
    In the Redwoods, California
    Legit people selling on Craigslist, put their LOCAL phone numbers in their ads.

    There are of course those that don't, but as a general rule, ANY ad that asks you to leave your contact number in an email so they can call you, is one I walk away from (or type, in this case), and as someone else pointed out, try and make email conversation, through a series of questions, to not only find out about the item in question, but who you're dealing with as well. Ask them for the serial number.

    ONLY meet in a public (lots of people), daylight location. Banks are good and often have security roaming the parking lots. Starbucks is good.

    Remember, if they are a legit seller, they should be asking these same types of questions about you.

    Never, ever go to someone's house OR let them come to yours, no matter how good ANYTHING sounds.
  16. Empyre macrumors member

    Oct 9, 2008
    I have sold a great deal of items on craigslist, and just make sure you meet with them in person, make sure your product works....But in this case I would certainly question the legitimacy of this because there is little chance someone would be selling a brand spanking new computer on craigslist...they haven't even been readily available to people for a week yet....I would be very skeptical about this...I would rather just pay the extra money and buy straight from apple
  17. wesrk macrumors 6502a

    Nov 4, 2007
    Use common sense. If you are going through with this, meet in a public place at a reasonable hour. The poster above who mentioned the bank has a point, since it would be nice not to have the money right there and only withdraw after you're buying the item.

    For example, my friend bought a camera from a guy off craigslist, they met on the student union, my friend tested the camera, played around with it and then decided he was going to buy it, went tot he ATM right there and got the money and the seller even used the same ATM to deposit. Overall a positive experience. Of course, there are also scary and sad stories too. Again, common sense is yor best ally.
  18. snowmoon macrumors 6502a


    Oct 6, 2005
    Albany, NY
    I have never placed my phone number in the ad. I will share it with any legitimate sounding email response.

    Honestly people I think we are over thinking this. They are probably selling a "new" old MBP they picked up a few days before the new ones came out.
  19. angemon89 macrumors 68000


    Feb 5, 2008
    The place where Apple designs stuff
    I laugh every time I get a response like that on craigslist. The fraud responses are always so similar. Maybe it's the same person or something...?
  20. e12a macrumors 68000


    Oct 28, 2006
    i didnt give my # out in my listing. Granted, my first one got flagged.

    second one stayed up, still w/o a phone #, and directions to email first. I stated clearly in my posting that my # will be given to serious buyers only. And i did, and received calls from the more interested buyers instead of giving it to the low ballers and people that would otherwise waste my time.
  21. sfroom macrumors regular

    Apr 30, 2008
    If this is legit, it's probably a BNIB (brand new in box) previous generation MBP, or alternatively, the only explanation I can come up with is that someone is abusing their employee discount through Apple or Best Buy (although I don't think BB discounts are that steep).

    Meet in public, ask him why he's selling in an email first. I always try to give the benefit of the doubt in these situations, but if any of the responses sound sketchy, better to be safe than sorry.
  22. Pr0digy Guest

    Nov 4, 2008
    Great tips!

    Also when you get a serial number from a seller enter it on this page: and find out if the specs are what they should be (or if the seller swapped parts) or maybe even if it's been reported stolen on that website.
  23. HiFiGuy528 macrumors 68000

    Jul 24, 2008
  24. ozziegn macrumors 6502a


    Aug 16, 2007
    Central FL Area
    I've sold several laptops on Craigslist with great success and I have never nor would I ever put my phone # in the ad. hell no......

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