PayPal - Payment held for 21 days

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by kolax, Mar 9, 2010.

  1. kolax macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2007
    #1
    Here's the situation:

    I sold my 13" MBP on eBay. Buyer sent me the money, however PayPal is holding it for 21 days/until the buyer receives it and confirms the item was received. Now, the problem is, I was going to use those funds to buy my replacement Mac, then ship this one off.

    I was expecting it to take 2-3 days for the funds to appear in my bank account so I can set up shipping and the buyer have it within 4-5 days. This is a huge PITA.. it basically screws up the whole plan. I can't be without a computer for 21 days! I need the funds now.

    And the whole "holding thing" is bloody stupid - the buyer paid postage! Yet, I can't have access to the bloody postage money, so I'm having to cover the postage on my on behalf until the 21 day period!

    Anyone else been in this situation? How was it resolved? Any ideas?
     
  2. andalusia macrumors 68030

    andalusia

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2009
    Location:
    Manchester, UK
    #2
    Can't get a bit of luck selling this thing can you!

    Why exactly are they doing this?
     
  3. Bennieboy© macrumors 65816

    Bennieboy©

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2009
    Location:
    england
    #3
    it's paypals method for protecting buyers, especially if your not an active seller, it wont be 21 days, they will usually lift the block once the buyer has left satisfactory feedback for the item, but if they dont, then you have to wait, i sold my iMac thru my brother on the 25th of january but paypal still haven't unlocked the money :/

    you could use google checkout they dont have the same issues but they charge more fees.
     
  4. kolax thread starter macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2007
    #4
    I've no idea.. I don't know if my account has been flagged up for suspicious activity or what.

    Last week, I had it on eBay and my flatmate offered to do a starting bid. Unfortunately, the auction ended at 1am (bad timing on my behalf!) and although there was 30 watchers, no one else bidded! So I ended up having to cancel that and re-list it. Then, last night, someone bought it (buy it now) and then 5 minutes later, that user was no longer registered. So eBay refunded the Final Value Fee, and I relisted for the 3rd time.

    Apart from that, I have 100% feedback. I really can't see what the issue is at all.

    I've told the buyer what the situation is, and said that I can't really ship until the funds are in my account "un-frozen". I mentioned if he was willing to give me positive feedback it might speed this up, but stated it was his choice and it could look suspicious.
     
  5. andalusia macrumors 68030

    andalusia

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2009
    Location:
    Manchester, UK
    #5
    If you're lucky (like I was yesterday, I'm pretty much in the same boat) you'll have a nice seller who'll be willing to wait for your funds to be reactivated. Three weeks isn't that crazy a time to wait for something, unless the buyer really needs it now.
     
  6. JBazz macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2006
    #6
    EBay and paypal pretty much suck. I wont sell anything of any real value on there ever again, got burned by them.
     
  7. Hawkeye411 macrumors 68000

    Hawkeye411

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2007
    Location:
    Canada EH!!!
    #7
    To be honest, if I bid on a computer on Ebay and the seller gave me a story like this, I'd be really suspicious. I wouldn't leave positive feedback until I received the item and if the seller said that s/he couldn't ship it, I'd contact PayPal and file a complaint to get my money back and buy a different computer.

    If you decide to ship it, make sure that the purchaser has a confirmed PayPal address and that you only ship to that address and that you track the package with a requirement for a signature. Review the Seller Protection information on the PayPal website for the latest regulations for protecting yourself. If you don't follow the rules, the buyer could say they s/he never received the package and will get a refund from PayPal.

    Hope it works out for you!
     
  8. niuniu macrumors 68020

    niuniu

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2009
    Location:
    A man of the people. The right sort of people.
    #8
    Yep this has been their policy for over a year now. They risk assess certain account, and certain transaction types, and if it falls into a threshold they put the funds on hold. Electronic goods, as you can see, is one of the high risk of fraud categories.

    There really isn't much you can do, bar pressure the guy to inform Paypal that you fulfilled the sale. I had my account payments on hold for months until I had a 20 Detailed Seller Ratings from eBay, which takes a while to get and most people just give standard feedback. Really frustrating, but what can you do..
     
  9. chris975d macrumors 68000

    chris975d

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2008
    Location:
    Georgia, USA
    #9
    I've disliked this policy since Paypal put it into place, as I sell quite often on eBay. They hold funds pretty standard now on anything in the consumer electronics categories (computers, cell phones, pdas, etc). But the hold won't be for 21 days, if you will enter the tracking info for the item you're shipping as soon as you ship it. This way Paypal will also have access to that info, and their policy is to lift the hold on the funds 3 days after proof of delivery to the buyer (which them having the tracking number on file will show), or earlier if the buyer leaves you positive feedback before the 3 day limit is up. I just went through this last week selling a Macbook Pro, and the last 3 laptops I've sold on eBay. If they haven't lifted the hold by the 3rd day after delivery, you can just call in and have them look up the info (run the tracking number to see that it has been successfully delivered 3 days ago) and they will release the funds immediately.

    P.S. Just a bit of advice...take a picture of your laptop, with serial number showing, before you send it off. I had a friend who sent a perfectly working non-unibody Macbook Pro to a buyer, and the buyer reported to paypal that the seller had "sent the wrong item/sent defective item" upon receiving. He supposedly sent the laptop back (had a tracking number to show paypal for verification), so Paypal took the funds out of my friends account and issued them back to the buyer. But what the buyer had actually done was swap my friends working MBP for his broken MBP, and sent the broken one back to my friend like it was his. The buyer scammed my friend, and he (my friend) had no documentation of the serial number anywhere, so no way to prove to Paypal that it wasn't his. Paypal typically sides with the buyer. My friend is still dealing with the situation, but so far hasn't really gotten anywhere with it.
     
  10. kolax thread starter macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2007
    #10
    I've just fired an email off to PayPal to explain the situation to see what they have to say.

    Thing is, that's 3-5 days for shipment, then another 3 days for the funds to appear in my bank account. That's potentially over a week without a computer, something I can't really do!
     
  11. chris975d macrumors 68000

    chris975d

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2008
    Location:
    Georgia, USA
    #11
    This is not a policy that Paypal typically lets up on, and in fact seems to be getting worse about. I have over 75 sells through eBay/paypal in the past couple of years, with no negative feedback ever, and they still do it to me. It's even gotten to where they are doing it when I sell lower priced items like Blackberrys, iPod touches, and iPhones. It started just being higher ticket items like laptops/computers over $1500. But let us know how it goes, and what Paypal says. And I've found that with Paypal, it's better to call in and speak with someone. They will often (if they are allowed) pull strings to keep customers happy.
     
  12. kolax thread starter macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2007
    #12
    Good advice on the serial number as evidence. I've also told the buyer I can supply additional photos and the serial number if he is doubting in any way.

    I've emailed them, but if they reply stating their policy, I'm going to give them a call. I really hope they can speed this whole thing up..
     
  13. kolax thread starter macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2007
    #13
    Having to borrow money from a close friend to get out of this situation..

    Anyway, shipping the item either tomorrow or Friday, and will email the buyer as well as PayPal all the shipping details. I've also taken photos of the laptop to show it is in good condition, as well as the serial number. I also shot a quick movie with close ups on the edges, ports and screen.

    Thanks for all your help!
     
  14. Teh Don Ditty macrumors G4

    Teh Don Ditty

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2007
    Location:
    Maryland
    #14
    I'm a bit late since you sorted this out...

    If you input the tracking number into PayPal and once delivery confirmation is obtained, the funds get released. Generally not anywhere near that 21 day number.

    Also, positive feedback from the buyer will release the funds earlier.
     
  15. yg17 macrumors G5

    yg17

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2004
    Location:
    St. Louis, MO
    #15
    That's all it takes? A tracking number? It sounds like PayPal is trying to screw sellers in the name of protecting buyers while not actually protecting buyers, because a tracking number doesn't guarantee the contents of the package; there could be a brick in there. Or it could be a P-P-Powerbook ;)
     
  16. Teh Don Ditty macrumors G4

    Teh Don Ditty

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2007
    Location:
    Maryland
    #16
    Yea, but it's not like instantly. Sorry if it came off that way.
     
  17. niuniu macrumors 68020

    niuniu

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2009
    Location:
    A man of the people. The right sort of people.
    #17
    Paypal changed their policy again over the past several months saying that the can't do reversals concerning the quality of a product, and in other categories also. They used to do reversals for buyers a lot. Which was becoming a problem as buyers could get their product, then just file a reversal claiming the product wasn't what they expected, or wasn't in the package. What could the seller really do to prove it?

    Hard balance for Paypal to crack..
     
  18. yojitani macrumors 68000

    yojitani

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2005
    Location:
    An octopus's garden
    #18
    This policy irritates me too, but the best thing to do is to send the item off as quickly as you can, make sure there is some type of delivery confirmation (and insurance, since it's a computer) on it. Don't mess about with the buyer asking them to do this and that. From the buyer's point of view, you being without a computer is your problem, not theirs. Find a way to do without until you get feedback or the delivery is confirmed.
     
  19. barkomatic macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2008
    Location:
    Manhattan
    #19
    The waiting period is one of the reasons I rarely sell items on ebay anymore. I understand the desire to protect buyers, but the scammers simply shifted their tactics to scam sellers under the current environment. Also, the fees are ridiculous. Ebay used to be so much fun, because the best stuff came from small sellers who would dig out really cool stuff from their attic and put it up for sale. High fees, waiting periods, and scammers have deterred a lot of that. Now we have a lot of bulk sellers or even major companies using ebay as a retail channel.
     
  20. andalusia macrumors 68030

    andalusia

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2009
    Location:
    Manchester, UK
    #20
    Too many items are shipped from Hong Kong too.
     
  21. jav6454 macrumors P6

    jav6454

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2007
    Location:
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
    #21
    I never buy items that locations are in Hong Kong... way to risky.
     
  22. Sdashiki macrumors 68040

    Sdashiki

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2005
    Location:
    Behind the lens
    #22
    You were selling an item in hopes of using the revenue to buy another.

    The buyer had no reason to believe that it wouldn't be shipped immediately after payment.

    Your issue with paypal holding the money keeping you from buying your next machine is your fault as a seller.

    Its not how eBay works, and its not how PayPal works.

    You don't sell something you can't honestly ship after payment. And paypal is keeping you, the seller, honest.
     
  23. kolax thread starter macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2007
    #23
    I stated shipping within 5 working days on the auction info. The buyer was well aware it wouldn't be shipped right after.

    PayPal transfers funds within 2-3 working days to my account. Had the funds not been held, everything would have been fine. This is nothing to do with the buyer and I've never said it was.

    Though, think of it this way. What if the buyer had wanted full postal insurance? That'd be around £70, then shipping, which would be around £20. For me to ship that item, even though the buyer pays shipping, will cost me £90 until PayPal releases the funds.

    What if I don't have £90 there to cover the shipping costs until the funds are released? It isn't my fault. It isn't the buyer's fault. It is the stupid system eBay has.

    Don't start arguing that the seller should be prepared to cover shipment costs because if I was selling a dozen items on eBay and had to cover high postal costs initially, it could be into the hundreds of pounds.
     
  24. GeekGirl* macrumors 65816

    GeekGirl*

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2009
    Location:
    Buffalo, NY
    #24
    You need over 100 feedback for payments not to be held, Paypal sucks, I ended up selling on Amazon less of a hassle and much cheaper for the seller :)

    If he says his account was jacked you will not get a payment. The Joy of Ebay and Paypal.
     
  25. Nermal Moderator

    Nermal

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2002
    Location:
    New Zealand
    #25
    It's not his fault, it's PayPal's fault. PayPal unexpectedly didn't give him the money from a sale; you can't blame him just because PayPal held the money.

    I fully sympathise with Kilamite, I've used the same "technique" in the past when selling computers and have never run into this "escrow issue" (but I don't use eBay/PayPal). It must be a fairly common situation, and PayPal is apparently now making things a nightmare for sellers.
     

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