1. Maverick macrumors member

    Aug 19, 2003
    Beaumont, Texas
    Ok, so I did something really stupid.

    I sold my previous computer (a Windows laptop) on eBay so I could start saving up to buy a new Powerbook. Well, it sold for nearly $1,000, and the buyer sent me a money order for $700, promising he'd send the rest of the money after he got paid that Friday. So, being the trusting idiot that I am, I shipped him the laptop anyway, thinking I'd receive the rest of the money the next day.

    Well, I got screwed. :mad: He never sent the other $300, and every time I have tried to contact him he blames the postal service, saying that they keep sending the envelope with his payment in it back to him. I dismissed this as BS, because his first payment arrived just fine. Then I requested his phone number and tried calling his house, but every time I do he's not in, so I end up leaving a message only for him to not return my calls.

    I know I'm at fault for being a moron and shipping the thing before I received payment in full, but isn't there anything I can do? The jerk still owes me money, and I was hoping if I notified eBay or put enough pressure on him, he'd have to send it. Has anyone been in a similar situation like this one? Can I do anything or am I just screwed out of $300? :(
  2. t300 macrumors 6502a


    Apr 10, 2004
    As an avid eBay buyer and seller, I am fortunate enough to say that I haven't come across a problem like this. I don't want to sound like a smart ass when I say this but, I am not that stupid. People learn things the hard way in life, and although its never been on eBay, I too have learned a few things the very hard way. eBay is pretty good about all of this. Nothing may come of it but they will try their hardest. The good thing is that eBay has dealt with a million cases exactly like yours so don't fret concerning that. They will do what you can...One thing is very good out of this...You got 700 dollars...True, you missed out on the 300 dollars, but it could have been WAYYY worse, just be glad in that case. Keep us updated, please.
  3. fussball macrumors regular

    May 7, 2003
    Since your transaction involved the US postal service, in sending the money, you can file mail fraud charges... if anything you can fill out the form at USPS.com, and they will send him a letter telling him he will lose his mail service to his address if he doesn't pay. It is worth a try, at least.
  4. rt_brained macrumors 6502a

    Jan 13, 2002
    You could also release his information via the internet. I bet this guy would hate being exposed for what he is. Even worse, it would suck if someone stole it from him and sent it back to you. Or they could hold it hostage and you could leave a message on his machine notifying him of the situation...or just resell it to someone else. Or steal it from him and turn it in to the cops and inform them of the situation...although, that could get real sticky.

    Having his picture splattered all over the internet or turned in to the local authorities would be a bummer for him too.

    I'll leave it to you to put 2+2 together from this point on.
  5. fussball macrumors regular

    May 7, 2003
    stealing= very bad idea. go through legal routes so you stay in the clean....
  6. Thirteenva macrumors 6502a

    Jul 18, 2002
    I would bet that this guy is counting on the fact that you'll give up on contacting him over the $300 dollars. I'd persist, and also report him to ebay and possibly the usps. He may not return your messages, but he is getting them. Just avoid making empty threats such about notifying police or lawyers unless you actually have.
  7. eyelikeart Moderator emeritus


    Jan 2, 2001
    Metairie, LA
    It sounds like u did get screwed. People worry about ebay, and no offense, but because of reasons such as yours. NEVER give up a product before receiving your payment in full.

    I hope u can get this resolved. Keep us posted to any developments. ;)
  8. 3-22 macrumors regular

    Nov 19, 2002
    Why did you send the laptop!??!!?!?!??!?!

    Your best bet is to avoid the threatening calls... Send a professional letter via certified mail stating he still owes $300 for the transaction. Remind him the auction was a legal contract and he is currently in default. Then give a date, and say a legal filling will be made in small claims court if the money is not received. It's up to you if that date passes to go small claims or not. You may end up spending almost that in travel, court fees, etc.

    eBay can suspend his account and maybe nag him but they won't do much. Especially since you sent him the laptop with only $700 paid. He could lie to them and say you made an outside verbal agreement for $700. Then it's your word against his word.

    You're probably screwed... Atleast you got $700. I'd chalk up the $300 to a life lesson.

    Good luck...
  9. boz2004 macrumors member

    Apr 8, 2004
    I've only had one person mess me over on eBay and I was the buyer in that case...

    But, I was only out 20 so it wasn't worth trying to do follow-ups after the third attempt... but, in this case, I'd say

    1) compose a professional letter and send it to the seller. Let the seller know you are CC:ing the US Postal service as well as eBay... and do it.

    2) contact the US Postal service, see what suggestions they have and follow them... with it going through them, it might fall into some sort of petty larceny wrap for the seller; though that's purely a guess on my part

    3) never repeat the mistake. we all make errors, sometimes things "just work out" and other times we're hosed... but, so long as we learn from the "OOps" we grow from there...
  10. Kwyjibo macrumors 68040


    Nov 5, 2002
    Hmmm, well now that your saving your PB, why don't you open a high interested account here at the bank of kwjibo, just send me all your savings and i'll hold onto them for you and keep them safe from scammer .... j/j

    i would do all of the aboive, and try to figure out if you can find out where he works .... either send a letter or make a phone call to his boss ... or his wife or his mom ...
  11. 0s and 1s macrumors 6502a

    0s and 1s

    Mar 7, 2004
    OK, USA
    Just send me a money order for $300 and I will get your money back in a week! As a free gift, I'll send you eBay for Dummies!
  12. Horrortaxi macrumors 68020


    Jul 6, 2003
    Los Angeles
  13. Nny macrumors regular


    Apr 7, 2004
    if you accepted the $700 then I believe you have no legal recourse. you accepted payment and shipped item. done deal. would not get an extra cent in small claims court.

    this is what you get from not watching enough court tv shows. next time watch more Judge Judy. this problem takes place quite often on those shows.

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