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A Bid is a Contract to Buy

In response to eBay Return Center: Becoming an Amazon?:

I fully agree with the writer, who noted that returns should be a last resort. I put in my Ts & Cs that if in the end we (buyer and seller) cannot resolve a bona fide issue, then I pay for the return and full refund of all costs.

This does not mean if you change your mind just send it back, or if you got caught up in the bidding just send the item back. The auction process is, in fact, a contract. If you bid on an item, you are making a contract to purchase the item at that price. If you do not intend to buy, well don’t bid.

This “send it back on a whim” concept flies in the face of honesty and trustworthiness. What would be the point of selling if you were subject to a unilateral decision to not pay (same as returning, in my book).

eBay and most other auction sites are predicated on the buyer being honestly interested in the seller’s goods—and the seller being honest about condition, shipping cost and payment terms. There are specific reasons, at least on eBay, for which a buyer can return items. If this is expanded to “anything that you feel,” it will not result in growth. In fact, it will be the death knell of the system.

If you don’t want something, don’t bid on it. What part of that is not clear?

—CWR/ManMade Stuff

p.s.: btw, I have had very few (less than five) returns in the 10 years I have been selling by auction on eBay and other sites. I put that down to being honest with my clients, and caring about them. That is how one grows a business and has repeat customers.

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