Marketplace Advice


  • Put yourself in the buyer’s position; what would make you enquire about or bid on this particular item as opposed to another, similar one?
  • Start with an overall analysis of the item for sale – stress its good points and include a few ‘tempters’ to encourage reading further.
  • If there’s a good history, paperwork or other relevant documentation, mention it.
  • If something doesn’t work, say so.
  • Be honest; if something really is exceptional say so, but making the product sound better than it is just wastes everyone’s time.
  • Stay safe! Don’t give a buyer your address until you know they’re definitely coming to view or buy.
  • Always arrange a specific time for viewings.
  • Do not accept a personal cheque from someone you don’t know.
  • Don’t get involved any complex arrangements involving giving ‘change’ for a payment that’s more than your asking price, especially involving overseas buyers or transfers using methods such as Western Union.


  • Start by asking if the item is for sale. This should reveal if the seller is a trader masquerading as a private seller
  • Be suspicious of any item that is cheaper than it should be. If it seems to too good to be true, it probably is.
  • Ask plenty of questions about the product – any good and bad points
  • Never send money in advance of buying a product, even a deposit
  • Check for any supporting documentation that proves the seller actually owns the product, and ask for a receipt
  • Ask yourself if you can trace the seller after the sale? Do you have multiple contact details and ideally an address?
  • Ultimately, trust your gut instinct. If any feels remotely suspicious, or you don’t like the answers you’re getting to your questions, just walk away
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