RANT about craigslist buyers - TCCoA Forums
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-07-2017, 12:28 AM Thread Starter
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RANT about craigslist buyers

Ive sold a few items on CL (basically items that are too bulky or not worth it to ship and/or pay eBay fees for) and one question above all others annoys me the most: "What's your best price"?

I'd like to pose this question to other TCCOAers: As a CL buyer, does this shit actually work for you? As a CL seller who has been asked this question, why would you ever give a better price?

My position is that a) my best price is what's listed in my ad, b) if I wanted less money for said item I would have listed it for less and c) I will never negotiate against myself. I do mention in my reply that I'll give reasonable consideration to reasonable offers but these folks almost never offer a price they would actually be willing to pay.

IMO, anyone who asks this question is just a lazy buyer and/or someone who isn't serious about buying that item (I guess they just want to see if you are willing to give them something for free or $5 because they asked). In fact, I cannot think of a single time I've sold something to someone who tried this tactic -- they are quite literally in the case of my current listing (selling four 94-95 17" mustang wheels I bought before sourcing 17s in the tbird bolt pattern), kicking tires.

PS. The only thing worse than these lookie-loos are people who shop on CL for older generation Apple products. I agreed to sell a 1st gen Apple watch for a friend when it was already a "previous generation item" and will never do that again. Despite publishing the part #s and clearly marking that it was not a current gen watch, I had multiple buyers contact me for several hours about this brand new factory sealed item (gift from her company) and multiple rounds of back and forth asking a ton of questions (two of them even called the apple geniuses or whatever they call their CSRs) before offering me $50. There must be something in the combination of technical ignorance + cheapness that makes this group particularly hard to deal with. After a week and a half of these idiots, I just listed it on eBay.. sold it for $150 on the same day, shipped it the next day, and never heard from the guy again. Sometimes, it's worth paying those eBay bastards their 20% (when you factor in all the fees+paypal).

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PS. If anyone does want a set of (4) 94-95 Mustang GT wheels for a reasonable price, I'll cut you a deal ($100 local pickup only). I know this is the price "all day long" in certain parts of the US but it took me a while to find them at this price in the Bay Area.

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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-07-2017, 01:31 AM
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Amazing how universal Craigslist buyers are across the country, I get the same thing every time I list something and am pretty much burned out from the hassle.

As a buyer I have never EVER used that tactic. I have negotiated prices down a few bucks but if I respond to an ad at all it means I'm willing to pay the advertised price in full if they aren't willing to haggle.

As a seller, No. I have found buyers who use this tactic, unlike me, are not only unwilling to pay the listed value in full, they aren't willing to pay more than HALF the listed value. I always respond to the "what's your best price?" text with "how much are you willing to pay", and the answer always confirms this observation. Even if I counter with a truly discounted price (like 25% off) they usually won't respond back.


My peeve in the last few years is Chicago Craigslist gets lumped into a tri-state area and like clockwork I always get real willing buyers from Indiana or Wisconsin who go silent when they ask where I'm located and find out it's Illinois(which irritates me as well, it's in the ad!).
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-07-2017, 05:58 AM
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I always put FIRM in the line for the price. Yes they do try to haggle, but I just tell them the price is the price...

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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-07-2017, 06:48 AM
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Too many junior negotiators that watch too much tv.

If someone says, "What's your best price?", say, "What's your best offer?"

I've got some wheels on CL, too for $100. If someone were to say, "I'll give you 50 bucks." I'd reply, "I'll take 150." Then dicker a little or tell them let's not waste any more time on this.
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-07-2017, 10:46 AM
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I think the problem with craigslist is that it is free. Obviously the cost on ebay is a little excessive, but the fact that it costs literally nothing to put something up on craigslist means that it attracts all the cheap bastards. It also means there is no incentive to price something accurately, since you can renew the ad an infinite number of times for no cost. The result is that people who have junk throw it up on craigslist for a ridiculous price, hoping to score, and people looking to buy on craigslist assume that everything on there is junk, and if they make any offer at all, it is based on the presumption that this thing it junk, or you are just looking to get rid of it. My personal strategy with craigslist, is that I won't make or accept any offer unless it is in person and looking at the item. If someone has taken the time and effort to come look at what I am selling, or to meet me to show me what they have for sale, then we both know that the other is serious. I also do pad my price when I list something on craigslist, because it is pretty much understood that nobody pays asking price for anything on craigslist, and if someone actually shows up and asks what my best price is, I will tell them the real price I had in my head, instead of the one listed on craigslist. To be honest though, the biggest reason I tend not to sell anything on craigslist anymore is that the last few times I have listed anything, I've gotten probably 20 or 30 texts from out of state numbers in broken english trying to scam me, and maybe if I'm lucky, one or two real people actually interested.
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-07-2017, 11:38 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MadMikeyL View Post
I think the problem with craigslist is that it is free. Obviously the cost on ebay is a little excessive, but the fact that it costs literally nothing to put something up on craigslist means that it attracts all the cheap bastards. It also means there is no incentive to price something accurately, since you can renew the ad an infinite number of times for no cost. The result is that people who have junk throw it up on craigslist for a ridiculous price, hoping to score, and people looking to buy on craigslist assume that everything on there is junk, and if they make any offer at all, it is based on the presumption that this thing it junk, or you are just looking to get rid of it. My personal strategy with craigslist, is that I won't make or accept any offer unless it is in person and looking at the item. If someone has taken the time and effort to come look at what I am selling, or to meet me to show me what they have for sale, then we both know that the other is serious. I also do pad my price when I list something on craigslist, because it is pretty much understood that nobody pays asking price for anything on craigslist, and if someone actually shows up and asks what my best price is, I will tell them the real price I had in my head, instead of the one listed on craigslist. To be honest though, the biggest reason I tend not to sell anything on craigslist anymore is that the last few times I have listed anything, I've gotten probably 20 or 30 texts from out of state numbers in broken english trying to scam me, and maybe if I'm lucky, one or two real people actually interested.
By default, I never turn on the CL mail relay and require that people contact me by phone. Historically, this cut down on a ton of tire kickers. The challenge though is that with the increased advent of texting vs calling (damned millenials), my percentage of lookie loos/flakes has gone up again.

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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-07-2017, 12:13 PM
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If somebody asks "What's your best price" (Or any other negotiating), I'll knock $x off as I usually mark it up $x in preparation for low balls. People like to feel like they're getting a deal.

As a buyer I won't ask that question, I'll just send them an offer. It is CL after all, not a retail store. Sellers should expect offers. I've gotten many a deal by lowish balling. Not insultingly low.

OP- If you use the shipping discount ebay offers it usually offsets the paypal fees, making it 10% total. I tend to sell 90% of my stuff on ebay as it'll often net more money, sells quicker and is a lot less hassle..for me. Bigger stuff ends up on cl.

Last edited by sbcaprice305; 11-07-2017 at 04:45 PM.
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-07-2017, 12:25 PM
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When I sell something on Craigslist, I overprice it by 50 to 100% of what I'd actually want for it. People have it in their head that they're great hagglers, and by over inflating your price and "letting" them talk you down, sometimes you get more than you expected, and it tends to keep the real cheapos/time wasters out.

But on that note, I tend to do the same thing. If I see something I think is over priced, I'll make a fair offer. If they say no, I walk. If they don't, we talk.

If it seems priced fairly, I don't argue, don't haggle, just hand them the cash and walk away/drive away with what I wanted.
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-07-2017, 01:11 PM
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Interesting replies here. Such is the nature of the CL crowd ....

Good advice about the "mark it up to mark it down" tactic. Retailers do this all the time.

One such case that comes to mind is where Kohls was sued in 2015 for inflating the "Regular" or "Original" price. TJ Maxx faces a similar suit.

https://consumerist.com/2015/07/23/l...iginal-prices/

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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-07-2017, 01:36 PM
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It works to a point. I don't ask a considerable amount over what I want but still leave a bit of room. I get my asking price probably 50% of the time with no haggling. Win.

I can't wait for Kohls to fail. When the cashier tells me I just saved $57 on a $40 pair of shoes I can't help but roll my eyes.
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post #11 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-07-2017, 01:57 PM
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Yea, I'd like to see them "Every Day, Low Price" their shit like WMT does but that won't happen. It would cheapen the brand and put them in the same category as WMT. Personally, I like shopping Kohl's ever with their pricing bull shit.

For clothing they're a great in-between, between WMT and Target and the even higher end retail clothing stores.

For decent clothing, for a decent price, I'll put up with their pricing BS.

.... Oh, and don't forget your "Kohl's Cash" That you can't spend until a week AFTER your initial purchase! ... It's just another BS play to get you back in the store.

Anyway ... Yea, same tactic you should use on CL ... Mark it up to mark it down.
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post #12 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-07-2017, 03:02 PM
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I have sold a few things on craigslist and local apps and I always put a higher price than I want so when we negotiate I get the number I wanted. Example, I had a futon I wanted $50 for, so I listed it for $75. Sold it for $50.
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post #13 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-09-2017, 09:14 PM
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What I don't like on CL is when someone asks "what's your lowest Price?" I'll usually say "make me an offer" Then they're to chicken sh** to make one.

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