Originally Posted by clr8ter
I personally have never really had a money issue with a buyer, once I found an actual buyer. Lots of people will say they are a buyer, but are not. You can tell when someone is serious. Last August, I put my truck on Craigslist. A total of 9 minutes went by before a guy called. I talked to him for 20 min, and it was obvious he wanted it. He told me up front it would be a few days before hen could come out, but he did everything he said he was going to, and on time. (I had removed the ad immediately after his first phone call.) So it took a week to complete the sale, but everybody was happy. Communication is also key.
I no longer will remove an ad when somebody promises to come look. Been burned a couple of times on that (though there is one notable exception where I turned it around on the buyer and sold him the same car twice- but that is another story). If they want to look in a few days I will tell them flat out the ad will not be taken down until I at least have a non-refundable down payment in hand (or on Paypal). It doesn't have to be much, but enough to make it worthwhile for me to take the ad down and to show that he is indeed serious. I will also keep a list of people who call/email and if somebody wants to look at it but can't get here in a few days I will call and tell them if it has been sold or if somebody else can be here earlier. I will give them the opportunity to show up first.
I know of some people who will arrange for several buyers to show up at the same time in hopes of starting a bidding war. That pisses me off. It does work sometimes but it still pisses me off. If I show up when that has occurred I will do one of two things.
a) Leave after telling them why and telling the other interested parties that they are being set up or
b) Take a look at the item and if it is not worth the asking price I will stick around picking it apart while the other interested parties are looking at it. I have been successful in exposing a shill for the buyer once and another time all of the interested parties left without buying. The seller was pissed. Screw 'em.
Bottom line is don't be one of those CL trolls that everybody complains about. Sometimes it is best to just take down your ad if the market is cold and then put it back up again later. That works very well if you have the time and patience. Key to success there is when you re-post it create a completely new ad, including new pictures and everything. It is really easy to spot a re-posting if all the person does is regurgitate the same ad again and again.