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Since I am currently in the middle of purchase transactions I thought to share what I am discovering as it may prove helpful to others on the forum that might want to buy or sell items and have them shipped. Please note that this is only based on my actual experiences.

There are a number of ways to pay and i am not covering them all as i dont have experience in any others i havent listed here. The best I have found so far, is to have the seller send a request for payment via Paypal or Paypal.me. Depending on the option selected,  there may or may not be a fee payable and, correspondingly, there may or may not be Paypal Purchase protection available to protect both parties. The best part of paying in this manner is that funds are transferred into the recipients' Paypal account immediately and both parties receive a confirmation of the payment having been made and received. The Seller can then transfer the funds into their own bank account if they wish at no extra cost. It also makes for quick and easy foreign payment transactions. No delays, no holds, no drama. Everybody is happy.

For Canadian to Canadian transactions, do an e-transfer. Quick and easy.

The absolute worst way is via wire and "cashiers check". I have done both and the banks tie up the process and the funds and this has caused frustrations and lack of trust between the parties which is sad when it just isn't necessary.

For a wire transfer, the seller has to provide banking details that, I am told, leave the seller's account vulnerable So it doesn't sound like a smart idea anyway. The Seller's bank can also put a hold on transfering the funds to the Seller.

 For a cashiers check, you have to mail it out which creates a delay,.and I am now told that the seller's bank can choose to place a hold on depositing the money for ten days... even though the banks say they can be treated as cash and they are guaranteed checks that can't be cancelled. When I asked my Canadian bank for a cashiers check in US funds, they issued me a money order as being one and the same thing. I sent it out via Certified Mail to ensure safe delivery. Turned out that the receiving US bank does not recognize it as a guaranteed cashiers check and placed a hold on it for another ten days more. The money has already been withdrawn from my account but the seller's bank won't release the funds to the Seller yet. So the Seller won't ship the items either. I suspect that the same holds true for personal checks. It is a dissappointing experience.

As far as shipping is concerned, right now based on shipping charges i have been billed by Sellers, Fedex has the best rate available  in  USA to USA shipping. And the difference is significant when compared to the UPS fees I have been billed. 

I hope that helps others out there who are looking to buy or sell. We all want our transactions to go smoothly.

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Sorry for your frustrations. Having worked in a bank years ago I know that a money order is not the same as a casher's check and I am sorry you were told that it was. With the advent of so much scamming going on, I don't think any type of printed check is looked on favorably by banks anymore. I agree that PayPal is definitely the way to go in today's society. I hope your future transactions go smoother for you.

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Yes, I get the distinct feeling that banks are not the way to make payments any more and I was very clear in asking my bank for a cashiers check. It looks to me like there is a disconnect between American and Canadian banking terminology. Using checks is a cumbersome method that leaves absolutely no guarantees or recourse for the Buyer. Paypal has found itself a real niche and it is, quite frankly, a joy to work with in comparison to banks.

I have heard others complain about the fee that business transactions via Paypal cost. My opinion is that if you need guarantees on your money or your item then this is a small price to pay for peace of mind. It is insurance and also just the cost of doing business... and it is a lot less than the cost would be if a transaction goes wrong. It is also less costly than the fee for getting your bank to draft a check, plus the cost of certified mail, plus the time and cost of driving to get the check and mail the check out (in my case a total of just over 240km because of where I live!).

I would encourage anyone wanting to buy or sell items through the forum to do themselves and the other party the favor of doing transactions via Paypal or Paypal.me because right now it looks like the superior way of doing business for both sides. I certainly haven't seen any negatives, but if others out there have please add it on to this conversation? Also, if you know of a better method of getting a transaction done I would love to hear about it!


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You are very welcome, Deb. I figure we are all here to help and learn from each other so maybe this will help others buy and sell with each other. I certainly appreciate being able to buy my equipment and tools through the forum (and have had the chance to talk with and write to some wonderful people as a result) and I want to ensure the transactions can go smoothly and fairly for everyone involved. This experience has been a major learning curve for me so I figured there might be others as inexperienced as myself, so why have everyone reinvent the wheel? Of course things change constantly so I hope others will keep us abreast of their experiences and any changes to the tools of doing business.

I have spent a lot if time reading past posts on the forum on a large variety of topics and I have found it to be a treasure trove of help and information and inspiration. So thank you to you all. I am learning so much from you and I am very appreciative!

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  • 2 weeks later...

You are welcome, Michelle. Cashiers checks and money orders are definitely not the route I would recommend as it will probably be close to a month since the bank transaction took place until i finally receive the items, and frustrating for the Seller as she still doesn't have the funds cleared by her bank as yet. It is a lot of money for both of us... a machine is way more. 

I haven't found any down side to making or accepting Paypal transactions yet, but be sure to use the Paypal Protection option. It only costs a little more but it is cheap insurance for both of you. 

Best of luck and enjoy your new machine!


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