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Read our scam prevention guide

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Not sure how to place a listing?
Sometimes new things seem a bit confusing at first, so with the help of our guide we should be able to ease all those first time sellers nerves.
Notice to all sellers - Beware of scams!
Over the years we regularly hear reports of attempted scams to lure eager sellers to part with items and even large sums of cash by online tricksters and conmen. Fraudulent scams are an internet wide problem that come in a variety of guises which are sometimes hard to spot. However if you keep to our scam prevention guide points below you should avoid getting caught out.
Which payment methods to accept
Cash - Safe and instant method of payment
Cash is always king, wherever possible insist on being paid with cash, but don't forget to check for counterfeit notes before releasing your item.
Bankers Draft - Nearly as good as cash
Banks will only issue a bankers draft to a customer on receipt of cleared funds. Before releasing your item pay it into your bank account and ensure that draft has been honoured.
Bank Transfer (BACS) - Safe but not always quick
Bank transfers although thought to be instant are not and can take up to three days to clear in your account and longer if from banks outside the UK. Always ensure that the transfer is in your account and funds can be drawn on before releasing your item.
Online payment systems - Good alternative to BACS
Online providers like PayPal are an alternative to using the BACS method of moving money however it requires that in most cases both parties involved in the transaction will need to have an account with the same service provider. The benefit is that the service provider will not release non existent funds so you are guaranteed payment and the transaction can be done by email.
Cheques - Very slow to clear
Cheques are very much a slower method of payment, UK cheques can take between 3 -10 working days to clear and upto 30 days from outside the UK. The buyer can cancel the cheque during that period and may not have sufficient funds to honour the cheque. Always ensure that the cheque has cleared in your account and funds can be drawn on before releasing your item.
Card payments - Only use as a last resort
If you have a business and can accept card payments you could use this method as a last resort, remember that most providers charge a fee and a percentage depending on which card is used and will take a few days to enter your account. Card providers can also call back payments if the buyers circumstances change or deliberately tries to not pay for the item.
Deposits and monthly payments
Our advice to anyone planning to release an item on just an agreed deposit, down payment or a monthly payment agreement is DON'T DO IT. Many sellers get caught out by entering into similar agreements and never see the buyer or item again. Not every buyer is the same but is it worth the risk?
Offers that sound to good to be true
If a buyers offer exceeds your asking price and it sounds too good to be true it probably is "to good to be true" nobody ever offers more than the asking price unless two buyers are bidding for the same item. Investigate but proceed with extreme caution and with an open mind, it may be genuine.
Don't get caught out by email scams and cons
Although all our listings contact email addresses are spam protected from internet robots they will never stop human fraudster's from posing as genuine buyers from contacting you. We have been notified many times over the years that foreign individuals, particularly from African and Asian countries have been running fraudulent scams where they are attempting to buy used items offered for sale over the internet and conning the seller into parting with large sums of money.
How the scam works
Sellers have been caught out by thinking the foreign cheque for payment of items have cleared, the buyer then suddenly changes his mind and wants his money back, the seller (you) then forwards the buyers money back to him from your own funds. Several weeks later the original buyers cheque then bounces after you the seller has already parted with the money. Always check with your bank that funds have cleared before parting with items or sending money back! If you are approached (usually by email) by a foreign buyer, always allow up to 3 months for foreign cheques or bankers drafts to clear the international banks and not the usual 3-4 days as with UK cheques.
What to look for
Scam emails often contain sentences with the words "My Client or Our Clients", they often require you to pay shipping cost's and are wrote using incorrect wording and poor English grammar. So if you receive an email containing words Shipping, Shipment or Shipping Fees and it looks and sounds dodgy just bin it and don't send any money!
You have been forewarned
The vast majority of users on Villagefetes are genuine individuals looking at or thinking of buying your used item for sale, however the internet is open to everyone and anyone. But now that you are armed with the knowledge above you should now be able to spot a potential scam and avoid getting caught out. If you are approached by a suspicious individual or get a dodgy email please let us know and we will include details here to warn other sellers.
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