Dear eBay Queen: I’ve been an avid baseball card collector my whole life. While recently checking eBay for Jeff Samardzija cards that are M.I.A. from my collection, I found a 1/1 printing plate of Jeff that I wanted. The seller had a “Buy It Now” price of $44.95 or best offer. I decided I better act fast before it sold, so I went ahead and made him a best offer of $25.55. The last Samardzija plate sold for $20 and one before that sold for $27. The seller then sent me a counteroffer of $44.55, its original starting price. Then he raised the Buy It Now price to $54.95 — $10 more than the initial price! He tried to make it seem like I’m getting some kind of deal because the cards value magically went up $10 since the seller received some interest in the card. After this, I’m thinking this seller is one of those crazy book value losers who is trying to cover the cost he paid for the box with this one card. I decided to send him a counteroffer of $37.55, completely not worth it, but again, I wanted the card. He rejected my offer and sent me this message:
“What’s your problem man? It’s a 1/1 press plate ... and a 2007 TRUE ROOKIE ... It’s priced to sell ... with $2.95 shipping ... that makes $45 delivered for this ... Otherwise when the season starts I hope to get $100.”
In your dreams, buddy! Even his best autographed rookies don’t sell for $100. He should keep dreaming and let me know when he comes back down to earth and is ready to except a reasonable offer. Unless he gets some drunken moron to buy it, he will never sell that card for what he’s asking for it. By the way, 2007 Just Minors isn’t a “true rookie” of Samardzija, but whatever helps him sleep at night. If he didn’t want to entertain a best offer, why waste both my time and his and put it on the listing?
I find it really difficult sometimes to make sense of people’s stupidity. Why do you think sellers do this kind of thing with Best Offers? — Collector, Denver Colo.
Dear Collector: The logic behind “Best Offer” has vexed me for awhile now. I think you were more than fair with your offer based on your reason behind it. Did you let the seller know why you offered that price? I’m not sure it would help with this seller, but it is worth a try if you really want the item. In this instance, I would probably move on and try to find another card. This seller believes his item is worth more than you are willing to pay for it.
Dear eBay Queen: I won an auction for an Xbox with games Dec. 13. I paid the seller on the same day with PayPal, and since that time I’ve had nothing with problems with this seller. He says that he shipped it with USPS, and gave me a tracking number. I checked the number, and it just shows “it’s left the sorting facility” — nothing else! I don’t think they have even sent it!
I contacted my city’s police department, and filled out the Online Fraud Form. I have contacted PayPal and eBay, and the customer support person told me to “wait just a bit longer for the item.” I’ve read over the dispute process, but eBay tells me I need to wait at least 7 days before I open a dispute. The guy’s phone number is in his listing, and I did call him. He just hung up on me as soon as he heard my voice.
What should I do? Do you think I will get this Xbox? At the time of the sale, he had 405+ feedback, but I just feel like the post office should actually know where the item is, don’t you? — Xbox Buyer
Dear Xbox: I think I can help ease your frustration with this transaction. I would say that since you purchased this item less than a week ago, even if it wasn’t the busiest shipping time of the year, you need to wait a little bit longer. I’ve been having problems with my own tracking numbers showing up, and seeming to be hung up in the system when I check on them. My advice is to wait until at least the Dec. 21. If it hasn’t arrived by then, I would contact your post master, and if it hasn’t arrived by Dec. 24, I would open a claim with PayPal.
Strange eBay item of the week: eBay item No. 160918944255. I’d like to have a few of these lying around the house: “Pink Panther Bendable Poseable Christmas Ornament.” It sold for $899 at http://www.ebay.com/itm/Pink-Panther-Bendable-Poseable-Christmas-XMAS-Tree-Ornament-Dangler-/160918944255
Suzie Eads is a nationally known eBay marketer and eBay trained Education Specialist. She lives in Rantoul, Kan.