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Buyer wants refund for dress not as described

(30 Posts)
dragonsarebest Thu 26-May-16 08:03:39

Hi. I sold on a dress at the weekend for just over 80 quid, so quite high value. The winning bidder had been in communication a lot during the auction asking for extra pics and measurements, all provided. Buyer messaged me last night wanting a refund as I had measured the centre back at 40 inches and they measure it as 98cm, so they're saying that it's a lovely dress but too short and not as described.

I've never been in this situation before (700+ 100% pos feedback) and I'd be grateful for any advice on how to deal with this - I stand by my measurement but of course I don't have the dress any more to double check. I would really rather not take it back if possible. What would you suggest?

Thank you.

TychosNose Thu 26-May-16 08:07:31

I think ebay will force you to refund eventually so you're probably best to just refund and relist without quibble.
It's annoying but there's not much else you can do.

SuburbanRhonda Thu 26-May-16 08:08:01

So she's saying its 3cm shorter than your measurements? Even if you stated clearly in your listing that all measurements are approximate that's quite a difference.

I would accept a return unless you sell a lot of items and can take the hit of negative feedback.

dragonsarebest Thu 26-May-16 08:17:08

Thanks so much for the quick responses, really helpful. I read that I'm liable for return postage costs too, sigh. Selling on eBay used to be much less stressy!

SuburbanRhonda Thu 26-May-16 08:21:15

It's s hard lesson to learn but make sure your listing is water-tight next time.

Take photos of the dress with a tape measure next to the bit you've measured showing exactly where you are taking measurements from. Quote cm as well as inches.

State clearly that all measurements are approximate (but not as much as 3cm out).

dragonsarebest Thu 26-May-16 08:53:10

Thanks - I'd been wondering why some sellers had posted pics of a tape measure actually on the item but it makes total sense now. Thanks for the tips, all noted. It's quite tempting to go the opposite way and give no measurements other than rough indicators (like "knee length") but I realise that would probably affect bidding. I'm still baffled as to how the measurements were that different to be honest. Anyway, as you say, I'll chalk it up to experience. Many thanks again smile

robin64 Thu 26-May-16 12:16:26


Sadly you got a PITA buyer and in my experience the ones that ask loads of questions, demand more pics etc are usually trouble - I can tell they are going to cause hassle and they usually do (I know a bit of a sweeping statement but I have been selling for years and have a nose for bad buyers) Just recently I had one and didn't accept a £100 offer on a dress because I could just tell buyer was trouble - I would rather not sell to that person. I think your measurements were probably correct - it was buyers remorse and they want you to take the hit for returns by claiming not as described. Unfortunately there is not much you can do - ask them to return in exactly the same condition, return tracked and make sure you get your fees back and block them asap.

VocationalGoat Thu 26-May-16 12:22:15

Such great advice robin64!

dragonsarebest Thu 26-May-16 12:29:14

Thanks *Robin", it's really useful to hear that because I'd not have made the connection but I can see it makes sense.

I've offered the refund and asked that they send it to me tracked, and they seem happy with that so we'll see what happens next.

Would you advise offering it to the next highest bidder as a second chance offer, or do you think relisting from scratch is a better way to go?

nauticant Thu 26-May-16 14:01:01

I'd wait until I had it back in my hands and was satisfied with its state. It wouldn't be that surprising if the buyer has received the dress, worn it (with it now being marked/soiled), and now wants to return it with you having unwittingly provided a free mail order dress hire service.

SuburbanRhonda Thu 26-May-16 18:02:29

Make sure the buyer goes through the correct eBay returns process. Don't just agree a return trough eBay messages. Then they have to send it tracked and you have a record that they have sent it.

Once you've received the item (and have made sure it's the item you sold - not as stupid as it sounds!), check the measurements. If you think you're right and the buyer's wrong, take some photos with a tape measure and contact eBay for advice before you issue the refund. They may say you still have to refund but it's worth checking. If the buyer did just change their mind, you can block them from bidding on your items again.

You can list items with no measurements but where the item is as expensive as yours, any potential buyer should ask what the measurements are before they place a bid.

dragonsarebest Thu 26-May-16 18:09:44

I didn't realise there was a formal process for returns - I've just agreed it with the buyer via messages. She's sending it recorded apparently. I can't see an option to open a return from my end, should she do that? Worried now!!

SuburbanRhonda Thu 26-May-16 18:32:13

Yes, can open a case to request a return. It's one of the options on the pull-down menu next to that item in her purchase history.

Don't worry if she says it's too late to open a case (it isn't). As long as it's all amicable and you haven't refunded her it will be fine. It's just that it looks good in your seller record if you settle a case through the correct channels.

SuburbanRhonda Thu 26-May-16 18:32:49

Make sure you get the tracking number if she doesn't open a case.

SuburbanRhonda Thu 26-May-16 18:33:16

Should have said "she can open a case".

dragonsarebest Thu 26-May-16 18:35:46

I'll contact her and ask her to open the case. Thanks SO much for your help. I'm feeling distinctly out of my depth with this, it's crazy because I've been selling on and off for years but have never been in this situation. It's thrown me a bit tbh.

SuburbanRhonda Thu 26-May-16 20:05:14

Don't worry - it doesn't sound like a tricky situation so I'm sure it will be fine smile

smilingeyes11 Sun 29-May-16 21:56:32

if she returns it standard signed for it won't be adequately insured.

SuburbanRhonda Sun 29-May-16 22:00:52

But if she goes through the eBay refund process that will be enough for the OP to get her money back if the item goes missing.

smilingeyes11 Sun 29-May-16 22:12:32

No it won't be.

SuburbanRhonda Sun 29-May-16 23:00:05

That's what eBay customer services told me when I returned an item of greater value to a seller, using the return process. They could have been wrong of course hmm

smilingeyes11 Sun 29-May-16 23:04:44

if a return goes missing and there is no attempted delivery made than a buyer won't get a refund. Nor will they be able to claim for the loss as they returned an item with inadequate insurance.

SuburbanRhonda Sun 29-May-16 23:07:49

I'm inclined to go with customer services on this one.

19lottie82 Mon 30-May-16 00:49:35

If there is no recorded attempt at delivery of a return then the seller cannot be forced by eBay to refund the buyer.

nauticant Mon 30-May-16 08:56:00

ebay customer services are well worth listening to but it's not that uncommon for them to give out wrong advice.

Internet clothing retailers as a free mail order dress hire service:

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