I personally don't know but would love to hear some experienced responses to that question. I sold a Krell preamp last month for almost $2000. The person I was going to sell it to said he would only do UPS COD. I wasn't comfortable with it. He agreed to mail me USPS money order and never followed through. I sold to another member who sent me certified funds before I shipped the preamp.
I've done a number of CODs, both as buyer and seller. It really depends on how comfortable the parties feel about doing business. I really don't care for UPS COD because it takes quite a while for the deal to be ultimately finalized. UPS isn't speedy with normal type deliveries and it takes again as much time for the seller to finally get their money. On the other hand, with FedEx Express deliveries it usually takes 2-3 business days for the package to get delivered and then the certified funds are overnighted back to the seller. It's a whole lot easier dealing with those members who have a reasonable amount of positive feedback. Remember, you always want to speak with someone in person if at all possible. If you don't feel comfortable doing a deal, then don't. If you have a desirable piece of equipment and you price it fairly, there will be someone who will buy it. The terms and conditions of shipping and payment are things that can be amicably worked out.
I have done numerous COD deals through Fedex. I have only had a problem once where the package came back because the person would accept delivery. I was out of the shipping expenses.
All of this is about risk exposure. Who gets the majority of the risk. With COD, it is somewhat shared. If I send certified funds, then I'm the one at risk. The person at the other end can cash the check and ship when they want(which I have had a few lengthy delays to deal with.)
Things can go wrong either way. A person could send a box full of bricks.
COD use to be very popular on this sight, then, it was send the money. I do like Paypal even though there is a fee imposed. At least you have some recourse this way.
I have been burned twice, once with a COD and once with a money order.
I am much more cautious now and I will not send cash to someone with no feedback. I'm even hesitant about Paypal with a person with no feedback but I also know one must start somewhere.
I have only had one UPS package come back because the person would not accept delivery. I was out of the shipping expenses, since he had a change of heart.
However with all the Audioweb, & Ebay scams lately, & having heard of 2 Agon members that received Fake-forged cashiers checks. I'm no longer offering the COD route.
I have had no paypal issues. Yet unless it's a postal money order, all Money orders, & Cashiers checks make me leary and must clear just like a personal check would.
I don't need to clear out my gear that bad, to totally give it away for free, & pay all the shipping too!
I would not sell C.O.D.
The problems are the item can come right back if the buyer has a "change of heart".
The money order or check accepted may be fake anyway.
Even if you insist on cash... the UPS dudes will almost always accept a check anyway!
I would not buy with C.O.D. because it is no safer than sending the money prior.
The UPS will NOT let me inspect the goods before paying COD, So it could be a box of bricks anyway.
I am sold on USPS money orders for bigger $$$ and PayPal or USPS money orders for under $200.
The only time I am willing to go COD as a seller is if the buyer is willing to pay the shipping fees up front.A guy I knew who bought and sold audio gear for a living turned me on to that idea.I never go that route as a buyer.
When I buy equipment I always insist on COD, I don't feel comfortable sending cashier check to a stranger. This way if the box is full of bricks, you have a chance to cancel the Cashier Check.
O.K. here's a funky C.O.D. story.... A A'gonR was listing a Dac for an elderly non computer using Audiophile buddy of his. The ad stated that all dealing would be with his friend via phone. COD was the only way I could buy it, so like "Elizabeth" stated "The UPS will NOT let me inspect the goods before paying COD, So it could be a box of bricks anyway" Was a major concern for me, as he insisted on a Bank Cashiers Check upon delivery. He personally had no sales feedback to check, no pictures of the item nothing. So I took the chance, the unit shows up in another manufacturers box, & I was sweating!!! I hand the UPS driver my check, & she tells me NOT NEEDED THIS ISN'T A COD??? I open the box, it's everything he mentioned, & a $500.00 extra factory option that he forgot! So I called him, asked him if his name was Santa Claus? He said he was sweating it out for 3 days, as he lost my name, & phone number!
Funny Huh? Almost a free $5000.00 mfrp DAC! So of course I sent him the funds asap, as a mistake like that could happen to anyone! I can't remember who his Agon buddy was as I did leave him positive feedback, but he didn't for me as I guess he didn't know why, or what mine was left for? So whom ever is Dave Scoville of Elkhart Indiana's Agon buddy the feedback was left for his DAC!
I also had an experience like Audiobugged. I bought a piece of equipment from an Audiogoner for $1500 COD. When the UPS guy arrived, he said there was no COD, no funds due, wouldn't take my money orders.
Naturally, I called the seller, told him what had happened, and dropped the money orders in the mail to him.
I guess UPS doesn't always know COD means . . . COD!
I personally have never used COD.
I have paid for most of my purchases with PayPal or with USPS MO. If the item is large in $$, I usually contact the seller/buyer, and get a real feel for them.
I had a pair of KEF 107.2's that I had one guy 'so interested in' if I would send them COD.... well, I refused, and asked for at least 1/2 up front for shipping.... he insisted he sent it. Well, it never got there, and he stopped returnng my calls after a while...several weeks....
I will not use COD.
Any drawbacks to selling and shipping COD?
Yes, the buyer can change his/her mind, refuse delivery, and stick you with shipping charges both ways. You item also has twice as much chance to be damaged in transit.
One option that I've read before that seems to make sense to me, is to have the buyer pay double the shipping + a little 'safety fee' up front, before shipping COD.
For instance, if I'm selling a $2000 preamp and shipping is $40 ($2040), I would ask the buyer for a $100 MO non-refundable deposit. I then would ship the preamp COD for $1940. If the buyer refuses delivery, I re-list and sell the item again, and keep the $100 for shipping/services rendered.
I've over 150 transactions between AudiogoN/Ebay, and never used COD as a seller or buyer. However, this solution I've seen from previous threads seems fair for both parties, IMHO.
ive used COD several times & im in the process of another COD deal as we speak,when im selling i want shipping charges up front & when im buying i pay shipping charges up front.
ELIZIBETH,where are you getting this info from where "the ups dude will allmost allways accept a check even if you request cash"? is this from your own personal experiences or speculation also what does not getting to open up the box before paying have to do with buying somthing COD?if you sent a postal money order or paypal you've allready paid even before anything was shipped so i dont see your point!
from a buyers stand point a postal money order is the worst form of payment right behind wire tx & offers the buyer ZERO PROTECTION as postal money orders cant be stoped or recinded & can be cashed at any us post office with a fake I D.
Well as I read all this it should scare me to death and I should never buy or sell anything.---My first ever sale was setup by the buyer--a Fedex cod.---went well. Be careful using the Post Office for cod. I think you can use monopoly money for a postal cod. Then if they do use a Postal MO---It can take weeks before you get 'that' MO.--(They are slow getting the MO to you)
I swear I just escaped selling to a scam guy from Canada.--That should read--"giving" my eqp. to that scam-guy.---A close call, indeed.---Among the best things about this site is learning from others how to sell or buy---and what things to look out for.---AND reading about the misfortune of others.
Avguygeorge, this site is still safer than Ebay, but not as safe as it used to be when I first joined (Sept 2000) IMHO. I see you've been a member longer than me. As AudiogoN and the internet in general become more established and recognized, the seedy underworld element has become more entrenched as well.
I'm more careful with dealings today then 4 years ago, it seems there are so many more scammers now. There are still many fine members here, one just has to be more careful nowadays. That of course is just my 2 cents.
I have only done 1 ebay transaction---I got that linc from another member and all worked out well.
Mom always told me I wasn't the sharpest knife in the draw; but I can learn.---And, learn I have.--Not that I won't learn more in the future.---Anyway I had my ph.# in the add so the guy called---Seems he wanted to buy anything I had and didn't care about bargaining. I asked him to click to my add, within the add. He said his computer was miles away and just wanted my email add;which I gave.--Then got an email 5 minutes latter. Ok, I'll sell to Attila the Hun--(for cash)But a check with potential for a charge-back; I was out-of-there.
A few years back, I sold an ARC PH-3 to a guy in New Jersey, COD. I sent it to a Mailboxes address, via UPS,, and somehow , they sent the MO to someone in South Carolina. I am located in Canada, but had used a friend's address in Nothern Maine, a few miles from where I live. Some months later, UPS sent me a certified check for the amount, to resolve the issue.
About two years later, I was contacted by a collection agengy from California, threatening me with a lawsuit if I didn't make good the amount I had received from UPS!!...I promptly threatened THEM with a lawsuit for harrassment, and they finally backed off. By this time I had lost the name and address of the individual I had sold to, and anyway, it wasn't my problem . UPS screwed up, not me.
Some time later I did find the address of the buyer,and sent it to the collection agency...never heard if they got the money or not.
I also sold a Krell Cd player to a guy in Western Canada, and he sent me $3500 MO just on the belief that I would send him the product!!..I don't know the solution, but I've done the same and am still not comfortable with this method of transaction.
I guess there are still some honest people in the world, after all....thankfully, a lot of them frequent Audiogon.