Beware temptation to buy second hand electrical goods online

Take note of where the appliance is Credit: Carlos Lindner Unsplash

BEWARE temptation to buy second hand electrical goods online as Christmas during a cost-of-living-crisis is the ideal time for unscrupulous traders to take advantage.

This advice from James Farmer, director of The Appliance Recycling Group in the UK is just as relevant to those of us living in Spain and some of his tips are worth taking notice of.

“Appliance poverty is a real issue, and the cost-of-living crisis means people are being forced to find new ways to save money,” he said. “When their washing machine or fridge breaks, they have no choice but to look for a quick and cheap replacement online.

“But they are in a vulnerable position. Scammers posing as individuals may take cash and leave them with a faulty appliance or one that doesn’t work at all, which makes a bad thing worse.

James said sites like eBay had systems in place to protect buyers, but others were not so robust.

Facebook Marketplace in particular is a huge draw for people looking for bargains. It does have measures in place for users to report scammers and fraudulent posts, but people are still falling victims to unscrupulous sellers.

James said people should follow the following tips to stay safe when buying online:

Always look for a picture of the item in situ – if it’s a fridge or washing machine it should be pictured in a kitchen or utility room. Pictures of the item outside or in a garage should ring alarm bells as it can be a sign that the item has not been in use in a home.

Don’t buy an appliance based on a photo; ask to see the appliance on a video call. A photo cannot indicate whether that appliance is capable of working.

Don’t fall for an offer of free delivery. Ask to collect the item, even if you are unable to. By engaging the seller, you have an address (you can let them know that a delivery would help after, if you are satisfied). When engaged, scammers will often tell you that the item is sold once you press for more details.

Don’t pay cash – a credit or debit card, bank transfer or PayPal is best.

Thank you for reading ‘Beware temptation to buy second hand electrical goods online’ and remember that all articles produced by Euro Weekly News may be accessed free of charge.

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