Depending on your outlook, you either think of Craigslist as a huge sea of scams or a land of opportunity to score great deals. The site has it’s fair share of scams to be aware of, but it can be a gold mine for deal makers as well. Let’s be honest, most sellers just want there stuff gone quickly. They’re usually something that they don’t need or use, something that has been sitting in a closet or garage collecting dust for years. Therefore, in most circumstances sellers are willing to accept reasonable offers and in some situations sellers will sell the item at a huge loss just to get rid of it.
I have been chasing down rare stuff online for over a decade. In that time I have scored some of the most sought after collectibles and antiques in the world. Hence the reason for creating this post and my all in one course, How I Turned $70 into $170,000. It’s a fact that there are millions of Craigslist deals posted on the site everyday in millions of different locations throughout the world. My course includes hours of step by step guides to making money online. some of my great Craigslist deals and ventures of traveling around the country unearthing rarities. A few examples are $9,650 In 8 Hours, 1 of 10 and The One That Got Away From American Pickers.
5 Keywords To Search For Killer Craigslist Deals
- Need it Gone
Searching for your anything online can be a daunting task when you’re looking for the best deal. Many times a plethora of results display ranging immensely in price. Craigslist can definitely be the place to find the best deals, but don’t expect a brand new in box item with 2 day Amazon Prime delivery. When you find that smoking deal on Craigslist it might have already been sold before you saw it. That’s the name of the game. Back to searching…
Local vs National
Craigslist remains a local classifieds site to date, but hunting for rare treasures may call for a long distance travel every once in awhile. This can be a huge P.I.T.A. Especially with all the kooky people on Craigslist. Luckily for me searching Craigslist locally in Maine and New England is rather easy. Unfortunately other states have many more URL’s making it more difficult and time consuming. For example, California has 29 different URL’s in the classifieds section making a state wide search consist of 29 searches compared to the single search in Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont. If you’re searching for you holy grail and you can’t seem to find it locally I suggest trying our Holy Grailz search service.
Let the pros take care of it.
Getting people to agree with a long distant deal can be tricky enough, but asking the seller to ship something means asking the seller to accept and online payment method and going through the process of packing and going to the post office. which usually leads to an unwilling seller.
Most transaction on Craigslist are cash transactions. Be weary if the buyer asks for any other form of payment. A good way to remember this is to remember ABC=SCAM (Anything Besides Cash) The main reason people list things on Craigslist is because it’s quick cash. Therefore, it should raise a big red flag when someone asks you to send them a check, Paypal or Western Union. I don’t advise using any other form of payment.
Watch out for scammers! They are everywhere and they are coming up with clever new tactics all the time. The internet can be a scary place. According to WAFB in an article published on April 9, 2015 there were 86 murders linked to Craigslist. If you don’t believe me, read this story about a couple that was murdered chasing down his dream car, a 66 convertible Mustang.
Scams to watch out for
- Western Union
- Wiring Money
- Escrow Accounts
- Personal Checks
- Counterfeit Checks
- Anything Besides Cash
Instant Red Flags
Read emails carefully. Look for spelling and grammatical errors as well as strange sentence formation and lengthy explanations. One thing I always do is read the emails several times. Read it out loud to yourself. Something seems strange it probably is. If it’s seems too good to be true 99.9% of the time it is too good to be true.
Beware of emails stating excuses with multiple reasons why they can’t meet in person.
Beware of emails asking to send more than the agreed amount for the item.
- Send to Nigeria or Overseas
- Blurry Photos
- Strange Email Addresses
- Spelling and Grammatical Errors
- Military Leave or Duty (Need to rush)
- Selling for Friend
- Multiple Phone Numbers
- Incorrect Area Code
How to Negotiate Deals
99% of the time people are wiling to negotiate on Craigslist. The approach you take is vital. Don’t be rude and don’t come off as a know it all or talk down about the item. These tactics will be ignored by most. Make friends, not enemies. Put yourself in the sellers shoes. Would you like it if someone emailed you offering you a third of your asking price for your item? The explanation in the email states, “it looks like a cheap TV that should be in the FREE section, but I’d give you $20.” After reading this email the seller would probably rather give the TV to someone else for free or bring it to a recycling center.
The great deals are out there and the sellers are willing to negotiate, but your approach is everything. I have listed out several strategies that have worked out great for me in the past.
- Show immediate interest, but don’t be sold immediately. There are opportunities daily to score awesome stuff on Craigslist, but don’t jump at this first one and pay full price without making an offer. Personally, I like to email and ask a few questions just to get the ball rolling without mentioning price.
- Be patient. I usually wait a few days. If the item is still available I email about setting up a time to see/test the item
With over 3 million classifieds posted everyday Craigslist has plenty of great deals. The key to success is to act fast. Great Deals don’t last long.
With all of the above being stated, like many others, I personally have a love-hate relationship with Craigslist. There are still tons of great deals on daily. Just remember a few things:
- Be alert and aware
- Act quickly on good deals
- Meet at a well populated public area
- Don’t send electronic payments
Enjoy your search. Good luck!