Marketplace and other used-goods sites – Our tips

Marketplace and other used-goods sites – Our tips

Marketplace, Kijiji… Used-goods sites are goldmines for finding the items you need at low prices, or for selling items you no longer use. Nevertheless, it’s crucial to stay alert for potential scams.


Here are 7 tips to apply when shopping:

1️⃣ Be skeptical if prices are too low. If it seems too good to be true, it probably is! Take the time to check other offers and the real value of the item on the market.  


2️⃣ Analyze the seller's profile in detail. A recent account with few friends or interactions should alert you. Take a look at the seller’s rating, past customer comments and personal page.

3️⃣ Ask specific questions about the article. Evasive or out-of-context answers may indicate a scam. Beware of photos of the item, which may have been taken on the Internet.

4️⃣ Inspect the product in person, and test it if necessary. Whether to check the year of manufacture, the degree of wear or apparent defects, don’t hesitate to call in a professional if an expensive product requires technical validation.

5️⃣ Limit the amount of personal information transmitted. Only give your address or telephone number when you make the transaction. Never give out credit information. To find out more about protecting personal information online, click here.

6️⃣ Avoid advance payments. Don’t make deposits or full payments before a face-to-face meeting.

7️⃣ Prefer cash or Interac transfers. For more expensive items, it's a good idea to bring along a receipt (a simple piece of paper recording the transaction). BUT BEWARE: fraudsters are not short of ideas to steal from you, and sometimes use the "money request" techniqueFor example, you list a piece of furniture for sale at $100 and a buyer says he’s ready to buy it. He says he’ll send you an Interac transfer. Instead of receiving the funds, you receive a money request. If you’re not careful, and you click on the “accept” button, you’re the one sending the $100. It’s essential to take the time to read the message carefully before accepting a transaction.

To find out more about how to recognize fake ads and phishing, click here.

Never forget: your intuition is your best guide. If something seems questionable, it probably is!