Author Topic: How long to remain available?  (Read 2249 times)

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norrina

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How long to remain available?
« on: February 08, 2013, 03:30:32 PM »
I'm not sure if this is really an etiquette question so much as a business one, but I figured I'd post it here anyhow and see what the group thought.

I have been looking for a particular widget, and the other day saw a widget that I liked (at a good price) on Craigslist. I emailed the poster to inquire if it was still available, and was told that it was. Very good, I followed up by asking when would be a good time to schedule a pickup, and got a fairly vague response of "this afternoon". So I followed up again indicating that I was fairly available this afternoon, and to just tell me where and when. To that I was told to text or call around 3:00.

Accordingly, I sent a text @ 2:59PM, "Hi, this is Norrina, about the widget. I am available for pickup when you are." Half an hour later, there has been no response.

I know I said I was ready when the seller was, but that was with the belief that I would hear back fairly promptly. It's going to be a 30+ drive each way to pick up this widget (I know roughly the area of town it is in), and I need to pick up some groceries and get home to make dinner at some point. Would it be rude of me to give it another 15-30 minutes then go about my day even if it means I am unavailable if/when this seller ever decides to respond?



bah12

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Re: How long to remain available?
« Reply #1 on: February 08, 2013, 03:32:48 PM »
No.  I think you go about your day anyway.  If/when they respond, if you are not available, just say so.  If you want to arrange a new time to pick up the widget, you can at that point, but if you want to forget the whole thing, then you can do that as well.

CaffeineKatie

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Re: How long to remain available?
« Reply #2 on: February 08, 2013, 03:33:56 PM »
Certainly seems like you have done your best--the seller must not be too anxious to unload this item if he/she is ignoring a cooperative offer.  I'd say get on with what you need to do.

oceanus

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Re: How long to remain available?
« Reply #3 on: February 09, 2013, 10:03:14 AM »
I'd go on about my day.  Either they want to sell the item - to you - or they don't. Seller may still be fielding other offers., and I would not play into their game.
« Last Edit: February 09, 2013, 10:04:52 AM by oceanus »

m2kbug

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Re: How long to remain available?
« Reply #4 on: February 09, 2013, 10:20:51 AM »
For all you know, they sold the widget to someone else at this point who was able to show up immediately.  I have sold and given away items through Craigslist and Freecycle and have learned not to hold anything for people with good intentions who ultimately don't show up when this item could have gone to someone else more readily available.  It sounds to me like you were very sincere and trustworthy, but the seller has no way of knowing this.  May as well just send another message and proceed with your day with the assumption you're not getting the widget.  If they respond and you can drop everything for the travel time, cool beans, or arrange a better time.  Don't waste your time waiting in the interim.  Go about your day as usual.

norrina

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Re: How long to remain available?
« Reply #5 on: February 09, 2013, 03:23:55 PM »
For all you know, they sold the widget to someone else at this point who was able to show up immediately.  I have sold and given away items through Craigslist and Freecycle and have learned not to hold anything for people with good intentions who ultimately don't show up when this item could have gone to someone else more readily available.  It sounds to me like you were very sincere and trustworthy, but the seller has no way of knowing this.  May as well just send another message and proceed with your day with the assumption you're not getting the widget.  If they respond and you can drop everything for the travel time, cool beans, or arrange a better time.  Don't waste your time waiting in the interim.  Go about your day as usual.

Except that I was able to show up immediately when I inquired, and it was the seller who told me to call or text at a time several hours off. And I was immediately available when I texted at the specified time.

The seller did finally respond at 4:09, and at that point I wasn't available because it was an hour after when had expected to arrange the pickup. We did meet up today though, and once I got my $20 widget home, it doesn't work. I probably should have taken the hassle as a sign.  ::)



m2kbug

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Re: How long to remain available?
« Reply #6 on: February 09, 2013, 06:41:21 PM »
Except that I was able to show up immediately when I inquired, and it was the seller who told me to call or text at a time several hours off. And I was immediately available when I texted at the specified time.

The seller did finally respond at 4:09, and at that point I wasn't available because it was an hour after when had expected to arrange the pickup. We did meet up today though, and once I got my $20 widget home, it doesn't work. I probably should have taken the hassle as a sign.  ::)

When you said 30+, I didn't know if you meant 30 minutes or 30 miles or how long that would take to get there, but my thought was maybe someone could be there in 5 minutes or 10, first one to show up wins!   ;D  Rather than getting back to you and tell you that they sold the widget, they just ignored you, even after telling you to call at 3, which is a little rude.  Certainly not worth sitting around and waiting at home for, and I do understand you were ready to head over there upon the word "go."  I've had hassles waiting on people and promises or they decide I'm too far away and don't bother to call me, so my wiggle room for holding an item is pretty narrow.  I have communicated the item is no longer available, though, so people don't sit and wait or make plans to drive 40 minutes or something.  Sorry the widget is broken.  Maybe it was a sign.   :P 

norrina

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Re: How long to remain available?
« Reply #7 on: February 09, 2013, 11:12:40 PM »
Except that I was able to show up immediately when I inquired, and it was the seller who told me to call or text at a time several hours off. And I was immediately available when I texted at the specified time.

The seller did finally respond at 4:09, and at that point I wasn't available because it was an hour after when had expected to arrange the pickup. We did meet up today though, and once I got my $20 widget home, it doesn't work. I probably should have taken the hassle as a sign.  ::)

When you said 30+, I didn't know if you meant 30 minutes or 30 miles or how long that would take to get there, but my thought was maybe someone could be there in 5 minutes or 10, first one to show up wins!   ;D  Rather than getting back to you and tell you that they sold the widget, they just ignored you, even after telling you to call at 3, which is a little rude.  Certainly not worth sitting around and waiting at home for, and I do understand you were ready to head over there upon the word "go."  I've had hassles waiting on people and promises or they decide I'm too far away and don't bother to call me, so my wiggle room for holding an item is pretty narrow.  I have communicated the item is no longer available, though, so people don't sit and wait or make plans to drive 40 minutes or something.  Sorry the widget is broken.  Maybe it was a sign.   :P

Oh, okay, I see. I meant 30+ minutes, but when I texted them at 3:00 they didn't know where I was coming from/how long it would take me to get to them. We never discussed locations, I just know the area of town that they put in their CL ad.

I have once driven some distance for a widget, only to be told upon my arrival that someone else got there first and bought it. That did not sit we'll with me; I told the person when we spoke how long it would take me to get to her, and was there within that time frame, I did not appreciate wasting my time and gas.



oceanus

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Re: How long to remain available?
« Reply #8 on: February 10, 2013, 11:31:44 PM »
Quote
and once I got my $20 widget home, it doesn't work.

ugh.  Sorry, how frustrating.

norrina

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Re: How long to remain available?
« Reply #9 on: February 11, 2013, 05:32:37 PM »
Quote
and once I got my $20 widget home, it doesn't work.

ugh.  Sorry, how frustrating.

Well, after some tinkering I got it mostly working. It was, specifically, a fax/copier/scanner/printer. I plugged it in and got an error message that the printhead was missing or damaged. I did some google research and tried to clean the printhead with bottled water and coffee filters, to no avail. I did more googling over the weekend though, and this morning soaked the printhead in hot water. Over, and over, and over again, until the water was clear. (The idea was that old ink could have built up in the printhead over time and clogged it, and the hot water would flush it out.) So that worked, luckily.

The machine will perform all its functions now, albeit slowly, but there's a line down the left edge of the page when I copy using the ADF. I've had this happen with machines before and usually it's just a matter of cleaning things up with some windex and paper towels, but nothing's working this time. Oh well, for $20 it will work as a stopgap until I can afford the machine I really want, which I will be buying new!



JenJay

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Re: How long to remain available?
« Reply #10 on: February 11, 2013, 05:38:38 PM »
Sounds like they thought it was broken. I'd be so tempted to email the seller "Printer is working great, just had to clean the printhead. Thanks!"  >:D

norrina

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Re: How long to remain available?
« Reply #11 on: February 11, 2013, 05:42:28 PM »
Sounds like they thought it was broken. I'd be so tempted to email the seller "Printer is working great, just had to clean the printhead. Thanks!"  >:D

Yeah, I'm a bit beyond miffed. The printer has a little screen right on the machine itself, and that's where the error message was. So before I even tried to connect it to my computer I knew there was a problem, there's no way the seller didn't know about it. He was just looking to make some quick cash off a "broken" machine. And for $20, he probably could have still found a buyer if he had been honest about the error message, and not had bad karma out of it.