Help: Return process, who pays for return shipping? Does the buyer lose out on the initial S/H fee?


What would you do?


I’m posting here because emailing offerup’s customer service doesn’t help. They can’t seem to give me a direct answer. My dilemma. Not sure if it’s pointless to return a "not as described" item, but still useable for my needs.

Item: Ab Dolly. Listed price: $20 dollars. Shipping: $12 dollars. Total: $32.


Question: Who pays for return shipping? Will the buyer get a full refund on the original paid amount plus the cost of shipping ($32 total). Does the seller lose out on the initial cost to ship the item ($12)?

My issue: The Ab Dolly was listed as new and never used, but upon opening the shipping box, there were various markings and discolorations, likely indicators that the item was used. My issue is the discrepancy between the advertised condition versus what actually showed up.


I’ve already scoured the web (i.e. Amazon, Ebay, Craigslist, etc) for its going rate prior to finding it on Offerup. It usually is in the range of $50/$60 to $80 to $100 dollars. So I’m already getting it for a bargain even with the added cost of shipping. I also ran web searches on for diy cheaper versions that I could have built but ultimately settled on going with the official product. 


Note: Had the Ab Dolly been listed as used, I would have been fine with it’s arrived condition with all the imperfections. I simply take issue with the condition discrepancy. I’ve messaged the seller but she hasn’t responded. The product is still useable. 


Offerup’s advice: File a buyer protection and they’ll investigate. They can’t give me a straight answer on how much dollar amount will be refunded.


What’s going through my head:

A. If it’s going to cost me out of pocket money ($12) to ship it back and will receive the full $32 amount that I spent initially, my net amount to have gone through this entire ordeal is $20 dollars; I spent $12 dollars (ship it back to the seller) for nothing if I only get $32 fully refunded.


B. If I only get back $20 refunded, and it’ll cost me $12 to ship it back, I’m essentially getting back $8 dollars.


C. Yes, the product is still in useable condition, but I’m just a bit disappointed/upset that the item’s condition didn’t match what was listed. It’s still a good bargain. All the seller needed to do was list it as used, and I would have been fine.









I totally agree that the language of what is refunded is vague. It just states that the "funds" will be refunded, but neglects to specify if that actually includes the shipping fee.

What I am sure of is that the buyer is responsible for the cost of return shipping, so I wold deduce (logically) that the buyer is refunded the TOTAL cost of the transaction, which SHOULD include the initial shipping fee.


You may want to ask user @RevivalGypsy  for more details, since most of her transactions are fulfilled by shipping.  


Please come back and share the outcome, as many others have the same questions.  

Level 9
I cant answer fully because thankfully I have not had a return. Although, many users on this forum have said that the full amount is returned to the buyer and not one item has actually had to be returned. It seems that the buyer is refunded and the seller is losing their item.

Its a tough blow for a seller as savvy buyers play this system well.
In the case of the dolly, i agree it should have been disclosed. Is a return warranted? With all that you have stated, do you really want to return it? I would suggest asking the seller for a small low cost item as a partial refund per se
Im guessing they wont respond, but worth a shot.



Should I still file a buyer's protection claim if I'm uncertain? Today would be day 2 of 2 (final day to file a claim). I've got 2 hours to go (it's 9:29 PM pacific time). Because it's a good deal, I may simply keep the item without going through the hassel of a partial refund. But my biggest issue was the description discrepancy. I'll try to figure out how to post photos of the Dolly.


Secondly, I had the impression that the buyer must ship the item back to the ship with delivery confirmation before offerup reimburses the buyer? That's completely wrong for buyers to get the product for free and get their money back.



Hopefully the following will show the images (looks more pronouced in person; not sure if the camera's picking up the concerns).









If the buyer need to eat the cost to ship the item back to the seller (rather than offerup forking over the dollars), then in my case, it probably wouldn't be worth it. It's probably going to cost me $12 dollars plus the cost of delivery confirmation (or signature confirmation) and I would simply be out of money. It's still very much a useable product. Just the whole description discrepancy kind of irks me.


I simply wish seller's would have a better understanding of the word "New," "Excellent Condition" "Great Condition," etc. Even looking through high resolution photos of craigslist posting (I normally browse craigslist but have recently started to browse Offerup more frequently), you can clearly see certain items are only in fair / average condition, and I kind of roll my eyes when I also see the words "Excellent" or "Great." 


I recently met up with a seller a few weeks ago and although his craigslist advertisement didn't have an actual photo of the product, his communication via email was that the item was in excellent condition. Turns out, it looked run down, rusty, etc. I nicely passed on the offer and found the same product in better condition from a different seller.


I'll definitely do a follow up on the Ab Dolly situation.

@factsdontcare For some reason, my reply to you isn't getting posted. I'll retry it now. 


If the cost is on the buyer to return the product, in my case, I suspect it'll cost $12 plus delivery/signature confirmation, then I'm essentially netting back only around $20 dollars. I'd be out $12 dollars.


For the price of the Ab Dolly ($20) plus the cost of shipping ($12), it just seems like a waste to go through the buyer protection process if the cost to return th unit comes out of my pocket. It's probably better if I simply keep the unit. It's a bargain considering the unit usually goes for around $50/60 to $80 dollars. 


I just need to figure out (i.e. internet research) how to clean foam/padding.


I also wish seller's would properly list the condition of the product to the best of their ability. I've sold stuff in past via ebay/craigslist and I'd much rather downplay a product's condition. Recently, I met up with a craigslist seller listing a product as "excellent" (No posted photograph of the product). Come to find out after a 30 minute drive to inspect it, the unit looked a bit run down, rusty, etc. Fortunately, there was another seller that had the same product in better shape and I bought that one instead.


I'll definitely update this situation.




Level 9
My suggestion would be to keep the item and rate the seller accordingly

I concur with @RevivalGypsy's recommendation, as "time" is money.


In addition, any users that can add to this thread with specifics on the returns, please share your story,since everything within the TOS in regards to shipping is more vague than a Pollack painting.

@RevivalGypsy  I've decided to keep the unit strictly on sitautional cost analysis. I'll simply run an internet search on the proper way to clean the unit.


With regards to rating the seller, could I be a victim of relatiatory feedback so to speak? 


Additional note that may or may not be of any significance. The seller doesn't have any star rating but have been an offerup registered membership since 2015. She has multiple used items listed including a new humidifier listed. 


The new humidifer (she describes it as an old school unit) has yellow sticker residue near the on/off knob including near the open vents. It's listed as "brand spanking new-never used." In my mind, I'm like "couldn't you at least have attempted to remove the sticker residue so it remotely fits your description? At least perk it up somewhat so it doesn't look 'used' even if the unit is legitimately new."


Do I really want to potentially sour her feedback rating reputation? But ... other potential buyers may very well use seller's feedback to determine if they want to purchase from a seller.