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edited January 10 in Chatter 0 LikesVote Down
Just had an odd experience. I sold a stamp (at about $40, which is way above my usual inventory range) and just received my original envelope back with a note saying the envelope had been opened, and the contents were gone. Here's the odd part: the envelope appears to have but cut open with scissors on both the right and left sides. The note says, "I removed this edge [right] to open letter. I then discovered that this egde [left] was missing and the contents gone. Please send me the contents again." Well, I don't happen to have heaps of copies of this rather high-end (for me) stamp lying around, so I must offer a refund. I don't think the buyer is lying, because he's been with HipStamp since 2018 with a perfect (though small, c300) 100% positive feedback rating.
Anyway, it seems to me likelier that this older (I looked him up online) and perhaps rather forgetful gentleman opened the left side himself, set the envelope aside for a while, forgot he had opened it, and cut open the other side, by which time the stamp had fallen out. I suggested this to him and asked him to look around for it, but I expect I'll have to give him a refund. (I'm not too terribly upset about this, because I don't do this for a living and anyway, I got the stamp as part of a large lot at a very low price. But I just wanted to see what others think about this situation.)


  • 7 Comments sorted by Votes Date Added
  • edited January 10 1 LikesVote Down
    It is very possible that there is an early cognitive disability occurring with your buyer, but that would be very tricky to address (or infer) from one event. I agree that "damaged envelope, lost content" events are also relatively rare. It is quite possible. Most right handed people open the right side of the envelope facing them first. With a scissors, I always shake contents in other direction. But you're correct. It is lost. images
  • Ted! Laugh-In! Sock it to me! LOL! Doug, I am always a bit concerned about this kind of thing happening especially with first class mail and no tracking but I kind of look at it the way I looked at things decades ago when I was a shoe salesman. If I take care of my customers, for better or worse, most of the time they will ultimately take care of me. I would often get someone come back after buying a nice pair of shoes to wear for a party or something. Scuffed and unsellable and I would (usually) give them a refund. Many of those guys would come back and buy many more shoes from me later. I, like yourself, don't do this for a living and most of my sales are of rather small value but the buyer valued them enough to purchase them from me. You never know, your customer may get the refund and be happy with it and then find the stamp at some point. Hopefully he would then get back with you and make it right because you did the same for him. I can sympathize with your situation though. All the best to you!
  • Good communication is the key. He might surprise you and find it. I would wait to refund until you hear back. If you haven't heard back in a week, send another message asking if he's had any luck locating the stamp.

    I am also currently dealing with an odd experience. I received a stamp back in the mail with a letter stating I had mailed him the wrong stamp. He identified the stamp I mailed as a #137, but we BOTH KNEW he had ordered a #174 and he wanted a full refund. I searched his purchases and found he had ordered the pink #137 for 75 cents that I sent and not the more expensive blue #174 that he apparently wanted. I sent him a message via the contact option located on his order, so he could see what he really ordered, asking if he still wanted a refund or the stamp back. I haven't heard back yet, but plan to refund if I don't, as he has previously purchased multiple stamps from me, including one for $995.
  • I consider it part of the cost of doing business - it is an overhead item. Right up there with knowing you will probably incur some pilferage at a show or if you have a brick and mortar. A how to start an antique business suggested putting one of your "mistake" purchases with a hefty price tag on it right by the front door and let it go. Better that easy pickings than a better item.
  • edited January 11 0 LikesVote Down
    Thanks to all for your replies. (The upshot is that I've refunded the purchase price. No tears shed. I have not left any feedback, though. Don't want to give a positive, but don't want to leave neutral, either. Yet, it seems I ought to put a public warning out there to other sellers that this buyer may be either a conman or suffering from mild dementia. I guess I just did, sort of.)
  • I have had the same thing happen to me. The stamps got delivered to someone else they opened it took the stamps then dropped the envelop in the mail. When I received it just the envelope and a invoice.
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