WHY SHOPPING ON EBAY CAN BE SAFER THAN ON A WWWEBSITE!

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Why trying to go green got me seeing red and how you can avoid this pitfall!







Are you tempted to just take a quick look at a web site you see advertised while on a search engine..or anywhere else for that matter... Sometimes almost all of us will get our taste buds tempted, on impulse, by an unexpected well placed advert.



We may well be looking for more information on something obscure when, like myself, I saw an advert for a web site selling electric water heaters..not huge immersion heaters, but small, modern, neat looking, over the sink style heaters that work on a fairly similar principal to an electric shower to give instant hot water when it is required.



Now being in an all electric home with storage heaters and an immersion tank for water, can be pretty exasperating, not to mention expensive, but we had no mains gas to our home when we moved here some years ago.



The most expensive part of the whole electric experience, is the water heating with the immersion heater..which has been called so many names in this home that I am surprised it hasn't been the recipient of physical abuse!



It gradually chews its way through the Electricity units and our pound notes, behind its cosy 'insulation jacket' which is barely adequate for keeping the water hot for longer than a few hours for a cold winter evening's hot bath.





So purchasing a small over the bath modern instant electric water heater seemed not only appealing, but a 'GREEN' alternative to heating up a whole tank of hot water in the immersion, only to find that is is tepid when you want it red hot, as someone has run some hot off when washing their hair or your teenager has left the hot tap dripping ..againnnn!



(Of course for those of you reading this, who are snug and instantly hot watered on gas, you may need to be informed that the cold water that tops the immersion heater, when any is run off, dilutes the existing hot water stored there to a tepid shivery temperature)



So.........the website that seduced me, was professional looking and had great features, easy navigation and loads of other eletrical appliances shown in photographs of which David Bailey would be proud, convinced me that this impulse purchase would be beneficial on many fronts.



After a quick discussion with your other half of the 'joint bank account holder', and a convincing discussion about how green it would be to reduce our carbon footprint and better still, reduce our water heating bill, I excitedly filled out the credit card details asked of me on the web site, with the Master card, then check delivery and then subconsciously and slightly excitedly wait for the arrival of the instant over the bath or sink, water heating appliance!



No more wasted hot water, no more chilly baths, no more quiet sneaky races to the bathroom to get the first bath, before the best of the hot water is used...no...the new 'greener', more efficient hot water heater will soon be arriving and after employing a plumber to fit it,I was anticipating endless hot baths, instantly!



After three weeks I started to wonder when it will be arriving..but I talked myself into culling impatience and giving it another week...then I check the online credit card statement .....yes - the payment left my account...........so now what?



Did you save the web site on your 'favourites' so you can find them again and email them?



YES!

You are so relieved!

You can let them know their product hasn't arrived!

Simple!



Not only did we have no gas to the house, we lived in a place no couriers can find us without directions.

Surely after a couple of emails the heater will be at your door. Your first hot bath with instant hot water is on its way!



But no.........no response to emails...........another look at the so Professional looking web site. No telephone number to call............and now you start to get a cold shivver down your back. No address..not a non cyberspace one at least.



No I don't get caught out like this!



I am net savvy!



I watch the ads and read the information on how to surf safely and buy with caution on the World Wide Web!



But! Oh dear no..the worst part is admitting to your ' joint account holding' partner that you have purchased from an 'unresponsive' web site..which is the nicest word I can think of for it!



How many times have I always told myself to look for a time or date ticker on the web site which shows the current time and date and also sometimes reassures by stating that the web site is secure and hacker free and regularly monitored?



These things are usually, (but not always) a guarantee that the web site is 'active' and still 'manned'.



How many times, have I heard the warnings?



'Look for an address'? (not that this is a watertight way of being sure the web site is still active)



So.............I am in the process three months down the line of trying to reclaim my money..which I am pretty sure I will be able to do, but if had paid using a Debit card it may not have been so .....and, now whenever I want something......and see it advertised on a web site while surfing

I always go back to eBay.co.uk, as the active feedback of the sellers there, tells me that at least these sellers are trading and contactable and you have many protections on your purchase through Ebay and also Paypal if paying this way.



There also is almost nothing you cannot find for sale on eBay! (If you have found something, please email me as I want to sell it!!)





So to conclude!



If, like me, occasionally the desire to go green, or any other colour, may tempt you into an impulse purchase.........please don't see red in the process, as I have done!



Try searching eBay for the product first, as you can be sure the seller is active by their feedback......and if you really do have to buy on a web site you have never used before.......play safe and try and Pay with Paypal, or at least a credit card that gives protection against online fraudulent sellers..as there are a lot of sleeping web sites out there that will take your money as slickly as a pickpocket..and the web site owner may not even ever be online anymore, having long ago, abandoned his site for a 9 to 5 job..or at worst be a scammer out to take your money and never provide anything in return.





Take care out there!

When you purchase, your pleasure should be gain.. not cause pain!

 

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