I've spent some of the last few months gently upgrading things. The only major outlay was a new MacBook, for which half-measures seemed like a false economy. Given I hammered the new machine's CPU and graphics capability, creating a video that took nearly an hour to render, that was probably a good decision.
Point is, I've generally bought a new item on Amazon or eBay and then sold the one we had, thus upgrading, but only at part of the cost. I've also sold off things I wasn't using to fund things I wanted to buy.
I'm sure it cost me more than I raised to do this, but my general costs have gone down, so why not, eh?
In general, it means I've had a little more exposure to eBay than normal, and people seriously need to get a grip there.
Ashley's first rule of eBay (and this applies to other online purchase sites too). If someone asks questions about an item, they're probably not going to be the eventual purchaser.
I don't think I've seen it happen. The time you spend answering the questions from some over cautious tosspot who can't read the description is essentially a waste. Someone else always either beats them to the final bid, or simply bids more boldly knocking the questioner out earlier. I'm not even sure that answering questions from eBay sellers even results in them bidding.
Don't get me wrong. I don't think the question facility is a bad thing. I just think it's largely used by people who haven't the gumption to use eBay. I recently asked a question of a seller and, based on their answer, offered them a price. I now have the item... No idea what I'm going to do with it, but fortune favours the bold.
Don't go early you pillock. I am not a fan of being prepared early for things. I don't turn up early for stuff if I can avoid it. I don't pre-book things. I occasionally miss out, but most often I don't, and I find I haven't wasted my energies and prolonged the whole experience in so doing.
In eBay, though, it's critical that you don't jump the gun. Put stuff on your watch list, but don't bid on the damned thing unless it's within 5 minutes of the item ending. Maybe put on a 1st bid, in the hope that it's the only bid and you'll win by default... but trying to bid halfway through an auction is simply a way to put the price up.
Fucking pay for the items you win you pricks. I bought a new Kindle before the summer holidays. It's had a lot of use, and I was interested in it as I felt my existing one was starting to run a bit more slowly. While I could probably have reset it and gone back to some sort of improved performance, I liked the idea of a more up to date model, with a longer overall life. I reckon a Kindle has about 5 good years in it. I'm now on my third. My wife is on her 4th (possibly 3rd).
I've put the old kindle up for sale. It works. I've reset it. It's in decent condition. I just fancied a nice newer one.
It's sold twice so far.
Then the tosspot who's bid on it and won doesn't bother paying. Then eBay chases them... then cancels the sale... then back to square one.
Someone bid on it tonight. Idiots... they've raised the price by £7, but the item still has the rest of the week to go. What they've done is make it overall more expensive. Worse than that, someone else is going to win it, then not pay for it... then... the circle of bloody life.
Tonight I bought the sheet music for The Wall - I've half an idea that I may already own this... but I was too lazy to double check. I don't think I do. It turns out I've been bending guitar strings incorrectly all this time, and it's much easier when you do it properly. Lots to learn!