Sheriff Jay Koon

Maybe you received some things you didn’t like at Christmas or maybe you’re clearing space in your home for the new year. Either way, you’ve listed some items online that you’d like to sell.

Using safe selling practices can ensure it’s a positive experience for both parties. Unfortunately, there will always be people trying to scam others out of money or goods. But, there are ways to reduce this likelihood.

You’ve agreed on a price and now it’s time to meet your buyer. Meeting in-person to complete a transaction is not without dangers. One of the best ways to reduce your risk in these types of transactions is to designate a safe place to meet. The Lexington County Law Enforcement Complex, located at 521 Gibson Road in Lexington, is one option. Buyers and sellers of online transactions are welcome to meet in our parking lot to safely complete sales.

If the Sheriff’s Department is not a convenient meeting place, please consider meeting at any law enforcement facility in Lexington County. Also, consider taking a friend with you during these situations. Most importantly, never invite someone to your home or agree to meet them at their home. 

When it comes to handling money, using online services like PayPal, Zelle or Marketplace may be a safer option than cash as it creates a payment record. This works if you’re able to send money during the meeting, not beforehand. If it’s a small-priced item, cash may be more convenient. But counterfeit currency is always a possibility. Only bring enough cash for the transaction. Accepting checks is usually not recommended because you risk having a returned check fee. Whatever payment exchange you decide on, make sure both parties agree.

A little awareness and caution goes a long way to avoid being the victim of a crime.