Is it a good idea to buy items by mail?
Buying by mail is an easy way for some people to shop. It
saves time and energy, and sometimes money.
To avoid any problems, ask yourself a few simple
questions before placing an order:
- Is the item you want to buy described well in words,
not just pictures? Is it really what you want?
- After adding the handling and shipping charges to the
regular price, is it still a good buy?
- If you are not happy with it, can you return the item
and get a refund? How much would it cost to return it?
- Know your rights as a consumer when buying by mail.
The seller must send the item as promised. When no date is
given, the item must be sent within 30 days. If not, the
buyer may cancel the order and get a quick refund.
- Protect yourself - do not send cash. Send a check or money order. Keep a copy of the ad, your order and payment receipt. If you have a problem, ask your local post office to help you.
Sandra McKinnon, Family Financial Education Specialist, University of Missouri-Extension
Cynthia E. Crawford, Ph.D., Family Financial Education Specialist, University of Missouri-Extension
Last update: Wednesday, April 19, 2006