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I'm done with used books on Amazon JAWM

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For the past couple months I've been ordering next year's books from Amazon.  Last week one of the books (Art of Argument) came filled with writing.  Writing in bright ink with terrible penmanship.  There is no way I can just have DD ignore the writing on the page and write on separate paper, because you can't look away from the large, brightly penned responses!  It's like not looking at a flashing neon light!  I totally thought this was a textbook and wasn't expecting writing to even be a possibility or I wouldn't have bothered ordering it used.  I only saved a few dollars on the cost of new, so this was a total bust.  

 

Next I ordered Building Thinking Skills: Primary and received a teacher's manual/lesson plans for BTS 3.  How do you manage to confuse these two books?  They look nothing alike!  I really want this book, don't have the budget to order it new, but I"m afraid to try a different seller and waste even more money.  Now I have a teacher's manual for a program that I'll never use.  I can send it back, but my refund probably wouldn't cover the cost of shipping.  

 

I'm pretty irritated that my last two orders are pretty much unusable.  At least the logic book's description stated that it had some highlighting/writing in it.  I was just expecting it to contain a bit of highlighting.  

 

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For the past couple months I've been ordering next year's books from Amazon.  Last week one of the books (Art of Argument) came filled with writing.  Writing in bright ink with terrible penmanship.  There is no way I can just have DD ignore the writing on the page and write on separate paper, because you can't look away from the large, brightly penned responses!  It's like not looking at a flashing neon light!  I totally thought this was a textbook and wasn't expecting writing to even be a possibility or I wouldn't have bothered ordering it used.  I only saved a few dollars on the cost of new, so this was a total bust.  

 

Next I ordered Building Thinking Skills: Primary and received a teacher's manual/lesson plans for BTS 3.  How do you manage to confuse these two books?  They look nothing alike!  I really want this book, don't have the budget to order it new, but I"m afraid to try a different seller and waste even more money.  Now I have a teacher's manual for a program that I'll never use.  I can send it back, but my refund probably wouldn't cover the cost of shipping.  

 

I'm pretty irritated that my last two orders are pretty much unusable.  At least the logic book's description stated that it had some highlighting/writing in it.  I was just expecting it to contain a bit of highlighting.  

 

Ugh, I'm sorry. I always hold my breath when I order used from Amazon too.

 

Regarding the bolded, since it was a seller's error, they should cover the cost of shipping back. I would at least notify them about the mistake.

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I've always had GREAT luck buying used books.   Those are nearly the only type of books I buy---and we buy A LOT.   We, of course, have gotten a few messed up books that were not as described, but *anytime* I have contacted a seller they have been great with refunding my money without sending the book back.   

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I'd go ahead and put in a claim through Amazon.  The seller usually refunds the cost of the book and shipping but rarely expects you to send it back.  If they do then refuse unless they pay for shipping since it's their mistake. And yes buying used from Amazon or Ebay is a PITA.

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I agree with above poster...definitely put in a claim. You should be out $0 on a book that was seller's error. Demand a refund!

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I would complain to Amazon about both of those. If the writing wasn't disclosed, and the seller sent the wrong book, they should offer a full refund including shipping.

 

I've had extraordinary good luck with used books from Amazon myself. Very often, "good" has meant "less wear on it than we out on it in five minutes." But ymmv.

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Yep, file a claim. Amazon is very good about handling customer issues like this. Though I have never dealt with their customer service in regards to used books.

 

Last summer, they ended up sending me three different copies of the same Aesop Fables book, none of which was what I needed. But they did not charge me, neither did they want the other books back.

 

That said....I've had nominal luck finding good deals on used books at Amazon. Often, the used price, plus shipping, is only a little less than brand new. Or...if the used book is Prime eligible, the price for the book itself is higher by the same amount it would cost for shipping on the cheaper used books.

 

So typically, I end up buying the new book. At least then I know it's definitely not written in.

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If the books weren't as listed (ie. it said the condition was no writing or margins only writing and it's filled with writing AND Especially where they sent you the wrong book) -- you should be able to return without paying any shipping.

 

 

I buy used books with GREAT results on Amazon all the time!!!

 

I also usually check addall.com -- they're a comparison shopper for used books (you can search by ISBN so the listings should be accurate) and they include shipping in the comparisons.

 

EDITED: Sorry I forgot the JAWM! I am so sorry that happened to you! It is SOOOOOOOOOOOOO frustrating when you order something and it doesn't turn out the way you expected! I really hope you can resolve it!

 

Edited by theelfqueen
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Definitely send a note to the vendor. I have had any issues resolved right away. There is only one vendor who I refuse to order from just because we had repeat issues. It just isn't worth the hassle.

 

I order so many books and often used because they are out of print so I would hate to lose that!

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I'm not sure if you'll get your money back for the first one - I think it depends on what the description said, but when the vendor refused to pay shipping on a book that was obviously the wrong book, Amazon covered it immediately. They're pretty decent with this stuff.

 

Amazon sellers... ugh. So useful, so convenient, so uneven.

 

 

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I'll agree with the others on filing a claim.  I once got the wrong book, and another time a book with writing in it that had said 'pages clean'.  Both times I got a refund, and in the latter case the seller sent me a clean copy for no extra money.

 

I will not order any kind of used school text from Amazon unless the description clearly says something like 'clean pages'.  The thing I most care about is no writing or highlighting - things like a dinged or scratched cover don't bother me much.  And if the description says 'clean pages' and they're not, I have the basis for a claim; I figure that gives me at least a bit of protection.

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I hate it when I get something that isn't as advertised!

 

But I will say that I've had some bizarre mistakes made by Amazon sellers and it has ALWAYS been made right when the mistake is on their end. The wrong book should get corrected without you being out a penny. The one with so much writing in it is worth a shot, though you may or may not get anything back - I've found that high volume sellers will often refund or partially refund for condition just to avoid a bad review.

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Another place to buy used is Belltower books.  Textbooks mainly but some surprises as well (OUP WIAT for example) they are usually same or lower in $ as Amazon but only $1 shipping.  For condition you need to downgrade 1 level.  So, good is fair, very good is good.

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Ugh, I'm sorry. I always hold my breath when I order used from Amazon too.

 

Regarding the bolded, since it was a seller's error, they should cover the cost of shipping back. I would at least notify them about the mistake.

 

this. I received the wrong book once and Amazon paid return shipping.

 

ETA:  it was a cookbook and I ordered one of the Boston Children's Museum science books. =)

Edited by cintinative
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Contact the sellers for both and complain, through the format that Amazon has set up. I've done that, and both times that I had to, the seller replaced the book with no questions asked, didn't make me return the item or anything (one time I bought a book that had missing pages, the other time I bought a book in "good" condition and it had severe water damage and reeked).

 

Super easy process both times. 

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Contact the sellers before putting in a claim through Amazon. Only do that if the seller doesn't respond to your satisfaction.

 

When Amazon started selling a lot of used items, they had a limit on number of claims in a year or maybe it was for the lifetime of the account, I don't know what the limit is now, but that is something to be aware of.

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Amazon.com condition guidelines.

 

If the book with writing was listed as Very Good (or better) then you have every right to demand a refund under the "Not as described" reason. If the seller doesn't respond, you can open an A-Z claim.

 

If the book contained "considerable notes" (which it sounds like) it should have been listed as "Acceptable." If it was listed as "Good" you may be in a grey area, but you can definitely still ask for a refund.

 

Amazon 3P sellers not listing their books with the correct condition is a problem. It causes problems for all the other honest 3P sellers, too (as this thread demonstrates).

 

At the same time, buyers need to know what the condition descriptions mean as well. If you want a book with zero writing, only choose Very Good or better.

 

And, for goodness sakes, don't order a book, be surprised by the condition, and then give THE BOOK a one-star review, because of the condition of the book! Arrghhh. I hate it when I'm investigating a book, and go to read the Amazon reviews, and there's little more than 1-star complaints about 3P sellers. Complain to the seller, not the author! That's my rant for the day.

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So frustrating. 

 

I have not had this happen often, but when it has, I have gotten full refunds. 

 

In one case, I complained to the seller, who did not respond.  I took it to Amazon (they make it very easy) after the time allotted for the vendor to respond, and they refunded me immediately - for the book and the shipping.  I assume they went after the vendor. 

 

 

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I both buy and sell books on Amazon and it can certainly be a big pain in the butt sometimes. When buying I look for accurate descriptions of the book that shows the seller has actually looked inside the book and didn't just list it's condition by what the cover looks like.

If I can't find any with good description I send the seller a question regarding specific things like writing. If they can't answer, most huge sellers can't, I ask what they will do if i order it and it comes written in, missing a cd, or whatever. Depending on their response I either buy or don't.

 

Selling can be equally frustrating because people don't have a good grasp on what the condition definitions are and don't read descriptions thoroughly. When they complain you have to walk on eggshells or risk a bad review because of their mistake.

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As others have said. don't just walk away from this.  You may be able to file a claim.  And the sellers and Amazon need to know there was an issue.  I have ordered a LOT of used books from Amazon and on the rare occassion that something came in that was not what I ordered or not the condition described they always made it right.  How were the books described?

 

 

1.  Book 1:  Absolutely file a claim if the description did not include that there was extensive writing or it was listed as Good or Very Good.  If book one had a description that included it was written in, or it was listed as Acceptable, you won't have much option for filing a claim, though.   I would still let the seller know you are unhappy.  Very bright ink writing should have been listed.

 

2.  Book 2:  Without a doubt, unless you misread the description, you can file a claim for this book.  Absolutely.  You did not receive what you ordered.  File through Amazon so you are fully protected.

 

3.  Do not give negative feedback on the product.  Give negative feedback on the seller if they don't make it right or the descriptions were way off.  Negative feedback on the product, as mentioned upthread, means people will think the book itself is a bad one, not that the condition of your particular book was poor.

 

4.  In future, when ordering used books, I recommend only ordering books in Very Good or Like New condition unless it is a book that you can use even if the condition is poor or there is writing in it.  Good condition is a very grey area.  Acceptable can frequently mean pretty darn bad (acceptable for some is waaaaay different than acceptable for others apparently).  Ordering a book in Very Good or Like New condition means you have a much greater chance of receiving a book in very good condition and it also means you have a strong leg to stand on if you have to file a claim.

 

:grouphug:  :grouphug:  :grouphug:

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Now I'm feeling lucky... I've ordered a lot of used books through Amazon and never had a problem. Now I think I'll be waiting for the other shoe to drop!

 

I'd definitely contact the seller/Amazon, though. Amazon is so good about resolving issues (which I have had with them, just never with a third party!).

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Always complain to the seller on Amazon. Be prepared to provide a picture of what you received (I use a link to a photo on my dropbox). For a low-profit book, they will usually just give you your money back, no need to return ship.

 

I never order used workbooks, they always have writing in them.

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I might have an unused Building Thinking Skills primary.   I think it was too easy by the time I ordered it.   If you are interested PM me and I'll check the bookshelf.  i don't think it was written in at all, but I'd have to check.

Edited by shawthorne44
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I almost always buy used on Amazon; it saves me a ton of money. Also, if you received books that you didn't order or were not in the condition as described, you can send them back, put a claim in through Amazon and receive a refund on shipping and shipping cost back, as well. As an Amazon seller and a prolific buyer, I can tell you that if you received completely wrong books it was likely that the shipping label was slapped on the wrong package by accident and the seller didn't intentionally mess it up or confuse the books.

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Amazon has "Condition Guidelines" for used things and a special category for Books.  Here's the URL:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/help/customer/display.html?nodeId=1161242#books

 

Scroll down and read the description of a Book listed in "Acceptable" condition.  

 

In general, I try to buy Textbooks for DD that are listed in "Used-Very Good" Condition, but sometimes, I buy books listed as "Used-Good" for her.  She has received many books described as "Good" that were actually "Very Good" .  One that was listed as "very good", she believes was never used by a student, because when she inspected it, after we received it, she said "it smells like a new book".  A few times, the books we received should have been listed in a lower Condition category, but it is more common for them to be better than described when we receive them.

 

I never consider books listed in "Acceptable" Condition.  Occasionally, you can buy a book that is "New" for less than a book that is "Used".  Some of those "New" books might have a school stamp, but if the price is right, I don't care about that. because I'm not buying a "Gift Quality" book to give to someone as a gift.

 

We had one experience with a book that had about 5 missing pages. Since we live in South America, getting another copy would have been costly. Fortunately, DD found those pages on the web, or  her Instructor sent them to her. I think that was a Spanish Workbook, but am not sure.

 

As I told my wife and DD, I suspect that when the people in a large Seller "inspect" used books, they have 30 to 60 seconds to "inspect" each one, so they don't look at every page, pick up on every instance of writing/highlighting, etc., or see that there are a few missing pages.

 

I have purchased books for DD for one cent (USD $0.01) plus shipping that were in "Very Good" condition or better when we received them.  Cost has *nothing* to do with the condition of the book, if a very large Seller has gotten into a price war for that particular book.  DD is currently using a 9th grade English textbook that I thought I would need to pay about $38.00 for, and then one night, BetterWorldBooks, to my astonishment, came in and listed it for one cent. That book had *not* been in a price war, prior to that. When we received it, it showed that it had been used by one student, in a TX Public High School.

 

OP: I would leave VERY NEGATIVE FEEDBACK AFTER communicating with the Sellers, via the Amazon Messaging System and asking privately for a full refund.  Possibly take one or 2 photos to include in your message to them.  

 

ALWAYS SEARCH FOR TEXTBOOKS WITH THE ISBN NUMBER.  ONLY SEARCH FOR TEXTBOOKS WITH THE ISBN NUMBER.

 

GL 

Edited by Lanny
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I've experienced a "success" rate of about 50% good and 50% what the heck is this book?? with Amazon for some reason. Very frustrating!  I shop at Better World Books now, but I don't know that they'd have things for younger grades.

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Contact the sellers. The first book should have been listed under Poor condition (or just not sold at all). It should be easy to get a refund in both items

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Please after you resolve the issue with Amazon and the vendor (or not), please leave feedback on the vendor either way. Sometimes it is a bit complicated to figure out how to leave vendor feedback, but it should be in your order information. It is useful to hear from real people and their experiences.

 

I've bought about 5 used books from various Amazon vendors, including a used (but really new) ETC book.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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I've experienced a "success" rate of about 50% good and 50% what the heck is this book?? with Amazon for some reason. Very frustrating!  I shop at Better World Books now, but I don't know that they'd have things for younger grades.

 

 

BetterWorldBooks is a *huge* seller.    Excellent chance they will have what you need. We have purchased several books for DD from them on Amazon. One of them, was a "Gift from God" and a financial blessing for our family. The textbook for 9th grade English had been starting at about USD $38.00 for months, and I assumed that I would eventually pay that for that textbook.  One day, for some reason, I checked, several times, on Amazon. To my astonishment, about 5 or 6 P.M. that day, there was a new listing. BWB had listed it for one cent plus $3.99 shipping.  I kept my fingers crossed and prayed that they would not cancel the order.  DD is using that textbook now. It apparently had been used by *one* student, in a public high school in TX, in a city where one of my cousins lives.  Excellent condition.    :hurray:

 

BWB uses a shipping company I'd never heard of (it works like DHL GlobalMail, FedEx SmartPost, etc. where the USPS actually delivers the packages) and our packages have arrived OK. BWB also has another company name they use on Amazon, but I can't remember what that name is.

 

So far, we have never received the wrong book from any Amazon Seller or had a total disaster. Even the *huge* Sellers (Hippo Books, etc.) have Positive Feedback numbers above 90%, which I believe is amazing, because they are shipping thousands of packages every day.

 

In our case, our packages go to our Forwarder in Miami, and everything is opened there and inspected, before they Consolidate things into one carton to ship to our home in Colombia.  I send them information about everything and ask them to inspect. On one occasion, the woman working on our Consolidation was concerned about the condition of a textbook and she called on the phone. I had her explain to DD what she saw in the book and DD told her to go ahead and send it. So, in our case, hopefully, they would catch it, if the wrong ISBN number was shipped to us, or a book was in really bad condition.

 

I have also purchased two textbooks for DD on eBay, from private people, and we saved $ buying from them and  not buying the same textbooks from Amazon Marketplace Sellers.

 

I avoid FBA (Fulfillment by Amazon) Sellers.

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And I forgot to mention... I used to be quick at leaving bad feedback and call it done. Once you leave bad feedback you can't remove it. Most vendors are willing to make it right, and even issue a full refund including shipping if I paid any. Now, if I have a problem I contact them first...I leave feedback after everything is said and done

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Why not buy books on the classified boards here? There are so many books for sale here from people you may know on this forum. I'd rather sell my used books here than on Amazon anyway. Amazon fees cost me. Sometimes I am spending money to sell books. giving them away only ensures Goodwill sells them on Amazon for $0.01.What is with that?  SUPPORT YOUR FELLOW HOMESCHOOLER!  

 

Buy Local here on the TWTM Classified board.

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The joke is on me... just received a used book from Amazon today and for the first time ever, I got a very marked-up copy that had been listed as "very good" condition. :-P Must be because of this thread. ;) Have emailed the seller and will see what happens!!!

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I'm sorry for your experience, but mine has been quite different. I stick to the reputable sellers, and will generally be willing to pay a little more to order from a seller I've had good experience with. The rare times that I've had an issue, it was promptly taken care of. I would contact Amazon, especially over the book that was completely different from what was described.

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Why not buy books on the classified boards here? There are so many books for sale here from people you may know on this forum. I'd rather sell my used books here than on Amazon anyway. Amazon fees cost me. Sometimes I am spending money to sell books. giving them away only ensures Goodwill sells them on Amazon for $0.01.What is with that? SUPPORT YOUR FELLOW HOMESCHOOLER!

 

Buy Local here on the TWTM Classified board.

I don't think they are selling them for a penny, I just don't think it costs $3.99 to ship a book via media mail, so the price difference is their profit.

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For the past couple months I've been ordering next year's books from Amazon. Last week one of the books (Art of Argument) came filled with writing. Writing in bright ink with terrible penmanship. There is no way I can just have DD ignore the writing on the page and write on separate paper, because you can't look away from the large, brightly penned responses! It's like not looking at a flashing neon light! I totally thought this was a textbook and wasn't expecting writing to even be a possibility or I wouldn't have bothered ordering it used. I only saved a few dollars on the cost of new, so this was a total bust.

 

Next I ordered Building Thinking Skills: Primary and received a teacher's manual/lesson plans for BTS 3. How do you manage to confuse these two books? They look nothing alike! I really want this book, don't have the budget to order it new, but I"m afraid to try a different seller and waste even more money. Now I have a teacher's manual for a program that I'll never use. I can send it back, but my refund probably wouldn't cover the cost of shipping.

 

I'm pretty irritated that my last two orders are pretty much unusable. At least the logic book's description stated that it had some highlighting/writing in it. I was just expecting it to contain a bit of highlighting.

I'd contact the sellers of both these books. I've received wrong books or books that weren't in the condition described a few times and was easily able to get a refund in all cases. The sellers didn't even ask me to send the books back.

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I don't think they are selling them for a penny, I just don't think it costs $3.99 to ship a book via media mail, so the price difference is their profit.

 

I forget the details, but, from memory, if a Seller pays Amazon about USD$30  (?) each month, they get a special status and pay lower fees.  If they sell a book for one cent, plus $3.99 Standard Shipping, they can make 30 or 40 cents on each sale.  If they have received the book for little or no cost, that's extra money to their bottom line, and they get the book out of their warehouse.   DD is currently using at least one textbook I bought for one cent plus shipping, from an Amazon Marketplace Seller.  Sometimes, and this is more frequent, books I have purchased for one cent or a dollar or two, have been in "Price Wars", where the computerized pricing programs of 2 Sellers that see each other as competition get into a "price war", and the price can eventually go as low as one cent, if the  books are not sold before getting down to one cent.  However, the last book I bought for DD for one cent had not been in a Price War. It was going for about $38.00, for months, and I knew I would eventually pay that for the book, when DD was ready for it. And then, one night, I looked on Amazon and BetterWorldBooks in IN had come in and listed it for one cent plus shipping. It is in "Very Good" or possibly "Like New" condition.   

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I buy heaps from better world books. Probably a hundred books over the last couple of years. I had one problem with one book (missing pages), they refunded immediately.

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I have also had great luck with Better World Books. We have picked up a bunch of DK Eyewitness books in great shape for very low prices. I have ordered one book from an Amazon 3p seller, listed as "like new" condition, that arrived with pages ripped out. I'm sticking with BWB from here on out. :)

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