Well, I did my best to check that everything was in place when I picked it up. I mean, everything even had boxes... how was I supposed to know that anything was wrong with it?
First clue: the price
If it's too good to be true...
Second clue: the seller's comments
"you can just call the company if you need extra parts"
Third clue: the unusual amount of leftover wire
We realized after reading through the instructions...
...that the wires attached to the fixture were too short! They needed to be long enough to feed through the "hanger loop" and "nipple" according to the set-up above.
Our theory is that the guy I bought the fixture from attempted to put it up in his home, but cut the wires too short and had to face getting it rewired. Then, instead of paying to get it rewired (if it could even get rewired) he decided to make a quick $20 by listing it on Craigslist... and that's where I came in.
Oh, but guess who figured out a way around the little wire issue?
Yep, I realized that the current wiring would be the perfect length if we just drilled a new hole to put it through. Who is the swindler now?! It looks like Mr. Craigslist-scammer unnecessarily tricked someone into buying his $500 chandelier for $20!
Here's a glimpse of it hanging in my soooo not even close to finished living room.
And a picture I dug up of the old fan and popcorn ceiling:
It's crazy looking at this picture from almost a year ago because the ONLY thing that I still have in the room is the couch... oh, and the boyfriend!
Have you ever found "a great deal" that turned out to be a scam? OR Have you turned "broken and worthless" into something useful in your home?
While I'm back on the topic of buying from Craigslist, I'd like to elaborate on one of my Craigslist buying tips that sparked a bit of debate the other day: offering a lower price when you get to the seller's home.
There are times when this is an appropriate strategy and there are times when it is not. If I feel like I understand the condition and value of the piece based off of online pictures and email conversation with the seller, I'll negotiate the price prior to picking it up. I'd say that this happens more than half of the time, but there are many cases where making a blind offer can end up hurting me in the end. If I want to go into the sale risk free, I'll simply ask the seller if I can come over and "take a look" at their listing. After seeing the item, I'll offer what I'd like to pay.
I believe that no person should be forced to buy OR sell something at a price that they don't see as appropriate. With this said, I do think that people are more likely to change their opinions of what a fair price is when they're faced with the real possibility of getting the junk out of their garage. Because of this, showing the seller that you're serious by driving to see the listing is usually a good strategy in negotiation.