How to Buy on eBay: Quality Products at the Best Price

You may or may not have used eBay in the past. For those of you who may be a little apprehensive to buy products through eBay, here is an in-depth review of the process and why you should consider it as an option for buying EPPP study material.  Many people have not considered eBay as a way of buying study material simply because they do not know how to buy on eBay, so lets take away that barrier by learning about it.  On a personal note, the first thing I ever bought on eBay was a car (a Porsche Boxster) and it worked out brilliantly.

Product: A Wide Variety of EPPP Resources

Price: All Price Ranges AvailableeBay

Place to Buy: Ebay

Free to Sign Up: YES

My Rating: 9 out of 10

While the information provided on this website is high quality and fairly comprehensive, you will have the best chance possible of passing the EPPP if you supplement it with additional study guides, flashcards, and most definitely practice test as discussed on the Study Tips page.  One way to get this material (at a fraction of the cost of what you would pay the 4 main study guide providers) is through eBay, as many people are looking to recoup the high price they paid for material after using it for only a short time.  Buying into an EPPP prep programs new will cost you anywhere between $1000 to $2000, but for a fraction of the cost of new you can buy the exact same material from someone who has completed the EPPP and no longer needs the material.  It’s the same as browsing the used book store at University before you commit to buying a new textbook. Not only that, there is a good chance you can also resell it once you have passed the EPPP!

First things First….Register an Account

It’s completely free to create an account! Not only is eBay the largest online buy sell site, but it also one of the safest  because your information is kept confidential by eBay.  The seller will obviously know your address after you purchase an item as they need to have someplace to ship to, as well as your email address for communication.  But since the payment goes through PayPal you can rest assured that your credit card or other payment information will be kept confidential.

Basically you put in your user information, agree to the terms and conditions, create a user name and password, and the follow the instructions on a confirmation email. And Voila! You are done.

Browsing for Materialbrowsing

There are 2 ways to search for items, you simply add a keyword into
the search box.  Or you can choose a category from the drop down menu.  You will want to check back regularly as there are always new items being added. At the same time you don’t want to wait too long to purchase because if you see something you like today, there is a good chance it won’t last long and someone else will buy it.

Then read through the descriptions, know that by clicking on a link to a product you are NOT committed to bidding or buying it.  Once you click on an item it will give you a shipping cost and an estimated time of arrival, you should also check to see if there is a return policy and if it is new or used (there are a lot of brand new items sold on eBay).  If you have any questions, you can simply send the seller an email to ask them.

Here is a link to EPPP specific eBay Material…Click Here to See What is Available….

To Bid or To Buy….That is the Question

First misconception about eBay, is that all items are auctioned.  Some items you can place a bid on, but some you just buy straight our like an online store.  And even the items that you can bid on, will also have the option of just being able to “buy it now”.

The first thing to know about bidding, is do NOT place a bid unless you are serious about buying that item. Also there will be a minimum amount that you can bid which will be listed.  You will also be able to see other bids that have been offered and you will be notified if someone has outbid you.  Most of the time bidding occurs minutes before the auction ends, even though the auction may be open for several days.  Because of this you have the option to “watch” an item and wait to bid closer to the end of the auction.  The benefit of this is you may be able to get items for a deal, the downside is you may lose the auction OR someone could come in and choose the “Buy it Now” option and you would also lose the item.  If this happen you do NOT owe any money at all (unlike some other bidding sites).

buysellIn my experience, most of the time in the category of EPPP material, they are being sold under the “buy it now” option only which means there is no auction or bidding.  Sometimes the seller will also have the option to “make me an offer” which means they are open to negotiate on the price. The benefit of buying items this way is you don’t have to wait until the end of the auction to get your item, and you don’t have to commit your time to watch an item at the end of the bid to make sure you get it.

At this point you are best to go to eBay to see it is easier than it sounds…Click Here

Isn’t it Risky to Buy on Ebay?

Often times people have worries that they are going to be scammed or ripped off by buying on eBay, so lets look at a few things to see how this is not very likely.  First off, every item will have the seller listed as well as their rating.  The seller is rated after every item they sell, and this is put into a percentage right beside their name.  If you want more information on a seller you can click to see the reviews written about them.  I recommend only buying from sellers that have over a 90% rating, and you will definitely be able to find lots that fit this criteria.  Also read the reviews, someone may have gotten a negative review for something very minimal. Some sellers even offer a return policy, so this is worth keeping an eye out for.

Because eBay is committed to the quality of both the items and the sellers on their site they offer a free Money Back Guarantee if you do not receive you’re item in a timely fashion, or it is not as described.  First you ask eBay to get involved within 30 days of receiving your item or when you should have received it, eBay will attempt to mediate between you and the seller (eBay is very motivating when they step in it is the sellers best interest to work with you), and if the issue is not resolved you can get your money back.  If you miss the 30 day window to file with eBay and you purchase through PayPal, you have 180 days to file through PayPal’s Purchase Protection Plan.  It is because of these offers that eBay has such a good reputation and it is very low risk to buy items on eBay.

Well I’m Satisfied! Now How do I Pay?

When you purchase an item the seller will let you know what means of electronic payment they are willing to receive, typically through PayPal or credit card.  Keep in mind this goes through eBay and not directly to the seller so your information is kept secure.  It is up to you to pay the seller within 3 days of purchase, payment due includes the purchase price as well as the shipping costs (you must pay shipping up front), and potentially tax.  If shipping is not listed or you want to clarify the cost, you simply email the seller before purchase to ask.  If you scroll down there will be a “shipping and payment” tab beside the “description” tab for every item, and it will give a detailed break down of card

If you pay with PayPal the seller may ask you to confirm your shipping address, which just makes sure that the shipping address is the same as the one you registered your PayPal account with.  It is up to you to make sure you give the right shipping address. Another bonus of using eBay is you will most likely have the ability to track your shipment (depending on the shipping options), and eBay has very good customer service if you have any questions or concerns.


When buying EPPP study material eBay is my #1 recommended way to purchase for 2 reasons: 1) There is always good material available for you to choose from and 2) It is the Best Price!  While this website provides a lot of good free study material, to have the best chance at passing the EPPP exam it is best supplemented with additional study guide information.  But even by purchasing supplemental material you can still save $1000 or more by not having to use one of the 4 main EPPP prep programs who end up overcharging you and selling you more than you need.  They do this by playing on your fear that you have no chance of passing the exam without them, and this is simply not true.  You will definitely benefit from practice exams which are essential in your study process, but there are lots of options for practice exams that cost way less.

I hope you have found this review helpful and you feel more confident purchasing material through eBay, if you have any question please leave them in the comments below.  Or if you want to share anything you find helpful when buying through eBay, also comment below!

2 thoughts on “How to Buy on eBay: Quality Products at the Best Price

  1. Hey Joy,
    Great article on eBay, I think it works very much like Mudah which is a Malaysian site for the locals here except that we don’t have the bidding system.

    I’m quite curious though, if I were to bid on an item on eBay and suddenly someone else joins in and bid higher and I continue increasing my price, what happens if I don’t pay after winning the bid? Will I get penalised though

    1. Good question. The seller lets eBay know, and they record it and keeps track and it can result in the buyer losing their account with eBay. There is no monetary penalty to the buyer that doesn’t pay. This often puts the sellers in a difficult position, so eBay on occasion will offer to refund the sellers fees if the buyer has screwed them over.

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