We’re here to give our customers a free and easy way to buy, sell and find opportunities. And while most people who use Gumtree stick to the rules, some break them and cause a problem. We can’t keep an eye on everyone all the time, so we share as much advice with our customers as we can to keep them safe.
What we offer
- Online tips. We’ve published a lot of safety advice on our website.
- Around the clock support. Someone from our team is always there to help, either by email, live chat, social media or phone.
Our biggest piece of advice is: if something seems too good to be true, it probably is. That’s why we encourage customers to meet buyers or sellers in a public place in daylight – and to take a friend. If anything bad or suspicious happens, they should get in touch with us straight away.
If someone’s breaking our rules and a customer reports them, we can block them and delete their ad. If it’s a very serious issue, we encourage customers to call the police. We work closely with the police and Get Safe Online to protect customers – and improve how we tell people when there’s a problem.
These are our top tips to staying safe when trading online. There’s a lot more information in the panel on the left, but here are some basics:
- Try to meet in person. This gives you the chance to check what you’re buying before you pay.
- Check the item’s real. Some things like phones or tickets are known for being either fakes or copies, so be aware of this and check the item before you buy it.
- Try to pay cash. Some people are clever in taking your money when you pay online, so always aim for cash.
- Of course use Paypal, but not the Family & Friends option. You won’t be able to get a refund if something goes wrong. Paypal offer a service called 'paypal.me' as well, which also doesn't get you a refund if something goes wrong.
- Ask for paperwork. Especially when buying a car, bringing a pet home, or buying electronics. Ask for receipts, certificates or log books.
- Avoid dodgy links. If someone asks you to pay through PayPal, log in directly through the PayPal website. Don’t click on suspicious links in emails that claim to be from PayPal.
- If someone’s paying cash, make sure you check the banknotes are real.
- If a buyer says they’ve sent you too much money then asks for the surplus back, it’s probably a scam. Ask your bank if any money has gone in.
Have a read through the rest of these pages for more specific advice. If you still have questions contact us before you trade. Waiting till after may be too late. Talk to us on live chat or tweet us @helpmegumtree