There is no such rule that is officially promoted by Bartertown.
Ive always operated under the standard rules of lower rep pays and ships first, leaves references, awaits shipment, etc.
Many members, myself included, use this as a personal trade guideline... but it is NOT a rule.
I know you might not have been calling it an official rule, but so many people see sentences like this and assume it is that we try to speak up and remind everyone any time we see something that even seems to intimate that it might be a rule, because we need that misconception to stop.
I dont have any reason to believe this gentleman would scam me but he is asking for payment first, as paypal does offer fraud protection in the case of a fraudulent sale, but i am not sure as to how this gels as to Bartertowns standards and usual practices.
I mean, you have to be comfortable with the trade/sale. So does he. My advice to you BOTH is that, if you two can't come to an agreement that you can both come to terms with, you go your separate ways amicably. Myself, I've lost some deals I really wanted that way, and have kept from getting scammed a few times, as well.
"PayPal protects the buyer" is kind of an empty promise. It never sways me in trade negotiations. Getting them to help you can be like pulling teeth:
"So, did he send you a box? I see that he's provided a tracking number."
"Well, yes he did... but it didn't have anything in it but a few magazines."
"The seller claims it had exactly what was promised in it, and the weight of the box is precisely what it should be for the items he sent."
"Yeah... because one of the magazines was ripped in half. Clearly, he planned this."
"Do you have proof."
"I didn't video myself opening the box, but I'm telling you... I want to file a claim."
Claim is filed. Seller proves he sent a box @ the right weight, and that it was delivered.
Seller wins claim. Buyer gets nothing.
Just looking for advice or thoughts, its a large enough sale i dont feel 'safe and smart' sending money first, im not a regular paypal user so i dont have a ton of experience with it.
Not trying to claim anything untowards may be afoot, just wondering.
I have two different sets of advice; one is "official advice" and the other is my "personal advice."
Speak with your trade partner, express the issues that HAVE happened in the past when higher rated traders trusted lower rated traders. Compare/contrast reputations. ALWAYS BE POLITE. Try to find something that you can both agree on.
Everything I said above, with the addition that I support the lower rated trader sending first and the one who RECEIVED first being the one to leave the first reference. Rarely ever do I break my own trade rating preference. When I do, it's for NOMINAL value item, or it's atrader who's WELL established or that I know VERY WELL.
I'd rather lose 100 great trades than get ripped off on one small one. There's no trade I want bad enough to do anything that I perceive as risking a scam.