Sometimes I notice a great piece of kit for a great price in the classifieds. If I don't have the cash on hand, I sometimes offer the seller a non-refundable deposit, with the balance to be paid by a specific date. Sometimes the seller agrees, sometimes the seller prefers to keep it listed but invites me to see if it's still available when I get the cash. At no time have I gotten complaints about my having been unreasonable. I would never send a deposit, or even payment, through anything but an escrow service like PayPal. The deposit has the full terms spelled out: Remaining balance of $xxx due by this date, with deposit forfeit after that. Shipping information is spelled out as well, including the obligation to provide a valid tracking number. That's the whole point of using an escrow service: With the terms spelled out, the seller can't run off with the deposit, and the buyer either pays it off or pays for the time the item was off the market. The buyer even has recourse in the case of "my dog ate my copy of the shipping tracking number." There have been various topics wherein people talk about attempting to bargain people down, and how they want the seller to negotiate. Some TGP members even feel there is an obligation on the part of a seller to engage in negotiation for a lower price. For me, if something is being offered at a more than fair price, I'd rather have the actual item *and* for the seller and me to both feel that we had a good transaction. I think the core difference between my getting nice replies back and those who complain about sellers not responding to their offers is that I'm offering a deposit, and making it clear that I'm either going to follow through or lose that deposit. That likely separates me from the tire kickers. Anyone else ever go the multiple payment route?