Need clarification on money orders - so confused

  1. I've gotten so many different stories regarding money orders. The latest being that they can take up to 30 days to clear. I don't get it. Back in the day, money orders were about as secure as funds could get because they were purchased with cash and therefore treated like cash. I'm expecting a MO from a buyer soon and need to know how this works. I told them it had to be from the USPS because MOs are so easily faked these days. They had no problem with that and it's on the way to me now. Do I cash/deposit it at my bank and wait 7 days like a check to have it clear? What's the story with people saying it can take 30 days? That's longer than a check. My buyer won't want to wait 30 days to get their item nor would most people knowing that money orders are usually treated like cash or at worst a personal check. I need clarification please. Also, how do you know it has completely cleared the cycle? My bank will show the deposit within a day of me depositing it, but I'm told they can come back and bite you. How will I know it has cleared their bank, which I assume is the postal service since that's where they got the MO. The PO isn't a bank...Oh I'm confused....
  2. I know some people just do it to make sure their own bank doesn't bounce it back for one reason or another. However I think waiting 5-7 days is fine. I personally never wait since the amounts I sell for are low and haven't had a problem yet.
  3. I have heard that there are fake money orders nowadays....and buyers attempting scams by sending in fake MO's and asking for their item to be shipped immediately. Thank God I haven't had any of this happen to me (knock on wood), but I surely have read about it. As a precaution I now state in my auctions that all money orders/cashier's checks/personal checks can be held up to 10 business days to clear before item can be shipped. Just an extra precaution b/c these days you never know what kind of scams are out there.
  4. Hi, if she's sending a USPS money order, just take it to the post office when you ship the item and cash it on the spot. then no worries
  5. Exactly. And they will know if it was stolen since its one of theirs. No problem, all clear.
  6. Thanks for all the infomation, I thought a Money Order was as good as cash but I can't believe people fake them. So I would bring the Money Order Directly to the USPS and have them cash it.
  7. Take it to the post office only if its a Postal Money Order! Some people send bank money orders or small stores sell their own, too, but the Post Office will cash only their own. Insist on Postal Money Orders only.
  8. Its amazing what people fake these days. Money orders, receipts, you name it!
  9. If you get a postal MO then you can cash it at the Post office. No need for involving a bank or needing it to clear. They will know if its fake.

    I was talking to my bank manager and she did tell me that it can take a money order to cycle as long as 30 days if its out of state. It depends on what kind of MO (Western Union, specific bank, etc)

    The bank gives you the money based on you banking with them. They then have to send it to the clearing house for payment. That is what my bank manager told me maybe its different for you. Just ask your bank.

    I just got a MO for a bag and it was from that big issuer of MO I cant remember their name, Safeguard maybe. Anyway...that had a heat stamp so I knew it was real, I also called their 800# and verified their was $ from that number in that amount, so I knew it was legit. There is so much fraud out there its scary.
  10. If you get a Currency Exchange MO, a lot of Currency Exchanges can trace those the same way the USPS traces a postal MO. I've actually had more trouble cashing bank MOs than the ones from a currency exchange or the USPS. I'd be careful about bank-issued MOs, cause I think the only way those can be traced is through the bank it's drawn on, and sometimes buyers go to local banks, that are not operating in all 50 states.
  11. Thanks so much everyone for your advice. I got it today, it was a USPS money order as I specified that was my requirement in the auction. Well, I took it to the PO and unfortunately, they didn't keep that much cash in their drawers. The women I spoke with phoned our town's main postal facility to see if they had that much cash in their drawers. They unfortunately did not as they needed to keep enough to make change throughout the day. The lady did confirm it was a legit money order and not a faked one. She suggested taking it to my bank to cash it as the big banks should be knowledgeable on how to spot fake USPS money orders. They can't be trained to identify other types from banks, etc., but should be up on postal service ones. I did take it and the person cashed it no problem and said this should not come back to bite me as it would have been purchased with cash at the post office. So, guess it's all good. Thanks again everyone for your input.
  12. Glad it all worked out for ya :smile: