When you sell something on Craigslist (CL), there are things you can do to make your experience safer. Do realize, that most people are just like you. They too want it to be a safe experience. We do these as precautions. We have never felt unsafe while selling, but we also make sure to be smart about it.
Here is our Top Ten List:
1. Do not take identifying pictures. Our pictures do not show our house number or our cars. We take our pictures outside because the light shows the items off better. If you take pictures inside, try to make sure other things (like you nice tv, stereo, etc) are not in the picture.
2. Put something in your post that will protect you from phishers or scammers. Put "cash only" as your terms and ask them to leave a phone number or a key word in the email they send you. (If they do not include these things, or offer to wire you money in exchange for you item, you can just delete it.)
3. If you set up an appointment for someone to meet you about an item, let someone else know. If it is at your house, try to have another person there. If you talk to the person on the phone, use language like "My husband and I will be home to meet you at..." or "My son, whose a marine, and I..." Even if you are going to be alone when you meet them, don't tell them that.
5. If you are meeting at your house, do not give them the address over email. Ask them to call when they are on their way or shortly before they leave. Blame it on your wife being funny about giving your address out or whatever you want. We have had too many people not show up after we gave out our address. Nothing ever happened, but it still creeped me out.
6. If you are able to, take the item outside. Whether it be your porch, your garage or out in your driveway, try to meet them with the item outside. This ensures that they never enter your house. If they are a bad person, they wont get to see what other lovely things you have, or how your house is set up.
7. Insist on cash, even if they seem like nice people. You told them in your ad ahead of time, so they should have made arrangements. Its would stink to accept a check and then to have it bounce.
8. Have some small bills of change in your pocket. If they pay you with a $20 for a $10 item, think ahead of the scenarios. Then you wont have to go back in the house and leave them outside, or pull out your entire wallet to give them change.
9. If you set it up to deliver an item to them (we do with some larger pieces), ask for payment before you or they drive away. Sometimes we do a half now/half later, but most of the time we ask for it first and leave it at our house.
10. Delete the item once the person has purchased it. You wont have to worry about getting anymore emails about it, but you also will erase the link for that person to find you again through that item.
Victorian Gentleman's Chest of Drawers: Available