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Buying art with PayPal

text description last updated: Nov.10.2017
Added an Invoice Guide!
Invoice Guide for PayPal by onisuu
my commission journal >> commission info | closed 

To fellow artists: Alternatively, you can make it easy on yourself and customers by sending an Invoice!
You can create a template invoice just for commissions. I like to add a detailed description to describe what type of commission the customer ordered, and I enter the price under "Amount Only" (rather than number of hours, items, etc)
Note: After completing the order, go log in and click on the detailed page for the transaction. There is a link for "Edit tracking info". Click that. Then choose "Order processed/service rendered" on the first line.
This shows YOUR confirmation that you did your job that was paid for. Please be honest. 

Guide for paying via PayPal App

You can view it here by ninthform! Thank you!

When buying art commissions, choose "Pay for goods or services"

so you and the artist do not get in trouble from PayPal. Art commissions are considered a Service. The Friends/Family option is for gifts, or possibly refunds/partial refunds since you are not expecting a service in return for those transactions.

Under "Your Shipping Address", select "no address needed"

because you are getting digital art online, not something delivered to your house. If you are getting the original art mailed to you, still choose no address needed and give the artist your mailing info via private message. The artist may adjust the service fee to include the cost of postage if they choose to do so. If you are the customer, please ask your artist if they will pay for postage or add a fee so you know what's going on. :D

Dear artists:

You can use this handy site to determine how much money you will be receiving, after paypal fees are taken out.
- enter your commission price (ex. $25)
- choose your preferred currency (ex. CAD)
- choose "international or cross-border" so the fee estimate accounts for international customers
- the number you see is approximately how much money you will receive after the fees are taken out. (ex. When your customer sends you $25, you will receive $25 minus paypal fees)

Easy way to incorporate the fees into your price:
Just take the amount you want to earn (X) and multiply that by 1.05. Then round that number up to the nearest dollar or half dollar.
Use this final number as your advertised commission price!

example >> If you price a chibi at $40 in your commission info (and no extra charges are needed for extra details or complicated designs, etc), then your customer will send you exactly $40 through PayPal (unless they choose to add a tip). It is against the PayPal user agreement to make customers pay $40 + an extra amount to cover paypal fees.
What you CAN do is price your commissions so you will receive the amount of money you want after the fees are taken out. This means raising your prices in your commission information. The difference here is that you are advertising your commissions at the TRUE prices that customers can expect to send. You are not asking customers to pay extra (for the sole purpose of covering PayPal fees) on top of what was advertised, since you already incorporated all that into the commission price.

reference>> From Section 8 of PayPal User Agreement
"For Purchase Payments, the recipient of the payment will always pay the Fee."

- The artist is the recipient receiving money from the customer for a purchase of their artistic service.
- By using PayPal, you have agreed to follow their User Agreement, and failing to do so can allow them to shut your account down, so please do your best to avoid that. :D

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DollCarcass's avatar

I have a question, if I commission someone who is from another country, do I put the currency from their country, or from my country?

Moremi-Hime's avatar

It would be from their country.

Actually the person you want to commission will tell you (maybe from their "commission open" page or their terms and conditions journal) the currency they will accept for the prices.

Also you can check their commission prices. The currency you see there is the currency they will accept.

(Sorry for the long explanation haha)

DollCarcass's avatar

It's perfectly fine! Thank you for the answer!

zenithzk's avatar
bubbleryph's avatar

i find this confusing tbh

Hazerei's avatar
Hello! May I put the link of your tutorial in my commissions journal? I think it would be nice for customers who don't know how paypal payment works ^^ 
onisuu's avatar
Sure! Feel free to link it ^_^
Hazerei's avatar
Thank you so much! <3
Gequibren's avatar
This very helpful ! thank you :)

I have a question, probably answered in one of the 22 pages of this journal, but I haven't see it all.

You said: "If you are getting the original art mailed to you, still choose no address needed and give the artist your mailing info via private message."

Why is that? is there some problem with this "Your Shipping Address" option?
onisuu's avatar
you can use the shipping address option, but you probably need to provide a tracking number for the shipment as well. It's up to you :)
Gequibren's avatar
Yeah, but is there a problem with that? why don't you recomend that option?
onisuu's avatar
Honestly, I forgot I even suggested against it cause I didn't update this post in a long time. I like to keep things simple so using the fewest options possible in any service is my own preference. If you want to use it, you can do so
Gequibren's avatar
Ah OK, thanks :)
itsErrui's avatar
What if I purchase a digital commission through PayPal and the artist doesn’t come through? What are my options? 
onisuu's avatar
hello! How long have you been waiting for your order? And did the artist give you an expected timeframe for the art to be done? Have you commissioned other artists before?

ok, let's say it's been 2 months and no contact from the artist about your commission progress:

First option is contact the artist - find out if they are working on the order right now and need an extension on time, or if they have not started yet and you can request a full refund on the order - they should not have spent the money received for the commission, until AFTER they did the, a full refund should be not a problem at this point. However, if they started on the commission already, you may request a partial refund, depending on how far they got. 

Second option - after trying to contact the artist and they do not respond within a few days (and the account still looks active - the artist is making new posts, or adding new arts to their favourites, etc) then go on paypal and you can request a refund there too. I think you go into the transaction where the money was transferred, and there is likely a refund option. You should have proof of the commission being accepted by the artist and the expected time when the art is to be finished, or at least some indication of the service not being done in a timely fashion. 

I hope you'll be able to either get your art finished or a refund! ^^ ))

future tips for commissions:
- ask the artist upfront for a timeline on when you can expect the art to be done. This way, you know you should check in if you're waiting past that time.
- you can always message previous clients of the artist and ask them how they felt about the service they got - was the artist easy to communicate with, worked in a timely manner, were they happy with the art they received? etc. ^_^
Just like in the workplace, it is okay to do reference checks and see what other people have to say about someone they've worked with.
- commission artists who seem to be posting regularly, or have multiple channels for you to reach them at. This way, if you can't seem to get in contact on one site, you can reach out on another platform as well~
itsErrui's avatar
Lucymidnight96's avatar
Hi I'm new to using paypal for comission/comissioning
If i get an invoice and i want to pay the artist for the comission, and it says "shipping adress" should i send payment to the artist instead of responding to their invoice?
Please help...
onisuu's avatar
hi! you should pay using the invoice you received ~ all invoices will show shipping address of both the sender and the recipient as part of the layout. 
rei-kaa's avatar
I have a question.. what if my commissioner chooses the address option ?   
onisuu's avatar
you can refund the transaction and aak them to send it again with the address option unchecked.

or make it easier for yourself and send them an invoice - you can mark the transaction as 'service rendered' after you finish the transaction by 'adding tracking info' when you click on the transaction in paypal.
rei-kaa's avatar
So the only way is to refund my commissioner and then set up everything right? Since I don't want to get into trouble I will do it correctly.. D:
rei-kaa's avatar
I see ! I think I will go for the second option, I will go figure it out :)
Are there any fines for buying art with paypal?
onisuu's avatar
Do you mean fees? Yes, the seller loses a portion of the money that is sent to them as part of paypal's fees. It is approximately %5 of the amount that is sent, and the percentage tends to be less when the amount is greater~

As the buyer, those fees should not come as an additional amount on top of the commission price that they pay. Sellers are supposed to advertise their prices that already account for the fees~ not adding them as an extra amount ^_^
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