SAFE SWAP SPOTS

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Learn how to be safe when selling goods or merchandise to someone you do not know and where you can make an exchange safely.

Swap-spots are public meeting places chosen by a buyer or a seller to exchange or buy/sell goods in order to complete a local sale. Swap-spots, also sometimes called safe meet-Up spots,' are designated locations that are generally open and available to the public, such as a police department designated area, coffee shop, or a local repair shop.

The purpose of Swap-spots is to help insure the safety of both parties that are involved in a sales transaction and the buyer and seller will communicate after an agreement of sale or exchange to determine the time and date of the meeting to complete the sale.

A swap spot should be a safe place. If the suggested meeting location for a sale does not look or feel safe to either the buyer or the seller , then they should  not meet there and mention their concerns to the other party.  If an agreement for a safe location cannot be reached, it may be better not to continue considering this transaction.

While many people who conduct business online are honest and sincere in buying and selling items, there are those who use it to facilitate crimes. Buyers and sellers should take safety precautions, including:

  • Telling a friend or family member where you are going and when you’ll likely return.

  • Bringing a friend with you to the transaction site.

  • Conducting exchanges during daylight hours and in a public place.

  • Bringing a cell phone and keeping it turned on and on you during the transaction.

  • Trusting your instincts and taking additional safety precautions as necessary. Never be afraid to cancel a transaction if you identify a red flag or have a concern for your safety.

 

Many police departments in areas in which Regency Park Partnership volunteers serve have established swap-spots at their facilities.

The Cary Police Department has a designated area with marked parking spaces in front of the police facility which is monitored, 24/7, with video surveillance.   You can obtain more information about the  Cary swap-spot here  https://www.townofcary.org/services-publications/police/crime-prevention-and-safety/swap-spot  

 

The Clayton Police Department has a swap-spot that tries to make it safer for citizens to conduct online buy/sell/trade transactions from popular sites like Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace, etc.  The spot is located in the Clayton Police Department parking lot at 315 E. Second Street (near the intersection of Second Street and Lombard Street).  They further stated that online buy/sell/trade sales are popular, but citizens often don’t feel comfortable meeting with someone they don’t know. If you purchase an item from an online user and want a location that makes you feel more comfortable with the exchange, request to meet at the Safe Meet-Up Spot.   CPD cannot guarantee the exchange will be seamless. However, we offer a location that is highly visible, next to the Police Station, and under 24/7 surveillance.

The Fuquay-Varina Police Department makes posts to the Fuquay-Varina Nextdoor about their safe exchange zone, as well as posts on their Facebook Page.  You can find information about their swap-soft at https://www.fuquay-varina.org/1094/Safe-Exchange-Zone

The Apex Police Department has an area in the Police Department parking lot where you can exchange items purchased over the internet. This area is located in the small lot beside the Police Department and is under 24 hour surveillance.  Please go here to obtain more information.  http://www.apexnc.org/1495/Internet-Exchange-Location

The Holly Springs Police Department maintains a Safe Exchange Zone in an area located in front of the Law Enforcement Center that has been established for the safe exchange of money or goods.  The marked spaces are under video surveillance which is monitored by police staff.  Click here to see more information:    https://www.hollyspringsnc.us/529/Citizen-Resources

We reached out to the Sanford Police Department about swap-spots. but they have not returned our call or email.

We reached out to the City of Raleigh.  A spokesperson there indicated that there is no information regarding swap-spots on its website.

The citizens of any area or location that does not have swap-spots or published information about their swap-spots are encouraged to use the swap-spot locations of any towns that do sponsor swap spots.  The important thing is to be safe when selling or exchanging merchandise to someone you may not know or be familiar with.

There is also a very informative video about swap-spots that is sponsored by the Town of Holly Springs which may be viewed at   https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=10153982298639314 

The information in this video is applicable to other area swap-spots as well.