Help Article

Help Center > Payments/Payment tracking > Why is my payment on hold or unavailable?

Ask the Community

Find answers or join the conversation in the Community Help Forum.

Why is my payment on hold or unavailable?

If a buyer pays you and the payment is on hold or unavailable right away, we’ll notify you via email or an alert on your Summary page.

Why is the money in my pending balance rather than in my available balance?

The email or alert you received will be your best source of information on why your payment is on hold or unavailable.
Your payments may be placed on hold in your pending PayPal balance because:
  1. You’re a new seller with PayPal - It takes time to build history to demonstrate a pattern of positive buyer-seller transactions. By building a positive selling activity, your funds may become available immediately.
  2. You have performance issues or a high rate of buyer dissatisfaction or disputes - The percentage of refunds, disputes, and chargebacks compared to sales on your PayPal account seller performance. Having performance issues increases the likelihood of received funds being temporarily unavailable.
  3. The payment you received may be considered unusual for your selling pattern - You may be selling higher risk items such as tickets, gift cards, electronics, or travel packages. Unusual sales activity could also include a recent spike in sales, a change in average selling price, or a change in business model or type of item being sold. Also, if you had been selling on eBay but are now selling off eBay, this would be new activity.
  4. You were previously an inactive seller-You may not have sold something for a while and you have now begun selling again.
  5. You’ve been selling for a while but opened a new account-If you’re an established merchant, but opened a new account, that account will be eligible for holds until a good history is established.
To help ensure a successful transaction, we always encourage sellers to adhere to the following best practices:
  • List successfully by including clear photos with detailed, accurate descriptions of items
  • Be clear about shipping and handling time, costs, and methods. Ship promptly and upload tracking.
  • Define your return policy upfront
  • Communicate with your buyers and respond to inquiries quickly and in a professional manner.
How can I get access to my money faster?

Here are some tips that may help make your payment available sooner:
  • Provide tracking information (UPS, USPS, or FedEx) with delivery confirmation. Your payment should be available 3 days after we can confirm delivery.
  • If you don’t upload tracking information, but mark the item as shipped on the Transaction Details page, your payment should be available 7 days for domestic or 14 days for international shipments, after the item is marked as shipped.
    • Buyers can also mark the item as received in the Transaction Details page, which will release the payment three days afterwards.
  • Mark the payment as processed if it was for a service, and your payment should be available in 7 days for domestic or 14 days for international payments.
  • If you fulfill the order, but don’t provide any shipping information, your payment should be available after 21 days, as long as your buyer doesn’t report any issues with the transaction.
We’re sorry, the page you’re looking for is no longer available. Please try your search again in our Help Center if you have a question or want to contact us.