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Bitcoin is still so dang confusing to me...

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jaders

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Feb 1, 2012
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4,153
Can anyone please advise me on two different issues. Trying to master this method of payment and I still don't understand a few key things.

One - What method do I use to buy BTC so I can then send it instantly? I'm using coinbase and when I buy using my attached bank account it can take five days to be available. And as we all know, the volatility of BTC right now is crazy (in the wrong direction.) If I use a debit card (which I have not done yet) I believe I am limited to how much I can buy, and it isn't enough to cover the price of what I'd like to purchase?

Secondly - how the heck do you know how much to send to cover the fees? I owed someone $99. So I put that amount in for sending. I use electrum and the slider bar said that the fee was going to be .55. I was under the impression that that fee would be pulled out of my balance when it was sent as well, but the person I sent the BTC to said I was $4 short. So I don't get it. How do I know how much to send? And do I have to include the fee in the amount paid, to start with?

Any help is GREATLY appreciated! I will be so glad to have this method figured out so I don't have to stress about it any longer. Last November is when I opened my Coinbase account and what was $500 is now $300 and not looking too good. I was also under the impression that once I moved my BTC to my personal wallet it no longer could lose value. I guess I was wrong there too. as what was $120 became $106. I could've paid a private tutor for what it's costing me so far...:(
 

Davey Church

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Jan 24, 2022
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Blockchain, Trust Wallet, Cake Wallet, Coinflip, Moonpay, Simplex, or a local cash ATM can all be used to buy and send funds instantly. You need an offline wallet to be able to send funds without KYC or "know your customer". Trust wallet and cake wallet are offline wallets that you can deposit money into using a local cash ATM, or buy directly in the app, and be able to send instantly.

Add an extra 5$ for fees when sending that amount. wallets will take it from the amount you are sending not directly from your wallet balance. If coinbase said the fee is .55 and your vendor said you're 4$ short, I would personally call BS. He probably wants the extra to cover his withdrawal fees as well. Not sure though.

If you use coinbase, leave your deposit in cash on the app. you can buy and send bitcoin whenever once your deposit has cleared. No need to leave it invested in bitcoin and possibly lose its value.
 

jaders

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Blockchain, Trust Wallet, Cake Wallet, Coinflip, Moonpay, Simplex, or a local cash ATM can all be used to buy and send funds instantly. You need an offline wallet to be able to send funds without KYC or "know your customer". Trust wallet and cake wallet are offline wallets that you can deposit money into using a local cash ATM, or buy directly in the app, and be able to send instantly.

Add an extra 5$ for fees when sending that amount. wallets will take it from the amount you are sending not directly from your wallet balance. If coinbase said the fee is .55 and your vendor said you're 4$ short, I would personally call BS. He probably wants the extra to cover his withdrawal fees as well. Not sure though.

If you use coinbase, leave your deposit in cash on the app. you can buy and send bitcoin whenever once your deposit has cleared. No need to leave it invested in bitcoin and possibly lose its value.

Thank you so much! I was under the impression that electrum was offline as well tho? But when I sent $120 to it, it also showed that balance but the next day it seemed down to $106 or so.

Also, I didn't know I could just move cash to coinbase and then use it to buy and send. That's a great idea. (I've just been using the website instead of the app but I suppose I could do that either place?)

I sent the money to the vendor from the electrum wallet. There's a little slider that will give you an amount of how quickly your BTC is likely to go and for what amount. Even with the slider all the way to the right - which is the fastest - it only showed .55 for the fee. So I don't get it. I looked up the transaction ID on blockchain explorer, and it gives the fee but it's in BTC too, so hard for me to convert it to US dollars now since it's always changing?

Thanks for the advice about the fee tho. And thanks for your advice in general. I appreciate it a lot!
 

Davey Church

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Jan 24, 2022
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Yes, Electrum wallet is offline as well. Works fine for sending, not sure about buying. If the 120 you sent was in bitcoin, it dropped because the price of bitcoin dropped. you cant do anything about that other than keep it in cash on coinbase or buy it immediately using one of the merchants I mentioned above.

I just assumed you were using the app but yes you can do that on the website too.

as for the fee, most likely the price of bitcoin dropped before you sent the payment.

Of course, glad I could help.
 

Santa's little helper

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Does the above mentioned advise apply to Canadian Crypto markets.
Jaders brought up a good point about debit purchase and block pricing.
> could a debit purchase be less transparent (more secure) than purchasing through credit
 
Last edited:

Davey Church

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Jan 24, 2022
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I can't speak on crypto markets outside of the USA but you can always use a vpn. Use Coinflips with a vpn for no kyc so they cant verify where you are purchasing from using your ID. You don't need to hide that you're purchasing bitcoin, you just need to hide where its going to. If you think you might be investigated if you purchase many items and resell, having a large amount bitcoin going back and forth through your wallets, I recommend using a coin mixer such as blender.io to make it difficult to trace your transactions. There will be an extra fee though of course.
 

jaders

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Feb 1, 2012
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Yes, Electrum wallet is offline as well. Works fine for sending, not sure about buying. If the 120 you sent was in bitcoin, it dropped because the price of bitcoin dropped. you cant do anything about that other than keep it in cash on coinbase or buy it immediately using one of the merchants I mentioned above.

I just assumed you were using the app but yes you can do that on the website too.

as for the fee, most likely the price of bitcoin dropped before you sent the payment.

Of course, glad I could help.

So now i understand that the fees must be included in the sent amount. But still - how to know what the fee is likely to be in any given purchase? You said about $5 for around $100. So how about $300 a $400? I still was under the impression that the slider on electrum (or other wallets also “suggested”) what the fee is likely to be, but .55 is a lot smaller than five dollars? I sure can’t find any info that I can understand so far thru Google.

Thanks again for your expertise! 🙏
 

donewiththis

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Sep 23, 2011
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I have not used electrum, I use cash app and it is a little more expensive then coinbase to buy and sell BTC but I am able to send right from my cashapp wallet to a vendor. When I used coinbase I had to use a separate wallet and send the money there from coinbase then to a vendor. Sending right from coinbase can get your account closed. But I have not experienced this with cashapp, I have sent to multiple vendors with no problems. Again, the fees are higher but it eliminates the need for a 3rd "middle man" wallet.
 

jaders

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I have not used electrum, I use cash app and it is a little more expensive then coinbase to buy and sell BTC but I am able to send right from my cashapp wallet to a vendor. When I used coinbase I had to use a separate wallet and send the money there from coinbase then to a vendor. Sending right from coinbase can get your account closed. But I have not experienced this with cashapp, I have sent to multiple vendors with no problems. Again, the fees are higher but it eliminates the need for a 3rd "middle man" wallet.

How about the fees part. How do you know how much fee amount to include. Does it help you with that?

I first tried cashapp but they never seemed to confirm my account so I gave up.
 

Davey Church

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Jan 24, 2022
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Hey, sorry for the late response. what ever fee your wallet says it will cost for the amount you are sending, is what you should include in your payment. Test it by sending a small amount to another one of your wallets and see how much you will receive. I usually send an extra 5$ so it can be more convenient for the vendor to withdraw the payment and be able to have the total in cash without fees. You definitely don't need to do that though, just send how much your wallet say it will cost.

This video could help
 

Babygoats

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Apr 21, 2013
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Wow. I have only started back on this board recently after many years away. I've noticed a lot has changed, but I never realized I'd have to figure out bitcoin if I need something in the future. I've largely ignored the whole realm. Not sure why. Just haven't been interested enough to figure it out. I'm still young enough to need it in the future at some point. So now is as good a time as any to figure it out.

Thanks for all this info
 

jaders

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Wow. I have only started back on this board recently after many years away. I've noticed a lot has changed, but I never realized I'd have to figure out bitcoin if I need something in the future. I've largely ignored the whole realm. Not sure why. Just haven't been interested enough to figure it out. I'm still young enough to need it in the future at some point. So now is as good a time as any to figure it out.

Thanks for all this info

Yeah it’s a challenge altho I’m quite certain once it’s figured out it’ll be easy and reliable. Necessity is the mother of “learning” too…

Thanks again @daveychurch! By the way I heard from my vendor that my sent transaction was NOT $4 short and they wondered where I got that? Hahaha. It was in the notes on THEIR website by my order. But the person responding told me I was only .55 short - the actual fee. So now
this is starting to make more sense. 😃
 

smo1959

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Feb 4, 2010
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@jaders I use Coinbase to buy BC, but I don't use it to purchase. I use a wallet called Jaxx Liberty. I purchase in Coinbase - yes it does take a few days to go through. I transfer the funds to Jaxx where I store my bitcoin. I have never had a problem with not sending enough. Usually the vendor sends me the address, I put whatever amount they indicate in Jaxx with the address, and it goes. Coinbase charges extra fees even to transfer to a wallet. Maybe the problem is that they are charging fees on their end. Anyway, I've had these accounts for several years. I keep a balance in Jaxx partly as investment and partly to use for purchases. Coins are in the toilet right now but should be coming up again soon. Good luck! I know it is confusing, but find a wallet that works for you, and you should be okay.
 

CalmSeeker

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Jul 2, 2021
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399
@jaders
Wasabi wallet is good about handling the fees. I don't think it will let you send the amount if you can't also cover the fees from what's in the wallet. It also displays all the amounts in USD, so it's a lot easier to look at amounts your messing with than some other wallets that just show btc decimals. It's by far my favorite wallet, but it's only available on desktop, though, no phone version, unfortunately.

I have my debit card linked to coinbase and can instantly buy and trade and send quite a bit of btc. Are you making HUGE purchases? Seems weird you can't get enough using a debt card.
 

jaders

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Feb 1, 2012
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@jaders
Wasabi wallet is good about handling the fees. I don't think it will let you send the amount if you can't also cover the fees from what's in the wallet. It also displays all the amounts in USD, so it's a lot easier to look at amounts your messing with than some other wallets that just show btc decimals. It's by far my favorite wallet, but it's only available on desktop, though, no phone version, unfortunately.

I have my debit card linked to coinbase and can instantly buy and trade and send quite a bit of btc. Are you making HUGE purchases? Seems weird you can't get enough using a debt card.

No I’m definitely not trying to buy large amounts. Less than $500? I thought I did link my debit card but I have to go back and check. I remember deciding to buy some more a few weeks ago and it said I was limited to $150 if I used a debit/credit card (I thought.) It might be that the fees were higher with the debit card so I figured I’d stay with the bank account anyway. But the bank transfer takes about 5 business days. Gotta look into all of this a little more.

I am pretty happy with electrum now that I’m getting a feel for how it works altho the layout is sure not real “pleasing to the eye.” I’ll look at Wasabi.

Again I appreciate the suggestions and comparisons. 🙏.

Bitcoin is partly intimidating because the language is so foreign. Saying the fee is based on “satoshis” and then there’s nodes and blockchains, etc. - pretty foreign. 🤪
 

Gullible

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May 15, 2011
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When I use blockchain.info they tell you the amount of miners fees and you can increase it or decrease. It then sends the amount and takes the fee out of your account so the correct amount is sent. Electrum does the same. You must be using a poor quality wallet.

Now that coin has crashed again, this is the time to buy some for investment. We have seen it crash time after time and it always comes back and sets a new high. Take advantage of the cycle and get in near the bottom. But don't invest anything you will absolutely need in a few months because it might be at another low point. Plan on a year or more and watch your money double
 

CalmSeeker

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I just checked, I have a 5k limit if I by with my debit card. And that coin is instantly available for sending.
Maybe it depends on how much money is in that checking account? 🤷🏼‍♂️
 

jaders

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Feb 1, 2012
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I just checked, I have a 5k limit if I by with my debit card. And that coin is instantly available for sending.
Maybe it depends on how much money is in that checking account? 🤷🏼‍♂️

Maybe that’s it? I keep a low amount in that account since I only use it for buying things, so that if it ever gets hacked I won’t lose much.

I am using electrum wallet @Gullible. I think I just am not familiar with the way the information is displayed.
 
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