Selling a commodity one does not own

Q: Can I pay for an item when the seller does not have possession of it? Only once payment is made, does the seller order the product from his own supplier. The conditions of Bay’us Salam are not met.


A: It is impermissible in Islam for one to sell a commodity which he does not own. Hence if the seller does not own the item, it will be impermissible for him to sell it to you. However, you may tell him that you wish to purchase the item from him. After he purchases it and takes possession of it from his supplier, then he may sell it to you.

And Allah Ta’ala (الله تعالى) knows best.


Answered by:

Mufti Zakaria Makada

Checked & Approved:

Mufti Ebrahim Salejee (Isipingo Beach)