U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Economics > Frugal Living
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 04-06-2009, 12:49 PM
 
756 posts, read 1,947,077 times
Reputation: 621

Advertisements

I have a FIL that doesn't pay the cost of anything. Even if it's on sale he will ask for another 5 or 10 percent off. Unfortunately, price haggling is very hard for both my husband and I. Very uncomfortable with it.

I would love to hear from people that do and how they do it.

We are looking at getting quotes for some landscaping work done in our yard and my FIL is telling me to ask the one I like best to take another 10% off the bill. Does that seem fair?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 04-06-2009, 01:03 PM
 
Location: Virginia
18,717 posts, read 26,083,631 times
Reputation: 42834
Quote:
Originally Posted by usmcfamily View Post
I have a FIL that doesn't pay the cost of anything. Even if it's on sale he will ask for another 5 or 10 percent off. Unfortunately, price haggling is very hard for both my husband and I. Very uncomfortable with it.

I would love to hear from people that do and how they do it.

We are looking at getting quotes for some landscaping work done in our yard and my FIL is telling me to ask the one I like best to take another 10% off the bill. Does that seem fair?
I don't. I've tried it once or twice and it made me uncomfortable. So uncomfortable that I didn't want to return to some of my favorite stores. And to be honest, the amount of money I saved wasn't that much. Just a token amount so the shopkeeper could get rid of an obnoxious jerk (me, the haggler). It was not worth it, as far as I'm concerned.

Now, if a shop keeper sees me looking at an item and putting it back... then asks me why I didn't buy it... I feel perfectly comfortable explaining that it was too much, but I might buy it for a lower price. But the shopkeeper would have to bring it up.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-06-2009, 01:12 PM
 
Location: Virginia
18,717 posts, read 26,083,631 times
Reputation: 42834
Just realized you were talking about haggling with a contractor. That might be a little easier for me to do than haggling with a shop keeper. Just be sure to be polite and professional. You could say "I'd love to get this done but I'm on a tight budget these days, the economy you know. Is there any way to lower the bill?" That way you aren't insulting the guy and he might be more willing to work with you.

But make sure you've already decided what you'll do if you nicely ask if they can lower the price, and the guy says no. Also, I'd keep an eye open while the work was being done... they might be ticked off with you and cut some corners or otherwise do poor work.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-06-2009, 01:12 PM
 
Location: western East Roman Empire
6,112 posts, read 10,166,843 times
Reputation: 4850
I have haggled at Best Buy on big-ticket items and received discounts of $100, in one case about 7% of the bill, in another about 12%.

Everything in life is negotiable. Even airline tickets: looking at a flight, about four weeks ago, the airline was asking about $300, now the price has come down to $200, all about supply and demand.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-06-2009, 01:15 PM
 
Location: Martinsville, NJ
6,159 posts, read 10,907,180 times
Reputation: 3939
Quote:
Originally Posted by usmcfamily View Post
I have a FIL that doesn't pay the cost of anything. Even if it's on sale he will ask for another 5 or 10 percent off. Unfortunately, price haggling is very hard for both my husband and I. Very uncomfortable with it.

I would love to hear from people that do and how they do it.

We are looking at getting quotes for some landscaping work done in our yard and my FIL is telling me to ask the one I like best to take another 10% off the bill. Does that seem fair?
Yes, it seems fair.
Many people are uncomfortable haggling. And in some cases, it really can't be done. I know that when I go to the supermarket, I'm not going to ask the checkout kid if they can cut $.25 per pound off the price of my pork loin. But in the case of hiring a contractor to do some work, sure, why not haggle? The guy gives you a quote, hoping to get your business. A nice, polite haggle might be something like "Hey Jim, I like what you have to say, and I think I'd like to hire you, but I need to ask you to cut down the price by $XX. Ccan you manage that?" The worst thing that happens is that Jim says he is priced as low as hecan be, and you need to accept it or let him walk. And what will you have lost?

My one recommendation is that you haggle politely, professionally. This comes from a guy who has people ask me to lower my fee all the time. And I have no issue with that. I sort of like the process, and certainly expect it. Hell, if I can't show you why I'm worth what I'm asking you to pay me, then you shouldn't hire me anyway. But when someone says something like "You're just trying to suck every penny you can out of me, and what you do isn't worth what you want me to pay," the negotiation ends and I walk out. No need to work with people like that.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-06-2009, 01:16 PM
 
Location: Virginia
18,717 posts, read 26,083,631 times
Reputation: 42834
Quote:
Originally Posted by bale002 View Post
I have haggled at Best Buy on big-ticket items and received discounts of $100, in one case about 7% of the bill, in another about 12%.
You've haggled with Best Buy?????? Multiple times????? Could you please provide details. I'm just a little surprised because it's a chain store, and usually when it's a chain, people at the individual stores are not allowed to change the prices. They're set by the corporate office. Were they damaged items, perhaps? That might give the managers more leeway to change the prices.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-06-2009, 01:33 PM
 
Location: Right where I want to be.
4,507 posts, read 7,833,194 times
Reputation: 3304
Oh, I love to haggle at everything from yard sales to home improvements to getting discounts at stores.

If you have a price in mind for the work and you are getting multiple quotes let the contractors know, "I'm looking to come in UNDER $XX for this job."

Also, think about getting something other than just a $$ discount when you negotiate. Make a point to get something out of the deal. Thinking of landscaping... "OK, that price will work if you also agree to clear this part of the lot or haul off this extra debris or expand this flower bed or chip the branches and leave the mulch..." If you are buying an appliance you can ask for free delivery or free removal of your old appliance. Getting the house pressure washed?? Ask them to throw in a wash of the camper or the sidewalks. Carpet cleaned? Ask for the hallway or a piece of furniture.
IME, if the request is reasonable they'll do it.

You can also ask for discounts if you pay in cash. I've been able to get a discount on house painting, tree service, stump grinding, plumbing....all for paying with cash. Retailers pay a fee each time you charge a purchase, some places will give you the 3% discount if you buy with cash. You can even ask at restaurants. I don't usually ask for more of a discount if I have a real coupon to use and make sure you don't discount your tip!!

I've gotten much larger %'s off for the dent and scratch stuff or clearance items (which is where I usually shop anyway, lol). By the time it gets to clearance or the scratch and dent isle they are usually very happy if you want to take it off their hands. One example...we were buying all new ceiling fans for our house (7 total). The fans were already 30% off but because we were buying 7 I asked if I could have another 15%. Yup, no problem.

It's definitely worth it to me to be a good negotiator.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-06-2009, 03:06 PM
 
Location: Home is where the heart is
15,400 posts, read 25,274,509 times
Reputation: 18984
It may matter where you live, too. In some places, like NYC, negotiating is a way of life. Of course, in New York people also enjoy having heated discussions. If you live in a place where people like to have a "spirited debates" you could probably negotiate a deal. But if the people in your town hate debating and call it "obnoxious bickering" or "making a scene" you may not get far.

I live in a little mountain town, for example, and there it would have to be handled very gingerly and probably would not go over well. You could get a reputation as an obnoxious jerk if you weren't 100% civil about it.

On the other hand, I also have a house in a large suburb, and negotiation is more common there (especially if your contractor belongs to certain cultures where haggling is common). Wherever you live, I like the advice to be polite. I think that's key to any sucessful negotiation.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-06-2009, 03:57 PM
Status: "The weather is beautiful:)" (set 1 day ago)
 
Location: Where the sun likes to shine!!
20,369 posts, read 25,524,356 times
Reputation: 87968
I will always ask for a better price. I don't make a pest of myself and I'm not obnoxious about it. I figure the worst thing that could happen is they say no.

On big ticket items I will always haggle. You can ask for a discount, 10% discount, or free delivery. Whatever works best for you.

For contractors I always pay cash and that is definitely worth a cut price. I have never not gotten a cash discount from a contractor. I once even got my house painted for a big screen TV that I didn't need anymore.

Just be nice about it and I think there is nothing wrong with asking for a discount.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-06-2009, 04:30 PM
 
Location: Right where I want to be.
4,507 posts, read 7,833,194 times
Reputation: 3304
Quote:
Originally Posted by younglisa7 View Post
I once even got my house painted for a big screen TV that I didn't need anymore.
Oh, EXCELLENT!! I forgot about bartering. We bartered some handyman jobs (including work on the soffits which were too high for DH to do) in exchange for some faux painting. The job wasn't going to cost much but when the handyman was here at the house he complimented me on some things in our house and seemed shocked when I said I DIYed them. He called later that night with an offer....he'd do the work for free if I helped him do some faux painting for one of his other clients. I'd love to do more bartering, it worked out well for both of us.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Economics > Frugal Living
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2018, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top