In many parts of the world, negotiation is encouraged and thought of as normal. If you do not try to negotiate a deal, you may even offend the owner of the curbside kiosk that you are attempting to buy from. For many foreign areas, this is simply a way of life. But, for people that grow up in the United States, this is almost unheard of. Ask to pay a price that is lower than the marked sticker price? That’s almost unheard of? Who would do such a thing? ….I would, and you should too.
Big Ticket Items
If you need to buy a big ticket item like a washer and dryer, refrigerator, or a new TV, do NOT simply walk into a store and pay their asking price. Since you intend to spend a large amount of money at their store, they will no doubt be willing to work with you on softening the price a bit. All you have to do is ask: “Hi, I’m interested in this refrigerator. Is there any flexibility in this price? I know it’s on sale, but it still seems a little steep to me.” Boom. Done. Say this statement and you will have a 90% chance of them coming down on the price.
I used this method many years ago when I was buying a home theater system with a brand new TV. The total bill was somewhere around $900. I asked if they could do anything for me on the price and sure enough, $100 was taken off my bill! I have also used this method at the car repair shop. I once had to get all new tires, brakes, and rotors, which meant the bill was nearing $1,000. I simply asked the front desk guy if they could offer me some sort of discount because of the amount I was spending. Sure enough, 15% was taken off my bill. That’s $150!
Slightly Damaged Items
When you walk into a retail store, you expect your item to be brand new and flawless, right? Well, sometimes there are some nicks and dings in a new product and this is where you can sniff out your deal (as long as you don’t mind those flaws). I was at Big Lots a few months ago and I happened to stumble upon an accent chair that would match my living room decor perfectly. I had been looking for a pattern that would match for so long that I simply could not pass up this purchase. The only problem was that the price tag was $129.99, which was quite a bit more than I wanted to spend. So, I started inspecting this chair very closely, seeing if I could find a flaw that could get me a discount. Sure enough, a couple of the legs had a few nicks in them that were fairly noticeable when observed closely. I asked for the manager and showed them the flaw, asking for a lower price. They discounted it by 20%!
Another item I purchased recently was a large framed photo (since my walls are still pretty bare in my house). It was originally marked at $80, but was put on clearance for $44.99. I liked this art piece very much, but there were a few nicks in the frame so I asked if I could pay less. Sure enough, even though the picture was already marked down considerably, they knocked off another $6 for the slight damage.
Finally, you can easily score a deal at a retail store if you intend to make a large, bulk purchase. Perhaps you have a very large event to host and you are in need of dozens (or maybe even hundreds) of the same item. Before you make your purchase, speak with the manager to see if the price can be discounted since you are buying so many. There is a very high percentage chance that your bill will be reduced because he wants you to make that big purchase with him, not somewhere else.
Have you ever received a discount at a retail store?
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My name is Derek, and I have my Bachelors Degree in Finance from Grand Valley State University. After graduation, I was not able to find a job that fully utilized my degree, but I still had a passion for Finance! So, I decided to focus my passion in the stock market. I studied Cash Flows, Balance Sheets, and Income Statements, put some money into the market and saw a good return on my investment. As satisfying as this was, I still felt that something was missing. I have a passion for Finance, but I also have a passion for people. If you have a willingness to learn, I will continue to teach.