The Best Way to Haggle

13 March 2011 | Uncategorized

The best way to haggle, negotiate, or drill down the price of something isn’t to be the blowhard who complains and keeps saying something cost too much. The more of some one’s time you eat up cutting into their margins, the more they have invested in getting your business. The easiest way to haggle is not to haggle at all. If you are more educated that the vast majority of consumers you will already know what something is worth. Once that is known, the opponent to your haggling will have lost their upper hand and will likely just give you the insider deal. This is how corporations and intelligent business owners haggle. The way your typical cheapskate haggles is to just assume that everything is overpriced. To a degree this is true, but the vendors of the world already understand this and knowing that something can be had for a better price is not the key piece of knowledge, it is knowing how overpriced a service or product is.  

I typically “haggle” by just finding out exactly what something is worth, then writing a clear letter or email saying what I’m willing to pay.  I don’t phrase the information in a interrogative way, I simply declare what I’m willing to do, what I know, and what I will do in lieu of using them.  This last point is extremely important because behind your back the person you are haggling with thinks you are bluffing.  “This person just wants a deal and hasn’t even thought of leaving”, is what they are thinking.   Now and then they throw back an offer not as good to test me, and I reject it and lead back to the original proposal.  I’ve done it with the commissions I am paid by life insurance carrier’s, I’ve done it with rent, a gym membership, the cable company and numerous other bills.  So the mechanics of haggling this way is to simply be much more knowledgable than you’re expected to be.  The psychology is to not care.  You don’t want to meet that number?  That’s fine, it’s your right not to, but I can not patronize you.  The walk-out is usually just a farce.  The guy trying to squeeze a few dollars of the sticker price of a car he plans on buying that day is in most cases, not willing to walk-out.  I on the other hand most definitely will.


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