Some prices are set in stone, and it’s a waste of time trying to negotiate with someone who won’t budge. However, when you think there’s some room to negotiate it might be worth to consider the following:
Can you negotiate a lower price?
While you probably can’t negotiate the price on many items, like new DVDs or a package of gum, there are plenty of situations where you can negotiate, even in a retail store. For example, if an item is cosmetically damaged, a store may be willing to offer a small discount because that blemished items tend to be more difficult to sell. If a salesperson wants you to buy a bunch of extras with a new computer or cell phone plan, ask for a discount – the salesperson they may be allowed to offer discounts in order to close the deal on big-ticket purchases. In many retail situations a “managers discount” may be available.
Of course, if you’re buying an item from a private party, you can always negotiate. Also, you probably already know not to automatically pay the sticker price on a car or house, because negotiation is standard practice on these major purchases and the sticker price is generally higher than the real amount the seller will accept.
Can you barter or trade?
Barter can be difficult because many people are not accustomed to doing it and it’s hard to find someone who wants the service or goods you have to offer in exchange for the what another person is selling. If you have some valuable products or services to offer and you’re purchasing from a private party, it’s worth asking. Even if the other party isn’t willing to barter for the entire item, he or she may be willing to at least reduce the price in exchange for an hour of your expertise. This situation works well with business to business transaction especially if it represents a sale that will not happen with cash.