Learn How To "Haggle"

To Save Money

By Larry Hayes, A050 Publisher

If you're uncomfortable haggling over price, bring along someone who isn't. Our daughter came with us at the second dealership to help close the deal as she is a much better haggler than me!

Once we got a verbal offer which was better than the first dealership, we offered a trade-in. They checked out our vehicle which came back clean and repair free. After some haggling over the trade-in value, we struck a deal and drove home that night in a brand new SUV.

It probably helped that we timed our purchase during "Black Friday" when dealerships were incentivized to make a deal.

What are some strategies to help you master the art of haggling?

Do Your Research

Before entering into any negotiation, it's crucial to research the item or service you're interested in purchasing. Understand its market value, typical pricing, and any relevant factors that could affect its price. This knowledge will give you leverage during the negotiation process and allow you to make informed arguments for a better deal.

Establish a Budget And Know Your Limits

Set a clear budget for yourself before entering into negotiations. Determine the maximum amount you're willing to pay and stick to it. Knowing your limits prevents you from overspending or agreeing to a deal that doesn't align with your financial goals.

Start Low But Realistic

When making your initial offer, start lower than your budget but remain realistic. A significantly lowball offer may be perceived as insincere or disrespectful. Aim for a price that is fair but advantageous to you, allowing room for the seller to counteroffer without feeling insulted.

Be Patient And Persistent

Negotiations can take time, so be patient and persistent. Don't rush the process or settle for a deal that doesn't meet your objectives. Stay calm, respectful, and willing to engage in back-and-forth discussions to reach a satisfactory agreement.

Use Silence To Your Advantage

Silence can be a powerful negotiating tactic. After making an offer or counteroffer, resist the urge to fill the silence immediately. Allow the other party time to consider your proposal and respond. Sometimes, the silence can prompt them to offer a better deal or reveal more information.

Be Prepared To Walk Away

One of the most effective strategies in haggling is being prepared to walk away if the terms are not favorable. This demonstrates that you're serious about your offer and unwilling to accept an unsatisfactory deal. Sometimes, the prospect of losing a sale can motivate the seller to improve their offer.

Look For Additional Incentives

In addition to negotiating the price, consider asking for additional incentives or perks. This could include free delivery, extended warranties, complementary services, or bundled discounts. These extras can add value to your purchase without directly impacting the price.

Build Rapport And Maintain a Positive Attitude

Building rapport with the seller can create a more amicable negotiating environment. Be friendly, respectful, and maintain a positive attitude throughout the process. A good rapport can lead to more favorable terms and a smoother transaction.

Know When to Compromise

While aiming for the best deal is important, it's also essential to know when to compromise. Evaluate the concessions you're willing to make and prioritize your must-haves versus nice-to-haves. Finding a middle ground that satisfies both parties can result in a successful negotiation.

Mastering the art of haggling requires preparation, patience, and effective communication. By following these strategies and staying focused on your goals, you can increase your chances of securing a better deal and saving money on your purchases.