Way back in week 1, one of the first posts I released referred to negotiating for a car . During that post, Finance Solver mentioned the old saying “Everything is Negotiable”. Well you know what, I’ve found that saying to be 100 percent true. Now I’ve provided you with tips on how to negotiate here, but I want to follow up with one more post on this topic. Particularly what is negotiable. Some of it may surprise you:
- Subscription services like Sirius XM, Cable TV, Internet, cell phone service, etc are almost always negotiable. Often times there are some great published discount offers, but the reality is the best deal is usually found by talking to the retention department. When you call, the best results usually occur by threatening to cancel service. Usually the customer service representative for retention is authorized to give you the best deal to keep you on. You can Google more on specific deals to shoot for to arm yourself in these calls. I’ve never paid full freight for a subscription service and neither should you. Currently we have a 15% break on the cost of internet service because of my negotiation.
- Large Electronics can also be negotiable. Visit the scratch and dent area of your local Home Depot, Best Buy, etc and the price on the item is not the price. Offer something reasonable, and you will likely walk out with the item. We once negotiated 300 dollars off a scratch and debt refrigerator with a free 3 year warranty. I’ve personally found new non scratch and dent hard to get a negotiation started unless it’s a left over floor model. So look for something that is scratch and dent that is otherwise new.
- Which leads me to floor models. I have a few pieces of furniture around the house that were picked up for a song from big box retailers as floor models that we’re no longer carried. If you see a floor model but no stock, do not hesitate to ask if they will make a deal. We have a desk we use for mail in our foyer that I picked up as a Walmart floor model for $10 dollars. It was selling for $299 dollars new.
- Cars and Home purchases are pretty obvious. Each time I’ve sold a house or car I’ve personally increased the listed price because I expected the person buying to negotiate. Ignore the real estate agent telling you there are 20 competing offers, and cut some money off the price.
- Real estate agent fees are also negotiable. I’m not a big fan of paying them at all, but if you have to you might as well keep the payments low. With our last sale we negotiated a 5% agent fee, down from a 7% opening position. Even better if you can position yourself for sale by owner and only have to pay the buyer fee.
- Insurance on cars and houses are often negotiable. Simply ask. Bring estimates from other companies via a insurance cross shop tool to help in the negotiation. Our current car insurance rate throws in an umbrella policy for free as a result of prior negotiations.
- Another area people often forget is your employment compensation. Always negotiate for a sign on bonus or a slight pay bump when changing companies, it is generally expected. Also consider negotiating for a pay raise at least once every 2 years with your employer.
- Repair services are also negotiable. The last time I received a quote on a car repair the first words out of my mouth was can you knock 100 dollars off. This also applies to plumbers, contractors, appliance repairmen, etc.
- Medical Bills, if you’re paying out of pocket instead of via insurance then ask the hospital or doctor. Usually they will work with you.
- Debt, yes, even debt payoff is negotiable. It may hurt your credit score but lenders are willing to take off a small amount to ensure they get something back if you’re in dire straights. I recommend only using this one as a last resort.
- Anything in a furniture store. It’s expected again. Similar to what I do with a house or cars, I wonder if they jack the prices up simply to given themselves room to negotiate. Do not be the sucker who does not negotiate. We bought a pair of couches when we purchased our last house. Ultimately, we paid the price of one for the pair.
- Items sold by a private seller or sold as used.
- Other services like Trash/Recycling can be negotiable. Normally, I’ve found this one is easier to negotiate as a group by banding your neighborhood together in the negotiation. I partnered with our neighbors and convinced our local provider together to provide us a lower rate.
Remember it never hurts to try. You would be surprised and before I started probing I never realized how many opportunities there are to negotiation.
Have you negotiated for anything others might find surprising?