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    haggling like a pro

    July 11, 2011 Posted by: Tech CU

    When it comes to haggling over a price, most of us tend to think of either a car dealership or a flea market. Who knew that there was room for bargaining when it comes to credit card rates, major appliances and even within retail stores? You simply have to use a few tricks. Remember, stores these days need to make sales.  Buyers carry more weight than they have in the past.

    Credit Card Rates – Just think about how many credit card offers you receive in a week. I tend to immediately dump them in the trash, but they can be very useful for comparison shopping. Pull together all of your offers, find the lowest rate and call your credit card company. Tell them the interest rate is too high, you have been a good and long-term customer, and you’d like a rate reduction. Don’t take the first offer either, persevere and ask to speak with a supervisor to bring that rate down. You could bring it down up to several percentage points.

    Appliances – When it comes to appliance salespeople, they aren’t generally as accustomed to haggling as, say, someone selling stereo equipment. However, there can be wiggle room when it comes to delivery fees and purchasing an extended warranty. You should also walk into a showroom armed with the lowest price you can find on your desired appliance.  There are web sites such as nextag.com and pricegrabber.com which can you help you comparison shop. Also, contact a few local competitors and find out their lowest price on the same item. Again, persistence can pay off — even if you just get free delivery (often a $100 fee).

    Clothing – Seems like the holy grail of haggling, I mean can you really get a lower price at a store like The Gap? Yes, but keep in mind a couple of ways to make the process smoother. Head into the store when it is not crowded – like a Monday morning. Weekends and evenings tend to be the busiest time. Again, check out competitors’ prices, and also indicate if a particular item has been “sitting on the shelf” for a period of time. Ask for 10-15% off, especially if the item has any slight stain or damage. You can also ask to speak to a manager who generally has the authority to make a decision.

    So, do your homework. There are deals to be had!

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