Doing Bartering Battle – Top Tips

A couple of weeks ago I attended the webuyanycar Negotiation Academy in Manchester. I did promise in an earlier post that I’d put together a list of some of the top tips from the day. So without further ado, here are my top five tips from each speaker.

Dr. Sandi Mann, Expert in Social Psychology. Haggling With Confidence

  1. Ask: What have you got to lose.
  2. Be aware: Avoid being lured into ploys that get you emotionally attached to an item and don’t fall for limited availability offers. These are rarely genuine.
  3. Body language: Watch out for ‘leakage’, when your extremities – hands and feet, give you away. Learn how to hide these tells.
  4. Make friends: Engage the salesperson as an individual. Ask a few questions to disarm them and they’ll be more likely to do you a good deal.
  5. The power of silence: If all else fails be quiet – we all hate awkward silence and retailers included will do anything to avoid it!

Tarlok Teji, Retail Expert and Visiting Teaching Fellow at Manchester Business School. What retailers think when you haggle

  1. Time it right: Car dealers have monthly targets. Go hunting the last weekend – or even the last day – of the month for the best deals as they try to hit their quota.
  2. Research: Use the Internet to see if the product you want is cheaper online. If it is, take the evidence to the till and see if they’ll price match.
  3. Limited time only: Never buy a big ticket item on impulse. Go home, double-check it’s credentials and only come back if you’re sure it’s right for you.
  4. Finance deals: Financing is often the biggest source of profit for a retailer. Always double-check their interest rates with one from your bank.
  5. Added extras: Ignore the offer of added extras and instead concentrate on getting money off the final sale price.

Martin Chrimes, Independent Financial Advisor. Buying a big ticket item

  1. Budget: Set a realistic budget that anticipates future costs.
  2. Keep schtum: Never reveal our budget – not even a between figure.
  3. Borrow: Research all financing options available – and ensure repayments are feasible within your monthly outgoings.
  4. Competition: Never buy from the first retailer you visit and don’t be afraid to play them off against each other.
  5. Invest time, save more: Separate your old car sale and next car purchase rather than part-exchange. A car dealer has margins to meet when he part exs – you’ll either get an inflated price on your old car or a discount on next. But not both.
  6. Walk away: Most importantly, be prepared to walk away. You don’t want to resent a big purchase and neither do you want to go into debt.

Richard Evans, Head of Technical Services at Essential checks on a car forecourt to make sure you’re paying what the car is worth.

  1. Colour panels: Stand 2m away from the car and check the panels match. If they don’t, work has been carried out – ask what and why.
  2. Dashboard: Make sure no lights are illuminated when you run the engine. Especially engine management, anti-lock brake and airbag lights as they point to problems that are very expensive to fix.
  3. Integrated satnav: Make sure that a disk is there. If not, it’s useless and a replacement is costly.
  4. Tyre tread: Beware of anything that is less than 3mm as they will need to be changed.
  5. Air conditioning: Turn on and test it to avoid an uncomfortable or costly summer!
  6. Service history: Check the paperwork is correct by calling the garage last to see it.
  7. Mileage: Check the stats add up by visiting

Ok, so there were 7 top tips from Richard Evans, but they are very handy tips I hope you’ll agree.

So what are you waiting for? Happy haggling,

Disclaimer: I was invited to attend the Negotiation Academy, given a scrummy afternoon tea and my travel and childcare expenses were covered. 

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