Here is an interesting article from SmartMoney.com through Yahoo finance on “10 Things the Wedding Industry Won’t Tell You” (catchy title eh?):
One part I find interesting in this article is when the author mentions a couple – the bride-to-be called for a bid on wedding service from a company in San Francisco and then her fiance called the next day requesting the SAME bid but telling the salesperson it was for a party – he was quoted 30% less on the same service.
Lesson – like everything in life, it often pays off to either “do your homework,” “barter,” or “haggle.” You’ve all heard this before and this applies to contractors, car sales, even retail (I negotiated the purchase of my flat screen TV).
Before making any investment/purchase, consider the following 3 ideas:
1. what do you want – is it precise or flexible? If you want a Honda Accord, maybe you won’t get a great price, but if you’re open to buying a Camry, or even an upstart car such as a Sonata, then your lack of obsession (over a particular car) will allow you the negotiating sanity to make a rational decision, and WALK AWAY if necessary (walking away, if done right is a wonderful buying ‘technique’).
2. who is in the position of power? A contractor in a slowing economy with everyone’s credit lines getting shut down is NOT in a position of negotiating power. On the other hand, if you need something done NOW, then you may get raked over the coals…
3. Do you know someone in the industry? An insider can give you clues as to profit margins in a particular industry and you then know what room you have to manouever. For example, if you want to buy a used car, and you have a friend who frequently goes to auctions, you might have an idea of what the dealer paid for the car and how much you could talk them down. The jewelry business is another business where emotional dulls the intellect and causes people to make STUPID purchases. Having an insider friend in this business could be key, especially come marriage time.
I could list many more ideas but you get the point – THINK before doing. Hope you find this helpful.