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  #1  
Old 10-10-2013, 04:38 PM
A guy who likes to Benz
 
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Haggling, a pet peeve.

I've had this happen to me several times this month, and it's always ground my gears a little bit.

The situation is I want to purchase something from someone. It might be a spare part, it might be something they made, etc. It's not something that has an MSRP or a barcode on it. And sometimes, there's no "usual selling price on ebay" for the item.

Me: How much is it?/How much will it take for you to part with it?/What's the price?

Seller: Give me an offer.


NO! I did not ask you "hi, may I argue back and forth with you on the price a bit? I'm really not set on how much I want to pay, so could you set the imaginary price about 20% more than it's worth so I can waste 15 minutes?"


It's not just in person, I've had it happen online and yes, on this site. Do you think it would be helpful to have some sort of tag or wording in the FS section which specifies what is "set price" and what is "I want to haggle"?

Honestly, I know when someone gives me a price whether I can afford it or not. I'd rather not waste my time and their's just letting them know I can't pay what they really want for it. And I hate lowballing people, but I'm consistently broke so it's a bit of a necessity at times.

Does anyone else feel this way?

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  #2  
Old 10-10-2013, 04:46 PM
t walgamuth's Avatar
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I like haggling. There is a good way to haggle and a bad way. One can be rude or one can be polite. The bad way a person belittles the product in an effort to reduce the price. The good way the buyer recognizes the value of the product and says they are willing to pay so much.

Back to the first part of your post....I always figure the seller has an obligation to name the first price. If they refuse I will make an offer on the low end of what I feel its value is....but a lotta times I simply pass on objects for sale with no named price.

Also it depends on the need and the rarity of the part.
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  #3  
Old 10-10-2013, 05:03 PM
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I have had a few cases like that. My opening offer is always one dollar. Then I get a starting price from them like I asked for in the first place and the games begin. It's part of my game to get them to realize if they want to dick me around, I can do the same. Sometimes I'll just tell them never mind and walk away, then they give me a price and the games begin.
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  #4  
Old 10-10-2013, 05:04 PM
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I never understood the aversion that Americans outside of NY have to haggling.
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  #5  
Old 10-10-2013, 05:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spdrun View Post
I never understood the aversion that Americans outside of NY have to haggling.
I haggle with the jeweler, Mechanic, ask and get cash discounts etc... I'm a cheap skate.
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  #6  
Old 10-10-2013, 05:22 PM
A guy who likes to Benz
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by t walgamuth View Post
I like haggling. There is a good way to haggle and a bad way. One can be rude or one can be polite. The bad way a person belittles the product in an effort to reduce the price. The good way the buyer recognizes the value of the product and says they are willing to pay so much.

Back to the first part of your post....I always figure the seller has an obligation to name the first price. If they refuse I will make an offer on the low end of what I feel its value is....but a lotta times I simply pass on objects for sale with no named price.

Also it depends on the need and the rarity of the part.
Maybe that's what rubs me the wrong way. The fact that they won't even let me know the ballpark of the price range they've got in mind.
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  #7  
Old 10-10-2013, 05:22 PM
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Я не хакер
 
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I don't like to haggle but it happens. I usually ask for a "rock-bottom, cash-talking price". Then follow up with a disappointed look and say "I was hoping you were going to say $x".

The car I just bought was advertised firm price and the guy offered a reduction when I said it cost $50 just to drive over to look at it. Later we haggled.

I like the $1 intial offer. I'll use that one.

It's easier on little stuff. I especially don't like it on real estate. I have another lot to sell and I just don't like it.
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  #8  
Old 10-10-2013, 05:34 PM
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When I say "make me an offer" that means I am pretty much prepared to accept ANY offer over $1....

Like walgamuth said, there is a good way to do it and a bad way. As a seller, I will always have an asking price. That figure may be double or more of what I would actually take for the piece depending on who's asking.

In my 13+ years of antique/junk peddling, I say that Palestinians are the thoughest/best negotiators. They do it the "wrong way" though.. Typically very insulting.
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  #9  
Old 10-10-2013, 05:57 PM
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I think the focal point you're missing is your own statement:

Quote:
It's not something that has an MSRP or a barcode on it. And sometimes, there's no "usual selling price on ebay" for the item.
In that instance, have you considered the very real probability that the seller may not have any idea what it's worth, either? They don't want to sound outrageous by way "overvaluing" it and they -- understandably -- don't want to take a huge loss by guessing low.

Perhaps they are thinking, "hey, here is someone interested in this widget...since they want it, I'll let them make an offer since maybe they -- needing this item -- might have some idea what it is worth?"

That's not really haggling, of course, that's just looking for someone to make an opening move.

After all, at least generally speaking, every seller is looking to get the most they can for an item, and every buyer is looking to pay as little as possible.

Either way, I don't see what the big deal is. Offer what you're willing to pay less some percentage, and if they accept, great. If they don't, then the haggling starts.
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  #10  
Old 10-10-2013, 06:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spdrun View Post
I never understood the aversion that Americans outside of NY have to haggling.
What would the point be? After a lot of back and forth, we end up where we do. There is an issue of time so if your time is worthless, you are right. Haggle for everything. I just ask you what your best price is and I take it or leave it unless it is a large item like a house or car.

I can make $8 an hour at Mcdonnalds or bagging groceries at Wal*Mart. So by haggling with you for an hour, the $10 item now cost $18. Even if I get it for $5, it is now $13. You give me a price and I take it or leave it.
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  #11  
Old 10-10-2013, 06:13 PM
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This is negotiation 101. A good negotiator ALWAYS at least tries to get the other party to throw out the first number. This is one of the most basic principles of haggling.

If it bothers you, I would suggest you tell him that he can give you a price or you will walk away.
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  #12  
Old 10-10-2013, 06:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aklim View Post
What would the point be? After a lot of back and forth, we end up where we do. There is an issue of time so if your time is worthless, you are right. Haggle for everything. I just ask you what your best price is and I take it or leave it unless it is a large item like a house or car.

I can make $8 an hour at Mcdonnalds or bagging groceries at Wal*Mart. So by haggling with you for an hour, the $10 item now cost $18. Even if I get it for $5, it is now $13. You give me a price and I take it or leave it.
An hour? If it's taking you an hour you're doing it wrong. Every time I've done it, I've arrived at either a selling price or a conclusion that a deal won't be made in a few minutes; sometimes less.
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  #13  
Old 10-10-2013, 06:53 PM
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Haggling is part of the excitement of the game. If humans couldn't haggle, there'd be a lot less buying and selling going on. I rarely contact a Craigslist seller who doesn't list a price mostly because it tells me they don't understand the game.
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  #14  
Old 10-10-2013, 07:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skippy View Post
An hour? If it's taking you an hour you're doing it wrong. Every time I've done it, I've arrived at either a selling price or a conclusion that a deal won't be made in a few minutes; sometimes less.
You shoot me a number thru the email, I think about it, send you a response and all in all, it takes time. That is why I now ask for your best price and might shoot a counteroffer. That is it. Same with hiring. What is the lowest you will take, I either walk or I accept.
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  #15  
Old 10-10-2013, 07:10 PM
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Without an asking price, it better be an item from a party, where I can write my own ticket, based on my sense of value and fairness.

Without an asking price? I'd walk - because ANY price you throw out is too low. The seller either doesn't know what the item should bring, or, they're insecure about pricing it. Regardless - I see big problems when something has no asking price.

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