When buying at a swap meet what are tactics I need to get the best price? Tell the vender I can't pay his price:
1. The kids need shoes?
2. Throw a crying tantrum?
3. Tell the vender that a vender in the other building has that part as new and at half the cost?
4. Bake them their favorite cookies?
What works good for you?
Haggling over prices at swap meets, other than for a car, typically does not work. You need to look at the price and decide if it is too high or just right. There is no such thing as too low.
Then you need to decide if you are going to pull out the money or not. You can bet if you walk away the guy right behind you will buy it.
As a seller COOKIES
I look at this from the reverse angle. Consider how repulsive cheapskates are
and ask yourself "Am I being THAT GUY ???"
Rapists, child molesters, con men, cheapskates, dirtbags in general, ..... don't
be THAT GUY.
Depends on how bad you need it. You can always offer what you honestly feel it is worth. If the seller doesn't go for it, ask yourself again, how much do you think it is worth. When you get into trouble is when you are not willing to walk away and start saying things you shouldn't. Remember, this probably is not the only one on earth!
I disagree with Royce, Haggling is part of the fun at swap meets.
Tryone, often the best deal is to organize a "pile" of parts, if the vendor has more than one you need.
Don't show up in new clothes, don't "talk fancy," be honest, "Gee, I THINK I need this part, but I really only want to pay XXX for it." This is when you find out if the dealer will deal. Some will tell you, "I mark 'em cheap enough, that's the price!" Some will make a counter offer. Sometimes I will ask, "Is that the best you can do?"
Nicholas has a good idea, MMMM Cookies!! On a hot day, a cold water. . . I'll have to try that!
I just try to be friendly, no need to antagonize anyone, you're there to find parts, have fun, visit folks, have fun, find parts, EAT food, have fun. . .
And if someone really seems incensed that I make a low offer, I tell them that I didn't mean to offend them I am just Cheap! Admitting that usually defuses the situation.
And honestly, I AM CHEAP!! I can make the computer print this: ¢ ¢, so you know I'm "squeezing them pennies" (actually , in the USA, we don't have pennies, we have one cent pieces).
Buy brownie mix
Buy Ex Lax
Free Brownies !
No fellow buyers ?
Here is what I find happens at swap meets. I look and look and finally find a part I need, but it is not in the best condition. Maybe I have visited several swap meets before I find it. Then after I buy it, I find better ones for less money at the next swap meet!
Any part is worth what the buyer is willing to pay for it or what the seller is willing to take. Some are in for the money, and others are cleaning out their garage. Look around and if you find something you like and the price is reasonable, buy it. If you think the price is high, keep looking, maybe a better one for less in the next row. If you go through the whole swap meet, and come back, maybe if the seller still has the part, he will lower his price.
easy be the the frist one there.charley
I never haggle, I figure that if the guy is parting with it, it's because he needs to for space reasons, the wife has put her foot down or he need the money.
But if he's willing to swap or make a trade, I'll do that too.
Some haggling, if done in good faith, offering a realistic price is OK and may get you something that you need at a better but still realistic price, however, offering a vendor an insulting, unrealistic, way below market price is a total turn off to me. At Chickasha, two years ago, I had three pair of 26-27 coupe, roadster, pickup rear fenders that needed minimum work and one pair that was salvageable only with a lot of work by an experienced body man. I had no realistic offers on any one pair and only one vendor made an offer of $500.00 on the lot. I declined and ended up selling all my fenders (except the pair in worst condition) through the MTFCA Classifieds for a total of $1,050.00 and I still have the worst pair available. I can understand retail buyers wanting to get a good deal, but I won't cave to a resale buyer, just so he can make the profit. I'd rather take them to the scrap man than to let another vendor offer me the same price the scrap man does.
First time I've seen this topic come up. Your tread i Mr in dangerous waters.....lol. I have my own theories on how is world a at swap meets but then I would have to kill you....lol. I go with most prices are a bit high with room for movement. The best thing is to know what you need and the going price for said items. Both sometimes are hard to to meet at the same time.
"Does Macy's tell Gimbel's"???
Yeah, haggling is fun and traditional and it's part of the warp and woof of horse-trading in its turn-of-the-century sense. _But you know what? _The guys and gals who do this stuff are trying to make a living or at least justify the expense of not doing something (or anything!) else that would be a whole lot more lucrative. _For them, it's got to be a labor of love. _The bother of cataloging all that stuff and storing it toward those few days of the year when it all gets loaded on the truck or trailer and transported to whatever far-away locale hosts these events has got to be considerable. _And then, whatever doesn't sell gets transported back home. _Geeze, that can't be easy. _
Don't get me wrong—When I'm buying a new car at the dealership, I'll haggle and squawk like a hen house, but at the swap meets and at Hershey... well, if they've got what I'm looking for, I don't mind paying the price on the little tag.
But Mr. Google will tell YOU...
Meant as a reply to Jay, but Bob C. beat me to the post...
(Message edited by adave on February 23, 2016)
Last October at Hershey I was looking for a pair of 21" wheels a buddy of mine wanted an old set for a project but didn't want to pay much. Well a vendor had a set of not the nicest ones in the world that fit the bill. When I walked over to look at them he asked if I was interested in them I replied maybe if the price was right and his response was "if you want them take em I'm tired of hauling them around so I promised myself to give them to the first person to show any interest". Sometimes your lucky and don't even have to barter. Jim
Best buying tactic - take some spotters with you and take more money than everyone else !!
The orchestrated and scripted Pickers show has convinced many buyers --- or lookers -- that any price is too high and they need to beat on the seller to get the price down. Be realistic. Sellers get tired of cheap skates whining about what the price is. I've heard all the stories about how their kid is sick or they are on retirement, etc. I don't have a sick kid, if I did I would sell everything I own and use it to take care of the kid, I wouldn't be at a swap meet trying to buy parts for a restoration. I am old enough to be long retired and work more hours than a lot of people half my age. I don't mind if somebody asks if I have any "room to move on the price" or something like that but I've heard all the sob stories.
A couple years ago I had some people come here see my stuff and potentially buy some things. They wasted the better part of my day when I should have been in the shop working. I gave the woman a couple things and thanked them for stopping by. Then they wanted to buy some things even tho I told them I didn't want to sell them. They had watched far too many TV shows about haggling and whatever price I put on something they offered half or less. I was ready for them to leave when they left and do not need them back. I wasted an entire afternoon for less than $200 and that doesn't count the things I gave them free.
I pretty much no longer sell at swap meets -- at least partly because I have no time to get anything ready to go -- and do not encourage people to come here and "See what you have for sale."
As a buyer, I don't immediately offer 1/2 the sellers asking price, presuming he has marked everything up 100%. If it's a high dollar item, I ask if this is his best price. If he has several items that I am intersted in, I ask if I take all the items I'm interested in, could he work with me?
If they do, they do. If they don't, they don't. It's not personal. I pay what it is worth to me on that day.
I used to be a real estate agent and my buyers would offer extremely low prices under the logic that the worse that could happen was the seller said "no" and made a counter offer. It didn't take too many transactions to learn that if you insult a seller with a low offer, the warse that can happen is they refuse to deal with you at any price. It does, sometimes, become personal.
Any buyer needs to remember that it is the seller that determines the price at which he will say sold. At an auction it is the auctioneer. Stand in the crowd and p and m all day about me and how I am running the auction and what we are doing wrong and what a terrible auctioneer I am and then think you are going to get a good buy on something??? That takes a special kind of stupid.
I have been on both sides of the "deal" both as a buyer and a vendor. and I can tell you from over 35 years of picking, buying, and vending. That every single deal is unique. There are no rules of engagement. You must be able to "feel" how the deal needs to go. and it does not matter if you are buying a rusty old hubcap or a whole barn full of stuff. You have to be able to judge almost instantly if the person is open to haggling or is offended by it. The ones that will haggle, usually have a built in "haggle markup" and the ones that do not "haggle" do not have a markup. So the first 2 seconds of the deal, is when you have to figure it out. My biggest pet peeve is not with hagglers, but with people that have something and say they want to sell it. Then say they are really needing to get rid of the stuff. So I take an hour or a whole day and go look at their stuff. And then after a few tries at buying something you realize they did not want to sell anything. They just want to see what you offer and get a free appraisal of their stuff. I will make a few exceptions and still go look at things if it is an obvious estate sale or I know the person. And I may give them some offers on their things or just try to help out. But at a swap meet, do not ask me "what will you give" I will just walk away. I price all my stuff, so If anyone wants me to buy something from them "they better price their stuff". Im not there to give them my 35 plus years of experience and a free appraisal. Just my 2 cents or maybe even a nickels worth .. and probably overpriced, but I will haggle ......unless you make me mad and then the price goes up .... hope to see everyone at Chickasha spaces SL 12-13-14
"Haggling over prices at swap meets, other than for a car, typically does not work."
Sounds like you've either been paying retail this whole time or walking away from potentially good deals!
T folks are different to deal with. They are usually aware of the value of what they are wanting and are prepared to pay up to that value.
I sell hand tools as well. Those buyers are a very mixed bunch. I only sell quality brands I have spent most of a year accumulating at small swaps and markets. When cheapskates want to hammer prices of quality tools they know are at good prices, I just tell them to try their luck elsewhere, or point them to my one junk tray.
The really annoying sellers are those who want me to put a value on their items for them. I usually tell them I can't be the buyer and the seller. If they are scared they are going to be taken advantage of, then they need to do their homework.
Allan from down under.
Pay what you consider a fair price or just walk away. Condition, rarity. and how bad you need it plays an important part in this also.
If you want it, buy it when you first see it. It will be gone if you decide to look around and then come back.
T's only represent a tiny part of my old junk interest, many of such items I might never
see another example to buy in my lifetime. I consider it bad form and the behavior of
d***chebags to beat someone down on their price for something like this .... either I can
do it, or I can't. I might ask if this is their best price, but beyond that, consider it disrespectful
to push anyone further.
When I arrived in AFG, I was shocked to see the Marines loudly "arguing" with the locals
in the markets, thinking these were not the people we wanted to be confrontational with. I
quickly learned that this is part and parcel with the expected afghan market "negotiating",
and that failing to do so was a matter of disrespect and honor. I watched and learned the
fine art of afghan negotiation and had a lot of fun with it. Made a lot of friends of the afghan
jewelry and gem sellers, cajoling them off a purposely set high starting price and getting them
down to their actual price. I earned their respect and they treated me well because of it.
Each situation has a special set of considerations. Bad judgment in AFG might get you
dead. Being a pushover wasn't good either and made Americans look stupid. Being a
cheapskate is just bad form. Some people have no sense of shame and do the cheapskate
thing without a thought. I call such people on it and direct them out of my AO. I would never
consider behaving that way just as a matter of Duty and Honor.
When I sell at swap I use this sign
Why are they called swap meets if no one swaps anything?
I don't think there is anything wrong with making an offer below the asking price as long as the offer is reasonable. I'll go along with those who warn of making an insultingly low offer. If the seller is asking a price that I consider to be unreasonably high, I'll just walk away.
I almost always at least ask if that is the best they can do on a price. I have sold and bought enough "junk" over the years I know that when I put something on the table it is always a bit higher than I actually want because some jackass will try to get me to come down even lower than I really want for the item.
For example. I have had a carburetor I wanted 15 bucks for that I have hauled around to lay out at a couple swap meets.When I am back home I post it on ebay. well that has lasted 2 years. I finally got a bid on it this week for 40 bucks. Well 18 for shipping,4 for seller fees that means I actually got 3 more dollars for it.
I did get a offer of 10 bucks for it a year ago.
I knew it should bring more than that. Turns out it fits a 77 corvette. but I didn't know all that until the guy bid on it. That was my fault. As a seller, you should get educated on what you are selling. As a buyer as in this case,you need to know what you are looking for. Casting numbers.
But what bugged me the most at Chichsha in 08 was when I would ask a price and then try to get the money out of my wallet, some foreign guy would hold the money out to the seller,1 case right over my dang shoulder , and the stuff went away to overseas.The buyers had parts toters and could just carry their money in 1 hand and devy it out with the other. I was not comfortable holding my little bit of cash in my left hand and counting it out over another guys shoulder. I kept my money in my billfold until it was needed.
So I would say for the seller,if someone agrees to a price,let that guy you talked to buy the item. Now if he lays it down and turns, fair game for the next buyer.
As a buyer, I guess you need to jump up and down like a bany rooster "I got it" over and over till ye get it paid for so at least the guy trying to buy it out from under you will be noticed and maby watched by others later in the day saving others grief.
Donnie Brown - I believe you said a "mouthful" when you said,...."every sale is unique". For that reason, I also believe that it makes no sense to make a statement like,....haggling over prices at swap meets typically does not work. Sometimes it will work, and sometimes it won't. And when you do not know the seller, and what his attitude is about his selling, you have to find out, and sometimes, haggling is the way to do this.
What I mean by the sellers attitude about his selling, here's what I mean:
There is the guy that hauls a bunch of stuff to the swap meet with the attitude that he really wants to get rid of all of the crap that he cleaned out of his garage, and really doesn't want to haul it back home.
Then there's the guy that has some good stuff that he really doesn't need and really feels like he'd like to find somebody that does need it and only wants to sell it for what it's worth.
Then there's the guy that has some good stuff, some questionable stuff, and some crap that probably should have gone to the dump or scrap metal dealer, but has the attitude that he'll price everything ridiculously high, thinking that there might be some fool dumb enough out there to pay that much!
That's what Donnie Brown meant when he said that you have to sort of "feel out" the seller, and I believe that if you are polite and honest in talking with the seller to do that, then there's absolutely nothing wrong with "haggling", and you are a fool to pay some greedy jerk way too much for an exhaust manifold with stripped or rusted away manifold nut threads on it, just because you need a manifold and it's the only one you've seen at the swap meet! YMMV,.....harold
I know how you feel! Some years back I was at a yard sale, holding a power tool in my hand and "dealing" on it. We agreed, and this guy comes up and says, "I'll buy it for that!" I said, "Buddy, it's still in my hand" "So?" "So it's mine unless I turn it down!" I was younger then, nowadays, hmm, guess I'd have to size up the guy first-I can't duck as fast as I used to!
Now, I freely admitted earlier that I am CHEAP! but I should tell this story on myself. Three years ago, Saturday morning, goofing off, not doing anything really, and the phone rings, it's an old car friend (not into toy trains)"David, there's a yard sale out by the airport with a bunch of American Flyer trains. They got a big transformer they want $60 for." Well, that's a good price, not a great price, but I gotta see. Yelled at the wife, "We gotta go look at a yard sale!" and we headed out the door; now the airport is usually about 25 minute drive. We made it, after stopping at the bank, in 20 minutes! Drove up and tried to CASUALLY walk down the driveway. There's a card table with the transformer on it, and trains laid out, boxes under with track, buildings, etc. So I amble over and give it a quick glance, nothing really rare, but looks in good shape, so I ask, "How much for the Trains?" "We'd like $80, we already have an offer for $60 if they're still here at the end of the day." I pull out my wallet and say, "They won't still be here at the end of the day!" Everybody laughs, they help me pack them up, and even go in the house to get the old catalogs (not in good shape, but, heck!). Turns out it was their Dad's layout that they took down 5 years ago and decided to sell the trains now. Since they were plastic, they didn't put much value on them. Told the friend who called me about the deal, and he said, "You should have offered $70, bet you would have gotten them." Heck, there was about $500 in trains there, I wasn't gonna haggle over $10! They were happy someone got their Dad's trains for the price they wanted & I was happy with the purchase.
turns out there were two sets both sold by Sears in the late 50s. So when I get my layout room done, I'm putting them in the display case with a copy of the catalog page. Yes, I could sell them, but the story is too neat to break them up.
Oh, another quick one; Was unloading my stuff for my space at one of the Auburn swaps, guy comes up and asks, "Selling your Dad's stuff?" "Nope, selling my stuff!" And I get this odd look, I can see him thinking "you're too young to be into Ts."
Well, it WAS a few years ago! I doubt I'd get that look nowadays!
I enjoy the offer and haggle I know my bottom dollar on each item I usually don't price things as what's it worth to yeah and go from there I figured both sides knows the game
Even my ads here are "make an offer" I'm not offered by low ball price but if you don't beat my bottom dollar then I bring it home
There is also the story of the guy that spots a unique headlight lense at a swap meet and asks the vendor how much? The potential buyer then mentions that he has been looking for years for that lense and offers half of the asking price. The seller pops it in two over his knee and says sure, I'll take half of my asking price.
T think there is a moral in there somewhere.
There are three ways to get a low price from me at a swap meet. One is to be friendly and make a fair offer. Another is to simply ask me what me best price is. The last, is to buy in volume. The guys that buy half a dozen things form me usually end up getting one or two for free.
What doesn't work is to point out flaws and try to chisel after I tell you my best price. As I often joke, "I'll sell it for $50, but if you need to haggle, we can start at $75 and work our way up from there."
Come see me at Chickasha space FH06. I want to come home with an empty trailer. I need space in my garage, more than I need spares for the spares for my spare T parts.
It depends who the seller is. I only sell at Hershey,I will deal on stuff so I don't take it home in most cases, my wife on the other hand is a lot tougher and is glad when I am out walking so she can SELL which she loves to do.
Treat everyone at a swap meet, buyers and sellers, as you would like to be treated yourself.
"Good" always finds its way back to you.
Well put, R.V. I'm a hobbyist, not a vendor - if I try to buy something, it's because I think I can use it (sooner or later).
If I see something I can use that I feel is fairly priced, I pay up without haggling. If something I can use is priced higher than I'm willing to pay, I make an offer based on my opinion of a fair price. If the seller doesn't budge, I walk.
When I sell I price a little high because I enjoy going back and forth and "finding" the right price. I just about always ask people to come down in price at flea markets and swap meets. They can always say "NO" but usually say "yes".
What does it hurt to ask?
I guess in Spokane that makes me equal to a child molester.
For something hard to find, if I need it I'll pay the asking price. But if it's an item I wouldn't mind having if it was cheaper, but I can live without it, I'll gamble by waiting until the sellers are packing up. By then, if it's still there, you can often get the not-taking-it-home discount. An exception is Hershey. It's such a large meet that I'm probably not going to make it back to that spot, and the item is likely to be gone if I do. If you want something there, you'd better buy it when you see it.
Back in the 80's I had a pair of tires-21" would fit T or A. Had one guy from a town 30 miles away who I later found out was a LAWYER who had lots of cars and bucks try and cheat me out of them and finely walked away. A bit later another fella asked about them and noticing this guy was in ear shot made him a quote that was lower than the lawyer and sold them to a nice guy who was thankful for them. The lawyer came back and and started to give me some crap as to my price and I said he made up the difference by respecting me and not being an ahole, it took a good long 5 seconds for him to connect the dots. Never had to deal with him at a swap meet ever again. Did run into him a few times at auctions and each time I made sure he paid more than I was willing to pay.
I have usually researched the item I want to buy and know the going price. If I feel the price is right I buy, if not I go on down the line. I am not going to try and price another fellows stuff as I don't know what he has in it. My wife and I have been selling certain products at the flea markets for fifteen years, always at a bargain and people who buy know what it is worth. Very aggravating when some one walks up and says "I will give you this much" he or she has just killed the deal. KGB
I have so many different stories I could tell, from all the years of buying and selling I could write a book. But one of my favorite sales is about an under dash air conditioning unit I had for sale from a 1960s Ford car. I had it for a couple years with no takers. It was leaned up against a tree on our spaces and right by the road where everyone could see it. I had it priced at 40,00 on a big sign. My friend who always went with me got up from his chair, and marked out the 40,00 and wrote 30,00 below it. So I got up and marked thru his 30.00 and put 25.00. We did that back and forth all day long going down to 20.00, 15,00 10,00, and finally it was at 5.00. Then my friend marked out the 5.00 and put $0.00. So I marked out the $0.00 and put -5.00. So we played price roulette the rest of the day. it was marked -10.00, -15.00, and finally at -20.00 a man stopped and looked at the sign for awhile and then would look at us, and then look at the sign. Finally he asked "does that mean what I think it means" I asked him "what do you think it means". He said, "you are going to give me 20.00 to take it. I said "yes do you want it". He said "Yes", I gave him a 20.00 bill and he walked away with his money and the air conditioner unit. You can not believe the amount of people that came by our spaces and wanted to know if we were the "crazy people" paying folks to take their stuff. That was one of the best "selling" swap meets I have ever had.
1. Buy it when you see it. Come back later and it'll be gone.
2. If you really need it, pay what you have to*, unless it's an insane price. *But always ask NICELY if they'll take less.
3. Don't pick on an item. The seller either knows what's wrong with it or doesn't want to be told by you. It is what it is, buy it or not.
4. For sellers: I'll gladly pay more to a pleasant seller, but wouldn't pay 1/2 price to a jerk.
In general, swap meets/flea markets are where sellers sell for as much as possible, while buyers pay as little as they can. It's fun if everyone has a good attitude about it.
Mom was doing a flea market, some buyers were looking at an item being jerks they offered her a way low price on it. She said no. After they left she took it off the table and put it in a box. When they came back around and asked about it, she told them she sold it at her price. Then there's the one that they didn't like her price, she told them; well I can mark it up and that's what she did.
I have done the mark up in price after some JA tried to get me to sell for way less then what it was worth.
I do not see a problem with pointing out any problems with an item esp if it needs major rework when looking to buy. Just because the seller has the stuff does not mean he knows everything about it esp if he is trying to get full market price comp. to one in good shape.
On the issue of mentioning condition, I'll admit, I've done it myself. I always try to cushion it however with a small degree of praise as well.
"Well yes, it is a rare one, and it has original paint too. Just a shame there's so many missing parts"
I really like your story. It's what makes this stuff fun.
After being asked to, I made on offer on an item, with no price tag on it, at a local flea market. After getting my offer, which HE asked for, he said with anger, "Whaddya think I am, stupid?". I told him that's what I was counting on.
Some year back I was at an old car swap, earl, of course, and there was this '31 A roadster door handle, nice, except for the major ding in it. I think he wanted $5 for it, but I didn't need one, so off I go. About an hour later I see the same handle in another space with $15 on it. Interesting, yep same ding. OK. Later in the morning, at yet another stall; what's this, the same handle, same ding, but now $25 is on it! I think it changed hands 4 times at that meet.
Gee, I coulda made lunch money. . . .
After all these posts, it should be a fun Chickasha. I will be in my spaces enjoying all the "tactics" that will be used.
Does anyone consider their time and aggravation in hunting for one, or the time a project
stalls, where one could instead be out enjoying the finished project .... how much is THAT
I spent six years and probably $10,000 in a fruitless search to find a 1958 DeSoto Fireflite
convertible. The POS I finally bought was delivered on pallets. I paid $500 for it. I then built
a frame and body using a coupe and the parts pile. Probably sunk 1000 hrs and another $10K
into it, before finding the car I now own for $10K.
So, in the end I was 15 years older, $30K or more spent, and I never did get to enjoy the car
in all that time. Now, we all spend money on stim items, so the money isn't really what gripes
me. It's the time. I will never get that 15 years back.
When I see something I need now, price ranks WAY down the list behind time and aggravation
in making a decision to pull the trigger. I can always scare up some more petty cash. And all
this talk about numbers under a hundred bucks ??? .... you cats need to re-evaluate what's
important in life. You are bordering on the dishonor of being a cheapskate.
Yup. Just like I tell them at auctions: You can always get more money but this is the only one we have like it today and you will spend more money on gas looking for another one than you will spend if you bid again right now and they will want more for it when you find one if you ever do!!!
I also tell them: Now you know what will happen, you won't bid now and then you'll call me tomorrow and ask who bought it.
I tell old women who quite bidding (and sometimes a cute young one.) You are going to tell me no now, then you'll go home and go to bed thinking about it and wake up about midnight wanting to say yes and I won't be there!!!! Gets a laugh every time and usually they will say, "Thank God!!"
I had 4 things for $4 each. Guy came and looked, and said I don't want to pay that much. I said tell you what, if you take all 4 I will sell them for $25. He handed me the money picked up the parts and went away happy
LOL! I guess math wasn't his best course in school.
The one I like is the guy that says hold it for me and I will get it on the way out but will not pay for it till pickup.
Then some one else comes and offers me twice what I wanted,picked it up and was loading it in his car when first guy sees it as he is driving out.
He gets out of his car and comes over to chew me out because I sold it to someone else, as I then point out he was leaving and had not paid for it.
""But I was going to the bank to and come back to
get it."" (it was 5 pm on a Sunday)
Like many have said in the posts above, each deal is unique. There are professional vendors that won't negotiate at all. Then there are the people getting rid of parts from a previous restoration and will work with you. I have been going to Hershey since the mid 1980's and it seems I see some of the same parts there, by the same vendors for years on end.
A couple years back at Hershey I picked up a Klaxon that didn't work. The vender asked if I was interested and asked me to give him an offer. I did and he came back with a counter for $20.00 more. I put it down and kept looking at his space. As I started walking away he said "don't need anything?" I repeated my offer for the Klaxon..... he said "give me $XX", which was $20.00 LESS than what I offered him! (I don't remember what I paid for it, just remember the $20.00 less)
As a seller I don't mind someone making a lower offer. What I hate is the tactic of running down the product to justify a low ball offer. I was selling a house one time and an agent came by and, after walking through the house,
began disparaging the cabinets, carpet, etc. I thanked him for coming by and walked him to the door.
Definition of a BARGIN: when both halves of the deal feel they got the best of the other guy
As a Sailor I have been to countries where it is considered an insult to pay the asking price without haggling... those were some good times
I have a very "frugal" friend. I often joke that when he goes to a swap meet he keeps $18 in one pocket, $45 in another, $92 in another, and so on. That way, after he's done haggling, he can reach in the correct pocket and go "OOps, I'm just a bit short". and get a few more dollars off.
At least, I think it's a joke.
I often do well by simply asking the vendor for his best price. As someone who has been both a seller and a buyer, I don't believe it ever works to insult the vendor, his merchandise, or his intelligence.
I went to an estate of a guy who had a lot of speed stuff. There was a "doodle bug" kind of thing that had a Ruckstell rear end and a Fronty head on it. The guy who was selling the stuff stated a price for the Fronty only. I told him I'd pay it if I could remove it first to look for cracks. He agreed. I removed the head, looked it over and was satisfied. He then said o.k., fine and then stated a price $500 lower than his first one. ???
I went back a week later and bought the rest of the doodle bug. Total price I paid was a lot less than my original offer, while still paying HIS prices. Weird deal.
There are two rules I live buy when dealing. I will not, under any circumstances, take advantage of a old person with thinking issues or a kid. Sometimes it is obvious that the seller is not thinking right. I may be able to see it better, since my parents have Alzheimers. But sometimes those lower second prices are mistakes by getting confused. That goes back to every deal is unique. You have to be able to judge the situation. I do not try to haggle any when a situation seems like the seller is getting confused. I will even try to get another person, like the wife, son, friend, ect involved. The second one is kids. I may try to haggle a little with the kid if the parent or grandparent is present, just for the experience for the kid. But sometimes a parent or grandparent will leave the kid there selling for them. I have heard all kinds of stories about how people have cheated the kid out of good stuff. Taking advantage of either situation is just plain "being a sorry person and not cool"
Like I said, and others have agreed; it never pays to insult a seller if he is offering a reasonable price. If you want it bad enough, you'll pay what is fair. If you want a bargain, there's always the Dollar Store, the Dollar Tree, the 99 cent store, Walmart, or K Mart.
P.S. Stan, have any of those ladies said, "Oh Shucks or Oh Darn"?
I buy a lot of jeep parts from a local vendor, I never haggle on price and always offer to pay in advance for special orders. A friend always tries to get a nickle discount on everything he buys there and he has never gotten a discount...ever! A lot of times when I pick up parts, the vendor just tells me "I will get you next time"
I operate the same way, a few years ago, I gave a new friend a rather scarce Russian grenade as a gift, he asked my why I was giving it to him and I told him that I had another old friend who wanted it badly, but wanted to chisel me on the value and that I would rather give it away than get chiseled.
The vendors all soon know who the chiselers are and they never get a break in the long run, you make you bed, you have to lie in it.
I think the bottom line is the attitude of the seller and buyer. A few years ago, I sold all my classic cars. They were all great running drivers with imperfect bodies and interiors. A guy came to look at my already low priced 66 Mustang that had many performance upgrades but needed minor body work and paint. He proceeded to point out every flaw in an insulting manner. He low balled me and I stuck to my price. A young woman and her dad came next and loved the car, saw the flaws as a daughter/dad project, and offered me full price. The first guy came back while she was about to pay and, while dipshit stood there, I gave her the car for $300 less. It made her happy, made me feel good, and pissed off dipshit. Someone's attitude can make or break a deal.
Some swap meet tactics are creative bargaining and some are just despicable. At the Turlock meet I had a Franklin lion hood mascot. Fairly rare piece, and easy to load up and take home, so I had it priced at $200. While I am out shopping, a guy stops by my place and asks my dad about it. Unhappy with that number, he walks away. No problem there. A few minutes later, dad goes out looking around. As soon as he is out of sight, the guy comes back and tries to lowball my young daughter who was watching the place. Bastard. She knew the price and called her grandpa and he said that was the price, period. So she told him It was $200 and she would throw in one her grandma's brownies. He bought it. If she had called me I would have told her $300 and no brownie. The best thing was it did sell, and my girl learned some things about selling and negotiation. I'm proud of her. She's almost old enough to learn to drive our T's. Can't wait.
This would make a much better story if I could remember more of the details, but there was a guy in our Model T club years ago who bought and sold a lot of Model T cars and parts. A friend of mine had something - I forget what - that the guy wanted. The guy asked him, "What is the absolute rock-bottom price you have to have for that?" My friend thought a minute and named a price. The guy offered him $10 more and they made the deal. The guy's thought was that they both ended up happy.
I was at a national convention and swap meet for military vehicles and a vendor stall had some ground straps I was interested in. But, no seller around. The guy in the next stall said he was out shopping and would be back sometime. The price on the box was $2.00 ea, so I took 10 and put a $20 bill in an envelope and tucked it under some loose parts in his stall with a note on the outside of what I purchased.
As I walked around the other vendors, I noticed every other seller who had these exact same ground straps wanted $5.00 ea, so I thought I'd go back and get some more.
When I went back, to get more, the seller was in his stall and had marked up the price to $5, because that's what he saw everyone else selling them for. I told him I was the guy that left the $20 in an evnelope and he said I owed him $30 more. I told him they were marked $2.00 when I bought them. I asked for my money back and gave him his straps back so he could sell them to someone else for more.
I know, I cut off my nose to spite my face, but I just didn't want to do business with a seller like that.
On the last day of the event, all the sellers were down to $2.00 and I bought all I needed from someone else.
Saw this sign in one vendor's spot at Hershey last year...
Excellent point about diminished capacities in older folks. I would never do that. This guy was in his thirties and otherwise communicated clearly and seemed to have good comprehension. Just a lousy salesman I guess.
I did have some dealings once with an old couple where the guy had some Alzheimers going on. His wife however did not, and she kind of ran things or at least made sure her husband didn't give things away. I can assure you, even with his shaky mental state, this guy was a cagey seller who knew his stuff. I spent a lot of money there. They were both nice people who I enjoyed dealing with, even if they did squeeze the dollars out of me. I think I said it above, "I'll pay a whole lot more if you're nice people".
My buddy and I were at a car flea market once, and we got slightly separated....I saw some things on a table I wanted, made a close offer to what seller was asking, and as I went to pay him realized I was $10 short of having enough to pay him, so gave him money I had, leaving parts in a pile on the back of his table. While waiting for my buddy to come back, to borrow the $10 from him, walked to other side of this guy's booth and saw a lense I needed. Now, my buddy and a couple of other people standing there, asked the seller "how much"? He said five bucks. I said no, couldn't pay that, but would give you fifteen for it! Everyone looked at me as if I were crazy, as I borrowed $15 from my buddy and paid vendor!
I've bought and sold and, as mentioned, every deal different. I had some brass horns for sale at Hershey last year, one fellow came up, saying he didn't know much about horns, trying to get my price way down. It soon became evident he knew exactly what he was looking for, and the final price was higher than if he'd just told the truth to start....
Jerry I was not thinking about anyone at all. Its just the mention of some of the deals being less than what was first mentioned, made me think of all the times I have seen the diminished thinking ability taken advantage of. I have even spoken up a few times and really "pissed off" a potential buyer. Sorry folks hate to be caught. I hope Im like the guy you mentioned above that still could negotiate even with Alzheimers, when I get to that point ... Not long till Chickasha and then ... "May the games begin "