Updated: Thursday, 19th September 2019 @ 4:44pm

He who dares, wins! How savvy shoppers can negotiate a cushty £1,000 saving... Del Boy-style

He who dares, wins! How savvy shoppers can negotiate a cushty £1,000 saving... Del Boy-style

By Kenny Lomas

The art of negotiating is something that wheeler-dealer Del Boy from Only Fools and Horses made into an art form.

Never an episode went by without him trying to flog one thing or another that either didn’t work or no-one wanted.

But it’s not just retailers who are using he tricks of the trade to make a few quid, and now the tables are being turned with savvy shoppers making huge savings simply by asking for a discount.

According to the Negotiation Academy, a new initiative from webuyanycar.com, one in ten Brits are indulging their inner Del Boy and saving a whopping £1,000 each year.

That still leaves nine out of ten who don’t have the confidence, or the know-how, to negotiate a better price for their item of choice.

The academy was set up by the online car-retailer to educate people on the subtle art of negotiation and shifting the balance of power in their favour.

Speaking at a Manchester Negotiation Academy seminar in Tarlok Teji, a retail expert and Visiting Teaching Fellow at Manchester Business School, said retailers expect to be challenged on price.

“For retail in terms of contract law there is an invitation to treat,” he told MM.

Tarlok said this essentially means that retailers are inviting you into their premises to have a look and are welcoming you to make an offer.

The onus is then on you to make that offer and they will then decide whether they’re going to accept it and that is where the bargain is struck.

Tarlok said: “Effectively it is actually an invitation to bargain. Most people don’t realise that and for every single retailer, that is the law of the land in the UK.”

While Tarlok says it’s probably not a good idea to start haggling down at your local Tesco on the price of milk, brown goods such as kitchen appliances and electrical items are far more open for negotiation.

“In any store you should be able to get 10% off,” he said.

“Not everyone will negotiate, till operators will not always have the authority, so you can ask the department manager the store manager.”

Tarlok says the level of discount you may be entitled to will fluctuate depending on the item in question.

He said: “Bigger items like cars for example you can get around 20% without trying too hard.

“When you buy a house you don’t give the asking price, everybody knows you make an offer. You always try to get something off – it’s the same for cars or any big ticket items.”

When it comes to bigger items such as cars and houses, he recommends having a plan in mind because the stakes are much higher.

Martin Chrimes, an independent financial advisor, said that working out your budget should always be your main priority.

“When you know what you can afford you can deliver that with much more conviction when you’re negotiating,” he told MM.

“With a big purchase, you don’t want to resent it. You don’t want to feel like you’ve paid too much for it.

“It’s not the kind of thing that you can just get rid of the next day – it can be very costly to do so.”

Martin says you should always be prepared to walk away in any negotiation. Know your limit, and if the negotiation doesn’t fall within that then be prepared to move on.

“There will always another dream house or another dream car or holiday that you will fall in love with, don’t be afraid to walk away,” he said.

While negotiating is undoubtedly a skill, and like any skill will improve the more you use it, sometimes all you need to do is ask.

Dr. Sandi Mann a psychology lecturer at the University of Central Lancashire said there have been various studies that have proven that simply asking for something, no matter how unreasonable, can yield positive results.

“Psychologists did a really interesting study. They got somebody to cut in a line in a shop and the first time they did this, the stooge cut in front and asked ‘can I cut in front of you I’m in a hurry? 90% said yes,” she said.

The same experiment was carried out again but this time the person trying to cut in this time asked if they could cut in as they wanted to buy something. The results were largely the same as the first time.

Dr. Mann said: “Everybody wants to buy something. The point is you don’t have to give a sensible explanation.

 “The key message is just ask, just try it – do it with confidence, with authority.

“You’re going to get a lot of people saying no, but you are still going to get a lot of people saying yes.”

It may take a bit of practice to perfect your negotiating skills, but all you need to do to get going is to muster up a bit of courage and know your limits.

As Del Boy himself said – he who dares, wins!

Image courtesy of BBC via YouTube, with thanks

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