The barter system was around for many centuries, before humankind had developed currency as a system of purchasing and selling items and services. When you are living on a budget and looking for ways to save and make money, you might think that bartering just isn’t possible in this day and age, that what you see on that price sticker in the grocery store is what you legally have to pay. In reality, there is a grey area in some cases, where you are entitled to haggle with the seller. When you are living on tight means from payday to payday, and if you are reliant on short-term fixes from responsible lenders such as the new breed of payday loan companies, this could be a way of stretching your budget even further.
Until money has changed hands as part of any transaction on the high street there is no legally binding contract between you as the buyer, and the seller. From the other perspective, a shop does not have to accept your cash, even if you are offering to pay the valuation clearly highlighted on the price sticker. Whether you are looking to haggle on food, furniture, or electrical items, there could be times where you are well within your rights to haggle and see how much money you can get off the advertised price.
Don’t worry, we understand that at first it might seem like a bit of a scary proposition, to walk up to a person working in a shop and to ask them for a discount, but there are ways to approach it that are more likely to be successful, and we wouldn’t suggest that you try to haggle the price down on every single item in your shopping trolley the next time you go to the supermarket. It would take too much time for one, and you are unlikely to gain much success when attempting to get a discount on a single apple, a bottle of water, or a pack of toilet rolls.
Start by thinking in a clever way about items where you might be able to get some success. For many it starts with high-ticket items, which can cost a fair bit in some cases. If you are buying a new TV for instance, why not ask for extras. This could be some speakers, or extra cabling that connect your TV to consoles or digital TV boxes.
For items that are already discounted you know immediately that there is already some scope for money off, as the store knows they will not be receiving the full initial price for the item. In these cases it is always worth asking for a lower price again, as retail staff will have greater flexibility than with a full price item.
Another trick is to look for items that have a slight scuff or damage to them, which can be offered as a negotiating point for a lower price, whilst offering to buy in bulk or to play a store off against a competitor offering a lower price, are both other ways in which you might gain success in seeking a discounted price on items you like.