A Few Easy Ways to Overcome Your Fear of Negotiating
We don’t negotiate very often in the U.S., compared to other countries, when we’re looking to purchase something expensive. Yet, there are times when negotiating can end up saving you a good deal of money. One of those times is when you are buying a used car.
Many people don’t like to negotiate. In fact, they are fearful of it. They are hesitant to negotiate because they fear rejection – getting no for an answer – because they fear being judged harshly or because they fear losing out on an opportunity.
But of these three, the only fear that really makes any sense is the fear of losing out on an opportunity. The truth is, fears of being rejected or judged are not good reasons to fail to negotiate. These are pretty much irrational fears. Being rejected is not the end of the world: it may be a setback, but it’s nothing significant. And we are being judged all of the time. There is really little we can do about that.
To help overcome your fear of negotiating when purchasing a used car, here are a few tips.
Hone your negotiating skills before signing a car purchase contract.
- Ask for it.
It’s pretty simple, really. Just ask for what you want. When a car salesman quotes a price to you, you might say something like, “Is that the best you can do?” It may not always work, but there are a lot of times when it will.
- Try to learn the other person’s motivation.
As you negotiate, you should listen carefully. Particularly when purchasing a car from a private party, the seller may reveal his or her motivations for his demands. You may find that they are not even sure what their car is actually worth. They are just worried that they won’t get a fair price for it.
If you know this, you can point out to them what other cars similar to theirs (make, model, mileage) are selling for. (Yu will need to have done your research on this before negotiating. Car sales websites can be a great help here).
- Know your cut off price.
This is the price beyond which you will not go, no matter what. You need to have it firmly established before you even begin negotiations. And you have to be willing to walk away if the seller will not come down to that price in your negotiations.
- Do your research.
If you are negotiating price on a particular car, you should know everything you can about the vehicle – its history, its engine and upgrades, its value on the market. This will give you a good foundation for your negotiations.
- Know when to stop talking.
Many people, because they feel uncomfortable during negotiations, tend to talk continually. You have to know when to be quiet. After you quote a price, be silent, no matter how awkward you feel. If you keep talking, you show your nervousness to other person, possibly hurting your negotiating position.
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