Free Ebook.

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner

« How NOT to Improve Your Credit | Main | Would You Work at a Job for Free to Prove Your Value? »

June 16, 2009


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

If you can't get a cash discount sometimes what works is asking for an extra item to be thrown

Say for instance that the store manager claims she can not lower the price. Ask for an accessory to help you with your budget.

Purchasing a HDTV, insist that the cables or a tv stand be thrown in for free. Perhaps they'll throw in free installation.
Purchasing a laptop computer ask that an extra mouse or carrying case be included for free.

Managers sometimes will be willing to throw in something like this because the cash cost to them is less. They'd rather give you a $25 carry case than $25 cash discount because the $25 carrying case doesn't really cost them $25.

I've done this once at Wal-Mart. We bought a set of patio furniture towards the end of the season and asked the manager what the lowest price was that he would take for it. He ended up knocking $100 of the sale price of $425. If I remember correctly, the original price was $525.

Never state your budget as you have pretty much limited yourself to that figure or near wiggle room to play with on either side.

This worked for me at Office Depot. I needed a carry on piece of luggage in a hurry. They had what I needed, but it obviously had been there for a while...full of dust. I asked and they gave me 15% on the spot. After brushing off the dust it was fine.

Worked for me the day before Christmas last year at home Depot. There was an inflatable "Thomas the Train" lawn ornament discounted from $100 to $40. I asked for a discount, was told "No," then asked for the manager. I said "If you offer an additional discount, I will buy this right now. He said "$25?" and I said "Deal!"

It's true - ask for a discount whenever you can - the worst they can say is no. I worked in furniture sales (and electronics and appliances for a little while), and we would expect customers to ask for discounts. Most of the time, sales staff cannot discount without manager authorization, so if they say they can't do it, NICELY ask them to bring in a manager. Even getting the equivalent of no tax is better than paying full pop. It's harder to get stores to discount things like appliances and electronics (less margin), but furniture & mattresses are MASSIVELY marked up. Bundling things will also help you get a better deal (like dining set plus sofa). Be creative. Say you'll buy the warranty if they throw in a free carrying case, etc. Doesn't hurt to try.

I have owned a furniture store for the past 20 years, and I have to disagree with Natalia, FURNITURE is NOT MASSIVELY MARKED UP, unless you are buying low end junk. Better retailers have had to trade down considerably, and right now, floor samples have been marked so low that they are almost at cost or at cost already just so the retailer can keep their doors open. Then you have people all over the country reading this information about asking for more off. The rules listed above are a respectful example of how to present your request in the asking for an additional discount situation. Unfortunately, the general public has become demanding, rude, jerky, and entitle. The shopping general public have become unreasonable, even it is is 70% off, they will still ask for more off. There is no shame or decency anymore. The one thing that I would caution about this practice is eventually there will be less and less stores for everyone to shop at based on this never ending bottom to what people should pay for items. Also, for those who are not in retail, would you like your salary to be negotiated down everyday? I don't think so. And that is the heart of the matter here. People only care about how cheap they can get stuff for, because they can't think beyond their own greed. But I'm here to tell you, this mind set will continue to bury the country. I understand that everyone needs their money to go as far as it can in these times, I really do. I do appreciate it when people ask respectfully for an additional discount , and I work with them when I can. But by and large, I have come to hate retail and the demanding and rude general public, and if I didn't own a retail plaza that I was on the hook for, I would quit today! Please try to be considerate of people still trying to feed their families as well at the other end of this story.

I employed this strategy when shopping for my paver patio block (actually I employ it everywhere I go) and saved around 20% off the retail price for the whole project. That 20% ended up being around $400!

It never hurts to ask folks (and it usually helps)!!

Act like a Jew.

Hey anyone monitor this sight? Nice Jew comment you bastard. Come over here and I'll show you how a Jew can beat you like a bitch! I never ask for discounts and even tip the guy who gives me takeout at the dinner! I'm amazed that this damn stereotype persists. Hey Google I see your ads are all over the sides of this website. How about using some of that revenue to keep an eye on what goes on here. As for asking for additional discounts on things, please think for one moment about the sales person who has to endure all the obnoxious requests for "additional discounts". Give me a break. How about you work one of those jobs for a minute and see what it feels like. I've done it and I know. Can't wait till all the shops have closed down and your stuck kissing Wall Marts but for a gallon of milk.

Bobby, I understand YOUR frustration but you were no better with your comment. It takes a BIGGER person to be polite in their comments and not retaliate. When I saw JJ's comment, I shook my head but left it at that. But yours deserve comment because you're stirring the pot. Let it go.

Oh and the buyers for the stores don't beat up their suppliers for discounts and specials which they may or may not pass on to their customers? This haggle process goes all the way back on the supply chain. Stores don't survive for a lot of reasons.
Yes retail sales is crappy work.

Everyone has to make a living and prices are set so that the business can stay open, pay the overhead and meet employee salaries. If you have money to spend at all, you are lucky! Many sales jobs are commission based, so the more you chew them down, the less they get in their paychecks. They let you cut them down because a little food on the table is better than no food on the table. I would never want to walk out of a store with a purchase knowing that I just cost someone some of their livlihood. Always tip your servers well in restaurants and always be aware of a sales persons dependency on your purchase, and DON"T BE A GREEDY S.O.B.!

Retail, like all service industries, is a crappy way to make a living. Employers don't pay much for unskilled labor.

Maybe you should've paid more attention in school...

Bobby - Thank you for your comments. I thought you brought some very good points to light. Also, Dan, retailers don't all beat up their suppliers for discounts and specials, other than the obnoxious ones that imitate obnoxious retail customers. And, yes, if I do happen to get a special on an item, I do pass the savings along to my customers, that's the point. I also love the customers who come in thinking that retail stores are resource libraries, take up your time, and write down all of the style numbers and brands, to go home and pick you off on line. Which is why I now private label most everything in my store. The general public at large SUCKS! They are sneaky, rude, and dishonest, with few exceptions. I catch retirees in lies all of the time trying to make up prices on items. ~It is awful this time in which we all find ourselves. If there are no local retailers, the internet won't help you much when your local retail Joe no longer is in your hood for you to go "do your research"! Send some money for gosh sakes and let the country start healing!!!

Bobby --

Yes, I monitor the comments here. Actually, yours is the worse of the two questionable posts here.

I admit that deciding which comments are left and which aren't is a tough task with lots of grey left for decision-making, but generally, unless there's pure hate/slander/profanity going on, I favor free speech over censorship.

BTW, we've discussed financial stereotypes before here:

Here's my take on the "don't beat up stores too much since they need to make a living too" comments:

1. Ask them for a discount.

2. If they can't/don't/won't give one, make your decision based on that.

3. If they do offer one, they are saying "this deal works for me at this price" and, as such, it's fair and a "good deal for them." If it was a bad deal/they were getting killed/they were pained by it, they wouldn't offer the discount in the first place.

4. This post is about getting a discount at a CHAIN store. Does anyone really think you're going to break Walmart, Target, Kmart et al by asking for and getting a discount?

ALSO, THANK YOU, PATTY BULLET!!! WISH THERE WERE MORE PEOPLE IN THE COUNTRY LIKE YOU! DECENCY SEEMS TO HAVE LEFT US!! JL - You are clearly cluesless. I know lots of people in retail with college degrees, who are business owners, who work in the stores themselves (my husband for one, is a CPA), and we have degreed interior designers on our staff as well. I realize this post is about chain stores. But it doesn't matter. It is all retail, and the same creeps that don't want to pay anything at chain stores don't want to pay anything at boutique type of stores either! They all want Walmart prices, but want to receive excellent quality merchandise, delivered from a status type of retailer so that their neighbors will be impressed!

I liked reading about the concept of asking for a discount. Frankly I did not think most consumers were into that.
Currently the manufacturers and the retailers have raised the price if tuna fish, solid white albicore to at least double and the customers have not noticed. No one appears to care. This occured within the past two months. A leading brand was often selling at 11 cents an ounce. Suddenly the same item was packaged in 5 oz cans, a reduction of one ounce and the price was 25 cents an ounce in the stores.
there are many other examples. Very many of the food chain stores appear to accomodiate rather than compete in many geographic areas. They do where I live. The recent rise has been over 20 percent.

I work in manufacturing. Our automotive customers require an incremental price reduction of 10% per year. However, the cars they sell are not so discounted. AND they get government handouts ? ALWAYS ask nicely for a discount. The guys above DO !

Lets get real.
I enjoy reading the comments they are often better than the suedo expert accounts. My experience comes from just this weekend at the big retailer that has a big catalogue. They are also well known for their tool line.
I was interested in purchasing a gas chain saw. You know the big noisemaker.
I looked on the computer and they had a model that sold from a range of $ 67 to $ 130.
Clearly I wanted to see why the price difference. I did my research. It was told to me that it is store or region discression. I then thought it would be better at the lowewr price.
I used the phone and while I could not find the extremely lower price and my local store wanted $ 128. I found one in Baltimore for $ 87. I called and found that this was new in the box and I confirmed the price. I then called my local branch of the same large retailer. I was connected to the manager. He explained it was his right to charge any price and the store that had the product was an outlet store of theirs. It is 40 miles away and I was not going that way.
I found I could call the on line folks and the confussion continued. One supervisor said I could but it had to be approved by my local store. At any rate they said trhey would process it for me and the local manager has 48 hours to respond. That was saturday and it is Wednesday afternoon. As I have heard nothing I can only assume that they obtained their clocks from their own sources.

Bobby, Welcome to the "Middle Eastern" style of buying(and selling) Does that make you feel any better? It's wonderful you don't conform to the stereotype.
You should be commended.What is the reason you think this stereotype exists? As much as the comment offends you, are you serious in believing this site should be "monitored"? Are you a protected class of person? Gentiles are constantly criticized in the press. They just don't refer to them as Gentiles.We're called W.A.S.Ps., and we are responsible for all of the world's ills, of course.

It's called capitalism. The customers need to drive the competition not the store owners. If the store managers allow multiple "bad" deals to be made, they are not good entrepreneurs and should probably find a new line of work. Everyone needs to look out for #1 (themselves). The stores are doing it already by setting prices higher than cost (called profit) - the customers should feel empowered to do the contrary as well (called discount).

I just buy EVERYTHING online. I buy from whoever gives me the best deal and free shipping.
I live in Hawaii, though. It does not pay to shop on this island. The prices are very bad and they say it is because they have to ship everything in... So I ship my own stuff in, for free. (Usually from

JJ, that was just plain ugly, and you should apologize to everyone on here. Your whole family and friends would be ashamed of you if they knew you said something so mean, but instead you hide behind the anonymity of a blog. If Jesus were reading this blog, would you post that comment? Well, guess what? God and Jesus both know your every thought.

Apologize and ask for forgiveness.

FMF, I'm surprised that you're willing to let an obviously offensive, anti-semitic comment stand as part of this discussion. JJ's comment has no other content -- its only purpose is to offend. Why wouldn't you remove that? How much more "pure hate/slander" must a post contain for you to remove it? I don't understand what gray area you're referring to when it comes to that post.

Jesse --

It looks like you're new here since I can't find any other comments from you, so maybe you haven't seen which ones get cut and which ones don't. Maybe you should stick around a bit before you're "surprised" at anything.

Anyway, I consulted a Jewish friend of mine for his take on the issue and he was satisfied with how I addressed it. Therefore, I'm leaving it as is.

I could offer you samples of what wouldn't stay up, but why even say those things, even as examples?

BTW, if you want to see abuse directed at me that I also allow to stay up, check out some of my Sunday posts on "The Bible and Money."

Has anyone been reading up on what's going on in Detroit? There's not one major grocery store in the entire city! This becomes the eventuality when the mind set is, "Get as much as you can". How about paying a fair profit for a product or service? The relationship between consumer and retailer should not be adversarial.

As for "The Comment". I don't sweep this stuff under the rug because that's how people get away with it. Sure just a little comment no big deal. Then the next guy takes a bigger swing and still hey nobody cares! Well I care and it's important for people to know there are those on the other side that will stand up and say your wrong and shame on you for such a statement. You think I just came up with this? Sorry my friends I have to many dark stories of being in a public school and having kids throw pennies then yell out to who ever picked them, "Your all (explicative here) J--s". And this was only one my friend. So just know there are us out there who see you and your little comments. We remember, They cut into our inner being where they strike the deepest. You wrote four words that strike back thousands of years and it never ends. Why? Maybe because people like you think it's alright. I'm here to say it's not, not for anyone.

Bobby --

I understand.

FYI, I have a Jewish friend of mine writing a post on "The Price You Pay for Pride and Prejudice". It will be posted on Free Money Finance on July 1. I hope you stop by and check it out.

FMF, while I am opposed to censorship and understand where you're coming from, I have to disagree with your decision to let JJ's comment stand. In my opinion, its only purpose was to inflame/insult, not to contribute to any meaningful discussion. I found it disparaging, insulting and totally inappropriate. And certainly not what I come to this site to see.

Wow. I feel bad for jj here. I'm sure this guy isn't racist. I've heard so many jew jokes,black jokes, asian jokes. Most of these people aren't racist. I'm not racist and I've used a small little joke like that. You guys are taking it wayyyyyyy too far. Are you guys saying you've never made any joke that wasnt somewhat predjudice. Most people have, it doesn't mean shit. Just cause someone made a black joke doesn't mean their going to go afterwards to their kkk meeting. Jesus christ chill out, i've heard that jew joke about a thousand times. You guys aren't going to write a letter to comedy central about all the stand-up comedians and their racist jokes are you?? I didnt think so..

Alright points have been made and now the case is closed. I understand that things need to move on. This post is about finance stuff right? Let's let it roll on in this manner once again.

Getting back to discounts I've found that my friends who have contacted higher level management have gotten far better deals than pushing the sales person who really is limited. One example is when traveling to Las Vegas. Definitely contact the hotel your interested in and you will be surprised at the perks they will through in to get your business.

Caitlin how old are you? Or rather, what is your maturity level? From your comment you look about 14 years old. Maybe what he said was a joke, but it was still offensive to Bobby. Even though he used strong words also, he had a right to express his resentment towards that nasty comment.

I don't as a rule pay full price (and yes I have worked retail). I also don't tip my waitress unless she does her job. If I walk in to make a big ticket purchase (furniture and home improvement supplies) and I am ignored (happens quite a bit because I shop in casual clothes)I don't hesitate to not purchase at that store. Several comments from individuals in retail have stated that the general public is rude and greedy and I agree with that, I see lots of rude and greedy people and that includes sales people.

What this post is about is asking for an additional discount on floor models, last year's models, etc. As was stated by someone else if you the store's cannot give the discount they won't. Bottom line you make $0 if the item isn't sold. So maybe you would have made 50% if the item was sold at full price, but you make nothing so long as the item sits, and the longer the item sits the less its worth every day (probability of sale, etc.) and so if you sell it for 10 or 20% less than you have it marked that is stil more money than nothing.

I for one do go into stores and take down information in order to comparison shop. But I tell sales people when I am doing that, that I am just comparison shopping so I don't need their assistance at that moment,

Lastly I would like to say that when you pay by credit or debit card the store is paying a 5% transaction fee so if you are paying in cash not only do they have cash in hand but they are not paying that 5% fee so its worth asking for that same discount plus a little more.

I don't as a rule pay full price (and yes I have worked retail). I also don't tip my waitress unless she does her job. If I walk in to make a big ticket purchase (furniture and home improvement supplies) and I am ignored (happens quite a bit because I shop in casual clothes)I don't hesitate to not purchase at that store. Several comments from individuals in retail have stated that the general public is rude and greedy and I agree with that, I see lots of rude and greedy people and that myself.

haha I like your sense of humor.

I so agree with chickies123. I own a store that carries furniture, clothing, accessories and now it seems like 8 out of 10 people ask for a discount. And they ask for 50% off not a few dollars off and they are usually fairly rude. "I will give you $5 for this $55 table." I don't like that term "I will give you..." So we politely say no. But if one of our regulars comes in and is nice we will give them a 10% discount on some items. We do not have a large mark up and we have been in business for the past 11 years because we have stuck to our guns on most pricing. We have to pay for overhead, staff [and our staff deserves a better paycheck than a discount to a snooty customer], etc. I love our customers but the Discount Divas we get in just make me laugh and send them on their way to WalMart.

The comments to this entry are closed.

Start a Blog


  • Any information shared on Free Money Finance does not constitute financial advice. The Website is intended to provide general information only and does not attempt to give you advice that relates to your specific circumstances. You are advised to discuss your specific requirements with an independent financial adviser. Per FTC guidelines, this website may be compensated by companies mentioned through advertising, affiliate programs or otherwise. All posts are © 2005-2012, Free Money Finance.