Gransnet forums

Ask a gran

Who is the negotiator in your house?

(21 Posts)
NanaandGrampy Sat 13-Feb-16 12:39:03

We have the decorator coming today to talk through a quote for work and it will be down to me to negotiate the best deal. DH is just too nice.

Maybe it's down to my past career or maybe I'm just the tougher of the two of us but whenever we have to arrange work or make a major purchase ( or complain ) that's my job !

Maybe he's just watched too many to cop shows and he likes good cop/ bad cop smile I don't know .

Who gets the best deal in your house?

MiniMouse Sat 13-Feb-16 13:10:58

Verbally/face to face it's definitely OH, but in a letter/email it's me! I would get too flustered in Real Life blush

janeainsworth Sat 13-Feb-16 14:07:30

If the decorator has given you an honest quote what is there to negotiate?
A fair price IMHO is one which covers the decorator's costs and reasonably remunerates him for his time. If he is self employed the cost includes the cost of things like his insurance and contributions to his pension, holiday pay etc.

If you think his price is not a fair one, get another quote.
But if you think it is a fair one, and you try to get a cheaper price, you are effectively asking him to either cut corners so that he won't lose out financially, or to accept a less than fair rate of pay for the job.

kittylester Sat 13-Feb-16 14:12:50

That's what works for us too jane. Letters/phone calls of complaint are my department.

janeainsworth Sat 13-Feb-16 14:12:59

John Ruskin on why you should not pay too little for goods or services.

It's unwise to pay too much, but it's worse to pay too little. When
you pay too much, you lose a little money - that's all. When you pay
too little, you sometimes lose everything, because the thing you
bought was incapable of doing the thing it was bought to do. The
common law of business balance prohibits paying a little and getting a
lot - it can't be done. If you deal with the lowest bidder, it is well
to add something for the risk you run, and if you do that you will
have enough to pay for something better."

Greyduster Sat 13-Feb-16 14:13:13

I'm with MiniMouse - I'm afraid I leave DH to do all the face to face stuff; I'm a bit of a wimp these days. It wasn't always the case. When I was working I had to negotiate prices for capital equipment and all manner of things, and I was good at it (well my boss thought so anyway!). Perhaps I'm getting old!

Synonymous Sat 13-Feb-16 14:18:04

Agreed Jane which is why we always get three quotes. If there is one person I would prefer to do the job we will discuss it and include all the other prices and if we can come to an agreement that is great otherwise "you pays your money and takes your choice".
I am the one who is the negotiator in our house. grin

ninathenana Sat 13-Feb-16 14:20:18

DH is not articulate enough to negotiate anything. He never makes phone calls for himself.
He has many compensatory qualities though.

merlotgran Sat 13-Feb-16 14:29:06

We usually get more than one quote but sometimes accept the first one without bothering.

We don't tell them straight away though because it's often good to mull things over.

Rather than negotiate we emphasise that the budget cannot be extended so their quote (if accepted) must stand.

NanaandGrampy Sat 13-Feb-16 16:16:54

janesinsworth in terms of negotiation with our decorator it's not always about negotiating price . Which in this instance whilst not the cheapest was , as you said not only fair but gave us a clear indication of the standard of work .

We did negotiate the start date and also what bits of work we wanted . For instance he'll do the paintwork in the hall but DH will have done some prep work and because of that the decorator will paint the ceiling in another room .

He was well recommended but more importantly we liked him .

So , now for a month - 6 weeks of chaos !!

annodomini Sat 13-Feb-16 16:47:34

Since it's only me, it's only me; but then, it always was.grin

janeainsworth Sat 13-Feb-16 17:39:16

Sounds good n&g smile

rosesarered Sat 13-Feb-16 18:40:47

We do most of these sort of things as a team. always get three quotes from any workmen and go for the middle price usually, plus what we think about them on a personal level ( gut feeling.)Buying an expensive item in a shop,
I take a back seat, as DH is good at getting reductions, ditto if we are buying a car (only the colour bothers me, otherwise a car is a car.)
Complaining in shops either in person or on the phone is down to me though!

Greyduster Sat 13-Feb-16 19:03:44

I have to admit, if it were me buying a car, the dealer would be able to run rings around me. I am like a rabbit in the headlights. DH got a very good deal on our last new car, after a bit of a war of attrition which ended up with him telling them negotiations were at an end and walking away. Two days later they rang him up and offered him a slightly better deal than we were trying for in the first place.

cornergran Sat 13-Feb-16 20:10:19

Letters and emails definitely my province, usually but not always telephone calls as well as DH struggles to hear on the phone. I tend to get a better outcome and I'm far more organised with pieces of paper. Face to face negotiations are invariably mine, with complaints it sort of depends what it is, where it is and how brave I'm feeling that day! I don't usually mind, we go with who has the better skill set for most things, but there are times I wish I didn't have this particular skill!

Judthepud2 Sun 14-Feb-16 10:36:08

Oh DH without a doubt! He is great at keeping his temper but very assertive when the situation calls for it. Don't know what I would do without him, even with the mess he creates round him at every point in the house.

Tessa101 Sun 14-Feb-16 10:38:26

It's always me in our house. OH is to nice and I think he gets embarrassed,we've just bought another car and I managed to get £400 off of price due to my negotiating.To be honest I like bartering/ haggling something we don't do enough of. Good luck

Teacher11 Sun 14-Feb-16 10:56:17

I do much of the negotiating but at the garage I leave it to the OH as garages are a very macho environment and the dear chaps feel it s a matter of honour to cheat women.

Having said that I have been to three places now where I have met former pupils and they couldn't have been nicer.

glammanana Sun 14-Feb-16 11:20:40

I do all the negotiating as OH is such a push over and always willing to pay the quoted price,I believe there is always room for negotiation with quotes we have tended to go on gut feeling towards the person doing the job and references.I have the dates when TV and Broadband need renewing and when to phone to get best deal same with other services I always compare the best deals and do the negotiating about a month prior to new deal starting.

chrissyh Sun 14-Feb-16 11:39:35

With tradesmen I don't negotiate but just get two or three quotes and usually get a feeling from one that they will be best for the job - not necessarily the cheapest. Neither of us is very good at bargaining and usually pay full price for things. For complaints, much better on the phone or by letter. DH is too nice to people on the phone, even if he is angry with the company he says it's not the fault of the person on the other end.

Gaggi3 Sun 14-Feb-16 12:49:31

DH does all the negotiating, complaining etc. He's very good at it, doesn't get cross but is very persistent. and a 'stimulating' conversation on the 'phone sorting something out sets him up for the day, especially if it's a bank or insurance company.