Let’s Talk Money

Ever wonder why some people have all the luck when it comes to getting incredible deals on cars, vacations, real estate and business transactions? The reality is those people aren’t really lucky at all; they just know how to negotiate for what they want. In How to Win Any Negotiation, Robert Mayer explains how you can get what you want—whether that’s the best price on a new car, a killer lease for your next location or an awesome deal on a cruise. Here are a few tips that might just help you walk away a winner from your next negotiation:

1. Know what you want. You’re not ready to strike a deal until you know exactly what you want. If, for example, you’re shopping for a new car, don’t walk onto the lot and ask, “Whaddya got?” Do your homework. Before you approach the salesperson, decide which make, model and color vehicle you want.

2. Know the margins. Travel agents and car salespeople work on commissions. Knowing how much wiggle room they have will help you strike a fair deal. For instance, Mayer says, “The base commission paid to travel agents by the cruise lines is generally 10 percent on the cruise fare; 5 percent on the air, pre/post cruise hotels; 10 percent on optional travel insurance.” To get your business, some travel agents may be willing to cut you a deal on fares or negotiate for prepaid gratuities or shipboard allowances on extras such as bar tabs and excursions.

3. Read the fine print. If you’re looking for office space or a retail location, don’t just sign on the bottom line. Negotiate up front for the best terms. Know what you’re agreeing to when it comes to rent increases, renewal terms and pass-through expenses such as insurance, repairs and property taxes.

As the saying goes, “Forewarned is forearmed.” Preparing for any negotiation is the key to saving money and getting the best deal.

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