"Dickering" on gun prices with sellers.


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SaxonPig
February 22, 2009, 12:20 PM
I always figure that all prices are negotiable and usually start out offering a little less than the asking price. Sometimes the seller just says the price is firm and that's OK. I just have to decide if I want to pay it or walk away. Most times the dealer is willing to meet somewhere in the middle.

A couple of times I have had sellers sorta go nuts on me when I made an offer. About 15 years ago a guy at a show had a 2nd Model 44 Special S&W that was utterly devoid of bluing. I guess somebody had polished it to bare metal. He had it tagged at $250 and it had been to at least 2 shows I knew of without selling so I figured he might be ready to deal.

"I'd like to make an offer on your 44..." I started but that's as far as I got. He started screaming... I mean screaming... about how he was tired of people offering less than what the tag said. I calmly suggested that if he didn't want to dicker he should just write the word "Firm" on the price tag. Well, that REALLY set him off and he grabbed the gun off the table and flung it into a cardboard box setting on the floor. "It's not for sale any longer!" he bellowed. Oooooo... K.

When I see something I like and the price is fair I still try to get a little something off just on GP. Two weeks ago I saw a Nylon 66 at a show tagged at $150. I had been watching for a shooter grade 66 for a while and I thought the gun was worth the asking price. But I still told the dealer "Give me $20 off and I'll take it right now." He took the money, I took the rifle, we shook hands and everyone was happy. I would have paid the $150 had he balked at the offer but it was more fun to get a little discount.

I recall about 20 years ago I saw a sporterized 30-40 Krag at a show. I had wanted one for a long time but wanted to pay no more than $150. But every one I saw was priced at $250 or more and that was too much for me. Well, this one was tagged at $90. I snatched it off the table trying to conceal my enthusiasm as I fought the urge to reach for my wallet. "Will you take $80?" I asked as casually as I could. He rolled his eyes and groaned that he had paid $80 for it 2 months earlier and wanted to make something off it. So we agreed on $85. I still have that rifle.

About 8 years ago I walked the aisles of show following a man who was carrying a pair of Ruger auto 22 pistols. One was the standard 4.5" model and the other had the longer 6" barrel and walnut stocks. I watched him show the guns to a dozen people who passed on the $150 asking price for buyer's choice. Finally, I stopped him and said I'd give him $100 for the longer one. He didn't hesitate a moment, he just handed it over. We walked another 30 yards before I offered him $90 for the other one.

I wound up giving both of those guns away as presents to friends. Oh, well.

Maybe 7 years ago a pawn shop had a wartime production M&P in 38 Special. It was reblued and the barrel was bulged. He was asking $100 but I thought that was too high. It went unsold for a couple weeks before I told him it was worth $60 to me. He was happy to unload it. I went right to one of the auction sites and saw a proper barrel with a $5 starting price. I bought it with one bid and swapped it myself since a gunsmith wanted $100 to do it. Gun shoots fine and is certainly worth the $65 I have in it.

I don't try to insult sellers with really lowball offers, I just offer what the item is worth to me. Often they don't accept. I recently offered $500 for a revolver that an FFL dealer has for sale at $575. He passed. That was 2 weeks ago and the gun is still for sale. I may wait another 2-3 weeks before trying again.

Anyone else have any good stories about haggling?

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jmr40
February 22, 2009, 12:30 PM
On a used gun I expect the price to be negotiable. I usually always get the seller to come down. Even most gunshops will at least eat the sales tax.

New guns are generally not negotiable.

MMCSRET
February 22, 2009, 12:39 PM
I watched a Colt Officers Model at the local Scheels go from $699.00 to $599.00 to $499.00 over 3 months. I made an offer on it the other day and it is now mine. I think the same way you do.

Duke of Doubt
February 22, 2009, 12:44 PM
Haggling is half the fun and satisfaction (finding it is the other half). Anyone can just go and BUY a gun for what the seller wants, assuming the buyer has the money and is willing to part with it.

I live in an area where those who pay retail are looked upon with disdain, and those who shop at WalMart are considered developmentally challenged. We gradually fill our homes with valuable antiques and fascinating curios, for which we pay a few dollars apiece at flea markets and thrift stores. We obtain our furniture piece by piece for distress prices at clearance sales, salvage centers and yard sales. Just going to a fancy store and BUYING it is considered the behavior of a perfect fool.

Guns are no different. People from away might go to a "gun store" and "order" a "new" gun. But real enthusiasts are on a first name basis, not only with all the pawnbrokers, but with their friends and family. Haggling over old guns is a weekly hobby event. Whether we actually GET the gun is a point of satisfaction only if we get a good price or trade. The only exceptions are those few guns with which we fall in love at first sight, and we are always a little bit embarrassed about those.

koolminx
February 22, 2009, 12:54 PM
Great Thread!

Nobody, and I mean NOBODY likes to be caught selling something that I want...:D

I will Gentile your arse off (I can't Jew ya down as I'm not Jewish strangely enough :neener:)

I will haggle anyone! I don't care if it's Brand Spanking New at Macy's 5th Avenue, Wall Mart, or Target!

I gotta haggle and get me a discount, and if I don't get my discount, I often buy it anyway... :) (I rarely walk away without a discount of some kind)

I simply relish the thrill of the bargain hunt!

In fact, not 30 seconds before tripping across this thread, I e-mailed a guy with a pile of Tarzan Comic's that he want's $35 bucks for... To see If I could nab them for a considerably smaller sum :)
(I'm such an ass :))

Pilot
February 22, 2009, 12:59 PM
There is nothing wrong with politely making an offer or asking if the seller will accept any less. All they can say is no the price is firm, then you can decide if you want to pay it or not.

Bubba613
February 22, 2009, 01:22 PM
There is nothing wrong with politely making an offer or asking if the seller will accept any less. All they can say is no the price is firm, then you can decide if you want to pay it or not.
+1
I dont mind folks asking if they dont mind my telling them no. I had a guy try to bargain on a DPMS AR 16" flat top a couple of weeks ago. I know mine was priced 100-200 less than anyone else's. And they were hard to get. I told him, you must be joking, right?
Sometimes I will hint I am looking for an offer and say "I've had this quite a while and am motivated to sell it."
What I don't like is someone asking for a better price and when I give them my "lowest" price they want even more. Those people can go jump in a lake. Similarly on ammo and accessories. I had a guy call about a Glock 19 mag. I had a used one in good condition for 20. He came by and asked me if that was my best price. I asked him "sir, do you want the mag or not?" I just am not going to dicker over a $20 item.

Nathanael_Greene
February 22, 2009, 01:54 PM
I think good-faith negotiating is always fair; it never hurts to ask (or shouldn't hurt, anyway).

When someone offers an absurdly low figure, though, I see no reason to be polite.

glove
February 22, 2009, 02:15 PM
Hello
I like to ask $20 to $50 more. Than when you bargain me down a little we are both happy.:)
Dave Z

crankshop1000
February 22, 2009, 02:44 PM
The principal that applies is that anything I have for sale is undesirable and worth only a low ball take it or leave it from most "dealers". The funny thing is that those same dealers sell only rare and unfired examples in pristine condition. Funny how things work...I'd think it was a profit scheme if I didn't know better.Always dicker,it's the American way.

raveneap
February 22, 2009, 03:15 PM
I'll generally offer less than I think I'll end up paying, figuring that the seller will come down a bit to meet in the middle. Usually works. Does he (the seller) know what I'm up to? Very probably - but he also knows that he probably priced it thinking of that. So we both end up happy.

LtShortcut
February 22, 2009, 03:16 PM
Haggleing over a price is a dying art in America. I take it as a given that the seller has over priced an item, so I lowball and expect to work up to somewhere in the middle.

It's not a gun, but I recently offer the salesman at the toyota dealership 16,000 cash for an 09 camery that was priced at 19,000. He told me that I needed to go across the street to the used car lot and walked away from me.

I was prepared to spend more than the 16,000 I offered, but he apparently didn't need any money. I don't know why he was selling cars.

Bubba613
February 22, 2009, 03:25 PM
Maybe he figured you didnt have a clue what you were talking about and it wasn't worth spending the time to educate you.
I hate that more than anything else. People come in and throw some absurd number out there just to see if I take it.
I had one guy on the phone once. He had bought something else on Gunbroker and then called to pay for it. While we were talking I also pitched him a used Bushmaster I had for like $650 in perfect condition (pre-election days). It was a deal at that price and I knew it.
He wanted to see pics. I sent pics. He asked a bunch of ignorant questions. I answered them.
Then he sent me an email, would I take $550 shipped for it?
I told him in no uncertain terms that not only would I not take that for it, I was done with him.
He wrote several more times apologizing and saying he didnt know the market for these things. I ignored him. I sold the gun for the full price to one of my best customers, who knew a deal when he saw it.

phish
February 22, 2009, 03:29 PM
I shop at Pekin Guns and Sporting goods, and it's nearly IMPOSSIBLE to haggle with the owner. granted, all of his prices are pretty good to start with, but he won't budge at all!

Floppy_D
February 22, 2009, 03:38 PM
I love finding one thing marked "firm" (like $400 firm). Because that infers anything not marked firm.... isn't. :D

lamebums
February 22, 2009, 03:42 PM
I love finding one thing marked "firm" (like $400 firm). Because that infers anything not marked firm.... isn't.

+1 on this. there isn't a single thing I picked up at a gun show that wasn't haggled on, or at least attempted. More often than not, I'll see something for say, $5. The guy will offer $4.50 since he hasn't sold it all day, and I'll counter with 2 for $8 ($4 each). Or something like that.

Friendly, Don't Fire!
February 22, 2009, 03:47 PM
I asked a local dealer how much for a certain NEW revolver, special order. The guy gave me a price, I told him to order it.

Several weeks go by, I call and the gun is in. I go to pick it up at the price quoted only to have the owner tell me that "his new worker" didn't know the real cost of the gun and he would have to charge me another $25.:barf:

I told him the price quoted was the price quoted -- it is not my fault that your guy is quoting guns below what he should be. I was prepared to buy the gun at the lower price, but certainly NOT at the higher price. I will give you what was quoted and no more than that. :banghead:

So, I'm a jerk and it wasn't even my own fault.:fire::fire:

Last time I ever went there to buy a gun.:)

BamaHoosier
February 22, 2009, 03:49 PM
Though I never dickered over prices,my boss would when I worked in his gun store in the 80's,and that was part of the fun working there!

Cannonball888
February 22, 2009, 03:56 PM
The proper way to haggle (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3n3LL338aGA)

22lr
February 22, 2009, 04:01 PM
Worst deal I ever got was a $50 dollar marlin 51 ($50 dollar sticker) I asked for $50 out the door and he said, sure. Never hurts to ask. Only thing I hate is when guys offer way below what my gun is worth. I know personal worth and everything but im not taking $150 for a gun im trying to sell for $250. But that said I never get mad about a low ball, I just politely counter offer.

tuckerdog1
February 22, 2009, 04:03 PM
The 7 magic words:

Is that the best you can do?

Has saved me hundreds at Best Buy, Conn's , Wal-Mart, Sams, etc etc ( never works at Fry's ).

And it has saved a few bucks at the guns shows as well. The gun buying process can be almost as fun as shooting the gun.

Tuckerdog1

Gambit88
February 22, 2009, 04:08 PM
I Went to an antique arms show a few weeks ago and picked up a replica 1851 navy revolver. The cylander didnt rotate right and the grip needed to be refitted. The guy wanted 150 for it and its holster and belt(csa buckle). I talked him down to 80 as it was the last day and he wanted to get rid of it, then my neighbor pointed out all the work to be done and he dropped it to 60. Hell the holster and belt are worth that.

Gambit

DCR
February 22, 2009, 06:08 PM
Always ask. Period. Don't treat it like a used car deal, though, and point out every little niggling "defect" in the gun, because the seller probably already knows it and can recognize "tire kicking." Don't bring your buddy who's an "expert" along to look at it and point out any actual or perceived flaw to the seller. Don't allow your "expert" buddy to enter into the negotiations. Don't go ask your "expert" buddy what his Blue Book says - blue books aren't reflective of the actual market. Don't bring your Blue Book and try to convince the seller his gun is worth $X because "the Blue Book says so" or that you think he's asking primo for a rough gun. Speaking from 30+ years of experience selling, sellers who have been at it for years know what the market price for a given gun is because they've been watching/buying/selling on auctionarms.com or gunbroker.com. You may live in a market where you don't see particular models of guns come by very often, so expect to pay a little more than what you see it going for on the auction sites because they brought the gun to your market, and you'd have to pay an FFL for transfer fees if you bought it online. But always ask. And always ask at pawn shops, because even though many of those guys actually know a lot more about guns and the market than you would believe, they only have a dime on the dollar into the gun and have lots of wiggle room on the price. Good luck and happy haggling!

hemiram
February 22, 2009, 06:18 PM
I've had people go ballistic over gun, ham radio, and even pet supplies, when I tried to dicker.

The last one I can remember is when I went and had the "nerve" to offer this old guy $400 on a not perfect, but very nice S&W model 28 he had a price of $500 on it. He started yelling at me, and after he was all worn out from his tantrum, I said, "Jeez, all you needed to do was say..no!" An old guy next to him started laughing when I said it, and the guy went off on him next. I ended up going over to the table next door and buying a couple of Beretta 92 mags from him, talking about how "some people" need to get a dose of reality in their prices. The guy with the 28 glared at us the entire time, muttering. It was fun, but I sure would have liked to have bought that 28.

searcher451
February 22, 2009, 06:24 PM
In this day and age of inflation and running-scared buying and selling, a man who doesn't dicker a bit is a man who is either paying full price ... or is getting gouged. While I'll seldom question the price of a gun I truly want, I'll sometimes ask about the shipping costs. On the last two purchases I've made, I was able to save more than $50 in shipping, which amounts to a tidy bit of ammo (when you can find it).

Old Fuff
February 22, 2009, 06:44 PM
As a retailer I was a true S.O.B. :what:

As a rule I didn't haggle because all I was doing was waste my time for the sole purpose of losing money. I felt that my prices were fair and competitive, and I saw no reason to lower them just because someone wanted to pay less. I did however offer a flat, no-questions-ask guarantee that if anything was wrong it would be made right, with no charge to the customer.

I remember one potential customer in particular that told me, “I never pay the asking price, so I’ll give you…” I told him, “goodbye …” So he want to a competitor and bought a similar gun from him. However he was soon back because he discovered that his new (used) gun didn’t work and he wanted it fixed. I quoted him a price that dropped his jaw. :evil:

However my regular customers did quite well. ;)

RobMoore
February 22, 2009, 06:47 PM
When gun dealers have a pistol priced correctly, I don't haggle. That is a rarity, but my most recent purchase was at a gun store, and the rifle was the right price. I bought it straight away with no fuss, and the dealer said "we'll just go ahead and make that sticker price the out-the-door cost and save you a few bucks".

Speedo66
February 22, 2009, 06:59 PM
It never hurts to ask "Can you do a little better on the price?"

You're not insulting them, you're not low balling them, just asking a question.

I ask it every time I buy anything at a show, antique store, etc. and find it works quite often.

zulu6
February 22, 2009, 08:21 PM
Most gun dealers, small and large, seem to do everything they can possibly do to not not sell guns. Gator Guns here in West Palm Beach is king of that sort of treatment.

JohnBT
February 22, 2009, 10:51 PM
I like to look at the price tag, pull a roll of bills out of my pocket, thumb through it and then say, "Huh, I guess not." Often it draws a price reduction. Something about the sight of greenbacks (or whatever funky color they are these days) going back into my pocket is a motivator.

Most of the time these days I don't mind paying a reasonable asking price, I can finally afford it. I overtip too. :) I put most of my efforts into making money, but definitely shop hard and deal on big purchases like cars, roofs, heating systems and such.

I can be cheap too; my cell phone doesn't have a camera.

JT

22lr
February 22, 2009, 11:00 PM
I was in my local gun shop with my buddy who is in the Air Guard. He made a comment like I had to qualify on that (about a 92) the dealer looked at the 22lr he was buying ($140 sticker) promptly kicked $20 off and out the door for $120. That speaks volumes as both me and my buddy would have gladly paid $140 for the gun.

Same guy who cuts a price on a $90 dollar scope to $70 so a kid can buy a nicer one on his allowance savings. That was really cool because the kid was just going to buy a cheaper one but he talked him into getting the nicer one for the same price.

larry_minn
February 22, 2009, 11:14 PM
If I see a item I like I will find out price, put it back and thank seller/tell them I will think about it, and move on. (looking at other items on table. If at gun show I will look over other booths then come back. Then ask seller "How much for the gun, those 3 boxes of ammo, 1lb of that powder toal?" Normally its a fair amount less then what I already added up in my head. If they won't give a deal for multiple purchases I can keep looking.

mongo4567
February 22, 2009, 11:33 PM
I almost always ask if they will take less. Sometimes they take less, seldom had anyone get mad.

earlthegoat2
February 22, 2009, 11:45 PM
If you want to haggle and get great deals on gun look no further than Gander Mountain. The local one where I used to live made me more money than my 401k. They had an ANIB Colt Python Royal Blue marked at 750 and I walked out with it for 600 OTD. This was less than 6 months ago. Later on that week I bought an Ithica double barrel 20 gauge that was marked at 365. I got it for 320 OTD. I buy guns I dont even want purely for investment. I am getting wealthy off them and they dont seem to care. And to think they actually turned me down when times were tough and I tried to get a job there. What a joke. They ended up paying me anyway. Go figure they are going to be closing down in a bit I hear.

Wolfebyte
February 22, 2009, 11:46 PM
Horse trading is a gallant art.. Nothing wrong with it.

Especially when everyone feels like they came out ahead..

that's an agreement, not a compromise.

crazy-mp
February 22, 2009, 11:50 PM
I was at a gun show in January where a dealer had 9 boxes of Norinco 7.62 X 25 ammo packed in 60 round boxes. That was one of those jump up and down and shout for joy moments, he had $12.00 a box on it, not a bad price... There was a guy in front of me who picked up a box, I almost yelled at him I wanted it all, but he put it down, thank goodness.

I asked the dealer if it got cheaper if I bought more, he said he would knock fifty cents off a box for every one I bought. I said how about $60 for it all, he almost started jumping up and down, uh...OK!

Win win, we both went home thinking we got the better deal:D

moredes
February 23, 2009, 12:12 AM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0HEW5bXqKbU

I'm on a Looooooow budget... so I'll haggle every time; I may not get anywhere with it, but I almost always try. There's only been 3 times I can think of when I didn't--twice I was too afraid of losing the deal--$1800 for a Wilson Combat Classic Supergrade in 2002, and about 4 months later, $1200 for an unfired Ed Brown Kobra Carry. The 3rd time (well, with the Kobra Carry, too) the seller was unemployed and trying to generate funds. I believed 'em and paid the asking price w/o dickering. Ya can't grind someone who's tryin' to buy groceries.

Funny; I think I've only lowered my own prices twice... one time for sure, by less than 10%, and the other time musta happened because I just can't believe I've only done it once.:scrutiny::D

TexasRedneck
February 23, 2009, 12:42 AM
I enjoy the negotiating process - as others have noted, there is a "right" way to do it. For me, I'll usually ask if that's the best they can do. I don't usually bring up "Blue Book" - unless THEY do. Once they do, I'm prepared to grab a current copy and reference it to 'em - because they're usually lyin' through their teeth. Besides - a perfect example is the Colt Mustang. Look it up in the BB, then try to actually BUY one at that price....

ThrottleJockey
February 23, 2009, 01:16 AM
Dave Ramsey has some good points about haggling. Have green cash in your hand, money talks BS walks. If a salesman knows you have cash in hand, he is likely going to be more flexible, as he knows you are a sale and not just a tire kicker.

Drusagas
February 23, 2009, 01:23 AM
I like asking lower prices but I try to be as nice as I can about it and most of the time it works out. What I can't stand is the people who get angry, like it's been said, all they gotta say is no if they don't wanna sell. If I'm selling something, even if someone lowballs, if I don't want to sell at their price, I don't get mean or anything, I just say, No Thanks, I'm looking to get a little more for *fill in the black*. No need to get angry or say, You must be kidding? They offer, you refuse, you offer, they refuse. Just wish people understood that these days.

SaxonPig
February 23, 2009, 08:31 AM
To follow up on my own post, as many noted of course you want to be polite, both when buying and when selling.

And I think it's very bad form to start pointing out flaws in an item to get the price down. If I say anything about condition it's something like: "Well, given its condition, I can offer..."

Also, once an offer is made, you should be prepared to buy if the seller accepts. I've seen people get a seller down to the offer price and then walk away. That's just bogus.

TexasRedneck
February 23, 2009, 09:09 AM
And I think it's very bad form to start pointing out flaws in an item to get the price down. If I say anything about condition it's something like: "Well, given its condition, I can offer..."


Exactly. The seller already knows the flaws - pointing it out to him is like tellin' your wife she's putting on weight. You might be right, but you still won't get any love later. ;) By the same token, you don't want him thinking you're a total idiot, either. Usually what I'll do is look one over, pause at the flawed areas (may or may not make some minor verbal comment as if to myself) and then proceed to the negotiations.

Also, once an offer is made, you should be prepared to buy if the seller accepts. I've seen people get a seller down to the offer price and then walk away. That's just bogus.

Now, THAT flat ticks me off! I've got a buddy that'll do that - he'll handle everything in sight, ask a million questions - then walk away. When I ask him why, he'll say something like he was "just curious" about it. It's at the point that I no longer stay with him when he starts that. I used to stay w/him because he usually wanted to ask me things about it as well - but after having seen him do it time and again, I simply consider it a waste of time.

Old Fuff
February 23, 2009, 09:35 AM
Now, THAT flat ticks me off! I've got a buddy that'll do that - he'll handle everything in sight, ask a million questions - then walk away. When I ask him why, he'll say something like he was "just curious" about it. It's at the point that I no longer stay with him when he starts that. I used to stay w/him because he usually wanted to ask me things about it as well - but after having seen him do it time and again, I simply consider it a waste of time

And how do you think the dealer feels? :banghead:

Could this sort of experience be part of the reason that some dealers won't bother to waste their time dickering & dealing? :scrutiny:

Mr. Bojangles
February 23, 2009, 09:36 AM
Every time I've asked for a discount at Sportsmans Warehouse I've had them either knock 10% off the price or give me a box of ammo for free. Every little bit helps and it keeps me going back there.

rbernie
February 23, 2009, 09:45 AM
To follow up on my own post, as many noted of course you want to be polite, both when buying and when selling. And I think it's very bad form to start pointing out flaws in an item to get the price down.I strongly concur. A confrontational approach usually begets, well, a confrontation from which nobody walks away satisfied. I usually just ask, "So what can you do for me on this?". If I like the price - I buy. If not, I thank them for the offer and move on.

But always say 'thank you' - that's what you'd want if you were on the other side of the table.

Also, once an offer is made, you should be prepared to buy if the seller accepts. I've seen people get a seller down to the offer price and then walk away. That's just bogus.Agreed again - that's just good manners.

But real enthusiasts are on a first name basis, not only with all the pawnbrokers, but with their friends and family. Haggling over old guns is a weekly hobby event. And this speaks to an unwritten rule of haggling - try to get a good deal, but never try to rip somebody off. If you stay interested in firearms long enough, chances are that you'll wind up buying and selling within the community to the point where you *will* become 'known'. You do not want to be known as someone who cannot be trusted or who will take advantage of their peers.

TexasRedneck
February 23, 2009, 09:53 AM
Y'know, that's the thing - most folks in the US has forgotten the "Art of the Deal", in which both claim that their mother will starve b/c of the impending deal, their children will leave home....and both depart as winners.
Now, don't get me wrong - I'm fully capable of verbally floggin' a seller - but I've learned that it's usually counter-productive. If he's a total jerk, I'll usually just mosey on down the aisle after thanking him for his time. Maybe the guy ahead of me was a total jerk w/him, maybe others things in his life aren't working well - whatever it is, there's nothing to be gained (usually) by adding to it.
Now, not that I'm known or anything, but there are usually a coupla dealers at the show(s) who know what I collect, and a quiet word to 'em will usually tell me if someone has what I'm looking for, if they're reasonable, and even helpful hints for dealing with them - so, yeah - if folks like you and trust you, it'll pay huge dividends down the road.

Bookworm
February 23, 2009, 11:39 AM
I had no idea I could haggle at all.

I was looking at a S+W 642 at Cabella's in Hamburg Pa, but it was something like $575. I've seen the same gun on budsgunshop online only with CT grips for $611. I didn't say anything then, just walked away without making the purchase. Would it have been proper to haggle in that case?

Duke of Doubt
February 23, 2009, 11:46 AM
Don't ask, don't get.

Everything is negotiable.

But as pointed out by a couple comments above, you sometimes run across a fellow who just doesn't enjoy haggling, won't do it, and will hold your attempt against you.

I once got a job offer at a time when I was out of work and running out of cash. They offered salary x, I countered with x+5k, they came back with x+4k. I had no leverage at all; so what? Don't ask, don't get, right? So I got some extra money. BUT, unknown to me at the time, that employer quietly resented that I had somehow squeezed extra money out of them. Ridiculous, but that was how they felt. I eventually left; they never got over how some kid from out of town had squeezed extra money out of them. Stupid, ignorant, petty, but that was how they felt.

MachIVshooter
February 23, 2009, 11:59 AM
New guns are generally not negotiable.

Depends. Yes, the profit margins are generally pretty small on new firearms, but that doesn't mean you always have to pay full price. Know what the average price is (not internet, but actual store shelf), and go from there. When I bought my AR-50, the original quoted price was $2,900. I knew of 2other shops selling them for $2,650, but both of those shops were a damn long way from me. Nonetheless, that told me that he likely had a great deal of room on the gun. So I told the dealer if he could go $2,750, I'd buy from him, but any more than that and I'd drive the 280 mile round trip to the other shop that had one. He agreed, and I bought it from him. Also, if you're buying multiple guns or a bunch of accessories at the same time, I don't think it's unreasonable to ask for a discount even if you know the prices to be perfectly fair.

Now, as far as haggling in general. there are right and wrong ways to do it. You have to be polite, and you have to have a number in mind. If someone wants to get a better deal from me, and thinks that saying "your price is way to high" will get him anywhere, he's wrong. As well, asking what my best price is will not get you anywhere. Make an offer, and we'll either find something we can both live with, or I'll keep my item. For instance, I had for sale a dirtbike that is a few years old, but in nearly new condition. I had a guy contact me and the very first thing he said was "KBB trade-in value is XXXX dollars", which was less than half of my asking price. I told him that, one) trade in value is very different from private party value, two) this bike is in much better condition with far lower hours than most it's year and three) I set my price in about the 70th percentile of average for the year and model. I told him I would negotiate, but he had to be reasonable. I just won't deal with people who are rude in the way they haggle.

Old Fuff
February 23, 2009, 12:04 PM
Everything is negotiable.

Lets say that someone goes to an attorney, and the lawyer says, “this initial conference will cost (whatever).” So the potential client says, “Oh no, that’s much too much, instead I’ll pay you something less.”

Is the attorney likely to dicker and deal, or throw the individual out of the office? :evil:

Duke of Doubt
February 23, 2009, 12:08 PM
MachIV: "If someone wants to get a better deal from me, and thinks that saying "your price is way to high" will get him anywhere, he's wrong."

Around here, we have a sort of polite code. When I ask "Is this one a consignment?", that means "Who the heck set THAT price?!" When I ask "I haven't seen this one before; did it just come in?", that means, "Yeah, this price is coming down in a couple months. I'll try a deal then." When I ask "This one still here, huh?" That means, "Cut the price about 25% and I'lll consider it." When I ask, "Is the box and other stuff in the back?", it means, "Whether I'm interested or not, just for your information this price is about 25% too high."

It's all how you put it.

meef
February 23, 2009, 12:16 PM
He was asking $100 but I thought that was too high. It went unsold for a couple weeks before I told him it was worth $60 to me. He was happy to unload it.Geez.

You'd think he would at least have left the ammo in it.

Tightwad.

Or did he just hand them to you after unloading it?

:)

Duke of Doubt
February 23, 2009, 12:20 PM
Fuff: "Lets say that someone goes to an attorney, and the lawyer says, “this initial conference will cost (whatever).” So the potential client says, “Oh no, that’s much too much, instead I’ll pay you something less.”
Is the attorney likely to dicker and deal, or throw the individual out of the office?"

I never charge for initial consultations. But if they try to negotiate the fee down, that's fine. I explain that I can do less work for less money (subject, of course, to bar rules on representation) if they can't afford full boat, and how they can still save money by paying the discount rate in full in advance, rather than the full rate over time. They eventually figure out that I'm going to get paid what I want and what they're willing to pay if they hire me, no less and no more, and the details of exactly HOW I get paid won't affect how MUCH I get paid. They're free to go elsewhere, of course, but my rates honestly are a lot lower than most, as I've cut expenses to the bone and beyond. Of course, if I don't like them after the first few minutes into the initial consultation, I'll quote them a ridiculously high fee. If they pay it, fine; the money covers their sins. If they don't, no loss; life is short.

22lr
February 23, 2009, 12:34 PM
Sorry for the 3rd post in the tread already but I just had another good one.:D


I had a AR lower that I was semi trying to sell (I.E if it didnt sell I would in clear conscience finish the project). However a guy started asking about it and asked if I could do anything on the price. I had $350 on it (back when that was above retail, LOL), well I wasn't wanting to sell but im a nice guy so I said id throw in a mag for free, he handed over $350 in fresh crisp bills. I was stunned that he had actually paid $350 for a DPMS home-build (I made sure he knew that), and a unmarked aluminum mag, that was flaking finish (yes I did point that out to), and he went away happy to have a AR lower. Now I wish I waited a few more months, but o well such is life.

f4t9r
February 23, 2009, 12:44 PM
"Dickering" on gun prices with sellers.

I always try to get the best price and that does not happen if you do not ask !!
Ever notice some people are better at this then others. I think it is the approach and way of asking.

rioalumni05
February 23, 2009, 01:05 PM
usually ask for best price then get that plus make it out the door... then when paying ask for a holster/case to take my new purchase home in..(learned that from a buddy hes the best at "dickering" ive ever seen).. usually pawn shops/used gun places have them laying around from when the gun was brought it....

Duke of Doubt
February 23, 2009, 01:14 PM
Yeah, it's a shame they don't keep the holsters with the guns. It's a display issue, but there are ways around that. I've sometimes found the right holster for the gun in the big bins in the back, but often it's lost in the pile. Considering they often give the holsters away as part of a deal later, they ought to try a little harder to keep the right holster tagged to the gun.

Jim K
February 23, 2009, 01:29 PM
Haggling at a gun show is normal and expected; haggling on used guns at a gun shop is also common.

But I strongly urge retailers not to haggle or make deals on new guns. They should set the retail price at a figure they feel is right to stay in business and keep most buyers happy, and leave it there. If they want to run a sale, fine, but the price should still be the same for everyone.

Why not haggle, or give discounts to your friends? Because it is bad business, that's why. If dealer "Joe's" customers meet at the range and one says that he bought his rifle from "Joe" for $700 while the second says that "Joe" charged him $900 and a third says he got a deal from "Joe" and paid only $500, "Joe" has lost two customers. Not good business.

Jim

Norinco982lover
February 23, 2009, 01:37 PM
HEHE....I love this thread:) I have to admit...I'm not much of a haggler! Ok, I'm terrible at it!

So I went to a gunshow when I was just turned 18 looking for my first gun...a cheap home defense 12 gauge...I found some here and there for $200-500 ...kept looking...an hour later I saw it. An all black short barrel beautiful shotgun. I went over to take a look at the price tag and boy was I shocked. $120 OBO !!! I was so excited I handed over the $120 and didn't even think about giving him the $100 he would have taken for my Norinco 98 :P The shotgun still shoots like a beaut and I don't regret paying full price:)

~Norinco

Duke of Doubt
February 23, 2009, 01:39 PM
Jim Keenan: "Why not haggle, or give discounts to your friends? Because it is bad business, that's why. If dealer "Joe's" customers meet at the range and one says that he bought his rifle from "Joe" for $700 while the second says that "Joe" charged him $900 and a third says he got a deal from "Joe" and paid only $500, "Joe" has lost two customers. Not good business."

Well, maybe. That's a very good point, though. I'm not a gun dealer, but if I were I doubt I'd do a lot of base price variation on new guns. Maybe I'd sweeten the deal in other ways; extra magazines, ammunition, a good cigar, et cetera.

Myles
February 23, 2009, 01:41 PM
I love haggling. Keep in mind that cash is king when it comes to a deal. Green folding money is required; a checkbook for a car/large ticket item. Don't even try to haggle with a credit card. Processing fees already eat up some of the seller's profit.

However, I will never haggle over a knife or any edged weapon. Superstitious of me, but I won't dicker with a knifemaker, ever. I want his best wishes and his keenest edge.

sarge83
February 23, 2009, 01:50 PM
At the local pawn/gun shop I trade with I always use the is that the best you can do line. Most of their stuff is pretty fairly priced for a pawn/gun shop. Some is way over the top, some prices are bargains right off the bat and I buy as priced and usually they will knock off the taxes. Their prices are for the most part pretty fair.

I have bought dozens of guns from them so they know I will buy and am not just a look and put it back customer. I buy from two guys in particular and try and alternate sales between them. Sometimes I make them an OTD offer and they take it right off the bat, or they come back with their offer OTD, if fair I take it, if not I pass and wait and watch the gun sit on the shelf for a while and go back again in a few months and offer again, usually they take it or are very close to it. If it sells in the meantime to someone else, so be it, they made what they wanted on it.

Justin
February 23, 2009, 01:50 PM
There's nothing wrong with dickering over the price of a gun. About the only time I don't haggle is if I'm buying a gun from a friend, in which case, we both usually know the value of the firearm. If it's worth their asking price, I'll pay it. If not, I pass.

ShooterMcGavin
February 23, 2009, 03:19 PM
Anyone else have any good stories about haggling?
I would not have posted this experience up if this thread had not been started. I met some real *ahem* class acts at the gun show this weekend. I'm not worried that the folks selling at the show will read this on a forum because, well, I don't think they do much reading. Sorry for the length of this.

I found a Kel-tec SUB2000 in 9mm (Glock) on a table. It was being offered with 10 of the Glock 33-round mags for a total of $800. I looked at it briefly and mentioned to the gentleman that my local FFL gun dealer told me he'd sell the same gun to me for $300. He said "well, mine is brand new and his is probably used". I said, "no, his is new too". I also mentioned that I don't want 10 of the 33-rounders. He said he'd sell the gun with only 5 mags for $600 and keep the rest to sell on his own, if I wanted. I went to get cash. I came back to him, in no rush. The older gentleman who I spoke with was sitting next to his son, who was probably 18-20.

I came back to look at the gun and noticed powder residue all around the chamber and in the internals. I asked if it was new. He said "it's been fired at the factory". I said, "yeah, one shot". He turned to his son and asked if he had fired the gun. His son said "no"; I don't believe that based on the amount of build-up. I pulled the cash from my pocket and I said to him "I'd like to offer you $550 for the gun and 5 mags". He stated that "the gun is worth $425 and it is going up". I said, "I can get the gun cheaper from my FFL and I know I can get the mags cheaper from a friend who owns a gun shop". He said "the dealer can only sell cheaper because he buys at wholesale; I have a lot of money in this gun and you are asking me lose money". I responded "it is worth less than $400 to me". He said "you can have the gun and 3 mags for $550". I thought for a bit and said "I'll do it for 4 mags". He said "now you are asking me to lose money - you think you can get these mags for $20 and that's just crazy, blah, blah, ...". At that point I cut him off and said "no, I never said $20; I said I can get them cheaper". He went on ranting and then his son got into the argument, yelling "you think you can get these mags for $20, well there is no way!! I went all around this gun show and they sell for $40 and no cheaper!! Tell me where you can get them for $20!". I said "alright, please stop putting words in my mouth; I never said $20; I can get these mags for a dollar or two dollars cheaper from a gun shop by my house". He went on yelling "well, does he have a whole stack of them? you can't get them for less than $40 anywhere at the show; tell me where you can get them cheaper!!". I said "I just did". At that point I walked away and walked around with friends for an hour or more.

Thinking about the math, I thought our argument was pretty silly. The mags he values at $40/ea., making the gun valued at $400 by him. For $550 for the gun and 4 mags, that means he'd be giving me a $10 "discount" - actually $10 closer to the real value in my perception. I walked back just to mention that we were only talking about a $10 difference here. His son was the only one at the table. They had a new sign that said "3 mags $550/5 mags $600". I mentioned to him that the math works out to a $10 difference with the 4 mags and now he is asking $50/ea for the mags(?). The kid said "if you bought 5 mags, you'd get them for $25/ea". I said, "huh?" and then spelled out the math for him, essentially "5 times $40 is $200, plus a $400 gun equals $600". He looked puzzled and got his cell phone calculator out!! As he did the calculations for himself, I said "look, I didn't mean to cause any hostility -sorry if my offer was taken the wrong way; have a good one". I walked away.

As I was walking past the table with my friends nearby, later in the day, my friend (who knew about the dealings earlier) told me he heard the kid say to his dad "oh, here comes that f**king ******". He then got up, told my friend "move!" and literally pushed past him.

Before I left the show, I spent 5 minutes looking around and ended up buying several of the Glock 33-round mags for $36/ea :)

Duke of Doubt
February 23, 2009, 03:27 PM
Arguing isn't haggling. It doesn't matter WHY the seller's price is higher than you want to pay; it only matters that it IS. It doesn't matter why YOU want to pay less; it only matters that you DO.

When I haggle, most of my "reasons" for asking or suggesting a lower price might be in order are either obvious jokes or half in joking. I mean, come on. "I assume the box for this [1926 Colt revolver] is in the back." Stuff like that. Don't get into a substantive argument with the seller. You won't convince him, you'll only rile him up, and the floor of a gun show isn't the place for a well-considered debate on the merits.

TexasRedneck
February 23, 2009, 03:30 PM
Yep - if you keep some humor in the discussion, no one has to take offense. If an arguement develops, I just apologize and walk away.

coloradokevin
February 23, 2009, 03:50 PM
Haggling at a gun show is normal and expected; haggling on used guns at a gun shop is also common.

But I strongly urge retailers not to haggle or make deals on new guns. They should set the retail price at a figure they feel is right to stay in business and keep most buyers happy, and leave it there. If they want to run a sale, fine, but the price should still be the same for everyone.

Why not haggle, or give discounts to your friends? Because it is bad business, that's why. If dealer "Joe's" customers meet at the range and one says that he bought his rifle from "Joe" for $700 while the second says that "Joe" charged him $900 and a third says he got a deal from "Joe" and paid only $500, "Joe" has lost two customers. Not good business.

I can see your point here. I recently bought a new gun from a shop where they claimed that they were giving me the bare-bones bottom price on the gun (honestly, it was a decent deal, so I can't be too unhappy about it). But, one of my co-workers was there in the very same week and was given the same gun for $125 less than I paid. I didn't like that.




As a retailer I was a true S.O.B.

As a rule I didn't haggle because all I was doing was waste my time for the sole purpose of losing money. I felt that my prices were fair and competitive, and I saw no reason to lower them just because someone wanted to pay less. I did however offer a flat, no-questions-ask guarantee that if anything was wrong it would be made right, with no charge to the customer.

I remember one potential customer in particular that told me, “I never pay the asking price, so I’ll give you…” I told him, “goodbye …” So he want to a competitor and bought a similar gun from him. However he was soon back because he discovered that his new (used) gun didn’t work and he wanted it fixed. I quoted him a price that dropped his jaw.

However my regular customers did quite well.

I don't have a problem with that philosophy, and I've purchased guns from a number of retailers who felt the way that you do. Honestly, if your prices are fair, and your service is right, I'm not going to try to haggle with you in the first place. Still, some retailers (not saying you) claim to have the "best" prices, but are consistently much higher than the competition... At that point I may ask them to price match, or proceed to another dealer.

All in all, I am willing to pay a slight premium to buy from a dealer who will provide excellent customer service, as opposed to the guy who runs everything with an "all sales are absolutely final, with no help from me whatsoever" attitude.

Also, I feel that gun shows are haggling territory. The buyers and sellers both know this, and many of the guns are used. I don't have any issues with haggling at a gun show, and always do so in a respectful manner. I still don't understand that dealers who get all offended when someone tries to politely ask for a better price... The guys who blow up at customers over something this trivial often don't deserve the business they get in the first place.

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