Caffe’ Break: Walk-away Negotiating

Continuing with a series of short blog posts on anything that I can write about in between bouts of writer's block and indecision, filling in the nooks between longer and better-crafted blog posts. Other examples of 101C coffee breaks can be found here and here. Pick up any negotiation handbook, and good chances are that the author will admonish the reader that the interest of both parties at the negotiation table is to reach agreement. If you're unreasonable, unwilling to concede and compromise, and ultimately walk away from the table, then you've failed. That is actually very good advice. As a negotiator, your mission is to make the deal. It could be a win-win, or a lose-lose, where both parties compromise on a bad situation … [Read more...]

Negotiate for Anything

Very Cool Carving Fork

Spring Fever is upon us, and we’re busy bees with the garden(s), re-habilitating and painting used furniture, and other projects.  The blog has suffered as a result, with sparse posting and commeting on other blogs, and an Alexa ranking that mirrors the lack of activity, bouncing around as it is up and down the 120,000’s.   I was planning to write a collection of snippets that I had put down in my blog idea journal, but as I started writing this snippet on negotiations, it morphed into a full-blown blog post. negotiation 1570s, from L. negotiationem (nom. negotiatio) "business, traffic," from negotiatus, pp. of negotiari "carry on business," from negotium "business," lit. "lack of leisure," from neg- "not" (see deny) + otium "ease, … [Read more...]

Auction Strategies

Image via Wikipedia Mention the word auction these days to someone and the first thing that springs into the conversation is online auctions.  Second thing, are sheriff’s or storage space auctions, as seen on those A&E reality TV shows.    What I mean instead are those little country or small town auctions, where you might find a mix of antique, modern, vintage and used furniture (and frequently, just junk).  Names like Col. Bud Phipps, Auction Service & Appraiser, or Uncle Bob’s Country Auction, that’s what you’re looking for.    Even estate auctions out in the country are great.  With a little knowledge and experience, it's a good and frugal way to spend a couple hours, and hopefully pick up a few great … [Read more...]

Yard Sale Negotiating Tips

Yard Sale in Norther California (photo by JimmyJazz)

There have been many reams and words written on the best way to plan a garage sale, promote a garage sale, price it, prop it, and profit from it.  But not so many, as far as I can tell, from the perspective of you the customer, and how to negotiate the best possible deal. Everything is for sale, and everything is negotiable.  A yard sale may have Grandma's timeless paint-by-numbers acrylic painting, but the simple fact that it's been relegated to a corner of the garage with a masking tape price sticker is proof enough that it's not *that* valuable. Tip #1: Dare to make a low-ball offer. Some folks have unreasonable high expectations of what their "stuff" will fetch on the secondary stuff market.  Well, when I bought this … [Read more...]