Negotiating is a skill that comes naturally to some and is incredibly uncomfortable for others. Regardless of where you land on the spectrum, finance blog Financial Ramblings suggests you can get better prices with one simple question.
Photo by Jonas Forth.
While you probably shouldn't try this with the cashier at Target, asking "Is that the best you can do?" or some variation of that is a simple way to demonstrate that you're seriously considering the product while enquiring about price flexibility. It can also prompt sales people to mention deals or packages they might not otherwise pitch right off the bat. As Financial Ramblings puts it:
More often than not, those seven magical words will score you a better deal -- sometimes a significantly better deal. And even if they don't, there's almost zero chance that you'll scuttle the deal.
The beauty of this strategy, aside from the fact that it hardly even feels like you're negotiating, is that it can be used in nearly any circumstance. Think yard sales, major purchases, salary negotiations, etc.
There are certain situations where it's always worth your time to haggle, regardless of how you feel about it. It's also worth pointing out that tone and context can help a great deal ("Is that the best you can do?" can sound accusatory if said with the wrong inflection). However, if you're new to negotiating or just uncomfortable with it in general, this is a great place to start.
How to Haggle Even if You Hate Haggling [Financial Ramblings]