There’s never been a better time to start negotiating a better rate and price for your household bills. Everyday bills like car insurance, credit card interest rates, paid TV, internet, phone, gas, electricity, nothing is fixed and all can be negotiated. So how do you go about negotiating your bills?
First things First
Start with the easiest expense you know you can get a better price on. An easy one is your car insurance. By starting with the easiest bill, you gain momentum to get the courage to ask for a better rate on the bigger things like your mortgage or a personal loan.
Export your bank statements into a spreadsheet and analyse your monthly direct debits and expenses.
Create a list of expenses, with the easiest ones at the top and the ‘hard’ ones at the bottom. The hard ones may surprise you and make you an offer you can’t refuse, just to keep you as a customer.
Research and know your facts. What are new customers offered? How long have you been a customer for? What’s included in your package? Gather as much information as you can and have your ammunition ready.
To win any war must have a strategy of attack. What is your weak point? Didn’t pay that bill on time back in February? Made a complaint? What are your strengths? Stable job, income, loyal Customer of seven years?
Most importantly work out your number. What is that goldilocks number you can afford to pay and are willing to stay to be a customer? Write it all down so you’re prepared and have everything in front of you.
Stand your ground
Be prepared to go all the way and walk away if necessary. Sometimes, it’s only when you get to the edge the provider will budge. Know who you are negotiating with and take it as far as you can. The best deals are often the ones you have to fight for the most.
No one likes a smart ass or disrespectful behaviour even over the phone. Listen intently and acknowledge what the other person is saying and back up your own argument with facts. Don’t raise your voice as tempting as it may be.
Everything is negotiable
Discounts, offers and price reductions are everywhere. All you have to do is ask. You’d be surprised how many discounts, rate reductions or offers you can get just be striking up a conversation with that sales assistant or guy in the call centre.
What’s the worse that could happen? You might get a ‘No’? Worse things have happened. If you don’t ask, you’ll never get and you’ll never know.