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How I negotiated for my new camera

01 Oct

I wasn’t going to actually post or write about this at all, but I think it might be helpful for anyone in the market for a new DSLR. I’ve been saving for a new one and researching lately what I want in a new DSLR. I had my heart set on a Nikon D600, but after reading a lot and watching reviews, I found that it might be more than what I needed. So, I started looking at the D7100 (this year’s model of the D7000) and I was hooked.

I searched for best prices in a D7100 kit, since I knew I’d need the lens and hoped to get a few extras with it.

Nikon D7100

Nikon D7100

I found the kit online and did some price comparisons. The best price I could find for this camera was on B&H. I happened to look at Best Buy’s site to see if they had the kit, but they only had the body for the D7100 and the lens was separate.

Last Friday after dinner, we stopped by a local Best Buy to see if I could ask some questions. I also really wanted to feel the weight and size of the camera to make sure it’s what I wanted. If I was going to order online, I didn’t want something that didn’t feel right. Of course, the salespeople immediately came over to help, but when I told them I was just looking and only had a few questions, the deal making started to happen.

I asked if they really didn’t have this camera in a kit and the guy pointed to the D7000 kit. I explained to him that I wanted the D7100 (and yes, I knew it would cost more) because it was a better camera and had better specs. {The D7000 has 16.2 megapixels for example. The D7100 has 24.1.} Since they didn’t have the kit in the camera I wanted, and I already knew that their website didn’t have it either, I thought I’d take a chance.

I asked the salesperson if he could price match. {My older brother told me they might do it.} And sure enough, he called over his floor manager and asked if there was anything he could do to help “match” the price for the separate pieces to give me a comparable price to the kit. I was happy to have the information, but I still wasn’t planning on buying the camera that day.

I listened to his spiel about not being able to match it exactly, which I completely understood, as they didn’t have a kit option for sale. He told me that depending on the store online, they might be able to match the kit price for the lens and body. I immediately pointed out that the kit offers more than just the body and lens on B&H. The site includes a backpack and a 16 GB SDHC card. I told him I didn’t really care about or need the backpack, as I had a camera bag. This is when the real negotiating began…

Knowing I’d done my homework, my husband didn’t even try to help me with the negotiation. I like to think he was there for moral support, ready to walk out with me when they didn’t come through on the “match” I wanted.

I showed the salesperson and floor manager the kit on B&H and asked “What can you do for me?” And yes. As cliché as it sounds, I said it just like that. The manager offered me the camera body and lens at the same price as the kit on B&H, but he told me they couldn’t offer the backpack (again, that was fine with me) and that I’d have to pay for the SD card. My answer: “Um…B&H includes the card. If I just get the body and lens for the same price, why wouldn’t I buy it from them and get some other free stuff?” Then he offered me a free lithium battery with it. Now we were talking. If you have a camera that uses a lithium battery, you know a free one sounds great right about now. He still wanted me to pay for the SD card. “And,” he added, “you get to take the camera home today.” What a classic line. Did he think I was that desperate? Maybe that would work in my favor.

Thinking quickly and knowing I could still get that card for free with the kit on B&H {and knowing that the sale on B&H was good until the end of the month…I still had two more days}, I said, “I’m not in any hurry to take it home today. Can you do the lens, the body, the extra lithium battery and give me half price on a 32 GB card?” He thought it over for a few seconds and said, “Yep. I can do that.” {Victory!}

The floor manager walked away and the salesperson started pulling together the different pieces to create my “kit.” He picked up a generic lithium battery and went to get an SD card. I quickly pointed out that the lithium battery on the B&H site was not generic and I could just get everything there if they were going to give me a generic battery. {Yes, I really would have walked if he had tried.} He put it back and gave me the EN-EL battery. I don’t think he wanted to call his manager over for this little pushy lady one more time (he’d already had to call him twice for me).

So, in the end, I walked out a very happy camper. And I hadn’t even gone into the store with the intention of buying my camera that day. Of course, I knew that after all that negotiation, those guys wouldn’t have smiled and nodded if I’d said “Can I think about it and come back?” I knew it had to be then and there and I had to put my money where my mouth was.

Lessons learned: 1. If you’re looking for a new camera that’s going to cost you a nice chunk of change, go into the situation having already done your homework so you can negotiate. 2. Don’t be afraid to ask for what you want. A few years ago, I would have never asked a salesperson in a big chain store if they’d match a price, let alone negotiate with him. 3. Be ready to walk out if they don’t give you what you want. Be consistent about your request.

And as my brother said, “When you negotiate, you sit there and make your demands. As long as they are not outrageous, you will win.”

In the end, I saved myself over $200 and didn’t have to wait for my camera to come in the mail. I walked out of there feeling like this little guy.

SuccessHopefully this post will help you think of ways to negotiate if you’re looking for a new camera yourself. If you’ve kept reading to this point and aren’t into photography or in the market for a new camera, thank you. I hope I didn’t bore you too much 😉

Have you ever negotiated for a camera and walked away with it for the price you wanted? Any other tips on finding a DSLR at a great price?

 
5 Comments

Posted by on October 1, 2013 in Photography

 

5 responses to “How I negotiated for my new camera

  1. tea&tadpoles

    October 2, 2013 at 6:04 pm

    You are welcome! I did not realize I could negotiate with chain stores. This is great!

     
  2. Bruna

    October 2, 2013 at 12:19 pm

    Felicitaciones linda! Bien hecho! Y me encanta tu blog!

     
  3. tea&tadpoles

    October 1, 2013 at 10:04 pm

    Wow! I am very impressed! Way to stand your ground!

     

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