Sunday, June 15, 2008

Tales of the New Economy-If it sounds to good to be true

you must be paying with cash.

DH and I went out to Sears today to look for a mattress. Ours can vote in the next election, so we figured it was time. Sears was having a huge sale, so we flopped on a few beds, and I did a little price checking.

We left the mall because the refrigerator lady was stalking DH. We hopped in the car, and drove down the road to the mattress store. Have you noticed that these are really common? We have 4 mattress stores (same company) on a 15 mile stretch of the same street. We walked in, found a few things that we liked, and started playing price footsie. The salesman found out we didn't require any financing (we were shopping on the finance side of town) and proposed a deal-

Take the mattress and box spring (an as-is floor model deal) that goes for about 1500.00. He'd sell it to us at HIS price-that is manufacturer's price, and his discount, or about 850.00. And since he'd help us out, he wanted us to help him out with a little barter transaction. Then he started taking bids on his "commission." He asked what it would be worth. I wouldn't say, because I wanted to see what he had in mind (my first thought was 175.00 or about 20%).

I consider myself a crappy bargainer. I never get those "whale of a deals." I was stumped. He decided that since most ATMs will let you take a maximum of 300.00 out, that's what he wanted. Then I offered up my 175.00. No dice. 200.00? "Not worth my time."

There was too much madness flying thru the air. I couldn't see the loophole, and I knew there had to be one. I try not to make purchases in that kind of situation, because I will usually get screwed. DH is not a shopper and he wasn't even looking for the bait and switch. We got in the car, and I tried to puzzle it out in my head. I could pay by credit card for the mattress, but not for his commission. That meant the corporate office was getting paid 1/2 off for that mattress and the transaction would appear normal. "It's not worth my time." Wha??

So we drove to two more of the company stores. Funny, 'our' style wasn't a floor model close-out at either of the other two stores. Then, we found a better deal on a better mattress, the mattress cover (it's bed-wetter proof, in case we ever need that feature), delivered. The previous "on the sly" deal would have been more.

It took me a longggg time to figure it out. He really offered up his employee discount so we could buy a mattress and have it delivered to ourselves! Or possibly to himself! I wonder how he intended to write it up?


smariek said...

Ok, I must be totally stupid. He wanted to sell you the mattress for $850, but you had to also give him $300 cash? So you think the $850 is really his employee discount price (if he were to buy it for himself), and maybe was trying to make a few extra bucks cash under the table?

junior_goddess said...

That's right, Marie, he wanted a 300.00 commission, which is probably a lot more than he would have made just selling me the mattress in the first place. And 850 is what it would have cost him to buy the mattress.

It took me forever to understand what was really happening.

smariek said...

Hmmm... unscrupulous and avaricious. $200 was not worth his time, for free money? Unbelievable.

Well you really showed him. You got something better for less.

junior_goddess said...

I think it's the result of 4.00 gas!

junior_goddess said...

I think it's the result of 4.00 gas!

Libby said...


That is totally crazy of the sales guy. At first I didnt understand either but then I got it. $1250 for a matress set? WOW I'm glad that you got a better deal somewhere else.


Trish - My Merino Mantra said...

I still don't get it. He wanted the $300. on the side, as a "tip"??? I'm really dense. Hey, we are all in the same boat. It used to be that salespeople would dicker around with price if you paid cash. Now, everybody wants you to finance. It is really bad when salespeople tell you it is not worth their time to do their job. He could have phrased that differently. We are all feeling the pinch, and people are starting to act animalistic.