Sunday, December 13, 2009

Out the door pricing

A couple of days ago I needed something and I called a guy I occasionally do business with. I asked him how much it was going to cost me.

He answered that the price was $132.67, out the door.

I wrote a check for that amount and went and picked up my item, no problem.

I like doing business with this guy because he makes it easy for me. He tells me what something is going to cost, including all taxes and other hidden costs. Like I said earlier, I wrote the check before I left home.

Cars are the worst things I can think of to buy. There are all sorts of things to consider.

You can agree on, for example, a $20,000 price on a car and when you drive off, you can easily find you have forked over more than $22,000 or even more depending on a number of things. Taxes, tags, title and other things add up pretty fast.

I recently bought myself a new pickup from a dealer about three and a half hours away from where I live, in anotherr state. It was the most painless deal I have ever made. We spoke on the phone and after I explained what I wanted, he said he'd have me a price in a few minutes.

When he called back, he simply said to me that the truck would cost me X number of dollars, out the door, but then he explained that I would be responsible for my own taxes, title and tags here in Pennsylvania. He had that figured out, too. He told me the entire cost of putting the vehicle on the road. I later found out that he was correct to the nearest dollar.

I drove down and picked up the truck and was in and out of the dealership in less than an hour, and the following Monday I had PA plates on it. Totally painless. I'll cheerfully buy from him again.

I love it when someone quotes you an 'out the door' price, and I wish more people would do that.

Of course, every once in a while you get some con artist that trys pull some evil stunt on you.

When I was shopping for Mrs Pic's car, a salesman quoted me a so-called out the door price.

I knew it was too good to be true, so I decided to take him up on his offer. I had done my research and I knew what the cost of the vehicle should have been.

I walked in and handed him a check.

He started to hem and haw.

"Get the sales manager. NOW!" I demanded.

He appeared.

"This man quoted me an Out the Door price to the tune of the amount written on this check," I explained. "Now he wants to renegotiate. I don't. I want this car for this amount."

The sales manager hesitated.

"Your salesman is either patently dishonest, stupid or ignorant," I continued. "Which is it? If he's dishonest or stupid, you ought to get rid of him. If he's ignorant, teach him."

Being a Saturday with a full showroom, they were loathe to start a real donnybrook or create a scene.

The salesman fessed up to ignorance, which was the fastest way to get me off his back.

I didn't get the car for the amount on the check, but I DID get the car for pretty much what it cost him. I saved quite a bit.

Betcha the next time someone asks for an out the door price he does his homework.

Generally, when you ask for an OTD price, people are pretty good about it.

The same principle holds true for buying stuff that has to be shipped.

I like to know in advance what something costs me to be delivered to my door.

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