5 household expenses you can negotiate for a better deal
We know a good deal when we see one. Our leasing solutions help Aussies save thousands on their cars every year. But those other pesky household expenses can begin to creep up too. So, we’re here to help you negotiate a better deal on and off the road.
Don’t get stung by the loyalty tax
Ever see an advertisement for your current insurer or internet provider and the package they’re offering is a way better deal than yours? Businesses will throw out big discounts to attract new customers but won’t give you a dime for sticking around. That’s the loyalty tax.
But with a little negotiation, you can score that great deal without switching providers or spending hours haggling on the phone.
So, what expenses can you negotiate?
You don’t have to be a master negotiator to bring your bills down. A cleverly crafted email or a quick phone call usually does the trick. The key is knowing which expenses are worth going after.
Internet and mobile
Internet and mobile providers are constantly slinging bonus data and discounted packages for new customers. So, if you find an option with a better price or more inclusions than your current package, jump on the phone and ask for an upgrade. Even if the offer is from another provider, they’re likely to price match or find a similar deal to retain you as a customer.
Does your car insurer increase your premium every year? If your renewal is coming up, it doesn’t hurt to look around. There are plenty of websites that allow you to compare multiple insurers. Before you pull the trigger on the cheapest policy, make sure you’re comparing apples with apples. The price may be right, but if you end up losing a bunch of additional benefits that come with your existing policy, it may not be worth making the switch.
Once you find a good health insurance provider, it’s tempting to stick around for convenience and continuity’s sake. But if your premiums keep jumping up, it might be worth considering your options. Plus, your needs might evolve over time, which means the extras you selected when you were 26 may not cut it when you’re 40. So every few years, look around and see if there’s a more suitable package. And don’t stress, you generally won’t need to find a new dentist or chiropractor if you switch health funds!
We all think it’s a landlord's world, but the truth is, they probably rely on having a stable income from their rental property. To keep good tenants around and keep their real estate fees to a minimum, they might be open to negotiation. Demonstrating your positive rental history or signing a longer lease term might help seal the deal. That said, it’s important to be aware of the rental market – if demand is super high in your area, it might be wise to pay up in order to hold on to your place, even if the rent is a little steeper than you’d hoped.
Electronics and homewares
Whether it’s a new laptop or a new lounge, it’s worth asking the sales assistant what kind of discounts might be available. Do some research and find out what other stores are charging and see if they’ll price match. And if you can’t get a straight discount, ask if there’s wiggle room if you bundle a few items together.
Mortgage interest rate
If you’ve got a mortgage, we bet you’ve been keeping a close eye on the monthly RBA updates to see if your rate is getting bumped up again. No matter the size of your mortgage, finding that extra cash each month is never easy. That’s why it’s worth chatting with your lender or mortgage broker to see if you can secure a better rate.
Car repayments and running costs
For most Ausssies, cars are one of the largest expenses in the budget. Loan repayments, servicing and running costs – it all adds up. So if your car expenses are getting out of hand, consider the switch to leasing. You can save thousands through salary sacrificing and bundle up most of the running costs in a single monthly payment.
Top tips for a successful negotiation
There’s a subtle art to asking for a better deal. If you go in guns blazing, you may not get the outcome you hoped for. But try these tips and you’ll have a good chance at getting your way:
- Be polite – after all, you catch more flies with honey than vinegar
- Be informed – whoever you’re talking to, let them know how long you’ve been a customer, what your current package is and where you saw the better offer
- Be realistic – don’t go too crazy with your requests. And if the answer is no, consider jumping ship or be happy you gave it a shot.
It might feel a little awkward, but asking for a better deal can save you hundreds in the long run. Doing a monthly or yearly check-in with your expenses is a great way to nurture your financial wellness. So go on, it never hurts to ask the question.