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Throughout the Spring and Summer of 2018, the two-person team here at Job Prices researched the prices charged by tradespeople and businesses for home improvement projects.
Much of our research forms the backbone of our site and has helped thousands of consumers budget and even save money.
But how much extra can you save by refusing to accept the first offer and by haggling for a better deal?
The Not-So-British Art of Haggling
Britons just hate haggling.
Research has shown time and again that Britons won’t haggle for a better deal, even when their finances are tight.
It’s just not the British way!
The Independent claims that Britons are missing out on up to £500 per year because they don’t haggle and the Telegraph has published research suggesting only 20% of buyers haggle when making a substantial purchase such as a property.
But how much can you expect to save, on average, if you were to haggle over the cost of home improvement projects?
We first sourced prices for 10 common home improvement projects, from landscape gardening to flooring and roofing.
After publishing the results of our findings on our site, we went back to the tradespeople and businesses to haggle for the best deal possible.
How much did we save?
Please share this infographic by using this embed code: <a href="https://job-prices.co.uk/haggling/"><img src="https://job-prices.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/haggle.jpg"></a><br>Sourced from: <a href="https://job-prices.co.uk/haggling/">The Job Price's Haggling Guide</a>
Below you’ll find the specifics of each project, including the number of businesses we contacted and haggled with.
Replacement Upvc Roofline
Project details: For this project we wanted our roofline fascias, soffits, bargeboards and rainwater guttering replaced with a Upvc plastic alternative product.
Average cost: The average cost, sourced from 9 tradespeople/businesses in 2018 was £3925
Average cost after haggling: After haggling, we managed to get a reduction in the price from some, but not all, of the firms we contacted. The average cost after haggling dropped to £3755.
Project details: We asked 11 tradespeople and small businesses for a quote to replace the carpet in our front room with laminate wood flooring. The project includes waste disposal.
Average cost: The average quotation supplied to us from all 11 firms was £1320.
Average cost after haggling: After going back to our chosen firms and pushing for a better deal, the average cost, based on all 11 prices was reduced to an impressive £1250
Double Glazing Windows
Project details: It was difficult to get an initial price for double glazing windows as many of the salespeople we met started off at an extraordinarily high price which was reduced at several stages as it became apparent we wouldn’t be rushed into a decision.
Average cost: The average cost, based on 8 written quotes from small and medium-sized businesses was £5390
Cost after haggling: After haggling, the average cost reduced to £4950
Project details: We got in touch with 11 kitchen installers and asked for a quote to remove our existing small kitchen and replace t with a new one. The quotes include all units, sinks, tiling and everything else you would expect from a new kitchen installation.
Average cost: The average cost, based on 11 quotes came in at £7250
Cost after haggling: After some haggling and attempts to get a better deal, the average price was reduced to £6925
Project details: For this home improvement project we asked 12 bathroom installers to provide us with a written quote for a new bathroom, complete with new floor and part-wall tiling.
Average cost: The average cost, based on the 12 sources and prior to any haggling was: £4300
Cost after haggling: After our attempts at haggling to get a better deal, the average cost for a new bathroom was reduced to £4150
Project details: With the cold weather approaching, we asked 10 gas boiler installers for a price to replace our existing gas boiler with a new unit. The price includes any pipework required to complete the project.
Average cost: The average cost for a new boiler, based on 10 sources, came in at £2300.
Cost after haggling: After deploying our usual haggling tactics we managed to get the cost reduced to an average of £2175.
Project details: We asked 8 firms for a written quote detailing how much it would cost to excavate a small existing driveway and replace it with block paving. All waste material to be taken away and the price should also include the cost of the materials.
Average cost: The average cost based on 8 sources was £5400
Average cost after haggling: After getting back in touch with the 8 firms we managed to negotiate an average price reduction to £5150
New Garden Patio
Project details: For this garden improvement project, we sourced 9 written quotes from tradespeople and small businesses for a new garden patio and drainage channel. The project includes all the materials and waste disposal.
Average cost: The average cost, based on these 9 written quotes came in at £2975
Average cost after haggling: Once we’d got back to our chosen 9 firms and haggled a bit, the average cost reduced to £2750
Turfing and Landscaping
Project details: We sourced 13 quotes for new turf to our garden and also some landscaping such as a small retaining wall, a rockery and a slabbed path.
Average cost: The average price based on the 13 sources came in at £3250.
Cost after haggling: After our attempts at haggling & negotiating, we managed to get the average price reduced to £2975.
Project details: For our research into current loft conversion prices we asked 7 firms to provide us with a quote to convert the empty loft space into a habitable room with an en-suite too.
Average cost: The average cost from our chosen 7 firms came in at £33250.
Cost after haggling: After negotiating and haggling we managed to reduce the average price to an impressive £31500.
So How Much Can You Expect to Save?
Based on 98 written quotes from tradespeople and businesses, our data suggests you can save, on average, 5.8% by haggling.
Top 5 Tips To Successful Haggling
- Keep it friendly – being rude, aggressive or condescending towards the person or business that has provided you with a quote is likely to get their back up and less likely to result in a positive outcome.
- Compare prices from different firms and try to play them off of each other. Many firms will lower their prices if they can see proof that their competitors are cheaper.
- Give them a reason to offer a lower price. Perhaps you can let them start the project straight away or you’re happy for them to put in extra hours on the weekend or you’ll allow an advertising board to be displayed etc. You could suggest payment by cash or bank transfer so their business isn’t charged credit card fees.
- Keep quiet and don’t talk too much. If you stay silent or don’t immediately reply, you may find that the firm will get anxious and lower the price slightly further.
- Be prepared to walk away. Some firms follow up on “lost leads” with discounted prices, this is often several days after the last contact.
Where Would You Like to Go Next?
We hope that our insightful research has given our readers the confidence to haggle for a better deal.
This page is just one of the hundreds of money-saving guides on our site.
Our complete guide to home improvement prices is the most popular part of our site here at Job Prices.
Our blog is loaded with hints and tips for DIYers and those looking to save money off their home and garden projects.