November 5, 2011


My situation is awkward and I don't know how to un-awkwardize it. That's not even a word. But it's about how comfortable I feel about what's going on. After three years of living in our home, we've decided to bite the bullet and get window coverings. Until we moved in, I didn't realize how many options were available nor how much they would all cost. Doing one or two windows is inexpensive enough. But we have 27. When we first moved in, I had the Costco Home lady come and do measurements...and found out I couldn't stomach the price of the project at hand. I've got a much stronger stomach now. Ha ha. We're ready to do it.

We've decided to do shutters. My neighbor got some a month or so ago and she showed me what they did. Since we have the same house model, I was able to see in real life what they'd look like in our house. They're fantastic!.I called a couple of places to get estimates on prices and she also told me the company she worked with was less expensive than Costco. So combined that's like checking out 4 places. I called her company and the guy came out to measure and give me a quote. We decided to do the project and verbally agreed on the price, but then I got to thinking. Customers don't know this, but merchants do, credit card companies make anywhere between 1.5% to 3% of each credit transaction a business accepts. I don't like to pay that. So I decided to ask if I could get a lower price if I paid by check instead of credit card. The business gets the same amount of money but we've cut Visa right out of the deal.

The salesman that came out said no, he wouldn't do that. He was concerned that the total of the project would be less and his commission would decrease. Well, that's not exactly what he said, but close enough. The reasoning didn't sit well with me and struck me as really selfish. But since it took me three years to commit to doing window coverings I didn't want to back out now.

I ended up taking my price quote to yet another company to see how they compared. They were about the same but wanted my business. I mean 27 windows is a huge order. So they worked their number magic and beat the original quote by $1500. Sweet. And company #1 is now grumbling. They'll match #2's price, but "don't know how #2 could possibly give such a low bid". I've got a good idea. They both use the same manufacturer for the shutters but #2 doesn't have to pay a sales commission. I love cutting out the middle man. 

Yet, here I am feeling some sort of an obligation to go with company #1 since they've actually been to my house but I like the personalities of company #2 better. Working with #1 could be awkward. Especially with the salesman whose commission is now way lower with the matching of the reduced price. Why'd he have to say something dumb that made me rethink the entire deal? And why is it so hard for me to tell one of the companies "no"? It doesn't have to be. It's just awkward. 

8 Riveting COMMENTS:

  1. Just go with the company you like better. It's your windows and it's not like you will have more dealings with the first guy anyway--so it doesn't have to be awkward.

    Business is business. He has to know not to take it personally.

  2. You don't know me -- but I blog stalk from Andrea Larsen's every once in a while -- My opinion is go with #2 -- yes, the first people came out - but they didn't want to work with you - so go with the company that does.

  3. I say go with who has treated you better and in this case it seems like company #2.

  4. Hi Bridget! So I'd think about who I'd want to work with *if* a problem arrises or if later on the quality on one shutter is a problem. Hopefully once they are up you'll be done but there's always a chance you'll need something redone/fixed/replaced in a few years (think boy's room.) :)

  5. They will work for you, they're not your friends, so don't think you're hurting anyone's feelings. Wallets don't have feeings.

    Get company no.2 to come and measure your windows "in person", and see if you get the same quote. Safe is safe. And have them sign it. I've seen the "but we encountered unforseen costs" excuse many times.

  6. go with the company you feel better about....I did the same thing with my insulation/siding project we just finished. I got 5 different bids, then called the guy who's done work for us before on different rental properties, and he beat the lowest bid by 5K....and did more work. I in turn got a real front porch and a basement that doesn't leak....I just copied what the other guy was going to do, with the same brand siding and let him see where he could make some adjustments to save me money.

  7. I say #2because they are the ones who got you the better deal in the first place. If it weren't for them yo wouldn't have saved 1500 and that is a lot of the money. Plus, the other guy wasn't even willing to try and cut VISA out of it!

  8. Thank you for your comments. I emailed the 1st company and told them we wouldn't be proceeding with them. Then made an appointment with #2 to come out to the house. #1 emailed back and asked if we wanted to see any other options that would be cheaper. I don't think I'll respond. Unless something falls through with #2. Then the door's still open with #1.


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