Home > Social Influence > Ethical Use of the principal of reciprocity in home selling

Ethical Use of the principal of reciprocity in home selling

On two occasions I've experienced the use of the principal of reciprocity in what I thought was an unethical manner recently.

One was a person selling bathroom remodeling and another replacement windows.

On each occasion the sales person forgot to include a high priced item when they worked up the quote, then, discovered their mistake when it was time to close. At each time they said it was their mistake and they would "eat" the cost if I signed that day.

Being a student of Robert Cialdini's work on the science of persuasion, I thought each mistake was just an unethical use a principle of persuasion..reciprocity.

Is this something to be mindful about or am I just looking to deep into a few honest mistakes? - by GlennB
Post deleted by moderator. - by rattus58
On two occasions I've experienced the use of the principal of reciprocity in what I thought was an unethical manner recently.

One was a person selling bathroom remodeling and another replacement windows.

On each occasion the sales person forgot to include a high priced item when they worked up the quote, then, discovered their mistake when it was time to close. At each time they said it was their mistake and they would "eat" the cost if I signed that day.

Being a student of Robert Cialdini's work on the science of persuasion, I thought each mistake was just an unethical use a principle of persuasion..reciprocity.

Is this something to be mindful about or am I just looking to deep into a few honest mistakes?
That's an interesting observation and topic. Here are my thoughts.

First of all it's difficult to determine if the "mistakes" were a set up. Two occurences aren't enough evidence that something is in the air.

That said, here is what bothers me. If the "high priced item" is not in the original quote, then it ISN"T. It's x dollars as it stands. BUT if it was IMPLIED that it was there ("Oh, I didn't realize you wanted an engine in the car.."), then you may have been misled intentionally. THAT is unethical.

Okay, let's move on. Let's say honest mistake in these cases. The high priced items SHOULD have been included and the implication was there. The salespeople erred and forgot to price it in. Mistakes DO occur. In my view, the "reciprocity" offer is NOT a valid option for the salesperson AT THIS STAGE (The 'fessing up stage).

Now let's take a look at the option of offering to "eat" the cost. Why would that offer be made from a pure business standpoint. "I must pay for ALL my mistakes." is invalid. "A sale is a sale regardless of profit.." is invalid. BUT, showing an INTENTION to stand by your word IS valid. Walking away, apologizing for the mistake IS valid. Appealing to the prospect's UNDERSTANDING and best nature IS valid.

Now to the nitty gritty. Let's say, in light of the mistake, that the offer of accepting the sale is made. And--the prospect does not buy at this time for whatever reasons. Then--in my view the salesperson has a right to WITHDRAW the offer, having displayed his willingness to make things right. BUT--here's the rub. It should NOT be constructed under a "principle of reciprocity. It would in effect be saying that the salesperson''s INTEGRITY HAS A SHELF LIFE. It would be transparent, and in many cases unprofessional. - by Ace Coldiron
Having been involved with construction for over 37 years and doing quotes with contractors, homeowners, wholesalers we are human and human errors happen. Admitting to a client a mistake was made prior to the start of the construction is not unethical nor is asking for additional money to cover the mistake unethical. This is the difference between a sales person making their quota and an owner of a company realizing the needs of a company. Mistakes must be corrected.
Keep in mind the majority of mistakes is found prior to the start of the construction the bid or quote becomes a contract and then the authorization of the contract. The mistakes are generally found at this stage. Giving the client the new information is required at that time and time for the client to make a new decision. The client must have an opportunity to make a new decision on the new amount of the contract.
Normally the mistake is a small part of the job and an example would be a standard faucet for a kitchen sink unless it is a fifteen dollar faucet or a door to a closet. Frequently the job can cover a mistake of this magnitude. However this type of job cannot cover a loss of fifteen hundred dollars. It must be brought to the attention of the homeowner client for a new discussion and decision.
Mistakes that are covered by the job would depend on the scope of that remodel or repair. It is not unethical or dishonest to fess up to a mistake and correct the mistake prior to the start of that job. However forgetting trusses on an addition most likely is not a mistake but a ploy to get you to the lowest price and raise that price during the construction phase. It raises a red flag when the sales person claims they made a huge mistake like that and then claim they will honor the price they gave. This informs the client they are paying a hefty price and it would be in their best interest to look elsewhere. A mistake like this should have been caught at the office while preparing the contract and specifications for that job.
The majority of clients understand human error and will accept that it happens and the adjusted quote or bid. When this happens and it is a deal breaker, the mistake is not the deal breaker however not building the relationship with the client is the real reason for the deal breaker.
It all depends on the relationship with the client. Mistakes happen we all make them even our clients. Do not limit yourself to a price presentation only. Your question is it a ploy to receive your work depends on the scope of the work. - by rich34232
Yes, Rich, that does add further insight to these situations. It's an interesting topic and occurences of this nature are not all that rare. - by Ace Coldiron
Yes, Rich, that does add further insight to these situations. It's an interesting topic and occurences of this nature are not all that rare.
You all make great points and I've certainly made my fair share of mistakes.

When I talk in terms of reciprocity, I'm specifically talking about the social science in which we feel obligated to return favors performed for us.

The science tell us reciprocity is activated by gifts & concessions, and are amplified when the gifts are significant, personal and unexpected.

This is powerful stuff that can be used in ethical and unethical ways.

Now take a look at each scenario. 1) The top panel of a shower surround was left out of the price by mistake, a $1,200 item on a $7,000 job. Pretty significant part of the job, sales person say's he personally is not going to include because of the unexpected mistake he made...just before signing. 2) same scenario regarding replacement windows where two half round window tops are left out of the price, a $4,200 mistake on a $22K sale, significant, personal and unexpected.

I've made tons of mistakes and have many more to make. I'm just suspicious when it happened twice in a one-call close sale. - by GlennB
Well I'm sure that this will also be deleted without reason... not even the courtesy of a private message.

So I'm done

Much Aloha to the rest - by rattus58
I think of reciprocity defined as another accepting my license from a different county city or state without me having to go through proper channels to receive their test or license. There is no bribe or wondering what do I have to do for them in order to gain this. Count yourself as being blessed and play the lottery. Without knowing what they expect to receive from you we have no way of knowing if what they did was unethical.

However from your two scenarios I must conclude the companies in question do not have checks and balances within their company. My thought these sales people quite often forget the proper equipment and it is better to give them to you than face the music at the shop. The sales person shows the contract signed and the amount and all is accepted without accounting checking the cost of the job against the profits of the job. My experience informs me that management does not know and will not know and the employee’s job is safe as long as these factors are hidden. These are the same companies that wonder why they are not making as much as they should as busy as they are. Once the economic climate hits them hard they will find out the problems within their bidding side of the organization.

Sounds as if the company is dollar driven over cost driven which happens quite often with construction and small companies. The seven grand job brought in seven grand but the cost of the job is five grand not much profit but a nice dollar amount or cold hard cash. Most small companies, cash is king and that is what management saw. That same job should have split even between cost of materials for the job and labor costs. These companies are lucky to break 10-12% profit. Neither one of your scenarios produced that with the products that you were given.

I work for a company that in years past looked at the bottom line of dollars brought in without reviewing the total picture. Finally after years of struggling to find ways for them to understand the cost of doing business we have changed the way we figure our profits. This allowed them to find what was wrong with the way the company operated and make the necessary repairs to make the company more profitable. - by rich34232
why did that post turn up like that? - by rich34232
Well I'm sure that this will also be deleted without reason... not even the courtesy of a private message.

So I'm done

Much Aloha to the rest
Note from moderator:

On messages that are deleted by a moderator, the reason for deletion is found on the bottom as it was in the case of your post. - by Ace Coldiron
why did that post turn up like that?
I have no idea, but I fixed it. - by Ace Coldiron
Hello Ace....

Maybe you could then EXPLAIN what your reason was, because I at least have no clue as to what you are talking about.

Further, for my own edification, though actually not really necessary here, why is a discount unethical? - by rattus58
Hello Ace....

Maybe you could then EXPLAIN what your reason was, because I at least have no clue as to what you are talking about.

Further, for my own edification, though actually not really necessary here, why is a discount unethical?
Here is my usage of the word "unethical":
That said, here is what bothers me. If the "high priced item" is not in the original quote, then it ISN"T. It's x dollars as it stands. BUT if it was IMPLIED that it was there ("Oh, I didn't realize you wanted an engine in the car.."), then you may have been misled intentionally. THAT is unethical.
It would not be difficult to get agreement among salespeople or laymen alike that "misleading intentionally" is unethical.

There was no reference in that statement, or in my entire post to "discount."

I will respond privately to your request for clarification of why I deleted your post. In doing so, I hope we can strike mutual accord that you have much to contribute here as a member. - by Ace Coldiron
Note from Moderator:

Rattus58, you do not have the Private Messages feature activated, nor have you provided contact information.

If you can make those adjustments, I'll PM you. - by Ace Coldiron
Thankyou for fixing that post I am far from computer savy that is my wife and childrens job!~ LOL I just learned how to paste and copy. Smal improvments building to bigger and better improvements hopefully.

I hope this brings clairty to the situation. I think a lot of us may want to rub your head to receive the luck you have had latey. - by rich34232
The science tell us reciprocity is activated by gifts & concessions, and are amplified when the gifts are significant, personal and unexpected.
That's what I was told too.

What is unethical about that technique? What are you thinking someone was tricked into doing something they didn't want to do? - by Thomas
That's what I was told too.

What is unethical about that technique? What are you thinking someone was tricked into doing something they didn't want to do?
Thomas, there is nothing inherently unethical about reciprocity. I would venture to say that it is generally used in a very positive and mutually beneficial light. However the topic started questioning specific cases INVOLVING reciprocity that seemed suspect and included for discussion "mistakes" involving costing which seemed suspect also. So this thread is in examination of those occurences. - by Ace Coldiron
Thomas, there is nothing inherently unethical about reciprocity. I would venture to say that it is generally used in a very positive and mutually beneficial light. However the topic started questioning specific cases INVOLVING reciprocity that seemed suspect and included for discussion "mistakes" involving costing which seemed suspect also. So this thread is in examination of those occurrences.
If the salesperson made a mistake on purpose and the customer felt they were cutting a fat hog in the arse then what's the problem? I am not kidding. Where is the harm in letting people feel they got an incredible deal? - by Thomas
If the salesperson made a mistake on purpose and the customer felt they were cutting a fat hog in the arse then what's the problem? I am not kidding. Where is the harm in letting people feel they got an incredible deal?
Inherently there is no harm in letting people feel they got an incredible deal.

Are there other factors in the original topic and post that warrant an examination of ethics in the case as it was described? I'm talking about from the standpoint of discussion here on the thread. What happened between seller and buyer is in their court.

Ultimately it boils down to ourselves and what we would do. Under the circumstances as they were described, I would not proceed as the salesperson proceeded for reasons that might be apparent in a previous post where I shared my opinions on the variables.

That is just one man's opinion--my own. - by Ace Coldiron
I concur with Ace that it is reasonable to inform the client they received a great deal.The to good to be true deal is what is questionable.If I am the client and they gave me such a deal with the material costs I would automatically wonder is the rest of the bid legit?They are giving me 20% of the job total.The bid must really be over priced. - by rich34232
Ace and Rich, Glenn wrote:

When I talk in terms of reciprocity, I'm specifically talking about the social science in which we feel obligated to return favors performed for us.

The science tell us reciprocity is activated by gifts & concessions, and are amplified when the gifts are significant, personal and unexpected.

This is powerful stuff that can be used in ethical and unethical ways.
This is what I am asking about. I don't see how the contractor forgetting the item on purpose to activate the principle of reciprocity is unethical. If the deal was too good to be true does that make it unethical? If the bid is really overpriced is that unethical? Not in my book. - by Thomas
Ace and Rich, Glenn wrote:

This is what I am asking about. I don't see how the contractor forgetting the item on purpose to activate the principle of reciprocity is unethical. If the deal was too good to be true does that make it unethical? If the bid is really overpriced is that unethical? Not in my book.
I agree with you. Who decides what is overpriced. I know contractors who routinely quote prices so outrageous when they are busy, that no one in their right mind would accept it, unless of course that they wanted the work done. This, I'm getting the idea from some, is unethical. I find it supply and demand.

Aloha... :cool: - by rattus58
Ace and Rich, Glenn wrote:

This is what I am asking about. I don't see how the contractor forgetting the item on purpose to activate the principle of reciprocity is unethical. If the deal was too good to be true does that make it unethical? If the bid is really overpriced is that unethical? Not in my book.
I agree that if a bid is overpriced, which is BTW a relative term, that does not make it unethical.

You have to expect varying opinions, Thomas, on whether "forgetting the item on purpose" falls into that segment of manipulation which is unethical. Some would think so. Some would not.

It really comes down to what each one of us would do, and how we run our businesses. I suspect that this thread will not make anybody change how they run their business (which is the best reflection of how we really feel about all this). - by Ace Coldiron
I agree that if a bid is overpriced, which is BTW a relative term, that does not make it unethical.

You have to expect varying opinions, Thomas, on whether "forgetting the item on purpose" falls into that segment of manipulation which is unethical. Some would think so. Some would not.
Good morning Ace...

I'm not arguing, but I'm posing a question on ethics for us as professionals.

I have a granddaughter of whom I have a picture here where as a family private joke... so don't everybody get exercised about leading her off to a life of crime... besides in todays environment it'd almost be considered honest work compared to what's happening to the lot of us....

The point I'm making here is manipulation. Some poor sap is going to learn to what extent manipulation is someday when he meets my granddaughter. :) What is the purpose of our sales tracks? What are the reasons we say one word, but not another... You can "own" this fine automobile... You could "buy" it, but I've been schooled that someone has to "sell" and consequently you've been "sold" and that's a bad thing.... well I'm not sure about that completely... but isn't the deliberate use of words being manipulative?

I remember when I was a child the banks used to offer you a toaster to open up an account with them. This was in the days when they used your money to loan to your neighbor for his home additions and pay you interest, back when before banking became a business. Was that a form of manipulation? Car salesmen.... Sticker price, delivered price... nowadays it seems that the sticker price was a good deal.... take a $2,500 discount, finance it and find you're paying with all the add-ons you're paying 25% more... Is that ethical just because you read it and signed?

Forgetting a Moen bathroom fixture for example in the quote... whether deliberate or not, where is the foul? If you quoted it and DIDN'T deliver, now that to me is fraud. Quoting a moen and delivering apex... is fraud. Offering an inducement of value.. is it manipulation or does it cross into ethics?

In the sense of offering an inducement of value, I'm leaning towards direct manipulation and also of being ethical. At least in the case of moving the sale forward. I can also see that if a guy makes a habit of it, word will get around... "Hey man... look for his deal... he always will forget something in his quote that he'll toss in for the sale". He's maybe made a game of it, and if his pricing overall is ball park and his work is maybe exceptional.. this is now fallen into a category a superior valued transaction... In my opinion.

To me in sales, ethics = intent. Do I intend to deliver the best service that I can. Do I intend to deliver the best product that I have. Do I intend to make sure you are happy with your purchase. Do I intend to make sure you and your family are financially secure. Do I intend to add quality to your life, and will manipulate my words to induce you to buy from ME, or if legal, offer you a toaster... which for us is not legal... but you all get my drift....

Do I offer somthing of value. That is my purpose. Buy the rest of it from me today and I'll throw it in for free!

Much Aloha... - by rattus58
I stumble I know. Everyone sees the world through their own lens. But if they could only see it my way. ;st - by Thomas
To me in sales, ethics = intent. Do I intend to deliver the best service that I can. Do I intend to deliver the best product that I have. Do I intend to make sure you are happy with your purchase. Do I intend to make sure you and your family are financially secure. Do I intend to add quality to your life, and will manipulate my words to induce you to buy from ME, or if legal, offer you a toaster... which for us is not legal... but you all get my drift....
Yeah, you call it intent..I'm always calling it intention. I think I wrote in my blog once...."A powerful Intention to please the customer.." or "A powerful Intention to create a good Experience...".

It hits home. Something I don't talk about much...it gets blank stares. It's something that transcends a lot of what is talked about in sales. Fact is...it's a spiritual thing....but I'm not talking religion. And don't give me that nonsense that you don't know what I'm talking about. We're all done with that, Tom.bgwnk; - by Ace Coldiron
I am not sure how this swung towards pricing. No one sets our prcing we set our own.You get what the market will bear. You can be a thousand or more higher then anyone else. If you deliver what you stated and quoted you are not overpriced no matter what the price hapens to be set at. - by rich34232
High pricing or giving things away to incentivize the deal are not manipulation. "Forgetting" an expensive item in a quote and then "throwing it in for free" to "own up to your mistake" and win the business IS manipulation. No two ways about it.

Should one make a mistake in a quote and then be an honorable business person and absorb that cost, they have made an understandable and applaudable business decision. In truth, should they try and pass that unquoted cost on to their custommer, they could then be accused of manipulation! Still, it's their call to move forward with the business or not. Rest assured however that THAT person will NEVER make that mistake again!

To build this into your business practice as general operating procedure to deceive one's customers into thinking they got a deal is wrong.

Furthermore, to think of this in selfish self-interest terms (as we should do in our businesses and careers), most of us hope to grow our business through word of mouth and referrals. Should word get out that you made this "mistake" with multiple customers, how long do you think you'll stay on the referral list? It's in all of our best interests, over the long term, to be honorable, trustworthy and respectful business people/practitioners. Anything otherwise is shooting yourself in the foot for short term gain.

Stephen - by sfrenkel
High pricing or giving things away to incentivize the deal are not manipulation. "Forgetting" an expensive item in a quote and then "throwing it in for free" to "own up to your mistake" and win the business IS manipulation. No two ways about it.

Should one make a mistake in a quote and then be an honorable business person and absorb that cost, they have made an understandable and applaudable business decision. In truth, should they try and pass that unquoted cost on to their custommer, they could then be accused of manipulation! Still, it's their call to move forward with the business or not. Rest assured however that THAT person will NEVER make that mistake again!

To build this into your business practice as general operating procedure to deceive one's customers into thinking they got a deal is wrong.

Furthermore, to think of this in selfish self-interest terms (as we should do in our businesses and careers), most of us hope to grow our business through word of mouth and referrals. Should word get out that you made this "mistake" with multiple customers, how long do you think you'll stay on the referral list? It's in all of our best interests, over the long term, to be honorable, trustworthy and respectful business people/practitioners. Anything otherwise is shooting yourself in the foot for short term gain.

Stephen
I agree with every word.

I just fail to see how anybody could disagree with that. I'm not disputing the right to disagree, but it just seems so obvious as to what is proper, and improper, selling in this scenario. - by Ace Coldiron
I think that if one did this regularly for his clients and was referred through word of mouth that one usually received a "freebie" of some sort, I think actually that he would be jammed with business if it became his "trademark".

You seem to think that this is a dishonorable practice of tossing in an expensive item for free, I'm not sure that I'm on the same wavelength as you are especially if you have a reputable source of service.

I have a client, for example, that doesn't go through the routine of "forgetting" which copper gutters he quoted, but because he was able to one day purchase a machine that formed his gutters and consequently was able to pass on significant savings to his customers giving them an upgrade of gutter materials for a similar prices that he was able to provide for a more common material. He asked if they wanted a discount or the better gutters, but the effect he had was the same IN MY OPINION as the scenario presented here.

Anyways... I'm not quite sure that with a "no harm-no foul" situation that I'd be terribly inclined to impune a tag of misplaced ethics on the man.

Aloha... Tom :cool: - by rattus58
Adding value into your services is very different than intentionally forgetting to add them, then remembering them and absorbing the cost to trick one's customers into thinking they got a good deal.

You're correct that a good provider who offers good value would thrive.

The issue here is how that value is conveyed. - by sfrenkel
Ok.... please go through this process with me a minute.

I'm asked to quote. I quote and DELIBERATELY leave out the widget. However the subject comes up... I say this quote doesn't include the widget, but I'll tell you what, if we move forward with this, I'll throw it in. This is in your words UNETHICAL?

Hmmmmmm..... maybe I've got ethical problems then.

Aloha... Tom :cool: - by rattus58
Do they NEED the widget in order to move forward with your proposal or is it optional? If it's necessary and you've left it out on purpose with the intention of "throwing it in later," I believe you're in a questionable position.

However, if it's not necessary, they ask for it and you can throw it in to sweeten the deal, then you're on solid ground.

Let me be clear - I'm not the ethics expert and everyone's unique situation will be different. My point is this and only this:

If you're pulling a fast one on your clients or manipulating them (in the negative connotation of the word) in order to close a deal or take advantage of your position, you're most likely on questionable ground and should rethink your long-term business model.

Mistakes happen and incentives are all a part of the sales process. It all comes down to your intentions, your angle and your process.

Just my $.02. Not sure how much more I can add to this conversation...

Stephen - by sfrenkel
Do they NEED the widget in order to move forward with your proposal or is it optional? If it's necessary and you've left it out on purpose with the intention of "throwing it in later," I believe you're in a questionable position. Stephen
Yes... I'm assuming that for a bathroom renovation you quote and Deliberately leave out the tub... significant item... and the sales person says here's the quote without the tub, and if we move forward today I'll toss it in for free. Tomorrow it'll be $1,500 more. Or not mention tomorrow.

I'm having trouble assigning guilt here, but maybe like I say, my ethics in this might be somewhat tarnished... because if it happened to me, and this is where I'm looking at this from, I'd not be offended if I moved forward based upon these facts.

Aloha... Tom :cool: - by rattus58
I am more inclined to believe the tub is included on the bid with that scenario. It is maniplulation.To bid a bathroom and forget the tub cmon who are we kidding?

I have more of a problem with one who constantly does this a lot of smoking mirrors to get the job and probably has problems with the job.

I come to you for life insurance and you bid disbaility ninsurance, extended disability ,cancer and present it to me with out the life insurance how much of a scam that? Price the life insurance and give the cancer insurance is a different bird. - by rich34232
I am more inclined to believe the tub is included on the bid with that scenario. It is maniplulation.To bid a bathroom and forget the tub cmon who are we kidding?

I have more of a problem with one who constantly does this a lot of smoking mirrors to get the job and probably has problems with the job.

I come to you for life insurance and you bid disbaility ninsurance, extended disability ,cancer and present it to me with out the life insurance how much of a scam that? Price the life insurance and give the cancer insurance is a different bird.
I completely miss your point here. I think you've completely missed mine if you are referring to me in your response here.

If I come to you and say here is the bid for your bathroom. It does not include the tub, shower, whatever... irrelevant... however, if you sign this today, I'll throw it in free. How much smoke you see here I guess is in the eye of the beholder. It's pretty much out front.

I don't personally have a problem with this if it happened to me. I don't have a problem with this even if I had to pay for the tub etc, and that is MY PERSPECTIVE. If YOU have a problem with it that is YOUR OPINION/PERSPECTIVE. I don't have a problem with you having that perspective.

As for your life insurance quote scenario, you apparently don't understand the process.

Aloha... :cool: - by rattus58
Rattus I apparently do understand the process. Keep in mind people never give you something for nothing.It is INCLUDED if this is a a practice that is employed with every sales situation.Please do not assume or think for others.

Your are an owner think like one. If your sales rep sells insurance or anything and is constantly giving products away, if you buy today without it being included in the pricing how long will you employ this sales rep for forgetting to include the items in the pricing. Now think logically. Your losing profits.

Yep we all want to think we are getting a bargin.You do know it is included in the pricing don't you? One time is a mistake numerous and all the time it is on purpose. This employee is costing you (business)money if it is not included. Remember if one gets away with it all the employees are doing it. Yep I am in business to lose money and profits - by rich34232
Rich... I'm not entirely sure I'm understanding you.

The question is/was/or maybe was about the contractor who left out an item in a quote and offered to throw it in for free if the sale would move forward today.

I know that you see this as diabolical, manipulative, unethical, and flies in the face of fair play, especially if another contractor didn't have the wherewithall to absorb such an offer.

That you assign shoddy work to such practice as well is potentially also correct. No contractor or business person could possibly have a quality product with a buy one get one free public offering. I perfectly understand your point of view.

If YOU have a problem with that, I respect your OPINION. If you offered that to me, I DON'T HAVE A PROBLEM with it for it may actually move me to take action.

Insurance is a financial product that I suggest to you to solve a need. If you agree that it is the right answer to your problem or learning about it CREATES a need for our product, I offer you/your business to a carrier. They will then make a decision to accept, counter offer, or deny. We don't have a say in premiums, generally and when we do, it is in agreement with the company. There are no offers or giveaways. - by rattus58
rattus that was the original statement however it has progressed to the sales person doing this on every call to manipulate the client into moving today.We all have seen that movement.

To that statement I stand by my earlier statement they are not going to give you the big ticket item for nothing. Especially with, contracting, a place I have been for over 37 years.Will give a small item under a 100 bucks to a client that was forgotten. Keeping in mind that 100 dollar item probably has a cost of 50 bucks or less.A tub for 400 bucks is not going to be given this translates into 800 dollars or a grand within the bid. If they claim it is being given, my claim they are using smoking mirrors it is included in the bid and the client is made to think that it is not. Large items are not forgotten with bids.

Trickery is the method of choice with this person. When people use trickery there will be more problems coming for the client. This is definitely a palce where people get what they pay.Quality is rarely cheap and cheap is seldom quality.

Contracting is my experience and expertise with all phases; new, remodel, and service. - by rich34232
Ok... let's get to the contractor that might give away something to every client. You may call it trickery, and THAT IS YOUR POINT OF VIEW.

Someone who has a "hook" for his clients, like the time share sales crews who give you coupons that if used wisely are worth several hundreds of dollars... and one of my sons makes a pastime of "preying" on these people for the coupons... but it get's people into the room.

The salesman who gives a TV with every home, the buy one get one free is common practice... but aparently in construction you are telling me from 37 years of experience, that it is trickery. I respect YOUR OPINION. I don't buy it, but I don't mind that YOU FEEL THAT WAY. Why? Because if it caused ME to purchase something today that I was vacillating on, they've done me a service... and given me a bargain to boot for making a decision.

Now lets get down to contractors shall we. There are many unlicensed contractors that rip off people every day. There are contractors who prey on the elderly with renovation and bait and switch technique and tactics every day. There are those who switch materials, galvanized instead of stainless... all kinds of techniques to screw the client... and ALL OF WHICH I personally have harsh comment for.

For the guy that quotes and says if you move in today, give me the order today I'll knock off (give you this in exchange) the widget, to be in this category of personality is not something I accept.

It may be that YOU will only give a trivial discount or novelty item but if a contractor made a career out of it, I DON'T SEE A PROBLEM WITH IT... and you have ALREADY made clear that my ethics in this matter are LACKING... and SO BE IT. I have no ethics in this matter. AMEN.

You are in the business... I insure contractors, that's as close as I get to most, but many of my clients build multi-million dollar homes and I can say with conviction, that there is considerable concession provided in these homes in order to get the job. When a range of bids runs in the hundreds of thousands of dollars between them, and they are all spec'd out the same, you tell me how UNETHICAL the lowest bidder is.

Aloha... :cool: - by rattus58
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