Negotiations The Smartphone Way

The other day I was looking at different Sandboxes for my daughters. I feel like it would be another easy way to spend more time outdoors and fairly inexpensive. As I looked online I realized that a sandbox of a decent size full with sand would probably end up costing around $100 plus. I know that this isn’t too expensive, but felt like a lot of money to spend on something that my daughters may use a few times and no longer care for. So I did as any consumer would do and began looking on eBay, craigslist, and classified ads. I had my heart set on a Step 2 Crabbie Sandbox. My oldest is really into crabs, fish, turtles, pretty much anything aquatic and we live close to the water so I felt it was a good fit.


I was lucky enough to find one Crab sandbox on craigslist for $25 dollars, the plastic was faded but that didn’t concern me since it would be sitting outside for us as well. Sadly this item sold before I was back in town to pick it up. I figured I would have to settle for the online version until I drove past a store that sells and consigns everything for kids. Sitting there right out front of this overflowing store was the sandbox. I made time to go back to the store and waited for help to arrive. A store employee approached and asked if I needed any help. I told her what I was interested in and she quickly replied $45. I acted appalled even though I still felt it was a good deal. I told her I would pay $25 and no more as I just found one on craigslist. She did not believe me and said that they research all of the items they sell online. I immediately drew my smartphone and pulled up the craigslist ad I had just been looking at and showed it to the employee. This is where she caught me off guard and said, “Why don’t you buy that one then.” My wit took over and I replied “I am here now with this one and wouldn’t you rather make a sale.” The employee went inside the store and spoke with the manager. The manager countered with $40 stating something about just getting it in that week. I walked in as I felt the middle man wouldn’t convey my interest in the sandbox correctly. I told the manager I would pay $30 ($5 over the other) due to convenience and that I would buy it right then and there. She said $30 cash and it was mine……… Sadly I never carry cash and will be going back this weekend to buy that crab. I will bring $35 just in case I have lost some of my leverage due to telling them I would be back soon.

The lessons behind this drawn out post that has nothing to do with Upwards of Twenty are as follows:

  • Never settle for the price someone first gives you. Even if you only save a few dollars.
  • Second hand items can be just as good and usually half price or less.
  • Do your research first whether at home or on your phone.
  • Seeing is believing; having the proof on my phone is the only reason they budged.
  • Children love anything you get them as long as they know you’re thinking about them.
  • Crabs are harder to acquire than you think.

I am still working on my craft idea project but this post felt like I needed to write this before it left me. I look forward to your comments. JB


About upwardsoftwenty

Family man with two lovely daughters and a beautiful wife. I work in the Real Estate industry and own two small businesses. I enjoy fishing and life in general.
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2 Responses to Negotiations The Smartphone Way

  1. “Second hand items can be just as good.” I use to be one of those women who didn’t want something unless it’s new, so this statement slapped me right in the face. Thank God I woke up and realized that good condition items that are second hand saves you a whole bunch of money. The Thrift Store is now my friend….

    • You and I are on the same page. There are some items that must be new but having young children has helped me realize what is the point of buying new when it will be no longer used or damaged in a short period of time. I have also found that exchanging items with firends and family has been great. Thanks for the comment.

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