Posts Tagged ‘tricks


Tricks of the Trade

“If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.” I couldn’t agree more.

For instance, I regularly hear car dealerships advertise in their TV and radio ads that “all credit applications will be accepted!” Sounds great, right?

Of course, the dealership will accept all credit applications, but that doesn’t mean that they will approve them. There’s a big difference between taking your application when you turn it in and approving it because you meet the criteria for receiving a loan. I refuse to do business with any company who uses that slick business tactic.

Another thing I have noticed is “unique,” one-of-a-kind t-shirts. The producing company states that it is a unique shirt that is unlike the others that are similar in design.

In my experience, the “unique, one-of-a-kind” properties come from a crease being present in the fabric when the decal was applied, a blemish in the cloth’s coloring due to a factory error, the decal being off-center or slanted, or some other production mistake. Instead of throwing the lower-quality shirts out, and eating the cost, some companies try to sell them as “unique.”

Another thing that irritates me is “price and participation may vary.” In other words, not all of our stores are going to offer you what we just showed you in our ad, and if they do they might not sell it to you at the sale price we just advertised.

Rebates drive me absolutely nuts, too, for several reasons – and if I walk into a store and see that the “sale price” of a particular product depends on a mail-in rebate, I usually walk out without buying the item.

If a business wants to give me a sale price, just give me the sale price at checkout instead of requiring me to fill out specially-approved forms, give out my personal information, send a copy of my receipt, trust the postal service to deliver it, and then typically wait several months for a rebate check that might never arrive. Businesses use rebates, instead of in-store sale prices, because they know that many people won’t send in the rebate forms and claim the rebate money, for various reasons (lost rebate form or receipt, too much hassle, etc.), and they can potentially profit from those who do.

If you happen to be one of those who actually sends your paperwork off to get a rebate, the company may rent, sell, share, trade or otherwise transfer your personal information to other companies and affiliates so they can send you spam and crap mail, clogging up your mailboxes with unwanted advertisements and solicitations.

In addition to the examples mentioned above, be wary of offers that give you a special price for a limited period of time. Some of these promotional packages will lock you into 2 year contracts and charge you an outrageous monthly fee after the promotional period is over.

In any type of business transaction, always read the fine print and details and know what you’re getting into.