December 15th, 2007 by Potato

I’m really not much of a negotiator, and usually roll over after the first refusal. I do try though, and I know that it can work sometimes. Of course, in retail the sales drones really don’t have much flexibility in pricing, but in other matters, discounts can sometimes be had. What brought this to mind was thinking about my budget recently, and how when we moved in to the house, we managed to get the landlord to agree to keep the rent fixed as long as we were here (instead of increasing it 2-3% per year). It’s the sort of small thing that was pretty easy to get her to agree to, but which does make a difference in the long term for me. I mean, grad students in my department haven’t had a raise in the better part of a decade (probably longer, since who knows how many years before I arrived the last stipend increase was), yet rent and food and gas keep going up year after year. Not having a rent increase will save us over $400 this year, and something like $850 the year after. Contrarily, in the old apartment rent went from ~74% to ~78% of my stipend over the course of my MSc (all the while quality of life there went down the shitter as increasingly noisier and messier neighbours moved in).

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