Chapter 14

Never Offer to Split the Difference

The next rule is that you should Never Offer to Split the Difference when you're negotiating. In this country, we have a tremendous sense of fair play. Our sense of fair play dictates to us that if both sides give equally, then that's fair. If Fred puts his home up for sale at $200,000 and Susan makes an offer at $190,000, and both Fred and Susan are eager to compromise, both of them tend to be thinking, “If we settled at $195,000 that would be fair because we both gave equally.” Maybe it's fair, and maybe it isn't. It depends on the opening negotiating positions that Fred and Susan took. If the house is really worth $190,000 and Fred was only holding to his overinflated price to take advantage of ...

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