A recent study shows that women are likely to pay more for auto repairs compared with men, but there is also the chance to negotiate better price concessions.

The new study from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management shows that auto repair shops will alter the price depending on their customers’ level of information about the price of the repairs. Women might pay more for the repairs if they appear to be uninformed.

“Our findings suggest that auto shops may assume men know the market price for a given repair, so they automatically grant it,” said Meghan Busse, associate professor of management and strategy at the Kellogg School. “However, they may not expect women to be knowledgeable in this area, so the perception is they can charge them more.”

The study relies on the mysterious shoppers results when they asked auto repair shops about the price for a radiator replacement. Some gave the market price of $365, some overestimated the market price at $510 and some said they had no idea about the price. The result was that women were “constantly quoted higher prices,” and women who knew the market price were given the market value. On the other side men were quoted the same price, even if they knew the market value or not.

The difference is that although women were quoted higher prices, they were still able to negotiate lower prices more often compared with men. One if three women managed to get the repairs to their expected price, compared with one in four men.

“Once callers refer to a price, gender differences disappear,” the study found.

Source: The Detroit News


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