It's tough being a consumer. Sure, salespeople have to earn a living, but let's face it, the consumer marketplace isn't exactly an even playing field. There are the misleading ads, high pressure sales tactics, the bait and switch of products, and other dirty tricks that unscrupulous salespeople like to play.

Don't get us wrong, there are a lot of good salespeople out there—knowledgeable people who can provide you with valuable information. But working as consumer reporters we've learned that you really have to look out for yourself. We usually spend months producing investigative reports for television. We talk to experts and consumers, but often our most important tool is the hidden camera. With this type of equipment we've been able to turn the tables on dishonest retailers, and show our viewers some of the tricks of their trade.

The reports we do for television are only five or six minutes long, so we often have to leave out a lot of valuable information. That's why it's such a pleasure to do a book. We're able to share so much more of the knowledge we've gained from our investigations. Plus, we'll let you in on some of the behind-the-scenes activities that go on while we're producing our stories.

Unfortunately, our consumer reports don't get to everyone in time. We constantly get calls from viewers who have already been taken by some scam and don't know where to turn. That's why we've included tips on how to fight back in this book. We'll show you how and to whom you should complain in order to achieve consumer satisfaction. We'll also teach you when and how to use the ancient art of haggling.

This book will help you save money by teaching you how to shop smart. In each chapter we'll show you how to navigate the minefields of dubious sales techniques, and then offer you a shopping strategy that will help you make an informed purchase.

They say knowledge is power. This book will give you the power to level out the playing field. It will give you confidence and help you get the best value for your money.

-Janice Lieberman
-Jason Raff

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