Is discussing terms of payment part of the price fixing laws?
Craig Shiller had a featured post yesterday about how stagers should get paid at time of service and that asking to delay payment until closing was not reasonable. I've read a few other posts written by other stagers discussing the same issue.
Aren't the terms of payment a big part of your price? I put out the possibility that this could be deemed price fixing. I'm not an expert in the field but I did find a website for a company that seems to know a lot about the antitrust laws. Here is the pertinent part that I found.
It is unlawful for competitors to reach any agreement or understanding about prices, whether it is to raise, lower, or stabilize prices, and any such discussions should be strictly avoided. The same restriction applies to discussions of certain other terms and conditions of sale, such as discounts, payment terms, credit, allowances and other terms which affect prices, profit margins, cost factors, discount or credit terms, or any member's future intentions concerning any of those subjects. EMA's members should not exchange with competitors price schedules or future notices of price or product promotions.
Does anyone know for certain about this?
Let's imagine that a large group of real estate agents all banded together and started requiring that their marketing costs be paid up upfront by the seller? Would this not be considered restrictive and bad for the consumer? Is not the total cost of a service made of of not only price but on how the price is paid? Paying for something today is not the same cost as paying for something on Tuesday.
You can tell consumers exactly how much you charge and how you take payment, but I do think that it is against the law to talk about those things amongst competitors.
Please tell me if I'm way off base here.