When people are selling their products privately on some online websites, I often observe, they write VB with the price. Can somebody tell me, what does VB stand for and what does it mean?

  • VB means the seller is ready to negotiate the price. Also in my opinion it is very bad practice to state VB for an item you want to sell, because everything is negotiable by default. Stating it explicitly means you will probably sell it for a much lower price.
    – arminb
    Aug 9 '19 at 7:32
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    When you search VB in google it tells you visual basic :) Aug 9 '19 at 8:39
  • Thats the problem with abbrevations, depending on the field/context they can mean different things. So when googling for them, try to include that context like you did in this questions (or else we couldnt have answerd it either). You can also look in Wikipedia: de.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/VB it lists multiple options, and under Business the one you are looking for. Sep 6 '19 at 5:40

In that context, "VB" means "Verhandlungsbasis". The listed price isn't fixed, but the basis for negotiation. The number is meant to give you an idea, a ball park number, but the details and the final price is expected to be negotiated between you and them. Sometimes, there isn't any number given, just "Verhandlungsbasis". That's roughly the equivalent of "Contact our sales team!" in English language offers.

As Michael A. Schaffrath mentioned correctly in his comment, you see "VHB" as an abbreviation for "Verhandlungsbasis", as well.

  • 2
    @userunknown Was der erste sagt. Aug 7 '19 at 18:08
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    @πάνταῥεῖ dann ist das falsche Verwendung des Wortes.
    – adjan
    Aug 7 '19 at 20:24
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    The closest (colloquial) English approximation would likely be "obo" for "or best offer".
    – towe
    Aug 8 '19 at 7:45
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    You could add that sometimes, "Verhandlungsbasis" is shortened to "VHB" instead of "VB" Aug 8 '19 at 12:25
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    @Adrian Naja das heißt dann der Preis wird festgelegt auf Basis von Verhandlungen.
    – kutschkem
    Aug 8 '19 at 12:59

It stands for "Verhandlungsbasis" as far as I know, which translates to "asking price", usually meaning that they are open to negotiation.

The other one would be "Festpreis", meaning no negotiation possible. As this is less common, I don't think that there is an abbreviation for it.

  • 12
    I'd say it's the opposite: Because Germany doesn't have a big culture of haggling, every price is considered to be a "Festprice" unless it says otherwise, for example with a term like "Verhandlungsbasis". Aug 7 '19 at 12:20
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    @HenningKockerbeck In private, every price is negotiable unless the seller writes "Festpreis"or similar.Und wer nicht handelt, ist selbst schuld.
    – Eller
    Aug 7 '19 at 14:32
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    sure there is one: FP
    – mtwde
    Aug 7 '19 at 20:26
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    @Eller In private, every price is POTENTIALLY negotiable unless the seller refuses to negotiate. There is no requirement to accept negotiations, even if no "FP" indication is given.
    – glglgl
    Aug 8 '19 at 6:21
  • It all depends on the context: In a store, negotiations are generally not accepted, so there's no "VB" (or FP) written anywhere. In private classified ads, "VB" is almost always implied. Most of the time, the seller just writes "Festpreis" (FP) to put himself into a better position for negotiations, because offering "VB" makes clear to the buyer that the seller does not even expect to get the written price.
    – JimmyB
    Aug 9 '19 at 9:12

Verhandlungsbasis, it means that the given price is negotiable.


It means "Verhandlungsbasis" and signals that the seller would be willing to bargain. The English equivalent for it is "OBO" - "or best offer".

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