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  • Maintenance agreements

    I noticed Spodelee mentioned something about maintenance agreements. Do any of you use them? What is included? Not included? How have things been working out with them.
    Distractions are everywhere, don't lose sight of your dream.

  • #2
    Re: Maintenance agreements

    They can be great for drain-cleaning. I offer a discount for scheduled drain maintenance, if they agree to quarterly cleanings at the minimum. Especially good fro restaurants and other commercial drains that need regular maintenance to avoid emergencies and business interruptions.
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    • #3
      Re: Maintenance agreements

      Originally posted by Devine Plumbing View Post
      I noticed Spodelee mentioned something about maintenance agreements. Do any of you use them? What is included? Not included? How have things been working out with them.
      A long time ago we got tired of always looking for the next job and decided there had to be a better way. Since then, we established an extensive commercial and residential maintenance program.

      Looking from the outside in, we look like another contractor, but once we have a presence in the customer's home, our goal is to establish a maintenance agreement.

      We have three residential maintenance programs -

      Club Advantage - Basic / Twice per year HVAC maintenance plus plumbing inspection, discounts on repairs, priority service, etc...

      Club Advantage - Comprehensive / Twice per year HVAC maintenance, plus HVAC repair, plus plumbing inspection, priority service, etc...

      Club Advantage - Comprehensive Plus! / Twice per year HVAC maintenance, plus HVAC repair, plus plumbing inspection, plus plumbing repair, priority service, etc...

      Maintenance programs like this absolutely solidify a good service company, balance out the work load, and make one time customers into lifetime customers.

      The key to any successful maintenance program is quarterly contact with the client via a newsletter, phone call, post card, anything to keep your company positioned "top of mind". If you don't continually establish who you are and that you stand ready to serve them, you will lose maintenance contracts as soon as you sell them.

      You will find that maintenance contracts allow you to shape your customer base to those clients that are forward thinkers instead of "darn, I guess we have to do something now" thinkers.

      Our maintenance program includes HVAC, but I would have a similar program in place even if we did was drain cleaning.
      spodelee

      Until lions have their own storytellers, stories of the hunt shall always glorify the hunter

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      • #4
        Re: Maintenance agreements

        Devine,
        I wouldn't suggest you drawing up contracts for plumbing maintanence.
        People would then have documentation of your illegal work.
        One mishap, if you wind up in court, there's documentation towards that $25K fine & potential year in prison...you don't want to chance it any more than you already do.

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        • #5
          Re: Maintenance agreements

          i don't have the free time to worry about maintenance agreements.

          even drain cleaning is something they have to call to sch.

          i have 1 building that they want the 2- 6'' mains snaked every month. that's the only one i would consider as an agreement.

          agreements can work to keep slow times busy. but for a 1 man shop, you can only be at 1 place at 1 time. i don't see it working.

          rick.
          phoebe it is

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          • #6
            Re: Maintenance agreements

            Back in the early 70s I worked for EL Payne in Beverly Hills. There big service money was the maintenance agreements they sold. Depending on your equipment you had anywhere from 3-calls per year to 12-calls per year. I'm sure Rick still see the basement cards hanging in the basements today.

            Mark
            "Somewhere a Village is Missing Twelve Idiots!" - Casey Anthony

            I never lost a cent on the jobs I didn't get!

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            • #7
              Re: Maintenance agreements

              Originally posted by ToUtahNow View Post
              Back in the early 70s I worked for EL Payne in Beverly Hills. There big service money was the maintenance agreements they sold. Depending on your equipment you had anywhere from 3-calls per year to 12-calls per year. I'm sure Rick still see the basement cards hanging in the basements today.

              Mark
              mark what was your id #. i'll try to find one for you

              rick.
              phoebe it is

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              • #8
                Re: Maintenance agreements

                i think they have there place as long as there sold honestly and serviced honestly and not just a return ploy to sell the unsuspecting recipient stuff that does not need to be done. i feel the intent gets washed a lot of times and therefore gets a bad rap.

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                • #9
                  Re: Maintenance agreements

                  Be careful with the wording of your agreement. Don't call it a "preventitive maintence" agreement or anything to imply that the service will prevent a problem. Call it a service agreement or something to that affect. There was a case in the local area where a well known hvac company had a preventitive maintance agreement with a customer and his unit broke. The customer sued the company based that "preventitive maintance" should have prevented the unit from breaking and he won. He was also a lawyer. The company had to install a new unit free. I found out about this through my hvac instructor who worked for trane.
                  Buy cheap, buy twice.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Maintenance agreements

                    Originally posted by gear junkie View Post
                    Be careful with the wording of your agreement. Don't call it a "preventitive maintence" agreement or anything to imply that the service will prevent a problem. Call it a service agreement or something to that affect. There was a case in the local area where a well known hvac company had a preventitive maintance agreement with a customer and his unit broke. The customer sued the company based that "preventitive maintance" should have prevented the unit from breaking and he won. He was also a lawyer. The company had to install a new unit free. I found out about this through my hvac instructor who worked for trane.
                    Yep, that's why we refer to the program as a club that has benefits, never perform maintenance but rather tune-ups, and when necessary, we use the word predictive instead of preventive.
                    spodelee

                    Until lions have their own storytellers, stories of the hunt shall always glorify the hunter

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                    • #11
                      Re: Maintenance agreements

                      Originally posted by aero1 View Post
                      i think they have there place as long as there sold honestly and serviced honestly and not just a return ploy to sell the unsuspecting recipient stuff that does not need to be done. i feel the intent gets washed a lot of times and therefore gets a bad rap.
                      I agree - a successfull maintenance agreement program must first be about maintaining customer relationships so you are there when it really is time for a new disposal, lavy, a/c unit, etc...

                      However, you also have to remember that by selling service agreements, you are shaping your customer base with people who see maintenance and predictive repair as required. They are the same people who take their car in for the "factory recommended inspection", actually change their transmission oil every 50,000 miles, or pay someone to clean their gutters every fall without fail, etc. They expect you to make a recommendation and "sell" them something every once and a while, otherwise they come to the opinion that you aren't doing your job.
                      spodelee

                      Until lions have their own storytellers, stories of the hunt shall always glorify the hunter

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                      • #12
                        Re: Maintenance agreements

                        Originally posted by plumber rick View Post
                        mark what was your id #. I'll try to find one for you

                        rick.
                        #87
                        "Somewhere a Village is Missing Twelve Idiots!" - Casey Anthony

                        I never lost a cent on the jobs I didn't get!

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Maintenance agreements

                          Originally posted by DuckButter View Post
                          Devine,
                          I wouldn't suggest you drawing up contracts for plumbing maintanence.
                          People would then have documentation of your illegal work.
                          One mishap, if you wind up in court, there's documentation towards that $25K fine & potential year in prison...you don't want to chance it any more than you already do.
                          Of course, Devine, you could do those agreements for trailers! Apparently, they don't fall under the plumbing codes in Michigan anyway.
                          sigpic3:00, I mean 5:00, and work is done. Time to crack a cold one.

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