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  • Lowballers!!

    Hey everyone!

    I wrote this for my website, but also for members here. If anyone has anything to add, please feel free! The more information, the better

    Beware of Lowballers!!

    Some of you may ask, "What is a lowballer? Is that a pitch that couldn't make it to the plate?" No. That isn't it. Well, it might be, but not in the field of home improvement.

    A lowballer has many definitions but it basically is an individual or a company that bids a job below the fair standard price.

    An example would be if a customer wanted to remodel a bathroom and received five bids from five companies. Let's say four bids were in the range of $15,000-$20,000 and one was around $6,000. That, my friend, is a lowballer.

    If you are a customer, you might be thinking, "Wow! That's great! I can get my bathroom remodeled for much less than the other four companies." That is true, but you will more than likely regret it later. I will tell you why:

    Lowballers end up hurting the customer and the industry that they are suppose to represent.

    The reason they hurt the customer is because they will more than likely rush through the job because they now need to work at a fast pace. In the process of working as fast as possible, they might run into some problems. Since the lowballer didn't bid for problems, he will try to do "hack" work to make things move along quicker. This isn't good for the customer at all!

    Once the job is done and if the customer notices the "hack" work or something isn't working, they will try and get ahold of the lowballer. Guess what? It will be hard for them to get ahold of or get the lowballer to come back out to fix the problem. Do you know why? Because the lowballer didn't bid for problems, either. Another reason might be because the lowballer has too much work on his hands due to his low prices and doesn't have time to come out.

    The reason why lowballers hurt the industry is because once customers deal with lowballers and if things go smoothly, they will think that is how much something is suppose to cost.

    If a lowballer goes to a customer's house and replaces a toilet for $50, that customer will think it is easy and should cost $50. If that customer talks to a friend that needs a toilet replaced, they will say, "I had someone come out for $50 to do it. It can't be that hard if they only charged me $50."

    This type of thing will put licensed professionals with integrity and professionalism out of business if the trend continues. Then all that will be left is lowballers who do "hack" work and will put the customer's safety and health in danger.

    This is another reason why I started this website. I want customers to be able to find professionals who do great work and care about the industry while helping contractors find customers who want things done the right way!
    YourHomeContractor.com - The Trusted Online Community For Homeowners and Contractors.

    Plumbing Reviews

  • #2
    Re: Lowballers!!

    I'm afraid there are more HO's that wanna save a buck then to hire a real legit company and do the job the right way. I did enjoy reading what you said here, nice job.
    Great Link for a Construction Owner/Tradesmen, and just say Garager sent you....

    http://www.contractorspub.com

    A good climbing rope will last you 3 to 5 years, a bad climbing rope will last you a life time !!!

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Lowballers!!

      By the way, wheres your web site?????
      Great Link for a Construction Owner/Tradesmen, and just say Garager sent you....

      http://www.contractorspub.com

      A good climbing rope will last you 3 to 5 years, a bad climbing rope will last you a life time !!!

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Lowballers!!

        I just put it in my signature. This might be against the rules, though.
        YourHomeContractor.com - The Trusted Online Community For Homeowners and Contractors.

        Plumbing Reviews

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Lowballers!!

          No Washington, DC on your project Forum list

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Lowballers!!

            Originally posted by plumberscrack View Post
            No Washington, DC on your project Forum list
            Crap! I thought it was there. My bad
            YourHomeContractor.com - The Trusted Online Community For Homeowners and Contractors.

            Plumbing Reviews

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Lowballers!!

              I know. We are the Big White Elephant in the room that no one acknowledges is there

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Lowballers!!

                Originally posted by plumberscrack View Post
                I know. We are the Big White Elephant in the room that no one acknowledges is there
                LOL! I will change that soon.
                YourHomeContractor.com - The Trusted Online Community For Homeowners and Contractors.

                Plumbing Reviews

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Lowballers!!

                  Originally posted by HouseOfAtlas View Post
                  Hey everyone!

                  I wrote this for my website, but also for members here. If anyone has anything to add, please feel free! The more information, the better

                  Beware of Lowballers!!

                  Some of you may ask, "What is a lowballer? Is that a pitch that couldn't make it to the plate?" No. That isn't it. Well, it might be, but not in the field of home improvement.

                  A lowballer has many definitions but it basically is an individual or a company that bids a job below the fair standard price.

                  An example would be if a customer wanted to remodel a bathroom and received five bids from five companies. Let's say four bids were in the range of $15,000-$20,000 and one was around $6,000. That, my friend, is a lowballer.

                  If you are a customer, you might be thinking, "Wow! That's great! I can get my bathroom remodeled for much less than the other four companies." That is true, but you will more than likely regret it later. I will tell you why:

                  Lowballers end up hurting the customer and the industry that they are suppose to represent.

                  The reason they hurt the customer is because they will more than likely rush through the job because they now need to work at a fast pace. In the process of working as fast as possible, they might run into some problems. Since the lowballer didn't bid for problems, he will try to do "hack" work to make things move along quicker. This isn't good for the customer at all!

                  Once the job is done and if the customer notices the "hack" work or something isn't working, they will try and get ahold of the lowballer. Guess what? It will be hard for them to get ahold of or get the lowballer to come back out to fix the problem. Do you know why? Because the lowballer didn't bid for problems, either. Another reason might be because the lowballer has too much work on his hands due to his low prices and doesn't have time to come out.

                  The reason why lowballers hurt the industry is because once customers deal with lowballers and if things go smoothly, they will think that is how much something is suppose to cost.

                  If a lowballer goes to a customer's house and replaces a toilet for $50, that customer will think it is easy and should cost $50. If that customer talks to a friend that needs a toilet replaced, they will say, "I had someone come out for $50 to do it. It can't be that hard if they only charged me $50."

                  This type of thing will put licensed professionals with integrity and professionalism out of business if the trend continues. Then all that will be left is lowballers who do "hack" work and will put the customer's safety and health in danger.

                  This is another reason why I started this website. I want customers to be able to find professionals who do great work and care about the industry while helping contractors find customers who want things done the right way!
                  I agree and disagree with what you write. First off I dont know why you are addressing the issue, but I never waste my time acknowledging hacks and lowballers.

                  First off if a homeowner gets four bids and 3 of them are basically the same and one is way lower, if they go with the lowballer then they deserve to get "cobbler work".

                  Lowballers will NEVER hurt the plumbing industry. Their quality of work will ALWAYS make me look better. I price accordingly to the quality of my work, and if price is the bottom line, then I guarantee they will NOT be hiring me anyway. I like lowballers and hacks, I wont bash them.

                  The reasons they are lower are quality of work and materials, it always shows. They also tend to "hire" hacks and this also shows in the work.

                  Embrace the lowballers and hacks. They will always make a real professional look even better
                  Last edited by Masterplumb; 09-06-2008, 09:00 PM.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Lowballers!!

                    Never really looked at it like that, good points.
                    Buy cheap, buy twice.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Lowballers!!

                      Originally posted by Masterplumb View Post
                      I agree and disagree with what you write. First off I dont know why you are addressing the issue, but I never waste my time acknowledging hacks and lowballers.

                      First off if a homeowner gets four bids and 3 of them are basically the same and one is way lower, if they go with the lowballer then they deserve to get "cobbler work".

                      Lowballers will NEVER hurt the plumbing industry. Their quality of work will ALWAYS make me look better. I price accordingly to the quality of my work, and if price is the bottom line, then I guarantee they will NOT be hiring me anyway. I like lowballers and hacks, I wont bash them.

                      The reasons they are lower are quality of work and materials, it always shows. They also tend to "hire" hacks and this also shows in the work.

                      Embrace the lowballers and hacks. They will always make a real professional look even better
                      My message was to address homeowners (the customer) on my website.

                      I agree that lowballers make professionals look better, but that takes time. If homeowners get a message stating why lowballers and hacks are bad and professionals are the only way to go, they might look for a professional NOW then wait for a bad situation to happen.
                      YourHomeContractor.com - The Trusted Online Community For Homeowners and Contractors.

                      Plumbing Reviews

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Lowballers!!

                        why not post pics on your website....one of a hack job, then another of how it should be done. I'm sure you can get some pics of the hackers, we all see them all the time.
                        The Other Rick

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Lowballers!!

                          Originally posted by rick1643 View Post
                          I'm sure you can get some pics of the hackers, we all see them all the time.
                          Good idea! Thanks!
                          YourHomeContractor.com - The Trusted Online Community For Homeowners and Contractors.

                          Plumbing Reviews

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Lowballers!!

                            Originally posted by HouseOfAtlas View Post
                            My message was to address homeowners (the customer) on my website.

                            I agree that low ballers make professionals look better, but that takes time. If homeowners get a message stating why low ballers and hacks are bad and professionals are the only way to go, they might look for a professional NOW then wait for a bad situation to happen.
                            I have found that in the long run it is best to keep your marketing message positive. While it is tempting to educate your customers on the perils of low ballers and hacks, even a limited emphasis re-focuses your potential customer on what others do instead of what you do. You might also be surprised how potential customers perceive negativity in marketing, "they must really be expensive if they have to put so much emphasis on how bad their competition is", etc...

                            Give some thought to why low ballers/hacks are, well, low ballers/hacks. IMHO, they are who they are because a) they are ignorant of their self appointed trade, b) they are ignorant of business acumen, and/or c) they have no or limited moral code.

                            Either way, when your potential customer is shopping for services after you have educated them about low ballers and hacks, they are going to ask pointed questions of the low baller/hack. The problem is, the low baller/hack is going to look them straight in the eye and tell them anything the potential customer wants to hear, and they will be very convincing when doing so. Why? Because just like yourself, they believe in their cause, no matter how ignorant or deceiving it might be.

                            The worst part of this reality is that the low baller/hack has at his disposal the ultimate weapon against a legitimate trade professional... the implication of greed. Their only required response to your argument is to imply greed, gouging, etc... , which, in the customer's view, reveals the naked truth and justifies the time and energy they have invested in the "bid" process.

                            For the customer that has not experienced the pain associated with low baller/hack work and who is motivated by his or her own greed, a successful argument against acceptance of low ball/hack work is a hard arguement to make. So why try?

                            About 15 years ago I was given a sole proprietor air conditioning company. To make a long story short, the owner of the company decided he had had enough of the trade and wanted out, but wanted to make sure his clients were treated well, so he gave his client list and phone number to me. He delivered the company to me in three file boxes, phones were forwarded to my number and off he went to his new profession.

                            What I discovered next was shocking. Over a 15 year period he had managed to find every check-bouncing-cheap-skate in the county. The differences between my clients and his clients were night and day. I think we might have actually ended up keeping only two of his clients by the end of the first year.

                            What I learned from this experience is that companies shape their destiny and their client base by how they market themselves and how they price their services.

                            So, rather than spending time and energy trying to find customers that might be thinking about using a low baller/hack. Consider instead finding customers that have already used and have been burned by the infamous low baller/hack. Those customers will not be looking for the best deal, they will be looking for a worry free transaction. Emphasis on licensing, credentials, experience, problem solving, and referrals is the type of information they will be looking for on your web site.

                            Give some thought as to whether the client who is tempted by the low baller/hack, really should be your client. There may be better fish to fry elsewhere.
                            Last edited by spodelee; 09-07-2008, 07:21 PM.
                            spodelee

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

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                            • #15
                              Re: Lowballers!!

                              Is this a thread about an old man gang? Team Geritol?

                              J.C.

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