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  • Flat Rate or Hourly?

    I'm just getting started in this and trufully I have no idea what the best way is to bill for my service? For example a house with a backed up main line do you guys quote a price, charge by the hour, charge by the foot, charge the same for cable vs jet?
    How about prevenitve maintenance jetting for commercial do you charge by the drain?
    Also, as a selling point I'm planning on using my camera for every job, is that a good idea?

    Scott

  • #2
    Re: Flat Rate or Hourly?

    Congratulations on your new business.
    When I first joined I was hooked.I couldn't get enough time in reading the plethora of information these guys here pass on.I would be logged on for hours on end.Vertualy every question I had has been discussed somewhere in the past on these boards.

    Do you know how to use the search feature?

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Flat Rate or Hourly?

      Originally posted by drtyhands View Post
      Congratulations on your new business.
      When I first joined I was hooked.I couldn't get enough time in reading the plethora of information these guys here pass on.I would be logged on for hours on end.Vertualy every question I had has been discussed somewhere in the past on these boards.

      Do you know how to use the search feature?
      That's a very nice way of stopping another session.....
      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: Flat Rate or Hourly?

        Thanks for the tip drtyhands, I have been pretty much reading every post, which I have to admit I have totaly enjoyed, but using the search feature with specific keywords is a perfect way for me to utilize this site. I have already learned so much from you guys, things that would have taken me months of trial and error. I am excited to get started, its actually the 1st time Ive been excited about plumbing in a long time. My jetter and other goodies will be here in about two weeks. I havent really tried to hustle any work, I want to be totaly set up and dialed in on the tools first. I'm almost certain, properly equipped, I will be able to get busy and stay that way. Sorry for rambling, my Wife is sick of it to.

        Scott

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Flat Rate or Hourly?

          Sure seems like you got the bite.
          It's been interesting to me to watch the worldwide plumbing industry offer up some of it's most passionate pro's to exchange thoughts and experiences here for the other end of the spectrums people's insatiable desire for information to better their skills.

          Welcome to the forum Scott

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Flat Rate or Hourly?

            You know your situation, you need to know your cost of doing business, you need to understand your demographic.

            you need to do what is best for you, and what is most profitable, what worked 5-10-15-20 years ago might not work now. times are different, the industry has changed.

            good luck.
            sigpic

            Robert

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Flat Rate or Hourly?

              Flat rate is how I charge, sewers are more than sinks, more to pull a toilet or go on the roof, and more for jets , sometimes there easy jobs and sometimes you bust your *** for the same $$, I figure you got to take the good with the bad.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Flat Rate or Hourly?

                [QUOTE=jamascott;238923]I'm just getting started in this and trufully.


                Thirty five years I find that hard to beleave but I charge $220.00 for the first hour then my hourly rate after that and from expience if you carn't clear it in one hour your not going to and a digging job is going to be needed.

                Tony

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Flat Rate or Hourly?

                  T&M here and i use the camera for virtually every job. now a specific locate job costs more and a DVD copy is also extra

                  good luck inyour new venture

                  steve
                  In the never ending struggle to keep the water flowing.... The Poo Poo Cowboy rides again!!!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Flat Rate or Hourly?

                    Thanks for all the input guys, its just what I was looking for. I think I will be following your formula Tony. Keep it simple.
                    Tony I find it hard to believe I've been at this 35 yrs too. Started apprenticeship 1973; Journeyman card 78; Master 80; Contractor Lic 86.
                    Now I'm ready to be a "real" plumber. If this goes the way I hope it does I am going to phase out of construction completely. Building is way down here and even on the projects I have theres no margin.

                    Scott

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Flat Rate or Hourly?

                      I run 3 Mobile Home Parks with (Too Many) trees, unfortunately I am having to learn this business the hard way, and don't get to bill for my services. If you or anyone else would "enjoy" practising, I would welcome you all - Beer and Burgers are on me!

                      Good luck in your endeavor, as one other poster mentioned some jobs are easy, others well ---

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Flat Rate or Hourly?

                        I charge hourly but its based on the type of work i am doing. for examole i charge more to crawl under a house than i do to change a flapper. and my hourly is based on. the cost of running my business.
                        Mike
                        Clark County Plumbing And Drain
                        www.plumbinginclarkcounty.com

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Flat Rate or Hourly?

                          Originally posted by westcoastplumber View Post
                          You know your situation, you need to know your cost of doing business, you need to understand your demographic.

                          you need to do what is best for you, and what is most profitable, what worked 5-10-15-20 years ago might not work now. times are different, the industry has changed.

                          good luck.
                          Yes times have changed plumbing and business in general.
                          Rick does word of mouth and pays no advertising but he has been doing this for many years and has a good client base built up. But he probably was working and building up in the beginning. As to changes you used to have to be in the phonebook then it was the phonebooks plural. Now it's good to be in the book but most people google everything these days so being a google advertiser is the (new) good thing in big cities. My web site used to come up in the first page if seattle drain cleaning was punched in now I am pages back, why because the big plumbing companies round me used to do the big jobs and didn't really want to do snaking unless it was for a good client, but now with the economy like it is they are back to advertising cleaning services to pay the bills since construction is down. I don't really care much about the big companies because I know I do better work for a better price but they are starting to effect my business. Just my 2 cents.
                          Seattle Drain Service

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Flat Rate or Hourly?

                            Originally posted by Cuda View Post
                            I don't really care much about the big companies because I know I do better work for a better price but they are starting to effect my business. Just my 2 cents.
                            Ya got that rite. I was employed by one of these big companies years ago for 10 years.
                            They would train new techs. maybe 6-8 weeks and turn them loose then quit within a year. They have the big name but lack in good techs.
                            I'm sure us small companies can run circles around them.
                            In my opinion the big guy's not worth it. You pay for the name.
                            Rod
                            MT. Washington Sewer & Drain Cleaning
                            Serving Berlin, NH and North Conway, NH areas
                            http://unclognh.com
                            http://mtwashingtonseweranddrainclea...m/default.aspx

                            Charging less does not mean more call volume it just means you have to work harder to reach your goals.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Flat Rate or Hourly?

                              Originally posted by jamascott View Post
                              Thanks for all the input guys, its just what I was looking for. I think I will be following your formula Tony. Keep it simple.
                              Tony I find it hard to believe I've been at this 35 yrs too. Started apprenticeship 1973; Journeyman card 78; Master 80; Contractor Lic 86.
                              Now I'm ready to be a "real" plumber. If this goes the way I hope it does I am going to phase out of construction completely. Building is way down here and even on the projects I have theres no margin.

                              Scott
                              It has always interested me reading different threads on this forum and U.S members talking about thier qualifcations and you have brought them up again after your apprenticeship you said you became a journeyman which is what I would have called myself in Aus but the you became a master and then a contractor what is the meaning and extra qualifications of a master and contractor.

                              Tony

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