Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Are plumber's getting overcharged?

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Are plumber's getting overcharged?

    Bought sharkbites the other day ($500 worth) at a supply house; for arguement sake we'll just call it Ferguson's. Went to a home improvement warehouse with my wife later that night, we'll just make up a name and say Home Depot. Out of curiosty I checked the price of the sharkbites and they were anywhere from 2-3 $ less. Help me understand this. How do I go to a supply house under my employer's name in which we do over 100,000 of business a year and get charged MORE for the same part than a customer who has no documented track record at a store get the same part for less? Am I looking at this wrong? And passing the cost to the customer is not an acceptable reply.
    Buy cheap, buy twice.

  • #2
    Re: Are plumber's getting overcharged?

    Check how much they sell them for WHOLESALE ONLY at W.W. Granger. Their prices are a joke at best. I'm pretty sure if you buy over $1 million / year from them you get a discount.

    Look up the Grainger prices of other RIDGID products.

    Anymore serious trade customers have to check pricing at several sources to find a good deal. I do hope you'll do some growling with the branch manager at "Big F" about the better prices at "Big Orange Box" and let him know how it makes you feel.
    Last edited by Woussko; 04-23-2007, 03:29 PM.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Are plumber's getting overcharged?

      The supply houses sell a better product and have to turn a larger profit per square foot to make up for shelf space taken up for items that you need but only buy once a year.

      Have you ever noticed the copper fittings from big box being lower quality?

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Are plumber's getting overcharged?

        Originally posted by drtyhands View Post
        The supply houses sell a better product and have to turn a larger profit per square foot to make up for shelf space taken up for items that you need but only buy once a year.

        Have you ever noticed the copper fittings from big box being lower quality?
        No, they don't sell a better product. They sell the exact same sharkbite that you buy anywhere else. I've seen the box. Cash Acme doesn't make a consumer and professional line of sharkbite. And the copper? It says Nibco just like home depot. I'm saying sharkbite because that's what caught my eye but now I wonder what else I'm being overcharged for.
        Buy cheap, buy twice.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Are plumber's getting overcharged?

          gear junkie,

          yes I'm sorry the supply houses are going to be more expensive for the small volume purchaser.Even the guys who buy large volume at the supply house have to negotiate prices on a very frequent basis.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Are plumber's getting overcharged?

            overcharged ??? yep to a point as it`s hard to compete with Lowes and HD. I try not to buy any thing from HD but I do spend a ton of money at Lowes. There will be a day when we wont have other suppliers because they just cant compete. I think it makes us look bad when I have to mark up a plumbing fitting such as a 2-way clean out, you can go buy it for 14.00 yourself but if you call me out I charge you 20.00 because I had to drive over there to buy it and stock it in my trailer. I`v only had one guy ***** about it and I told him he can go get one and install it himself if he`d like

            It`s kinda the Wal-Mart thing if you ask me.. is it a good thing or a bad thing??? puts some people out of a job is what I think.
            http://www.all-clear-sewer.com/

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Are plumber's getting overcharged?

              Originally posted by gear junkie View Post
              Bought sharkbites the other day ($500 worth) at a supply house; for arguement sake we'll just call it Ferguson's. Went to a home improvement warehouse with my wife later that night, we'll just make up a name and say Home Depot. Out of curiosty I checked the price of the sharkbites and they were anywhere from 2-3 $ less. Help me understand this. How do I go to a supply house under my employer's name in which we do over 100,000 of business a year and get charged MORE for the same part than a customer who has no documented track record at a store get the same part for less? Am I looking at this wrong? And passing the cost to the customer is not an acceptable reply.
              There are three things to consider here here:

              1) Are you basing the Furguson price on the invoice you recieved? If so you have to understand that Furguson prints the retail price on their recievers, but contractors each get a discount based on their volume. This is probably not their actual billed price.

              2) $100,000 per year is not alot in plumbing terms.

              3) Their are alot of items cheaper at home depot than Furguson. But a plumbing foreman cannot call in an order for a truck load of material at 3:00 pm on Monday, and have it delivered at 7:00 am Tuesday dealing with Home Depot. Nor can Home Depot supply everything needed to complete a project.

              I'm no fan of Furguson, but keep in mind that service comes at a cost. If you are doing repair plumbing, it may work out to deal with Home Depot, although I bet Rick gets his material from a plumbing supply company. It doesn't make economic sense to have plumbers searching the aisle at Home Depot for hours and end up going to a supply house any way because big orange din't have everything they needed.
              the dog

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Are plumber's getting overcharged?

                I think you'd be hard pressed to find the quantities you need at a Lowes or HD, at least for commercial work. We used to order 1/2 and 3/4 copper ells by the hundreds, oakum by the case (24 boxes) and lead in 25# bars asking for a couple hundred pounds at a time, and crates of CI fittings and bundles of CI pipe, not one or two sticks.

                I guess for residential work or service work you could get by, but when you have 550 hotel room baths to rough in and trim out you need more than a Lowes or HD, you need a real plumbing supply.

                Many of the contractors I have worked for buy copper pipe by the ton to save money. They know how much work they did the previous year and they will order at least that much in one shot for the upcoming year. So they might have a couple hundred lengths of 3 or 4" L in the pipe shed, big jobs get drop shipped right from the factory.
                "It's a table saw, do you know where your fingers are?" Bob D. 2006

                https://www.youtube.com/user/PowerToolInstitute

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Are plumber's getting overcharged?

                  Bob, you bring up great points and I do understand the difference between commercial and residential service work. I'm no where on that scale of what you're talking about but I do feel a discount, however small, should be given to the plumber. Remeber supply houses do not have to pay for advertising, fewer employees and often do act as a middle man between the plumber and the factory and just collect a payment on ordering the material, no storage to deal with.

                  On a side note; were you in the Seabees?
                  Buy cheap, buy twice.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Are plumber's getting overcharged?

                    Yep, UT2

                    The supply house will also save your bacon at times and run out to your job on short notice with that pipe or fitting you need, you'll never get that kind of service from a big box store, and it's not expected either, least by me. They also have people who know what they are selling, and that is worth something too. Those guys working in the supply houses are not getting $8/hr or whatever sub-standard wage HD and Lowes pay, they are worth a lot more than that.
                    "It's a table saw, do you know where your fingers are?" Bob D. 2006

                    https://www.youtube.com/user/PowerToolInstitute

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Are plumber's getting overcharged?

                      dog hit it spot on. The supply houses have different costs a box store does not have. To start with the supply houses have salesmen who gets a piece of everything they sell. Then you have counter guys who are running around filling your orders. When you need materials you call an order in and the materials come to you. Time spent in a box store are not billable. Lastly the supply house extends credit which also cost money as not everyone pays their bill.

                      When the first box stores opened up around here I thought we would lose money. I found we actually got more work because we instaklled what the HO bought from the box store and we didn't have to warranty the parts.

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

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

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Are plumber's getting overcharged?

                        gear junkie, i feel for you. i go through this on a regular basis with my supply house and between my supply houses.

                        i too have recently purchased shark bite from h.d. they just started to stock them there. actually they have a more complete selection than any of my supply houses do for shark bite. and yes they are less expensive and are bagged too. same fitting, better selection and less costly

                        certain items such as slow movers, shark bite are priced higher than everyday items. have you ever purchased a bag of concrete from your supply house or a water heater shed?

                        the supply house will always be less expensive and have a larger, more vast selection than any h.d. or lowes, on the real everyday items we use.

                        2 things you can do.

                        talk to the branch manager. my manager will actually lower the price and will tell me his cost. they have to make something or they won't stay in business.

                        check with another supply house for pricing and selection.

                        i know what items i purchase from what source. you sometimes have to keep the supply house honest. there was a time 1 of my supply houses was charging for domestic brass fittings, while supplying import brass. the small guy like me will catch it since i pay the bills and do all the ordering, installing and shopping.

                        last but not least, pretty soon, h.d. plumbing supply will be sold to fergusons anyways. that's the rumor on the street, and you heard it from me first

                        rick.

                        p.s home depot doesn't sell propress. how do you like sharkbite? i use both
                        phoebe it is

                        Comment

                        Working...
                        X