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  • #31
    Re: Why are doctors soooooo cheap?????

    Originally posted by PLUMBER RICK View Post
    actually the main reason why they call me is because of my reputation. not my price. people call from referrals, not because they know my price.

    i turn down at least 25% of all calls based on location, time frame, and type of work. price has never been an issue. same reason why i don't waste my time on free estimates. i'll give them a price, but not a free estimate.

    rick.
    I like and agree with that business practice. I also have clients that recommend me to potential clients. Just in case any of them are not clear on job or service pricing I give them that information right up front. I also tell them right out, that, "I'm not the least expensive irrigation contractor out there", but I am licensed, insured, and I stand behind my work.

    Part of the sales training that I've received over the years is in the initial sales/contact of the client relationship.

    Basically it boils down to;
    1 - These are the job parameter(s)
    2 - This is how I will proceed (in general terms, no details)
    3 - This is the price to fix the situation, do the job, and these are the payment terms.

    If they hesitate, I also tell them that if I don't get the job to save my card for service work in the future. A lot of my competitors are a lot bigger than I am with a lot more employees, but just because a company is bigger company doesn't mean that they will be doing a better job. It also doesn't mean that someone with a lot of experience will actually be the one that is doing their installation or service work.

    I suggest that they get quotes with other companies, and when they do find out who is going to do the work, and what *their* experience is. I'm the one that is on every job that I do.

    I don't turn down any work, but I do price jobs higher if it's going to be any kind of inconvenience to me, or if the customer gives me the feeling of kicking tires. I also have the option of bringing my pricing down if I get the job and I find out otherwise, but the original pricing stays until I hand over the final invoice.

    I believe that it's the *person* that is cheap, not the profession. I have been burnt once way, way back when I first started out. I 'helped' out a client (squeezed her in to 'help' her out) didn't have all of my ducks in a row, and got taken advantage of. Never again.

    So far with this way of presenting my pricing I've managed to avoid getting burnt again. The only installation/repairs that I've lost are the jobs that people are basing their contractor hiring decision based solely on lowest price. No problem. But a lot of them have also called me back to repair the mess that the first contractor left. My pricing is always higher when I come in after the fact, and I tell them that too. But I also guarantee that my installation will work the way that they want it to work before I leave the site. They have a choice, we all do. But I believe that we all need enough information to make an informed choice. I try to give my potential clients enough information to make an informed choice.

    I'm not yet big enough to limit my clients like Rick does, but I like that he can do it that way! Good for you Rick! You worked hard to get where you're at. I'm still at the prostitutational part of my business plan. I'll do almost anything for money, but the difference is that I'm the one that chooses who I work for, what I'll be doing, and what the charges will be.

    I've also have learned that "it's not what you say or tell the client, It's how the client interprets and understands what you said".

    Mick
    Last edited by Fireguy97; 03-03-2009, 02:39 AM.

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    • #32
      Re: Why are doctors soooooo cheap?????

      Worked for a lawyer this morning. Guy talked to me and my brother for about an hour while we worked then left for a meeting. When we went to leave we each found a twenty in our work boots.
      West Trail Mechanical Ltd
      Service. Commitment. Expertise.

      www.westtrailmechanical.ca

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      • #33
        Re: Why are doctors soooooo cheap?????

        I've been a plumber for 17 yrs but have owned my own business for only 1 year. It was the first time that I"ve ever had trouble from a customer like this and I will do everything in my power to prevent it from happening again. I don't remember if I told her my hourly rate was $85/hr before I did the job, but she NEVER asked. I will make sure to tell everyone from this point on. When I told her that even if it only took a half hour that it still would have cost the $85 minimum plus material. I told her, " Brenda....are you telling me that you NEVER hired a plumber before?????? You know damn well that we don't charge $10/hr!" She was speechless. I think she would have even found that to be too expensive! In the end it was a lesson about a crazy cheap azz person. It made me think about an experience that my father had. He was a plumber for over 35 years. One night my mother and him decided to go to this fancy french restaurant back on Long Island. When they walked up to the maitre de he was told that he needed to have a jacket and tie to sit down and eat. They had a loaner but it was dirty and he refused. He looked over and saw some fat slob eating like an animal with his tie pushed to the side. He said, "So I'm dressed nice, maybe not in a tie......and you're telling me that you won't let me in but that guy is ok in your eyes?" He was told yes and that he would have to leave. A few months later he received a call from the same restaurant...in fact the maitre de!!! They had NO WATER( a freeze up) and it was 8 pm and a Saturday night!!!! He quickly reminded the guy of the situation a few months back.....and heard," Oh please...no other plumbers will come!!!" My father politely said, "Sorry, if I'm not good enough to eat in your restaurant, then I'm not good enough to do work for your restaurant....goodnight! ....click I LOVE THAT STORY!!! karma is a b-tch!!!! ha

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        • #34
          Re: Why are doctors soooooo cheap?????

          Originally posted by Service Guy View Post
          To me this story is just another example of why you should always give an upfront price. I tell people the TOTAL price to do a toilet repair before I start, so they can approve or not. Once they approve the job and price, they are contractually bound to pay by law. Flatrate pricing is superior in this way.
          When I worked hourly years ago, we had FAR more complaints after work was done. Now all the complaints come before, since the price is given before, they either agree to the price and have the work done, or they don't agree and I let them call someone else. Everyone wins that way.
          Does Your Dr. give You Prices up front on each visit? REALLY?
          I can build anything You want , if you draw a picture of it , on the back of a big enough check .

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          • #35
            Re: Why are doctors soooooo cheap?????

            I have had good experiences with Doctors. Most folks are decent . The bad ones just stand out!
            I can build anything You want , if you draw a picture of it , on the back of a big enough check .

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            • #36
              Re: Why are doctors soooooo cheap?????

              I have a few good attorney customers. Attorney's who own rental properties.

              The last doctor that I did work for was a psychiatrist.

              He complained that he had gone to eight years of college and didnt make that much.

              He laughed when I said "I guess you chose the wrong profession"

              Then griped all the way through the check writing process.

              And as I drove away from his home in the french quarter worth at least $1,000,000 because of location, I thought, "What a f-ck-n a$$hole"

              Lenny

              Pronounced A-Bear Drain Care

              I know, it doesn't make sense.


              http://www.hebertdraincare.com

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              • #37
                Re: Why are doctors soooooo cheap?????

                Originally posted by toolaholic View Post
                Does Your Dr. give You Prices up front on each visit? REALLY?
                I am talking about the plumbing business, not medicine. I find its a good practice to give prices upfront. That way everyone agrees on the price before the work is done. Its really quite simple. Whomever doesn't do this is way behind the times.
                Water Heater Reviews & Water Heater Information

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                • #38
                  Re: Why are doctors soooooo cheap?????

                  SG
                  I'm not trying to pick a fight, but when you give a price and the job turns out to be way more of a bear then on first inspection, do you eat the loss and accept it as a cost of doing work by flat rate?

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                  • #39
                    Re: Why are doctors soooooo cheap?????

                    Originally posted by Plumbus View Post
                    SG
                    I'm not trying to pick a fight, but when you give a price and the job turns out to be way more of a bear then on first inspection, do you eat the loss and accept it as a cost of doing work by flat rate?
                    Yes, that is how a contract works. If I quote a price of $xxx to replace a drain, I don't change the price just because the job turns out to take longer than I thought. That isn't fair, and actually its illegal if it violates the contract agreement.
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                    • #40
                      Re: Why are doctors soooooo cheap?????

                      Originally posted by Service Guy View Post
                      Yes, that is how a contract works. If I quote a price of $xxx to replace a drain, I don't change the price just because the job turns out to take longer than I thought. That isn't fair, and actually its illegal if it violates the contract agreement.
                      I flat rate drain cleans but if it takes more than 1 to 1 1/2 hrs at my discretion I charge more depending on what is needed,ie jetter,camera,repair or whatever is the hold up.
                      Seattle Drain Service

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                      • #41
                        Re: Why are doctors soooooo cheap?????

                        Originally posted by Cuda View Post
                        I flat rate drain cleans but if it takes more than 1 to 1 1/2 hrs at my discretion I charge more depending on what is needed,ie jetter,camera,repair or whatever is the hold up.
                        edited:
                        The job has changed scope if you need extra equipment, so that is understandable.
                        Last edited by Service Guy; 03-02-2009, 10:53 PM.
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                        • #42
                          Re: Why are doctors soooooo cheap?????

                          Originally posted by Service Guy View Post
                          As long as the customer agrees to those terms beforehand, then its perfectly fine. That isn't really flat rate though, since you are changing the price at your discretion. Personally, I wouldn't hire anyone under such ambiguous terms. It doesn't seem fair to the customer to have "flat rate...but it might go up, if..."
                          Imo, that is not good business practice Cuda. You should either have a fixed hourly rate, or a fixed price per job. Changing the price "at your discretion" isn't really fair.
                          I think you would probably do the same thing, but your contract is probably clear about it. If the customer's line is collapsed you aren't going to fix it for the price of snaking the drain. There is some point that you're gonna cut your loses. I think you are at an advantage to other guys though, because I think since you have a camera you can just look at the problem and provide evidence it is beyond the original contract.

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                          • #43
                            Re: Why are doctors soooooo cheap?????

                            Good point, I reread Cuda's post and he probably has a flat price for a cable, then an add-on price for camera, an add-on for jetter, etc. I do the same thing.
                            That is cool. For a second I thought he meant that he has a flatrate, but then will raise it if the job goes too long...that is more like hourly with a one hour (or two or whatever) minimum.
                            The main thing is that both parties agree on the terms. (the contractor and the customer).
                            Water Heater Reviews & Water Heater Information

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                            • #44
                              Re: Why are doctors soooooo cheap?????

                              Originally posted by cpw View Post
                              I think you would probably do the same thing, but your contract is probably clear about it. If the customer's line is collapsed you aren't going to fix it for the price of snaking the drain. There is some point that you're gonna cut your loses. I think you are at an advantage to other guys though, because I think since you have a camera you can just look at the problem and provide evidence it is beyond the original contract.
                              No No No I dont change the price at my discretion I work for an hour on the original terms and maybe an extra 1/2 hour (same price) at my discretion. Wow I wish I could change the price because I felt cold or wet or the job was really smelly LMAO
                              Seattle Drain Service

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                              • #45
                                Re: Why are doctors soooooo cheap?????

                                In all fairness , much of our work is much longer term than service work. We are not strangers anymore,and build trust. The Money comes easier. Much work is time and material.
                                I'm fortunate to have a customer base that has Money. My situation is different,and doesn't apply to many of these stories. I'll try to read more and keep My mouth shut . Tool
                                I can build anything You want , if you draw a picture of it , on the back of a big enough check .

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