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residential service
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Came off of vacation with a lot of calls already on the books for this week. Went to my 12:00 pm yesterday (it was 1:15 :whistling2:). The description was "slow drain and a running toilet". So I get there and the slow drain and the running toilet turns into: 1 lav pop up adjustment $99, 1 lav pop up hair clog removed $99, 2 running toilets and 2 water dist sys leaks tell me there is a pressure problem so I check and sure enough it's high so I replace the prv $319, the basement had been finished post new con and they teed a wall right over 1/2 of the prv creating access issues so I added $149 for limited access, one of the water leaks was in a shower wall just above the 2 handle shower valve which looked like it was for a mobile home (might have been the crappiest piece of junk I've ever seen) so I suggested that although I can stop the leak without replacing the faucet this might be a good time to consider replacing it so the ho approves the shower faucet I have on my truck and authorizes replacement $654, oh yeah there was another access charge of $149 associated with hunting down the water dist leaks which revealed 2 leaks. One will be taken care of with the faucet replacement the other is directly above the shower $199. The toilets still ran after prv replacement and I had already quoted $199 for minor tank rebuilds but had also pointed out that although they were probably going to work fine with simply the minor tank rebuilds, they were old toilets that used a lot of water (3.5 gal per) and that he might consider replacing them with Totos. He thought that was a good idea and added a third toilet to the list at $577 each or $1731.

I don't think I left anything out. My slow drain ($99) and running toilet ($199) turned into $3471.00 just by being thorough and by OFFERING OPTIONS. When I left yesterday the last thing he said was "oh yeah, one more thing, what would it take to get water supplied to my refrigerator?". It's on the opposite side of the kitchen from the ks and there is a finished basement with sheet rock ceiling underneath the kitchen :).

Now I know that none of you have ever met me face to face or have talked to me on the phone (except for 3kings), but I assure you I am not a high pressure guy and I am rather slow of speech. I am not beautiful, nor especially compelling or persuasive but I am learning the secret of sales. You don't have to twist anybodys arm, you don't have to lie, cheat, or steal. SIMPLY OFFER THEM OPTIONS!!! Just lay it out there and let them choose. Whenever possible show them what you are offering, either the actual item (faucet, etc.) or in a manufacturers catalog or on a website or whatever. I can repair it for this, or I can replace it with standard grade for this, or I can replace it with deluxe grade for this. Not everyone will bite but never assume who will and who won't because YOU DON'T KNOW WHO WILL OR WHO WON'T.
 

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waterheaterzone.com
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2,043 Posts
$99 to remove hair from a pop-up:eek:...damn, you're a good salesman!

Don't you have discounted tasks for additional work? I couldn't charge that much for each task on a multi-task job. If someone called me out to ONLY do one thing, then they get full task price, but every additional task is discounted while I am there...pop-up hair plug takes 5 minutes, so I don't charge much, sometimes I just write 'no-charge' on the ticket if its a real good customer.
 

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residential service
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1,948 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
In my opinion that is one of the nastiest, most disgusting jobs in all of plumbing. I ain't playing in that for free. The only reason it's not more is that it is normally a pretty quick operation.
 

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In my opinion that is one of the nastiest, most disgusting jobs in all of plumbing. I ain't playing in that for free. The only reason it's not more is that it is normally a pretty quick operation.
Invest in a pop gun and you don't have to manually clean pop ups.
 

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residential service
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
P.S. the next time you do one, be sure and show the ho what you pull out of there. Put it on a towel or tp or whatever and hold up as close to that invisible line marking no mans land between two people as you dare go. If they had been complaining about the price they won't anymore.
 

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residential service
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Invest in a pop gun and you don't have to manually clean pop ups.
Nope. When they see it, they appreciate me more. As a service plumber I have become somewhat desensitized to many sights and smells, so if it is revolting to me I can really only imagine what it is like for the ho but judging from their reaction it seems pretty clear that even if they weren't before they are certainly glad they called me after seeing it. I believe this has a subconscious attachment to all plumbing (I of course can't prove this) which means that they are less likely to attempt any other plumbing task in the future.
 

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LeMarr Plumbing, Inc.
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772 Posts
Smells, That is down right AWESOME! Options, options, options, gotta love options:thumbsup:

GOOD JOB:thumbup: And the cool thing, they like ya and will call you back.

In Christ,

Song Dog
 

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every tool is a hammer
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I pulled baby wipes off an ejector float today and held them up to the renter, I was gloved off course. I told her it's baby wipes. She says no, it's toilet paper. I told her toilet paper dissolves, this can barely be pulled apart. Her unwed daughter just popped a frog a month ago, I guarentee she's flushing baby wipes:furious: I actually called it before I got there. I my partner there June 10 to replace the pump. he mentioned the daughter being ready to pop. I told the landlord on my way over it's gonna be baby wipes. sure enough, it was. The best part is the renter lying to my face, and implying it's our fault. I saved the butt wipes, they are in a bucket and if I gotta introduce 'em as evidence to Judge Judy, I will:thumbup:
 

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Nice job on selling. :thumbsup:
 

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residential service
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
$99 to remove hair from a pop-up:eek:...damn, you're a good salesman!

Don't you have discounted tasks for additional work? I couldn't charge that much for each task on a multi-task job. If someone called me out to ONLY do one thing, then they get full task price, but every additional task is discounted while I am there...pop-up hair plug takes 5 minutes, so I don't charge much, sometimes I just write 'no-charge' on the ticket if its a real good customer.
Sorry I just now caught the second half of your post.

Occasionally I will discount additional work it just depends on what it is and what frame of mind I am in at the time. Whether or not it is an existing client or a little old lady on a fixed income will influence this decision as well. In general however, I don't discount secondary jobs for several reasons: the first being that it seems like every time I do I run into some sort of problem with the task so that it takes much longer than it ordinarily would, second, my pricing system really does not seem to be overly generous in time allocation for a given task (or maybe I'm just slow) which means I really don't seem to have that much room to discount, and third is, next time you go to the steak house ask them if you can have your wife's steak for 1/2 price since you are paying full price for yours and see what they say.
 

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Our rates keep climbing as the price of fuel goes up. We use to be one of the cheapest in town, which we probly still are but we are charging 95$ 1hr plus a 10$ extra first hour truck charge.
 

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residential service
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
No offense ,but I can't believe someone would pay that much.I mean I believe it,but what a racket.
I am not offended by my pricing but do I sense that you might be?

Was "racket" the exact word you meant to use? Racket being a derivative of racketeer?

The definition of racketeer being: one who extorts money or advantages by threats of violence, by blackmail, or by unlawful interferrance with business or employment.

I'm thinking that this is not exactly what you meant but just in case it was let me assure you that no racketeering took place. I simply quoted the man my price to perform these plumbing tasks and he authorized by his signature this work to be done.

How much should a plumber be "allowed" to charge. I think that the answer is, whatever someone is willing to pay. If a customer is willing to pay $200 for something and you only charge them $100, who has suffered loss? The answer is you have.

This turned out to be a pretty good sales day for me but what I didn't post was the fact that my first call of the day was one in which I quoted $1775.00 for the installation of the following ho provided faucets: (2) 4" centerset lav faucets, (2) 8" widespread lav faucets, and (1) roman tub filler on a tub that had a 3 step cultured marble staircase facade. I also quoted $2258.00 for the same installation with me providing similar faucetry. The lady was quite gracious but had not expected this amount and so I left with my service call charge ($59.00) only. She had had the idea that it would run about $1000.00 for the installation of these 5 faucets :no:. Not by me. She was quite nice about everything she just was not prepared for what I told her. She thoroughly understood the value of my warranties on my faucets and the quality of those faucets since: the first of the boxes she provided produced when opened a 4" centerset lav faucet by PricePfister with a crushed shut ss flex supply integral to the valve body and because I subsequently brought in my faucet which she was able to handle and compare side by side with the defective home depot model. This I believe was a case that unfortunately as it often does came down to price. I think she would have liked to do business with me but she either couldn't or wouldn't handle my price. Sometimes that's just how it is but my pricing is what it is and if I start monkeying around and negotiating then every client I do that with knows that my "price" is not really the real price. It's Pandora's box and I'm not opening it.
 

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LeMarr Plumbing, Inc.
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Smells, do you provide financing? Think she would have went ahead if you offered it?

In Christ,

Song Dog
 

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LMFAO @ popped a frog. I am rolling over here. :laughing::laughing::laughing::laughing::laughing::laughing::laughing::laughing:
 

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waterheaterzone.com
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next time you go to the steak house ask them if you can have your wife's steak for 1/2 price since you are paying full price for yours and see what they say.
You know as well as I , that is a really poor analogy. Plumbing service is VERY different than restaurant business. For one thing, the restaurants don't come to your house to do work...

Sorry, but that argument sucks.
 

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waterheaterzone.com
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Here's my example. A customer who calls me to ONLY repair a toilet is a completely different scenario than a customer who has me repair the toilet while I am already there doing something else.

In scenario A, I have to drive out to the house before I can do the repair, it might take me a total time of one hour.

In scenario B, I simply have to do it, my tools and parts are already there and so am I....it might take me 15 minutes to do the toilet repair.

So tell me, why should customer B get charged the same as customer A for the toilet repair?

Your steak analogy doesn't apply at all...
 

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I have a grabber tool that makes it extremely easy...not disgusting or difficult at all to me.

Your price is fine with me. I believe in free enterprise. You could charge $9999 for all I care. I am just impressed, maybe I should charge more for that stuff...
I'm curious
If you get a call for a stopped vanity and thats all it is, what do you charge then?
 
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