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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I quoted a job for 4 ceiling fans, 2 requiring new wiring, and 2 to replace old fans. All needed to be hardwired to a switch. I qupoted a total of 750.00 for EVERYTHING and did not win the bid. I think that was a pretty low bid. Where can I find the reasonable paying customers?
 

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I am by no means an expert at "finding the reasonable paying customers" but my first suggestion I use to qualify peoples need for an estimate is a charge for the estimate. I generally subtract the price of my estimate fee from the work when the work is completed with in 30 days. I have found it helps two fold: 1. If they balk at the price for an estimate they are usually price shopping and won't have the work done. 2. The 30 day limit helps with people calling years later wanting the estimated price. If it's like 2 months later or something like that (within reasons) I'll usually do the work.
Bear in mind though my business is mostly referral as I am a one man band.
 

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That's cheap to begin with, I charge $300 for fan box/ 3wire/ 1 switch and hang customers fan each on new construction.
I once had a customer who called me telling me about a guy charging $100 to install box and hang fans and wanted me to match his price, I asked him for the guys number stating that I too needed a couple fans installed in my house and for that price, I'll hire him too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I am by no means an expert at "finding the reasonable paying customers" but my first suggestion I use to qualify peoples need for an estimate is a charge for the estimate. I generally subtract the price of my estimate fee from the work when the work is completed with in 30 days. I have found it helps two fold: 1. If they balk at the price for an estimate they are usually price shopping and won't have the work done. 2. The 30 day limit helps with people calling years later wanting the estimated price. If it's like 2 months later or something like that (within reasons) I'll usually do the work.
Bear in mind though my business is mostly referral as I am a one man band.
I am a one sometimes two man shop and work on about 95% refferals. But I just finished a difficult remodel and pretty much ate it. My cash flow is down and I need some quick cash. I got the lead off of a service called thumbtack. I have bid 7 or 8 small jobs and haven't landed one. I must be competing with handymen on this service.
 

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cthermond said:
I am a one sometimes two man shop and work on about 95% refferals. But I just finished a difficult remodel and pretty much ate it. My cash flow is down and I need some quick cash. I got the lead off of a service called thumbtack. I have bid 7 or 8 small jobs and haven't landed one. I must be competing with handymen on this service.
People have less to spend, contrary to what the MSM says the economy is going south. You can not compete with the guys doing this under the table. We all see it. And it will get worse.
 

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I quoted a job for 4 ceiling fans, 2 requiring new wiring, and 2 to replace old fans. All needed to be hardwired to a switch. I qupoted a total of 750.00 for EVERYTHING and did not win the bid. I think that was a pretty low bid. Where can I find the reasonable paying customers?
Not at that house..:laughing:






















Sorry buddy,but welcome to the club..:)
 

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I own stock in FotoMat!
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I quoted a job for 4 ceiling fans, 2 requiring new wiring, and 2 to replace old fans. All needed to be hardwired to a switch. I qupoted a total of 750.00 for EVERYTHING and did not win the bid. I think that was a pretty low bid. Where can I learn to improve my salesmanship and close more bids?
Fify.
 

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I suck at getting my name out there too. I have been very lucky in that I try to do good work and take care of my customers so I do get work from it. Sometimes it is a viscous cycle to get work you need to get out there but at the same time you need to put in time on jobs, as a one man company it sucks.
I wish there was a button or like a bat signal or something to use to get customers but in reality you just need to get out there (yes easier said than done). It's not as exiting as electrical work but even something as simple as handing out cards in strip malls/office parks can help. It also depends on what type of work you want to though.
 

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It's funny...when these threads pop up, there are always the guys talking about how a person should work on their salesmanship, target a better customer base, etc.

When the phone rings, and someone asks for a price, you tell them $750....the other guy is at $500 for the same job....I don't give 2 sh*ts how good of a salesman you are, they are going with the $500 guy.

You could have Tony Robbins sit there and explain the value they are getting for the extra money...It won't matter. In this day and age, it is all about the bottom line.
 

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And in regard to the OP...$750 sounds pretty reasonable. Off the cuff, I'm guessing I would have quoted pretty close to that number.
 

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I know this will get me flamed, but here it is.

You compete on price you have to be the lowest price. A large majority of service electricians fall into that category and fight for work at a price they hope they can make a profit from.

Compete on value and you have to compete with a much smaller group and your price will more the double what you quoted.
 

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It's funny...when these threads pop up, there are always the guys talking about how a person should work on their salesmanship, target a better customer base, etc.

When the phone rings, and someone asks for a price, you tell them $750....the other guy is at $500 for the same job....I don't give 2 sh*ts how good of a salesman you are, they are going with the $500 guy.

You could have Tony Robbins sit there and explain the value they are getting for the extra money...It won't matter. In this day and age, it is all about the bottom line.

Too bad you're stuck in that rut as well. Oh well, continue your race to the bottom. Good luck with that.
 

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It's funny...when these threads pop up, there are always the guys talking about how a person should work on their salesmanship, target a better customer base, etc.

When the phone rings, and someone asks for a price, you tell them $750....the other guy is at $500 for the same job....I don't give 2 sh*ts how good of a salesman you are, they are going with the $500 guy.

You could have Tony Robbins sit there and explain the value they are getting for the extra money...It won't matter. In this day and age, it is all about the bottom line.
You're right, with some people it is only about the bottom line. No matter how good of a salesman you are, they will never want to pay less than the absolute minimum.

The point is to ignore those people.

I think a lot of EC's think they need to close all of their calls and when they don't, they think they are doing something wrong.

If 80% of your calls are cheapskates looking for the cheapest price, and 20% are customer looking for a good value that you could provide at a higher price, you're doing damn good.
 

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..........If 80% of your calls are cheapskates looking for the cheapest price, and 20% are customer looking for a good value that you could provide at a higher price, you're doing damn good.
And at this point, you ignore the 80% looking for the cheapest price, and concentrate your efforts on the 20% that know value. :thumbsup:
 

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That 750 sounds like a side job price. I find it unbelievable a ligit contractor would be able to charge less than 1K for that work. and that would be on the cheap side
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
It's funny...when these threads pop up, there are always the guys talking about how a person should work on their salesmanship, target a better customer base, etc.

When the phone rings, and someone asks for a price, you tell them $750....the other guy is at $500 for the same job....I don't give 2 sh*ts how good of a salesman you are, they are going with the $500 guy.

You could have Tony Robbins sit there and explain the value they are getting for the extra money...It won't matter. In this day and age, it is all about the bottom line.
This is true for the most part. Probably near 100% of customers that use lead services are looking for the lowest prices they can find. There is still too large a supply of electricians and handymen that can do this type of work and not enough work to go around. That's the reality I must face.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
That 750 sounds like a side job price. I find it unbelievable a ligit contractor would be able to charge less than 1K for that work. and that would be on the cheap side
It's extremely competitive here in southern California, especially for that small residential work, it's the low hanging fruit. There are gobs of one man shops like mine, side jobbers and handymen, fall out from the recession. That's just a reality I must face.
 

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I am by no means an expert at "finding the reasonable paying customers" but my first suggestion I use to qualify peoples need for an estimate is a charge for the estimate. I generally subtract the price of my estimate fee from the work when the work is completed with in 30 days. I have found it helps two fold: 1. If they balk at the price for an estimate they are usually price shopping and won't have the work done. 2. The 30 day limit helps with people calling years later wanting the estimated price. If it's like 2 months later or something like that (within reasons) I'll usually do the work.
Bear in mind though my business is mostly referral as I am a one man band.
I would never ever hire someone who charged me for an estimate. I just don't like or trust the idea.
We all hate cheap customers and people in general but this is how I feel and I can bet I am not the only person like that.
Estimate suck but it is the way it is. Sometimes your the cheap guy and sometimes you're sky high.
 

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People have less to spend, contrary to what the MSM says the economy is going south. We all see it. And it will get worse.
Weird, I was as busy as I have ever been and I really didn't do anything much to different. I assumed the recession was over.
The only thing I did was raise my prices a ways and did very little new construction that I thought I had to lowball.
 

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Weird, I was as busy as I have ever been and I really didn't do anything much to different. I assumed the recession was over.
The only thing I did was raise my prices a ways and did very little new construction that I thought I had to lowball.
How much of your work is construction/remodel and how much is service/small installs. Whats your split?
 
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