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Old 01-07-2011, 07:57 PM   #31
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I understand what you are saying. But any work done by whoever should come with complete satisfaction and warranty on parts and labor. The only thing I can add is become a small business owner and the world of work and finances will be seen in a totally different light.
agreed. i just like to know it's done right the first time, even if they fix it the second time for free.
i know guys who own small business, and i only use small businesses for my service vendors (electrical, plumbing, landscaping, general contracting) at work. i'm a firm supporter of small business and i am one of those guys who will patronize mom and pop hardware instead of home depot when i can.

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Old 01-08-2011, 05:02 AM   #32
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what i want to know is, where do shops get off on charging me for an hour's worth of work when the job took 20 minutes?
this is why i do everything i have the ability to myself.
I have come to realize sometimes it only takes them a few minutes because of the years of knowlege and the better tools. I do try to do stuff myself but sometimes its better to give in and let someone else get the job done.

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Old 01-08-2011, 07:01 AM   #33
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My gripe in my first post was not about people complaining about how much they are being charged. I rarely get people who complain about that. We never so a repair and the tell the customer "it's done here's you're bill." We do and estimate and try to give worst case scenario so when the bill comes in at or below the estimated price the customer is happy. My shop may not be the fastest or cheapest, but I try to make a point of being the most courteous and honest. It males my job a lot easier and my customers a lot happier that way.

My problem in my initial post is that time is relative to what they want. A customer can say "I dropped it off 2 weeks ago" when it was actually only a week ago. I can't use the same time defying logic when billing a repair. If the repair takes me 1 hour I can't bill for 2 because it is not fair to the customer. My main point is if you are going to call and be rude and complain to a friendly person on the phone at least know your time frame, or else you just sound like a jerk.
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Old 01-08-2011, 08:11 AM   #34
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yeah, the case in the original post deserved to be griped about. i figured as long as we were discussing shops and customer service. if i knew the reaction it was going to generate, i would have just kept it to myself, lol.
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Old 01-08-2011, 08:17 AM   #35
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I just got my Jeep serviced at a local shop that just moved here from a nearby town. They do a quality job compared to the stealerships that my parents take our suburban to that leave grease stains on leather seats, break stuff, change the wrong part, etc. This shop not only quoted me a 'worst case scenario' price lower than any other shop but he charges by the tenth of an hour (so I only pay for the actual time it takes them), I got $10 off the hourly wage because the president gives our local Jeep club a discount, 10% off because I showed up at their grand opening and shot the breeze with them, and the service was done earlier than expected. I'm happy with them and will definitely be going back. That is how a customer should be treated: with a personal touch. I also like supporting small businesses so its a win : win.
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Old 01-08-2011, 10:40 AM   #36
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I have been on both sides of this.Waiting for parts for equipment needed on the jobsites,having foreman's scream at me over the phone because their stuff wasn't done yesterday.THEN I'm on the phone chewing butt because my parts aren't in or someone dropped the ball ordering them.The stress level was up there.I've learned over the yrs that its not worth the trouble of trying to please everyone or getting upset because the middleman don't jump on my orders on the spot.When I deal with a counter person who is having troubles dealing with the assh&le before me I smile and say "Isn't P.R. work a dreamjob?"Just treat people like you want to be treated and altho it might not seem like it at first,it will come back around for you.Either that or hang a shotgun on the wall behind you.
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Old 01-08-2011, 10:50 AM   #37
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I have a question for Jess or anyone else that runs a repair type business. When a customer brings an item in, do you charge them a diagnostic fee? If you do and the customer has you perform the necessary repairs, do you still charge for the diagnostics or do you waive that fee? Another scenario, a customer comes and tells you what is wrong and what it will take to fix the problem, but for some reason or another is incapable of doing the work themselves, do you still charge a diagnostic fee?
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Old 01-08-2011, 11:18 AM   #38
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I have a question for Jess or anyone else that runs a repair type business. When a customer brings an item in, do you charge them a diagnostic fee? If you do and the customer has you perform the necessary repairs, do you still charge for the diagnostics or do you waive that fee? Another scenario, a customer comes and tells you what is wrong and what it will take to fix the problem, but for some reason or another is incapable of doing the work themselves, do you still charge a diagnostic fee?
we do have a $25 estimate fee, but i usually don't charge it at all. if the customer chooses to have the repair done at my shop or if they purchase a replacement piece of equipment, i waive the fee. to be perfectly honest, the only time i have charged the estimate fee is when a customer is being an absolute jerk; example: if you scream at me because your craptacular chainsaw cost you $125 at walmart and i want $75 to repair it ($50 for the carburetor and $25 for the labor to install it), then yes you get the estimate fee. i like to call it the a**hole charge. really the customer's attitude dictates whether or not they get the charge. i give the customer every opportunity to be nice back to me. i can look past a customer yelling and being a jerk if they change their attitude and realize that i am not in the business of taking advantage of them. i explain to the customer why the cost is the way it is, and they usually change their tone when they realize that i am not trying to rake them over the coals and that i value their business.

most of the time we can figure out what is wrong with the machine just by them telling us the symptoms, which means there is no reason for an estimate fee. if they tell me what is wrong then, no, there is no charge, they have done the work for me.

i run a super small family business (me, my husband, my father, & my brother). it is to my advantage to treat my customers like i would like to be treated. my entire family's well being depends on it. if i act like a jerk and take advantage of my customers, i lose business. if i lose business, no one in my family has a job. simple as that. i say thank you to my customers after they have a repair done or make a purchase, i usually try to call them a few weeks after the repair to make sure everything is still going well. i have also honored my 30 day guarantee months after it is over. my business is not perfect, and i am sure we have some unhappy customers, but i try my best to keep them few and far between. i try my best to operate my business much differently than the "big box stores" and the larger repair shops in my area. All my customers have names not $ sign. i am not trying to have a sales pitch here, what i want people to realize is that a lot of small business operate like mine, not everyone is trying to take advantage of you.

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Old 01-08-2011, 11:41 AM   #39
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Originally Posted by JDsDream View Post
I have a question for Jess or anyone else that runs a repair type business. When a customer brings an item in, do you charge them a diagnostic fee? If you do and the customer has you perform the necessary repairs, do you still charge for the diagnostics or do you waive that fee? Another scenario, a customer comes and tells you what is wrong and what it will take to fix the problem, but for some reason or another is incapable of doing the work themselves, do you still charge a diagnostic fee?
My response and situation is a little different than Jess's. When a customer brings me a firearm for repair they typically don't know what is wrong only that it is not functioning correctly. Customers rarely know the difference between types of failures. I charge $30 for a "Clean and Inspect". This charge stays with the gun regardless whether or not they have me repair it because I have already performed a service. It is very common that the C&I fixes the problem. When more work is required I call the customer with a quote of work that needs to be done. I get stuck with too many repairs unclaimed. Currently i have six repaired rifles that have been sitting for twelve months or longer. I try very hard to get people to pick them up but sometimes I have to sell the gun to pay for the bill. If I sell the gun for more than the bill I send the customer a check for the balance.

My shop is also family owned and operated by my cousin and I. Everything in the shop is owned by us. We received financial help from nobody and we take a lot of pride in that. We enjoy making our customer laugh and having a good time. We are not the only gun shop but we are the first one people talk about when the topic comes up. Let me tell you nothing makes you more proud than standing in line at a box store and hearing total strangers talk about your shop.
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Old 01-08-2011, 11:54 AM   #40
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My response and situation is a little different than Jess's. When a customer brings me a firearm for repair they typically don't know what is wrong only that it is not functioning correctly. Customers rarely know the difference between types of failures. I charge $30 for a "Clean and Inspect". This charge stays with the gun regardless whether or not they have me repair it because I have already performed a service. It is very common that the C&I fixes the problem. When more work is required I call the customer with a quote of work that needs to be done. I get stuck with too many repairs unclaimed. Currently i have six repaired rifles that have been sitting for twelve months or longer. I try very hard to get people to pick them up but sometimes I have to sell the gun to pay for the bill. If I sell the gun for more than the bill I send the customer a check for the balance.
that is very commendable. i don't know too many places that would be willing to do that.
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My shop is also family owned and operated by my cousin and I. Everything in the shop is owned by us. We received financial help from nobody and we take a lot of pride in that. We enjoy making our customer laugh and having a good time. We are not the only gun shop but we are the first one people talk about when the topic comes up. Let me tell you nothing makes you more proud than standing in line at a box store and hearing total strangers talk about your shop.
i am the same way. i have no problem joking with and talking to a customer for an hour about non-business stuff. i like the friendly atmosphere that big business lacks. i have never hear anyone at a big box store talk about my place, but i have customers that work at the big box stores that have sent people to me me for parts, repairs, and even new equipment.
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Old 01-08-2011, 12:01 PM   #41
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that is very commendable. i don't know too many places that would be willing to do that.


The sad part is some of the customers that this has happened to complains that they could have sold the gun for more.
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Old 01-08-2011, 12:16 PM   #42
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The sad part is some of the customers that this has happened to complains that they could have sold the gun for more.
sadly, i'm not surprised.
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Old 01-16-2011, 01:42 AM   #43
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agreed. i just like to know it's done right the first time, even if they fix it the second time for free.
i know guys who own small business, and i only use small businesses for my service vendors (electrical, plumbing, landscaping, general contracting) at work. i'm a firm supporter of small business and i am one of those guys who will patronize mom and pop hardware instead of home depot when i can.
i always avoided home depot and Lowes, but what do you do when its friends and neihbors that work there and the small shop owners and employees live out of town.

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