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  #1  
Old 07-17-2012, 09:43 PM
irritation's Avatar
irritation irritation is offline
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Location: Indianapolis, IN
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She thinks my bill is unreasonable

She called for me to check the system because it was coming on when it's not supposed to and grass is brown.
First thing I notice is controller off time and at default settings, 10 min a zone every day. I check all zones and all heads and reprogram controller. I billed her 75.00

What would you charge? It's not like I was next door, at least 20 min drive time one way. Long time customer and an old system I didn't install.

I almost called her back when I was hot and tired and tear up the invoice and find someone else.
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Old 07-17-2012, 09:53 PM
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FIMCO-MEISTER FIMCO-MEISTER is offline
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Stick to your guns. You could of been a lot of places and yet you were there to help her. If she can't appreciate that then tough.
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Old 07-17-2012, 10:04 PM
txirrigation txirrigation is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by irritation View Post
She called for me to check the system because it was coming on when it's not supposed to and grass is brown.
First thing I notice is controller off time and at default settings, 10 min a zone every day. I check all zones and all heads and reprogram controller. I billed her 75.00

What would you charge? It's not like I was next door, at least 20 min drive time one way. Long time customer and an old system I didn't install.

I almost called her back when I was hot and tired and tear up the invoice and find someone else.
We charge $105 min. I had a tech come back one day after he plugged in the clients controller, which was the reason the system was not working. The customer didnt want to pay, so I called him and explained it.

1. Tech left shop at 7:30 and did not get to the next repair until 9:15. He paid for the time I lost where I could have made money somewhere else.

2. Gas

3. Insurance Company/Auto/Workers Comp

4. Training Time

5. Lost time

I probably paid $45 to have my tech plug in his controller.
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Old 07-17-2012, 10:12 PM
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DanaMac DanaMac is offline
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$75 for the first half hour on site. That's what I would have charged. If it was an out of area home, with additional drive time, more $ on top of that.

I kindly tell them, "hey if you can bring your sprinkler system to me, I will charge straight labor with no service call fee or minimum charge". I tend to get the pause on the other end of the phone, then the ok I'll send a check. But this is a customer that you may lose due to charge. Some folks don't understand what ti takes to operate a business.
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Old 07-17-2012, 10:27 PM
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irritation irritation is offline
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I'm not worried about losing the customer but I hate confrontation and don't look forward to the phone call. I should have called when I was hot.
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  #6  
Old 07-17-2012, 11:29 PM
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DanaMac DanaMac is offline
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I had to deal with one today as well. $700 to replace a ball valve 6' deep, with a curb stop, going from the line from the well to the house, teeing off for the sprinklers. Some manifold work too. And I already gave him a discount. Lots of labor, not much in materials.
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Old 07-17-2012, 11:42 PM
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irritation irritation is offline
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6' deep? That would require a hole I'm not willing to dig or reach for. Your frost depth is not that deep is it? I would have charged that for the backhoe.
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  #8  
Old 07-18-2012, 12:05 AM
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DanaMac DanaMac is offline
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Supply to the house is typically 6' here. I should have told him to get a plumber with a bucket, but I didn't. My employees dug it, and I got in the hole to replace it. I'm not putting them in jeopardy.
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  #9  
Old 07-18-2012, 06:03 AM
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jvanvliet jvanvliet is offline
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Location: South Florida
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Quote:
Originally Posted by irritation View Post
She called for me to check the system because it was coming on when it's not supposed to and grass is brown.
First thing I notice is controller off time and at default settings, 10 min a zone every day. I check all zones and all heads and reprogram controller. I billed her 75.00

What would you charge? It's not like I was next door, at least 20 min drive time one way. Long time customer and an old system I didn't install.

I almost called her back when I was hot and tired and tear up the invoice and find someone else.
$95.00 to show up for any part of an hour & $95.00 per hour thereafter.
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"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it"
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  #10  
Old 07-18-2012, 06:36 AM
ArTurf ArTurf is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by irritation View Post
I'm not worried about losing the customer but I hate confrontation and don't look forward to the phone call. I should have called when I was hot.
$75 for a service call is not unreasonable. Better to not talk to a customer when you are upset. My philosophy is to not let people get to you, if they make you mad they won. As the saying goes "cool heads prevail". When you need to talk to her have your speech more less prepared. Say something to the effect like txirrigation said.
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