Emergency Service

Discussion in 'Irrigation' started by JimLewis, Aug 14, 2006.

  1. JimLewis

    JimLewis LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,841

    I just came up with the idea to offer an "emergency service" for irrigation systems. The idea came out of necessity. Our irrigation tech. is always booked up at least 1.5-2 weeks in advance. And often people call wanting someone to come out and fix their leak or whatever RIGHT AWAY. Well, the problem is two-fold. First, most companies around here don't have FT dedicated irrigation techs. Second, those that do are always booked up for several weeks. So customers who have a more urgent need really don't have anywhere to turn to.

    So I asked my tech. how much money he'd have to make to stay late and do an "emergency" repair, if someone asked. It would obviously have to be done after he finished his already scheduled work that day. He and I agree on a rate that our company would charge and a rate I'd pay him.

    So last week we got our first call for such work. A customer needed us to come out and fix some sprinkler problems right away. So I informed him we charged $200 to show up and then $100 per man hour plus materials for the work. He agreed.

    Today I invoiced him for $3250.00. Not bad for 24 hrs. of work. I think we did well on that job. payup

    Any other irrigation companies out there offer an emergency service? If so, what are your rates for this work?
  2. Hank Reardon

    Hank Reardon LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 599

    I hear that is common in the Seattle and Eastside area. The company we sub our Eastside work to has a similar policy. Their minimum is $150 to show up and I believe they would only do the minimum to get you up again.

  3. Without A Drought

    Without A Drought LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,020

    For us it depends on the situation. If it's off hours, (which there's very few of), and we can instruct the homeowner to turn the water off, and we'll get there the next day, price remains unchanged. If it's a real hassle to get a guy there ASAP, and it's off hours, prices double, and in most cases we'll turn the water off and return during business hours. Let's face on residentials, there's not too much that qualifies as a major emergency (and almost nothing that can't be solved with a "ok take handle with our tag and turn it so the handle is perpendicular to the pipe)

    but that's us. any other "i have broken head and you HAVE to get here today", we can usually accommodate as part of our regular service to our customers. even if it means the boss has to get dirty!

  4. JimLewis

    JimLewis LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,841

    WTF? What you talkin' 'bout, Willis? Boss get dirty???? You must be out yo damm mind, talkin' crazy like that! :hammerhead:
  5. PurpHaze

    PurpHaze LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,496

    C'mon Jim... You coulda spiced it up a little. :laugh:

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  6. DanaMac

    DanaMac LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,156

    If we are booked 2-3 weeks out, and it's a new customer, then probably not. Good existing customer, maybe. After hours? Heck during the busy season I'm at it from 7:00-7:00 and then hours of phone calls, scheduling, invoicing, etc. I also don't want my customers demaning my work schedule like that. I have done it in the past, years ago, and the people tend to be demanding about everything else as well.

    But for that, maybe.

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