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Finishing Carpenter
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Discussion Starter #1
I'm sitting here wondering why the he$$ why did I break my own rules? crap.

I got a call from someone in a nearby city, one that I almost never go over to due to the fact that it has a very large ethnic community and I virtually never get work there.

I figured, what the heck, the guy sounded reasonable on the phone, so off I go.

1 hour drive, one bridge toll. Met the guy, the house is a dump, but it's cleared out so doing trim work would be pretty easy.

I won't post my price's here as I know that's frowned upon. Anyway I measure up for 120' crown, 440' baseboard, 3 outside doors with locksets, 6 inside doors with locksets, 4 double bifolds, 3 single bifolds, 19 sets of casing.

I didn't hear from the guy for a few days so today I sent him an email, something like "I'm setting my schedule for the next few months, what days would you like me to keep aside for your project?

He sends back, sorry I went with the low bid as the budget is tight on this one.

I sent back, Thanks, can you let me know about how much the low bid was, it will help me in my business.

He sent it back, and wow - low!

I then checked with two buddies in the business, and my local supplier who also does installations.

Turns out that I am waaaay low by their prices. Damn! I cut my prices to the bone this last while as I wasn't getting many bids, but wow.

My problem? don't bid in Surrey! my own damned fault, I never get jobs out there. Folks just do not hire outside their own ethnic community.

Ok, this is more of a rant/***** than educational. guess I needed a lesson/reminder.

gonna go out now and buy a lottery ticket, I have a better chance of making money doing that.
 

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I remember bidding a job once in surrey a few years ago....within five minutes of meeting the guy "if i'm not happy with everything I will not be paying you" just completely negative from the getgo, after I was the sucker who drove out for my free estimate...waste of time... pretty much just drove away after that, had that gut feeling...

Had another person from that community you speak of phone me up... told me she would need a cheaper price.. before I even told her a price...

Although to be fair I have worked in that community for very nice people, made me lunch everyday to sit down with them...paid promptly..
 

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Finishing Carpenter
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1,332 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Ya well, there's the theory of good marketing, good presentation, good price and then theres reality.

I liked the guy! we got along great. I suspect that either he's doing the work himself as he's built a few homes in Maple Ridge, or he has family or friends doing the work. I suspect that the price that he quoted me was B.S. and he's doing the work himself, or using my bid to underpin another guy.

I was almost 1/2 of what the market here in Coquitlam is, and he was $800 less than my bid. It's just not reasonable.

I've got references as well, and proof of my work, and wcb, liability etc etc. I guess that doesn't mean squat.

Guess I'll stick to Vancouver, most of my work is there. Lean this year though! oh well :)
 

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Ya well, there's the theory of good marketing, good presentation, good price and then theres reality.
:D
Yup, one of my filters are areas of cities. Besides the cultural aspect of it, there's also the simple economics of it--sort of like going to a trailer park to do a bathroom or deck.
 

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Yes

In my younger day I would lower prices to get a job, needed money 'cause I had none.

Now that I am almost retired I look back and realized I did work too cheap, but it did keep me busy.

Now my mantra is "I'm expensive but worth it. You can always find someone else to work cheaper so I won't even try to compete. But I only do good work."

Majority of folks accept my price, some don't. You get what you pay for. :thumbup:
 

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Stuck in the Past:)
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Most of my work comes through general contractors, and I'll go wherever they need me. But on my own I try to stay out of Santa Monica, ca. Often called Santa Moscow and/or soviet monica for good reason, the over-regulation of every aspect of life in that turd of a city is disgusting.
Besides districts, I'll avoid doing work for lawyers whenever possible. While I've never personally experienced any of their treachery, the horror stories I've heard from others are enough for me.
 

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Of course not that would be profileing!.
:D :D And without "profiling" there could never be marketing.
And without marketing, there could never be advertising.
And without advertising, there could never be business/commerce.
 

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:D :D And without "profiling" there could never be marketing.
And without marketing, there could never be advertising.
And without advertising, there could never be business/commerce.
Word of mouth?. Free no profiling. No need to go to job site armed:sad:
 

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Head Grunt
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3,270 Posts
No worries of ethnic communities here, but i do follow some of the guidelines when it comes to home owners associations. Dealt with a couple high dollar associations and what a PITA!!!! Not worth it. Right now i do deal with a very small association and one of the founding owners is a friend so i get a lot of work through them now. Whenever anything comes into question i sit right down with my friend to talk to him 1st and then the other board members and tell them just how it is and why. In the last couple yrs i have gotten to know most board members personally and we now have a good work relationship. But other HOA, i shudder and run!
 
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