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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Okay so my wife does the "office" work for my small but growing company. I have worked for a great boss mentor for about 6 years then I opened a bike shop with two other guys that didn't work out. Aaaanyway she complains about what appears to be a fluctuation in my pricing. I simply tell her that every job is different and I dont have a exact formula for pricing a job. Any suggestions or comments on pricing.
Thanks.
 

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Don't know quite know what she means by fluctuations. Every job is different I look at every job. I don't price per door, window, opening or sq footage. I just figure how long it will take me plus materials.

You can use a per opening, per linear ft or whatever but it's not always going to work.
 

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Take her comment seriously. Is she noticing something you didn't? Every job is different. Have her show you examples and then figure out why there is fluctuation. Could be completely legitimate. Maybe some jobs are further away. Some jobs may require you moving furniture. Maybe she picked up on something you hadn't thought about.
 

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Joseph A. Capece
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You'll see it all over this site with a little research:

Labor + Material + Overhead (takes some time to figure out but a necessary part of the process) + Profit (how much profit you want to make is up to you. Your market may limit you here) + PITA factor (some jobs aren't worth doing without a heavy PITA factor).
 

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I was just asked to provide pricing on a rehab in a “less than desirable" part of town. So much so, pricing may include someone to watch the truck - all day. Not kidding.

I've been thinking about that PITA factor a good part of the night. lol

It's like Jimmy Buffett: if you want him to play at your wedding, it's going to cost you over a million dollars. Why? Because he really don't want to do it, but if he does its going to be enough money that it would be crazy for him not to.
 

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It's not mentioned in your post, but I'm assuming you're asking about how to price a paint job. You need to have a system. Figure out how long it will take to complete a job, then figure out how much material you'll need, then mark it up for profit. If you're really good, you'll time how long it takes to complete specific surfaces with specific material. Then use those numbers to create your "Production Rate." This production rate will help you determine how long future projects will take, making your estimates much more accurate.
 

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You'll see it all over this site with a little research:

Labor + Material + Overhead (takes some time to figure out but a necessary part of the process) + Profit (how much profit you want to make is up to you. Your market may limit you here) + PITA factor (some jobs aren't worth doing without a heavy PITA factor).
I agree, you should have a formula to price all of your jobs with your profit never to be forgotten. I would rather price high with a profit then to get a job with hardly any profit. Yes you can add on more for more difficult jobs or PITA customers BUT it should still be a formula.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks for all of the comments guys. I thought my question was clear about pricing but wanted to first give my years of experience to show it wasn't my first time at the rodeo.
Well to the guys who did get it again thanks. I do base jobs on a few different factors and come up with two numbers and try to get the median number. I recently raised my day rate 200 dollars more a day and hired 2 really good guys in addition to the two I already have. I am realizing that I am not going to sacrifice the quality of my work to get a job where I am cursing myself the entire time because I know I am not making money. I feel my level of clients who except high end work is growing from developers, real estate agents to owners.
It sounds to me like all prices fluctuate even if the job is the same printable sqft.
What is "pita" ?
 

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pricing is the hardest element to grasp for most contractors.

You better have an exact formula otherwise you're going to leave money on the table.

Your wife should know exactly what the labor burden is for each employee and how much you need to make off each employee. That will give a good base for estimating your jobs. Multiply each employees daily labor burden x the days estimated to work the project.

Then you add in all the other direct costs, primer, paint, rollers, rags, tape, fuel, etc.. to include P&O on top of all those other costs.

That in a nut shell will give you a base to start from and at least get you close to where you need to be.

Bike Shop? motorcycle or bicycle?
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thanks guys

It was a bicycle shop, geared towards bmx bikes.

The hard part for me is being ethical and figuring how much I dhould make off of each employee? And how much there costing me with workers comp.

I think I have a formula now in that I pay a guy 180 a day and ask for 200 a day.
I called a guy the other day and he was going to charge me 350 a day for his guys. Which makes me think is he greedy or am I under charging?
I lost 3 jobs last week and I'm a little torn dont worry ill figure it out. I am good for this month and happy about that. But I really appreciate you guys input.
 

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Thanks guys

It was a bicycle shop, geared towards bmx bikes.

The hard part for me is being ethical and figuring how much I dhould make off of each employee? And how much there costing me with workers comp.

I think I have a formula now in that I pay a guy 180 a day and ask for 200 a day.
I called a guy the other day and he was going to charge me 350 a day for his guys. Which makes me think is he greedy or am I under charging?
I lost 3 jobs last week and I'm a little torn dont worry ill figure it out. I am good for this month and happy about that. But I really appreciate you guys input.
How is $20 per day making any profit if you're paying comp?
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
What I think I am trying to figure out is my day rate. I know a decorative painter and he tries to get 600 a day. For me at the moment I think 400 a day is fair.
Now if I pay a guy 180 day how much do I charge the client?
I feel like I know the answer but I just haven't heard what I wanted to hear yet. My comp is about 3500 a year and insurance 2300. I guess I am looking for a formula, if one even exists.
Maybe I need to figure out how much I want to make a year and go from there.
Dont judge me guys I may be over thinking this but I just want to protect myself and be successful
 

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I think a comprehensive math test should be required for anyone to start a business. We all know that 90% of business fail. I am sure that not understanding the math is the root cause for most of those failures.
 
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