Best Practices: Quote Vestibules Separately


This is a quoting technique that I learned from a good friend in our industry. I will state it briefly and explain my thoughts.

When quoting a Commercial Job, break down the written quote into 3 options: 1) Outside Only, 2) Inside and Outside and 3) Vestibule.

Obviously, this only applies to storefronts that actually have a vestibule.

I have recently adopted this method because the majority of my route work is outside only (I include the inside of the door). But, when the customer requests a price for having the inside done as well, they expect that it will simply be twice the price. I am generally happy with that, if there is the exact same amount of glass on the inside.

The challenge I have found is if there is a vestibule the quote seems exponentially high to the customer.

Let’s use an example based on $1 per pane per side:

Scenario A:
“Widget Store” gets done every 2 weeks for $10, outside only. The Owner approaches you and says he would like to add the inside windows every other cleaning. You do a window count: 10 windows on the inside, 8 panes of glass in the vestibule. So, to add the inside glass it is $26 for a grand total of $36 for everything inside and out. You write the total down and hand it to the owner. If the owner was expecting double ($20) you just blew that price out of the water, and he will ask why it is so high??? Now you have to justify the higher price and… well, I have just always found that to be awkward. The answer usually is “Well, if it is that expensive, then just keep doing the outside only.”

Scenario B:
Same store, same window count. You write down the quote as $20 inside and outside. (Just what the customer expected!) and a line for the vestibule at $16. This validates the expectations of the customer, and helps them to see that there is extra cost for extra work, right from the start. It also gives the owner the option to just have the same windows done on the inside to stay within budget. And, I hate doing vestibules, so giving them the option to leave that out would be awesome. I have found this to be a superior method.

If the customer accepts both the inside/outside and the vestibule, I put that on the invoice as opposed to simply putting “inside and outside”.


Smart way to do things. I’d do it too if I could land some storefronts