I am thinking of raising the price of a regular window this year. What do you charge?
I don’t, I charge by the hour.
If you worked the numbers back, what might the equivalent per window charge be?
For example, you charge $100 per hour and complete 10 windows in one hour. $100 / 10 = $10 per window.
Although i highly doubt most will average 100.00 per hour(on a straight residential clean) a more realistic view would be what the over-all gig comes to at your per pane/per DH price and compare that to the hourly you would like to achieve!
As it will fluctuate immensely.
My $100 per hour charge [B]example[/B] was directed only to Mr. Robinson (see my post) due his unique situation and information he has shared in the past.
What’s wrong with charging $100/per hour for residential?
Who said it was wrong?
The only thing preventing someone from making $100/hr in this trade is a lack of experience (which they will get) and poor pricing on EACH job…of course, there are extenuating factors like physical limitations or other…
The $$$ you make every hour should not fluctuate very much if you have a good bidding system. That includes knowledge of, and ways of factoring specific time and performance obstacles into your bid price. If your standard price for a DH is $10, you cannot always charge $10. Sometimes there is uneven ground, a tree in the way, lots of dirt, difficult screens, paint overspray, shotgun fungus, etc., etc., etc.
Everyone can improve on pricing immediately. Write down bid-notes for all things you can think of that will bring your hourly rate down. Experience will help you along that process. Along with getting faster, you will learn what requires more time/effort. Record these things and make proper adjustments.
The reason I don’t charge per window or even consider the picture samples put on web pages is because the window in question could be on the 13th floor or the first floor - which would mean a great difference in price. The harder the access then the more I increment the price. The state of the window also has a bearing on the time taken so therefore pushes the price up more.
If all the windows were on the ground floor & in good condition, I would be charging $10 in & out - I would have them done in well under an hour with no furniture moving or screens. We are talking different money as soon as the ladders come out. My bottom line is $40 - $50 if the ladders have to come off the truck even for one window.
I don’t know how you guys price when you go to bid? But I like to spend time with the client, ask him to show me all the rooms, all the windows. Walking along next to him with my diary & booties, getting to know him/her & instilling confidence with small talk. I also check for scratches & usually open a few windows if they look like they are stuck fast or have a handle problem. Believe it or not homeowners are pretty impressed seeing that you can open their type of windows, as there are lots of different ones on the market or showing them that the seals are blown & showing them the evidence.
I don’t price the windows but mark time with slashes & add them up at the end. So IIII would be 2 hours. Then you take your houly rate & multiply.
I also find that talking to the customers on the walkabout & seeing potential time wasters such as curtain rails/blinds about to magically fall off, or water fountains/sculptures hindering you, can alter your time dramatically.
I can see from the replys that you know I’m not teaching anyone to suck eggs. I’d be interested to see how many still price windows per pane or & if they can’t work out what time they have to be leaving to fit in the next client. For me - time is money, I often think about that waiting in the bank!
I provide quotes utilizing factor bidding as a base and the same inspection/conversation with the customer as Mr. Robinson.
This is part of selling me, my customer service, and my value to the customer rather than providing a price.
I do an internal reality check to compare the total quote, my hourly goal, and the estimated time it will take me to complete. I’d rather call and inform or reschedule the next customer rather than rush my service and provide quality below my standards.
I just do a quick walk around the exterior. I factor in ladder stands, then I explain the whole process to the potential customer.
This is what we do, this is how we do it, and this is what you’ll get.
Last but not least… This is what it’ll cost.
Not walking the interiors has bitten me a few times but for the most part it’s all worked out.
If they are not home and want me to leave the estimate on the door. I have a cover letter that builds the value and explains the things listed above. I back that up with names and phone numbers of people they can call (references). Then a carbon sheet with the estimate so I have all there info written down, and don’t forget before I enter into my CRM program.
That’s just what works for me.
[I]I do an internal reality check to compare the total quote, my hourly goal, and the estimated time it will take me to complete. I’d rather call and inform or reschedule the next customer rather than rush my service and provide quality below my standards.[/I]
Well put, love the internal reality check bit - thats so true. But at the same time, I’ve done it before & thought to myself thats too high & gone in lower, but was right in the first place. I’d rather walk away than undercut my own scale.
Kind of funny,with all the talk of targeting 100.00 an hour just today…had anew client call she had used a guy that use to clean windows here in Canyon Lake nevertheless…this guy was a “lowballer”
Long story short…i hit her with my price 238.00 2 story (about a 2 hr gig) she comes back with thats over 100.00 an hour i said yes…i know:D so i broke it down in “LAYMANS TERMS” so she had a better understanding.
Needless to say…we landed the gig but…not counting on this one becoming a regular.
Is this a 2hr gig with a two man crew or just one?
Congrats on landing a sweet job.
I would send out a 2 man crew.Basically…like i said i had to break it down to her so…she had a better understanding ,that im not clearing 100.00 an hr but…people still get aggravated knowing we make that kind of money.
As for being sweet? Well…thats pretty standard for us.Some gigs are better then others,we try and concentrate on better paying gigs & those that have the disposable income.
I thought that was a two man job based on what I do…
Flying solo and billing over $100 per hour is sweet…
Two guys billing the same amount… right on target. At least for Oklahoma anyway.
The other day I had a guy say… “but that’s $40 an hour!”
I just grinned and said confidently, “no… that’s $60 an hour… I’ll be in and out in 4hrs max.” He chuckled and asked what my schedule was like.
I can’t imagine a resi window cleaner going for anything other than the ones with disposable income. With this economy, pretty soon they will be the only ones able to own their own homes.
If people get aggravated, I would think it was because they were being charged that kind of money (thrifty), not because you were making that kind of money (jealous or question value.)
So, that’s 2 men for 2 hours? Isn’t that 4 man-hours?
If so, not only wouldn’t you be clearing $100 per hour, you wouldn’t be charging $100 per hour either.
Exactly! Unfortunately…there are still a few cheap skates that can’t handle the fact it costs to run a legit business. Even more so that there having to spend that kind of money,some just can’t get there head around that!
I can say this much about residential. There are alot of different factors that can stumble you up. Every home is different. Experience is what bails you out in some of these situations. I do my best to add in “frustration charges” (over grown bushes, pianos in the way, crazy ladderwork etc). Everyday and every house is different in nailing an hourly target. I concentrate mainly on per pane because it is more of a consistant formula for me. My competition bids this way as well. Keeps me in a competitive range. It is also a great structure for scheduling the days work. If its a 350.00 job, I will set aside about 4 hours for one guy to do (unless we have done it before and have completed it quicker). The office girl doesnt see these jobs and it is helpful in scheduling the daily workload. Very seldom are we running late to jobs because of it (darn traffic!!)