Welcome to The Nature's Quick-Dry Forum. Feel free to post a message.
Sorry to bring this up again. But hopefully my questions will prove to be helpful to the rest of you starting up.
Does anybody here use room pricing? I know most of you have been using sf pricing, and I'm aware of the pros and cons of both approaches...
My questions for any of you room pricers are:
1. What is your definition of a "room"... or do you handle that by having a max room size?
2. Do you have a max room size, if so what?
And questions for everyone:
1. Does anybody have a two tiered service? I've been pondering offering a lower rate for jobs with no furniture moving, no barriers such as pet urine or very trashed/heavily soiled, and possibly offering free protector, some furniture moving, etc. with the higher tiered service.
2. At what point do you charge and how much for furniture? Always an obstacle but very important to many custies.
I can think of both pros and cons to doing this, a con being explaining it on the phone... but it could also sell a lot more protector, and give you an out to discuss the higher tier at the job where you show up and their carpet is totally trashed...
I'm changing my rate structure in early 2007, right now leaning toward 30/room with a 200 sf max per room and .20/sf after. It's probably just about the same as charging .20/sf but avoids the measuring.
If I did the tiered service I was thinking 25/room for the first tier and 40/room for the second tier.
When I've seen fliers from a per-room c.c. company, there is usually some fine print at the bottom stating what is a room, or an area, and how many s.f. will be done for that rate, with an additional s.f. charge of
X cents for rooms/areas which are larger. You don't want to get stuck having to clean a whole basement playroom (possibly 400 s.f.!) for your minimum room rate. I've also seen many huge master bdrm suites as well, sitting atop a spacious 3-car garage.
i've looked though as many phone books as i could and a bunch of peoples web pages just to see what other people are doing...
the sqft max tends to be 200-300 sqft... typicaly the 200...
another thing i notice and know from a past experiance from having a house rug-sucked is that they tend to consider a room as a one use room... so if you have a long room and they split it into a dinning room and living room it counts as 2 rooms... they do the same w/ "offsets"...
while I understand why they do that it seems kind of sleezy to me which is one reason i plan to do sq-ft pricing... while i understand it'll take a little more time it doesn't have that bait-n-switch feel that the "multi use room charge" does... add to that the lazer messuring tools are fairly inexpensive these days and they can mesure sq-ft for you... :) of course that doesn't competly replace the traditional tape mesure method, but it'll help (just a note though they are typicaly off by an inch or 2 in my experiance... which adds up to insurance comp's ******** when doing water damage stuff... not an issue for CCing ;-)
as for Tiered service... I plan to... at servpro we had a fairly simple method... prices aren't exact as I forget the exacts... but not far off...
$0.20... only very small firniture moving (dinning room chairs, some lamps ect)... we'd pre-treat the stains/spots w/ a generic spotter but beyond that it didn't get much attention...
$0.25 moving all but the largest furniture (heavy stuff like entertainment systems, large desks ect)...
$0.28, moved all furniture... or if it was heavily soiled/lots of stain work (basicly this was the price for the nasty .20 jobs)
protectant was always extra... 1/2 the cleaning price
IMHO this system worked well... rooms where mesured in their entirety, wall to wall even when just doing "open areas"
I've read on the other boards "charge for your time" this to an extent gives you that... you charge a little more for slightly heavier soiled carpets and/or moving stuff...
i'm reading something though jon-don right now that mentions this... (glanced over it haven't had a real chance to read it yet) it's all part of them trying to get you to goto some marketing class... for free i'm enjoying the reading though :)
My minimum trip charge is 75 this is one rm or one spot, I charge 2 rms for 100
each rm after that is 35.00 one rm to me is about a 200 sq ft.
This is for res work only.
If you are to be working by yourself, I would not even consider moving such heavy, complex items as entertainment centers, full dressers and chests of drawers, pianos, etc. Things like sofas and heavy chairs move easily , though, on sliders. I provide a pack of 8 furniture sliders with my package.
a local aqquantiance that bought out his friends carpet cleaning biz here had a neat little lever so he could put the slider pads under... one of these days i'll snag a pic of it... bascily it looks like a clean painted crowbar w/ wheels at the leverage point... he said it was given to him by some company, he uses it to lift up heavier couches and stuff to put the slides under... and to help block them up (he's a HWE guy)
We charge .30 cent a square foot if we don't have to move furniture, and .35 cents if we do. We do not move entertainment centers, big screen TV's, computer stands, or desk with the computer on them, dressers or china cabinets unless they are empty. We generally don't move couches, loveseats, large chaires, or sectionals, we simply tilt them onto there front or back, allowing us to clean under them, then we put tabs where the feet marks are in the carpet and tilt them back into place. Very easy to do even by your self.
The tool Donaldson was talking about is called a lift buddy, and they can be bought from Interlink supplies, Jon Don, Sunbelt usa, or magic wand company. They sell for about $52.00
We tell our customers that if they don't move their large furniture around, so it's in the same place all the time, then they don't need to clean under it because it is not walked on, therefore not dirty, maybe a little dusty, but not dirty. Since we charge by the square foot, if we don't clean under the furniture then they will save money because we take that square foot out of the room and we will charge .05 cents less a sqare foot. IMO you can't get paid enough for moving a lot of furniture. It's back breaking and time consuming, I'd rather just clean the walk areas and make a little less, and move on to the next client.
I like your method jim... where i had worked before we had to move larger furniture occasionaly... it was REALY bad durring a water-damage and there where lots of valuables involved akk...
I think i'll likely follow your suit in that aspect... not having to worry about braking over priced nic-nacks is a good thing... and paying for them is even worse
side note i realy like the "tilting" of the furniture idea... limits movment of peices... but is it realy nessasary to use a pad under the feet? i know we're dealing with a lot less mositure... while i see it nessasary for HWE do we realy need to worry about it w/ OP? or is it more of a "just in case" for you?
Mark, on light oak, pine, etc you probably don't need them. On dark colored wood you will. On Plastic and metal no. Metal however if unprotected could cause a rust stain. So we always tab everything except plastic and most light colored wood. It doesn't take a lot of moisture to cause dark colored wood to bleed into the carpet and it's a bi- ch to get out.
thanks for the response jim... do you typicaly use the plastic sleeves or the foil type?... maybe the foam blocks?
I've been using sandwich bags. I think the foam blocks probably appear more professional, but sandwich bags are cheap and get the job done. I've never seen the foam blocks for sale anywhere so I don't have any. Speaking of professional, where do you folks get little footies to slip over your shoes after you're done cleaning to do your post-vac?
Great service with them.