Flat Rate or T&M?

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice' started by D'Brie, Sep 30, 2009.

?

Flat Rate of time & Material?

  1. I do flate rate

    66.7%
  2. I do time & material

    16.7%
  3. Other

    16.7%
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. D'Brie

    D'Brie Apprentice Plumber

    Messages:
    44
    Location:
    NW Washington State
    I read the forums quite regularly and have been enjoying my education here. I'd enjoy hearing the opinions of our more seasoned members on the pros and cons between flate rating jobs or charging by time & material. Thanks!
  2. Basement_Lurker

    Basement_Lurker One who lurks

    Messages:
    668
    Location:
    Victoria, BC
    wasn't this poll already done?
  3. D'Brie

    D'Brie Apprentice Plumber

    Messages:
    44
    Location:
    NW Washington State
    Maybe but I did not find one.
  4. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    15,300
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    Most plumbers either bid a job or flat rate it.

    There is only so much time in the day for making large lists of items, pricing them, typing them, jeeze, if plumbers wanted to go white collar, they would have stayed in school.

    The only way I would do Time and Material, is if the homeowener would pay me for all of that book work.
    I have had some jobs that would have taken an extra eight hours to compile a list.

    Most things we do so often, we can just look at it and know what it should be.

    When I go to a resturant, I read the menu and order.
    Bam! There's the price, and I want it!
  5. D'Brie

    D'Brie Apprentice Plumber

    Messages:
    44
    Location:
    NW Washington State
    Hey Terry, thanks for the info. I'm a second year apprentice (at age 49) loving the work (when we have it) and wanted to know what other plumbers thought. Our shop is flat rate (with a few exceptions) also for the same reasons as you mentioned. If you get up to Whatcom County sometime drop me a note I know where a few good pubs are here. :D
  6. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    27,054
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    poll

    You have to differentiate between the sizes of the jobs you are asking about. Larger projects are done using an estimate, but while that is a "flat rate" to the customer, it is a calculated using a type of time and material format. Small/service jobs may lend themselves to either, BUT, since they are not "cut and dried" like the tasks in an automobile repair Blue Book, the time required to perform the task can vary according to the technician's ability and the job circumstances. Time and material can accomodate those variations at the time of invoicing. Doing them "flat rate" means you either lose money on the "difficult" jobs, OR you charge EVERY job as if it were going to be difficult, thus overcharging the majority of your clients.
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