Michael Stone’s latest blog post for Markup and Profit responds to a reader’s question about how companies should go about pricing small jobs. Small jobs include changing screen doors, fixing different pieces of trim, etc. Should companies say yes to these often low-profit jobs or turn down these types of jobs from the get go? Is the time and energy worth the small profit that companies get from taking on these jobs?
Stone says that handyman work requires efficiency and thorough knowledge of building and construction. If you’re a slow thinker and unable to be a quick problem solver, Stone recommends that you turn down these types of jobs or offer "insane prices" so you at least can make a profit.
If you're going to do the work, charge what you might call an insane price and let them know your rates before you show up. There is a good chance they'll still want to hire you. That's because you might consider it an insane price, but they'll consider it reasonable because they want the work done and they can't get anyone else to even return their phone calls.
Never forget that you're in business to provide a service and make a profit doing it. You are not in business to drive around and give out free estimates, and you aren't in business to do small jobs and lose money on them. You can't take care of yourself or your family when you're giving away your knowledge, your time or your skills.
To read Stone’s full advice, click below.