Done a quote last weekend for a potential new client, regular fortnightly maintenance with lawns to be sorted and generally improvements all round, new borders and plants, veg patch, shrubs removed etc.
Nice job, only they thought my rates were a bit high, any how, explained I run a full time business with all the associated running costs, professional tools, tax, insurance etc plus of course my knowledge in to the bargain. They said they understood and appeared quite keen, they had a few other people coming to give quotes but i felt i had a good chance of winning the work.
Had a call today and he explained that although i appeared to be the most knowledgeable person, and that having discussed with other tradesmen, the going rate was closer to £15 an hour but they would be happy to pay a little more and was i able to drop my price. Now i had already explained initially that my price was per visit not a set hourly rate and also included spot treatment of weeds as necessary. But as with most people they had calculated the rate from my quoted 1.5 hr approx price per visit.
After explaining i have plenty of clients happy to pay my rates and that i didnt need to drop my price just to secure his work, he decided to go elsewhere.
This was a nice big house, new car, fairly large garden and i got the impression he ran his own business, but they were definately of the opinion that although they wanted the garden to look great 'its only gardening' and is therefore low value! AArrrggghhhhh so do it your bloody self! I had told him during the initial visit, that you get what you pay for and i hope they do!!..
Here here, if they ever sort it out, if not you've got to just ignore unskilled competition or it would drive you nuts. We should all be too busy being damned good to have any time to worry.
One thing I suspect on here is though (from experience of other forums and even thefts and burglaries occurring because of them) is that these same 'give it a go' folk, whether legitimate or not and whether they post on, or even join this site, are most probably 'watching' and most probably on here nicking all of your info and reiterating it to customers the next day! You do see a fair amount of very, very, basic questions being asked on here from people who are supposedly already in business doing something which they clearly don't understand or have any knowledge of. In that respect, and with the wealth of knowledge being poured out on here, how do you prevent this site from helping cowboys or even your own competition? Nothing wrong with educating people who are genuinely making an effort or are genuinely in need of help but it's the one thing that's confused me since joining here. Isn't it a bit tooo 'open'. What's to stop your next potential customer joining and realising that they can have basic work done for half the price by deliberately seeking out a moron? lol.
This is a good point Duncan. You do have to be wary what you post on the internet.