Go Back   Technibble Forums > The Computer Repair Business > Business and Legal Issues

  Technibble Sponsor

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 01-09-2011, 10:41 PM
Tom Hudson's Avatar
Tom Hudson Tom Hudson is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Redditch
Posts: 19
Tom Hudson is an unknown quantity at this point
Default Charging Friends & Family?

I was just wondering if anyone else has a problem when it comes to charging your friends and family.

I often knock a fiver or two off but sometimes I feel obliged to tell them to not worry if it takes me less than an hour. I recently set up an entire office which included two computers, NAS for backup and storage, wireless printer and little bits here and there. In all it took me over 3 hours which I would normally charge 55 but I did not feel I could ask for this, so I charged 20.

Being a technician is not a full time venture for me and so I do not charge high prices.

Am I being too nice or is this a normal thing to do?
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 01-09-2011, 10:46 PM
ATS's Avatar
ATS ATS is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Aberdeen, WA
Posts: 131
ATS is an unknown quantity at this point
Default

I charge $20 /hr for friends and family unless it is something super quick (minutes) then I say don't worry about it.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 01-09-2011, 11:31 PM
BostonGeek1 BostonGeek1 is offline
Banned
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Boston
Posts: 275
BostonGeek1 is an unknown quantity at this point
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Hudson View Post
I was just wondering if anyone else has a problem when it comes to charging your friends and family.

I often knock a fiver or two off but sometimes I feel obliged to tell them to not worry if it takes me less than an hour. I recently set up an entire office which included two computers, NAS for backup and storage, wireless printer and little bits here and there. In all it took me over 3 hours which I would normally charge 55 but I did not feel I could ask for this, so I charged 20.

Being a technician is not a full time venture for me and so I do not charge high prices.

Am I being too nice or is this a normal thing to do?
Well it depends if you're a professional technician or not. If you're not a professional tech as you say, I would charge whatever you like, but I would definitely be VERY VERY cautious as they can hold you liable for any data loss or damage, since you didn't have them sign an agreement that releases you of any liability. I would definitely explain that you're not a professional and so you don't charge professional 'rates'. If you're saying to yourself, wait a minute, but i'm just as good as the 'professional techs', then you should be explaining to family and friends that this is how you make your living and you can't do it for free, unless its immediate family (father, mother, sister,brother, children, etc)
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 01-09-2011, 11:44 PM
K007's Avatar
K007 K007 is offline
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 947
K007 is an unknown quantity at this point
Default

Friends (closes) and family I charge only for hardware replaced.
I do not charge for labor.
I do it in my spare time.
They all know I do it on my spare time for free and if they want me to charge I would refuse to work all together on their PC's.
I give something for free but I take the right to do it whenever I feel like doing it.
The above goes for home computers.


PS
I have never considered myself as a business person based on the work I get from friends and family.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 01-09-2011, 11:49 PM
GreenCycleComputers GreenCycleComputers is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 100
GreenCycleComputers is an unknown quantity at this point
Default

Its a question every tech has to ask him/her self at some point (unless you just don't have friends/family or you don't charge). It's really up to you and how you feel about the situation. I've just had a couple long standing customers come into day with a computer I sold them awhile ago. Nothing really wrong with his computer but there were a bunch of simple things he didn't quite understand and I couldn't explain over the phone. (lets just say they are a really sweet older couple that don't know anything about computers). Now this guy has bought 2 computers from me, (most recent one was an upgrade to the 1st), a laptop install of win 7, and a ram upgrade for the same laptop. They have also brought me food item (today I got a chocolate cake ). They have also invited us to go to their house on more than one occasional. They also live quite a ways away and could certainly find a closer tech but they keep coming back to me. So at this point I would not feel right charging him just to answer some questions and show him a few things when I know they will keep coming back for upgrades and such.

That being said you will have to find your own comfort level and maintain the balance between that and people monopolizing your time. If it comes to that just tactfully remind them that your time is valuable and you are doing it to make a living.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 01-09-2011, 11:51 PM
Xander's Avatar
Xander Xander is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Niagara region, Ontario
Posts: 6,422
Xander is a jewel in the roughXander is a jewel in the roughXander is a jewel in the rough
Default

Quick answer:
  1. Family and close friends = free
  2. Associates = one-hour fee, even if it takes longer
  3. Everyone else = full charge
(I have one 'associate' who is a masseuse so we barter and she gives me a credit for the wife).
__________________
Xander St Catharines Computer Repairs

New here? Watch this and read this. Remember, it's not our problem, it's yours so ask your questions well.
e.g. Make/Model#, Win version/SP#, BSOD 0x#. Consider posting Event Viewer logs, Autoruns exports or Speccy reports.
More info means better answers and less snark.

Don't be parasitic and only pose your own questions. Help others.

D7 question/idea/etc? Bring it to the D7 Forums.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 01-10-2011, 05:19 AM
Martyn's Avatar
Martyn Martyn is offline
Administrator
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Bedfordshire UK
Posts: 5,260
Martyn has a spectacular aura aboutMartyn has a spectacular aura about
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by eHousecalls.ca View Post
Quick answer:
  1. Family and close friends = free
  2. Associates = one-hour fee, even if it takes longer
  3. Everyone else = full charge
(I have one 'associate' who is a masseuse so we barter and she gives me a credit for the wife).
Ditto and everyone understands it's my living
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 01-10-2011, 05:27 AM
bagellad's Avatar
bagellad bagellad is offline
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Kingston, Ontario
Posts: 816
bagellad is an unknown quantity at this point
Send a message via MSN to bagellad
Default

Just make up a friends and family rate and stick with it. I usually give 50% off. But of course you cant charge your mom, dad and possibly siblings or christmas might be awkward...
__________________
Owner Of..
Computer Heroes, Fast and Friendly Computer Service.
Kingston Ontario Computer Repair

Haunted Woods Games, Indie Game Company
Fun iPhone Games
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 01-10-2011, 06:14 AM
meanderer meanderer is offline
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Brooklyn, NY
Posts: 362
meanderer is an unknown quantity at this point
Default

Take your time and think up a rate table then stick with it.

I don't charge for my direct family - father and brother, etc.
I charge a reduced rate for my closer relatives and friends - 1/2 off my usual price
Full price for the rest.

Before I started the business many relatives come to me for *free* tech work, once my business started all those favors seems to have disappeared....
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 01-10-2011, 07:27 AM
16k_zx81's Avatar
16k_zx81 16k_zx81 is offline
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: South Australia
Posts: 3,791
16k_zx81 is a jewel in the rough16k_zx81 is a jewel in the rough16k_zx81 is a jewel in the rough
Default

http://www.technibble.com/forums/showthread.php?t=5318
http://www.technibble.com/forums/showthread.php?t=16629
__________________
"Do something you love, and you'll never work a day in your life"
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT. The time now is 04:26 AM.


Powered by vBulletin®
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Technibble.com is based out of MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA.