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  #11  
Old 02-10-2011, 10:41 AM
certifiedtek123 certifiedtek123 is offline
 
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I had it written down and ended up getting paid accordingly.

This guy is just real real old school he even recorded my payment in an old ledger.

Thanks for advice its all right on.
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  #12  
Old 02-10-2011, 04:41 PM
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Desktops, I'll go ahead and diagnose at no charge - unless the customer has no intention of getting it repaired, or is getting the diagnostic just to avoid his own work - then it costs. I work a deal out with whoever I need to, and we go on our way.

Laptops, free diagnostic unless I have to take it apart, then it's one hour's labor to put it back together.
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  #13  
Old 02-21-2011, 04:15 PM
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GoHighVoltage GoHighVoltage is offline
 
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As long as you told him what your charges would be up front before you started, then you have every right to charge a diagnostic.

If you just started looking at his computer without telling him your rate, or charges, then you made a critical error, and have no legal stand on charging a diagnostic.

I always make sure my customers know my charges before I start anything. Just as you do when you sign a repair order when you get your car worked on.

Shops charge a set diagnostic fee, and you can apply this to the repair if they want to repair, if not, your time is covered.
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  #14  
Old 02-21-2011, 08:11 PM
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Quote:
Desktops, I'll go ahead and diagnose at no charge
Give yourself some credit for diagnosing desktops. If it's a failed CMOS battery or disconnected cable I charge my $35.00 diagnostic. Otherwise it's a full $100 labor repair to fix hardware and / or software based problems, but they can opt out for just the $35 diagnostic if they don't want to replace an expensive part. I call it my "opt out of hardware repair", otherwise they are under agreement that I fix the thing completely for $100.
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  #15  
Old 02-21-2011, 08:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by parker.casey View Post
Desktops, I'll go ahead and diagnose at no charge - unless the customer has no intention of getting it repaired, or is getting the diagnostic just to avoid his own work - then it costs. I work a deal out with whoever I need to, and we go on our way.

Laptops, free diagnostic unless I have to take it apart, then it's one hour's labor to put it back together.
Why are laptops free?
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  #16  
Old 02-21-2011, 08:44 PM
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Laptops, free diagnostic unless I have to take it apart, then it's one hour's labor to put it back together.
OK. Back up all of my data and reinstall Windows.
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  #17  
Old 02-23-2011, 03:25 PM
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You should ALWAYS charge a diagnostic fee. Every industry does this, auto mechanics, electricians, even doctors for that matter.

If you want to apply the diagnostic fee towards a repair, then that is acceptable or you can keep it separate.

I have had multiple calls of people that "PAID" Best buy Geek Squad to diagnose their computer for $130.00, then want me to double check their diagnostic, for FREE!! Once I say there is a charge, they say they didn't want to spend any more money on it. Then why call another shop?

Some people want you to not only diagnose things, but then once you tell them what is wrong, they say no thanks, and try and do the repairs themselves.

Not worth it. Your time, knowledge, training, equipment, overhead is worth much more then that.

Last edited by GoHighVoltage; 02-23-2011 at 08:36 PM.
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  #18  
Old 02-23-2011, 06:40 PM
GreenCycleComputers GreenCycleComputers is offline
 
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I've been struggling with this myself and finally decided I'll charge half an hour of labor at normal rates for a diagnostic. If they go ahead with the repair no charge (since really that is most of the work anyway trying to figure out what is wrong). If they don't want the recommended fix then I still get paid at least a bit for my trouble. This also tends to eliminate the cheapskates just wanting someone else to diagnose so they can attempt their own repair.

On a side note I got burned in a similar situation with what I thought was going to be a new business client. I responded to an ad for a small business saying they wanted some IT help. Talked on the phone, met up in person, and discussed his needs. Supposedly he wanted quarterly maint on his office machines, a new camera system installed, new backup solution for his server. Well after our meeting I kept trying to get a hold of him to figure out when we were going to start implementing this stuff. I keep getting pushed off ("call me later"). Over a week later I find out he went and had one of his employees implement my backup recommendation. He assured me that they would call me for other IT issues when they come up...Sure...
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  #19  
Old 02-23-2011, 08:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GreenCycleComputers View Post
I've been struggling with this myself and finally decided I'll charge half an hour of labor at normal rates for a diagnostic. If they go ahead with the repair no charge (since really that is most of the work anyway trying to figure out what is wrong). If they don't want the recommended fix then I still get paid at least a bit for my trouble. This also tends to eliminate the cheapskates just wanting someone else to diagnose so they can attempt their own repair.

On a side note I got burned in a similar situation with what I thought was going to be a new business client. I responded to an ad for a small business saying they wanted some IT help. Talked on the phone, met up in person, and discussed his needs. Supposedly he wanted quarterly maint on his office machines, a new camera system installed, new backup solution for his server. Well after our meeting I kept trying to get a hold of him to figure out when we were going to start implementing this stuff. I keep getting pushed off ("call me later"). Over a week later I find out he went and had one of his employees implement my backup recommendation. He assured me that they would call me for other IT issues when they come up...Sure...
I had a guy email me. He had a virus, and wanted to know how to back up his important things. So I figured I would be nice, and emailed him back specific instructions on how to do it. Then told him what I would charge to remove the virus. Then he emailed me again, he was having trouble, so I emailed back and fourth 4 times with baby like instructions. This guy had no clue. So I called him. Walked him through it by phone and finished it by saying that I cannot help him any more, he needs a professional to back up his things, and remove the virus. I ended the call. He preceded to keep calling, leaving voice mails. I sent him an email and explained that this is my lively hood and he needs to hire a professional, even if it is not me he hires. I explained that I got the impression like I was a free support service, and I am not. I told him that I spent a few hours trying to help him already, without any intentions on paying me, and that I couldn't do any more. And I ended it nice. This is the REAL email he sent me back:

Quote:
I'm sorry if you feel that you have wasted your time and given service without any form of payment. You are correct when in that first voicemail I was just looking for some advice. If you are not able to give that advice out over the phone or through email then just state that on the initial contact. I have been calling you and some other computer repair places. You along with others did give small amounts of advice. Of which I am grateful. You are the only one however that has responded negatively to my questions. In response to your being puzzled at why people are asking for free advice it is because these services are extremely expensive and they would like to try and fix it on their own. People are trying to save money. If you feel that you cannot offer this help due to financial reasons then clearly state that on the initial contact. As I said earlier, I'm sorry if you feel you've been wronged or taken advantage of but people would just like to get help sometimes rather than pay the outrageous prices of computer support. Thank you for your time as this will be my last time contacting you!


Last edited by GoHighVoltage; 02-23-2011 at 08:52 PM.
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  #20  
Old 02-23-2011, 08:53 PM
GreenCycleComputers GreenCycleComputers is offline
 
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Wow that's way more than I would have done to be nice. In this case I was more trusting than normal because I was dealing with a business.
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