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#2989309 06/09/20 07:58 AM
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Duaner Offline OP
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I usually don't travel very far out of my "district" really and have established a fair charge per travel that I base on travel-time spent rather than price per mile (Kilometre). Having said that I have a call that is probably a two hour drive from my house. I don't have to take it and I wouldn't usually but it is a challenge as several things are wrong with the piano. It's the challenge really and the chance to make someones piano life a whole lot better.

Having said all that I have a simple question, I think, and it's this: What is a fair charge per mile (K)? what do you use for the "distance" run? I mean I know what I will use if say no one answers this question but I like to compare really to see if I'm being fair to the customer and to myself also. tks.


Duane Graves


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Myself, I don't like to be nickle/dimed so I try not to nickle/dime others. I have a general hour-rate. A tuning call is 3 times that, one hour-rate to get me to the door and back, and two hour-rates to tune, which will include minor adjustments and include a quick pitch raise if needed. Pinblock treatments get charged one hour-rate, even though it doesn't take that long. It's a valuable service, and the piano tilter wasn't cheap. Not to mention lugging it into the vehicle and out again...

Sometimes it takes a few minutes of travel and sometimes it takes closer to an hour. I charge the same. But if it takes me much more than an hour of total travel time, I usually add one hour-rate There's been times I have added two hour-rates.

Is it "fair"? I dunno, but I am comfortable with it and it avoids discussion likes "How come you charge me more than my cousin? We are in the same County, you know."


Jeff Deutschle
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Duane,

If it is two hours away that means you'll be on the road at least 4 hours out of the day. That's half a days work. Charge accordingly.

You might say: "You are well out of my normal working area and I'm happy to refer you to a competent tech much closer to you, however if it really is ME you want then the cost would be $xxx over and above whatever work I do". Then see what they say. If cost is no object they will have no problem. Make it worth your while. Your not in this for fun.

Pwg


Peter W. Grey, RPT
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I agree completely with Peter. How much money would you make for the same total amount of time if you stayed within your usual territory?
You have to be fair to yourself as well as the customer.


Gerry Johnston, Registered Piano Technician
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What is "fair"? Why does someone call a technician so far away?


excuse my bad english, I'm not native. Corrections are always welcome!
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Originally Posted by Andymania
What is "fair"? Why does someone call a technician so far away?


"What is Fair?" Maybe it depends on one's views of positive and negative rights. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Negative_and_positive_rights

I tune a particular piano once a year that is an hour away, and charge extra. Why do they call me? First, they personally know me, but also the venue is very pleased with my work. Then there is an odd situation. The local tuner and a nearby tuner have a territorial agreement, as I understand it. Few seem to be happy with the work of the local tuner, but since I am not a party to the agreement, I sometimes get calls to tune in the area.


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Originally Posted by UnrightTooner
Originally Posted by Andymania
What is "fair"? Why does someone call a technician so far away?


"What is Fair?" Maybe it depends on one's views of positive and negative rights. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Negative_and_positive_rights

I tune a particular piano once a year that is an hour away, and charge extra. Why do they call me? First, they personally know me, but also the venue is very pleased with my work. Then there is an odd situation. The local tuner and a nearby tuner have a territorial agreement, as I understand it. Few seem to be happy with the work of the local tuner, but since I am not a party to the agreement, I sometimes get calls to tune in the area.

Be sure not to give the name(s) of anyone who is party to a territorial "agreement" unless you want to get them in hot water. Such a thing -- even at an informal, verbal level-- is explicitly illegal and directly in violation of anti-trust laws. Moreover, even acknowledging the presence of such an agreement (in the sense of accepting its existence) is skating on thin ice. Any sort of allocating customers or defining geographic boundaries is a violation.


Keith Akins, RPT
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Originally Posted by kpembrook
Originally Posted by UnrightTooner
Originally Posted by Andymania
What is "fair"? Why does someone call a technician so far away?


"What is Fair?" Maybe it depends on one's views of positive and negative rights. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Negative_and_positive_rights

I tune a particular piano once a year that is an hour away, and charge extra. Why do they call me? First, they personally know me, but also the venue is very pleased with my work. Then there is an odd situation. The local tuner and a nearby tuner have a territorial agreement, as I understand it. Few seem to be happy with the work of the local tuner, but since I am not a party to the agreement, I sometimes get calls to tune in the area.

Be sure not to give the name(s) of anyone who is party to a territorial "agreement" unless you want to get them in hot water. Such a thing -- even at an informal, verbal level-- is explicitly illegal and directly in violation of anti-trust laws. Moreover, even acknowledging the presence of such an agreement (in the sense of accepting its existence) is skating on thin ice. Any sort of allocating customers or defining geographic boundaries is a violation.

Thanks for the reminder - to all of us. In this case it is all hearsay on my part. Don't even know their names. Kinda doubt the local tuner is in business anymore, but I get the idea people still believe the agreement is still in effect.

Guess my point was there can be odd reasons a tuner is called to travel outside their usual area.


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My rates are based on distance. One rate is for up to 50 miles. I have rates for each distance traveled up to 125 miles.


David Schwoyer
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I don't charge for travel. I service pianos in a one hour and twenty minute radius and they all just get charged my regular rate. I try to get at least a couple of calls in when I travel out of the town I live in. Maybe I'm cheating myself, but it makes things much simpler. Besides, whichever way I go it's a beautiful drive. If I were living in a big metropolitan area things might be different.


Bob Runyan, RPT
Chico, CA
www.runyanpiano.com

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