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Old 10-11-2013
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Re: Hiring Contractors - Are component/part prices typically higher than online?

There are no hard and fast rules. It's up to the business person to make their own choices.

In my marine business "stuff" falls into one of four categories:

1. Customer purchases - I'll point them to the best value (price and customer service) I am aware of. I'll accept delivery (big help to cruisers) and bench test at my regular rate.

2. I purchase - I'll get the best price I can and charge retail. I don't charge separately for my time tracking things down, ordering, receiving, and bench testing.

3. I stock - I get my best price and charge retail.

4. Odds & ends - This covers adhesive shrink connectors and terminals, wire ties, tape, and other small odds and ends. I charge a subjective shop fee, usually somewhere between $5 and $50. Any customer that wants an actually count can have one, but I charge my labor rate to count and tabulate. Once I spend the time to count the shop fee is off the table.

I don't charge for tools or consumables like drill bits and Fein blades. I don't charge for research. I don't charge when I make a mistake and have to fix it.

I don't charge for after service e-mail support.

None of these are rules - just how I do business. Other tradespeople make other choices.
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