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Pricing too high?



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jimmystevens

Hi guys, newbie here

 

How do you guys price domestic jobs, £1 per window and £2 for big stuff? All my quotes seem to get a negative response for being too expensive

 

Also, how many houses/windows do you get done in an average 8 hour day? Obviously depends on the round but looking into how much canvassing I'm going to need to do.

 

Thanks

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spruce
1 hour ago, jimmystevens said:

Hi guys, newbie here

 

How do you guys price domestic jobs, £1 per window and £2 for big stuff? All my quotes seem to get a negative response for being too expensive

 

Also, how many houses/windows do you get done in an average 8 hour day? Obviously depends on the round but looking into how much canvassing I'm going to need to do.

 

Thanks

 

Pricing will vary from area to area even in the south where prices are better than they are up here in the north.

 

Pricing is all about what a customer's perception of what the job is worth and how desperately they need you. Price too high and they will retain your services for a bit and then dump you, possibily when someone cheaper comes along.

 

I've never found the pricing per window works as it gets very confusing keeping a running tally in your head especially when you are being followed around by the customer talking.

 

When starting up we tried to understand what fellow window cleaners were charging for a standard 3 bed semi. Then we would add a bit for access issues and more for a conservatory. We had a rough price for a small, medium and large conservatory and added that to the house clean. Then we would try to roll the price up. So a £14.00 job became a £15.00 quote. A £17.00 estimate became a £20.00 quote.

 

The advice I got was that if you got about 40% of the quotes you gave then you would be about right. If you got 60% then you could be under pricing. If you are getting all the quotes then you are too cheap but if you get none then you are too expensive.

 

So when starting off you really need to ask a fellow window cleaner what the going rate is for a 3 bed semi. Most window cleaners would be happy to share that info with you if you add that you don't want to be an under cutter.

 

Pricing could also depend on your needs. So if you have to get a customer base quickly, then you might consider quoting lower to get your foot in the proverbial door. Once you start to get your round established and you gain a reputation, then you would increase prices gradually in small increments.

 

How much canvassing will you need to do? Depends on the area and the satuation of window cleaners covering that area. Canvassing is a numbers game in the same way sales is a numbers game. You could go out and spend 3 hours canvassing and get no response. You could then go out the following evening and get lots of new customers.

 

When I first started I aimed for 16 to 18 only 3 bed semies a day maintenance cleans before running out of water. I was younger in those days. (First cleans take much longer so you need to charge extra for that first clean.) That's 2 to 3 an hour in summer. In our area, we found that customers are sensitive to time taken and price charged. They tend to judge a quality clean by the length of time it takes. When son in law cleaned with us I got a few complaints he wasn't cleaning properly as he went through the work like a dose of salts. Every inspection of the complaint was unfounded as the windows were spotless.

 

We now have that work covered by a young couple who are also very fast. But they don't do a good job unfortunately.

 

The number of customers you need will also depend on your clean frequency. If you clean every 4 weeks then you will need a smaller customer base than if you cleaned every 8 weeks for example. I would suggest you offer 4 and 8 weeks period. Charge more for 8 weeks than for 4 weeks, say 50% more.

 

 

 

Edited by spruce

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jimmystevens
10 minutes ago, spruce said:

 

Pricing will vary from area to area even in the south where prices are better than they are up here in the north.

 

Pricing is all about what a customer's perception of what the job is worth and how desperately they need you. Price too high and they will retain your services for a bit and then dump you, possibily when someone cheaper comes along.

 

I've never found the pricing per window works as it gets very confusing keeping a running tally in your head especially when you are being followed around by the customer talking.

 

When starting up we tried to understand what fellow window cleaners were charging for a standard 3 bed semi. Then we would add a bit for access issues and more for a conservatory. We had a rough price for a small, medium and large conservatory and added that to the house clean. Then we would try to roll the price up. So a £14.00 job became a £15.00 quote. A £17.00 estimate became a £20.00 quote.

 

The advice I got was that if you got about 40% of the quotes you gave then you would be about right. If you got 60% then you could be under pricing. If you are getting all the quotes then you are too cheap but if you get none then you are too expensive.

 

So when starting off you really need to ask a fellow window cleaner what the going rate is for a 3 bed semi. Most window cleaners would be happy to share that info with you if you add that you don't want to be an under cutter.

 

Pricing could also depend on your needs. So if you have to get a customer base quickly, then you might consider quoting lower to get your foot in the proverbial door. Once you start to get your round established and you gain a reputation, then you would increase prices gradually in small increments.

 

How much canvassing will you need to do? Depends on the area and the satuation of window cleaners covering that area. Canvassing is a numbers game in the same way sales is a numbers game. You could go out and spend 3 hours canvassing and get no response. You could then go out the following evening and get lots of new customers.

 

When I first started I aimed for 16 to 18 only 3 bed semies a day maintenance cleans before running out of water. (First cleans take much longer so you need to charge extra for that first clean.) That's 2 to 3 an hour in summer. In our area, we found that customers are sensitive to time taken and price charged. They tend to judge a quality clean by the length of time it takes. When son in law cleaned with us I got a few complaints he wasn't cleaning properly as he went through the work like a dose of salts. Every inspection of the complaint was unfounded as the windows were spotless.

 

We now have that work covered by a young couple who are also very fast. But they don't do a good job unfortunately.

 

The number of customers you need will also depend on your clean frequency. If you clean every 4 weeks then you will need a smaller customer base than if you cleaned every 8 weeks for example. I would suggest you offer 4 and 8 weeks period. Charge more for 8 weeks than for 4 weeks, say 50% more.

 

 

 

Thank you very much for your reply, there's one large company with 6 or so franchisee's and a couple of smaller companies in my town so I'll have a ring round to guage pricing.

56 minutes ago, tnwindowcleaning said:

Where are you based?

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South East, most expensive part of the country

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Incheck

Welcome to the show & sorry to hear it’s not straightforward for you, i don’t think it was easy for any of us starting. You keep canvassing until your books are full really. The weird stage is when you have about half your diary full, people start asking for the extras, and then you need to think, do i want to be a windows only guy, or do i want to do add ons? Some people like ad ons, some dont. Personally i favour them as i would get really bored just doing windows all the time & like to mix it up a bit.
Our work is split 50-50 so usually 2 or 3 days a week on the windows and 2-3 days are ad-ons. I really dont think we could find enough customers to get by if we stuck to windows only, the market is so saturated.
If i was starting out now, i really would be focussing on ad-ons. Window cleaners seem to pop out of the woodwork these days. new guys rise and fall every year, they don’t really pose a threat to us but they do drag the market price down because they will clean all round for a tenner, fronts only for a fiver etc, last for 18 months and jack it in. You could probably get those prices in the 1990’s. a lot of windy’s dont raise their prices either, so they stay too static. I’ve recently priced up a few houses to take over from long standing window cleaners who’ve retired or packed it in. One had been cleaning a large detached house with a roof lantern on a flat roof for over 10 years and had always charged £12 never putting the price up. I priced it up at £40 for maintenance cleaning as they were already in good nick & the customer wasn’t interested. If it was a first clean price he probably would have passed out.
The vast majority of the public don’t value window cleaning for these reasons as they are used to “come and go” guys & low prices. You can get £60 for the average gutter clearance and take an hour maybe? with a Vac. You can also spend well in excess of an hour doing first cleans on windows but try & get £60 for it.
A lot of guys coming in now are focussing on ad-ons only (gutters, pressure washing etc) can’t say i blame them to be honest. Best of luck mate, hope you get some work soon




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spruce

I also should add that an average 3 bed semi in our neck of the woods could be around £8 to £10. We found we have lost a few £10 accounts but haven't lost as many £8 jobs.

 

Go a couple of miles further east and pricing is around £5 to £6 for a 3 bed semi. @Part Timerwill tell you that there are windies in his part of the world also charging £5. For that price customers still expect a Rolls Royce clean.

They perceive that at £5 you are earning £15 an hour, well above the minimum wage they might be working for, and, after all, we are only window cleaners.

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Cookie
5 hours ago, jimmystevens said:

Hi guys, newbie here

 

How do you guys price domestic jobs, £1 per window and £2 for big stuff? All my quotes seem to get a negative response for being too expensive

 

Also, how many houses/windows do you get done in an average 8 hour day? Obviously depends on the round but looking into how much canvassing I'm going to need to do.

 

Thanks

 

What frequency are you offering? If you're getting a negative response for a 4 weekly clean why not offer them an 8 weekly clean at the same price (or at the same price plus £2). It'll effectively cut the cost of window cleaning by half for the customer and 8 weekly cleans are usually just as quick to do as 4 weekly.

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Iron Giant

£8.00 for a older style 3 bed house is easily doable in the North East so in Kent it should be no problem, I charge £0.70 per window for a small to average size window £1.40 for patio doors or a bay window sometimes I add a bit extra on sometimes I shave a little off. But typically lads around my area are charging quite a bit less than me.

But on modern houses which are getting smaller in some cases it's different I charge £10.00 for a 4 bed detached but these can be done in 15 minutes and a lot of my work is compact typically 5+ houses in the same street next door to each other or near enough 

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Green Pro Clean Ltd

Just look on the websites. 

 

In the South East you have Pryors - he has prices on his web site. 

 

In the South you have JRH and Perfect Windows. Both again have priced on their sites. 

 

We have prices on ours. 

 

We used to close 70% of quotes but now closer to 50%.  

 

Only change we made is that we insist that they sign up for Direct Debit before a first cleaning. 

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Iron Giant

I close 90%+ of my quotes because I am so bleedin great
[emoji12] [emoji38]

County Durham Lad

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Poles Apart

Pricing Posts hmmm? Seen lots of these how much to charge posts, all businesses incur different costs my business will cost more or less to run than other businesses that is what you have to factor in when pricing not how much to charge I couldn't run my business and make a profit charging £8 per house why not work out how much your round should be worth for you to make a living when taking out, tax, NI, expenses, fuel, equipment, holiday pay, sick pay, pension and wages, then work out how much you need to charge your customers, asking other window cleaners how much they charge doesn't give you a definitive indication of how much you should be charging? 

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Incheck
I close 90%+ of my quotes because I am so bleedin great
[emoji12] [emoji38]

County Durham Lad



Yes if an iron Giant showed up on my doorstep i’d hire him any day [emoji41] 20 ft tall, no requirement for water fed poles, does upper windows by hand, a simple step to get over the gate i’d normally have to leave unlocked, rock on dude!


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spruce
2 hours ago, Poles Apart said:

Pricing Posts hmmm? Seen lots of these how much to charge posts, all businesses incur different costs my business will cost more or less to run than other businesses that is what you have to factor in when pricing not how much to charge I couldn't run my business and make a profit charging £8 per house why not work out how much your round should be worth for you to make a living when taking out, tax, NI, expenses, fuel, equipment, holiday pay, sick pay, pension and wages, then work out how much you need to charge your customers, asking other window cleaners how much they charge doesn't give you a definitive indication of how much you should be charging? 

 

Cost management is an important aspect of running a business. I doubt many will know exactly what their running costs are per job over a year.

 

I did that exercise a while back. I totalled all my business expenses excluding wages/earnings and divided that amount by the number of cleans I had done during that tax year. That gave me an actual 'turning up' cost to each job before I did any work. Those figures give me an idea of where to start pricing a residential customer clean. The last time I did that exercise the cost was £3.97 per job. So for me, I wouldn't consider a £5 clean. I also tells me I need to have a minimum price.

 

I also took the same expense figures and divided that into my annual turnover. For me that is a better gauge as 42% of each clean, both residental and commercial are running costs excluding labour.

 

So this gives me a starting point. So if I wanted to earn £20 an hour, then I need to quote £48 for an hours work. If I need to earn more I have several ways of achieving this. I could work quicker and smarter, increase my prices and/or reduce my running costs/expenses.

 

The trouble is that when you are just starting off you don't have the benefit of business history to work with. So you have to make a business plan and use some realistic figures. To start with your running costs which include equipment purchases will be high and your turnover will be low. Whilst this is frustrating to start with it will get better with time and effort.

 

.

 

Edited by spruce

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Part Timer

All this costings exercises are applicable once you've got a business up and running. No point in dividing your insurances, depreciation etc etc when you have 30 jobs a month. Any newbie has costs in setting up and needs to dilute them by getting work. In the first few months his Labour costs are free because if he turns down an £8 job because it doesn't cover his costs then sitting on his **** won't cover them either. Get the work and when you're earning a living then do your costings and replace the poor work.

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Iron Giant

Nothing wrong with the £5 jobs if their is 3 in a row £15.00 in less 30 minutes.

But as you know Spruce it would be impossible to make £48.00 an hour on residential jobs day in the day out more so in our neck of the woods.

County Durham Lad

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Panorama window cleaning
 
Pricing will vary from area to area even in the south where prices are better than they are up here in the north.
 
Pricing is all about what a customer's perception of what the job is worth and how desperately they need you. Price too high and they will retain your services for a bit and then dump you, possibily when someone cheaper comes along.
 
I've never found the pricing per window works as it gets very confusing keeping a running tally in your head especially when you are being followed around by the customer talking.
 
When starting up we tried to understand what fellow window cleaners were charging for a standard 3 bed semi. Then we would add a bit for access issues and more for a conservatory. We had a rough price for a small, medium and large conservatory and added that to the house clean. Then we would try to roll the price up. So a £14.00 job became a £15.00 quote. A £17.00 estimate became a £20.00 quote.
 
The advice I got was that if you got about 40% of the quotes you gave then you would be about right. If you got 60% then you could be under pricing. If you are getting all the quotes then you are too cheap but if you get none then you are too expensive.
 
So when starting off you really need to ask a fellow window cleaner what the going rate is for a 3 bed semi. Most window cleaners would be happy to share that info with you if you add that you don't want to be an under cutter.
 
Pricing could also depend on your needs. So if you have to get a customer base quickly, then you might consider quoting lower to get your foot in the proverbial door. Once you start to get your round established and you gain a reputation, then you would increase prices gradually in small increments.
 
How much canvassing will you need to do? Depends on the area and the satuation of window cleaners covering that area. Canvassing is a numbers game in the same way sales is a numbers game. You could go out and spend 3 hours canvassing and get no response. You could then go out the following evening and get lots of new customers.
 
When I first started I aimed for 16 to 18 only 3 bed semies a day maintenance cleans before running out of water. I was younger in those days. (First cleans take much longer so you need to charge extra for that first clean.) That's 2 to 3 an hour in summer. In our area, we found that customers are sensitive to time taken and price charged. They tend to judge a quality clean by the length of time it takes. When son in law cleaned with us I got a few complaints he wasn't cleaning properly as he went through the work like a dose of salts. Every inspection of the complaint was unfounded as the windows were spotless.
 
We now have that work covered by a young couple who are also very fast. But they don't do a good job unfortunately.
 
The number of customers you need will also depend on your clean frequency. If you clean every 4 weeks then you will need a smaller customer base than if you cleaned every 8 weeks for example. I would suggest you offer 4 and 8 weeks period. Charge more for 8 weeks than for 4 weeks, say 50% more.
 
 
 
I'm new too and im finding all my customers are going for 8 weeks frequency. I actually think this is great though because i do charge 50% extra and so when i get to my full capacity, ill be earning an extra 50% every month for the exact same customers and practically the same amount of work.... which would be a huge difference in terms of earnings. Only trouble is itll take ages to get there but will be well worth it. Lucky i still have the odd day of freelancing to take on every now and again (from my past career industry) to bring some money in if i need.

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scottish cleaning service
23 minutes ago, Panorama window cleaning said:

I'm new too and im finding all my customers are going for 8 weeks frequency. I actually think this is great though because i do charge 50% extra and so when i get to my full capacity, ill be earning an extra 50% every month for the exact same customers and practically the same amount of work.... which would be a huge difference in terms of earnings. Only trouble is itll take ages to get there but will be well worth it. Lucky i still have the odd day of freelancing to take on every now and again (from my past career industry) to bring some money in if i need.

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I don't understand the logic with 8 week cleans. I was working at a house with a massive bird muck right down the middle of the window. So theoretically it could be there 8 weeks? Not very house proud with 8 week cleans or maybe you don't get the amount of rain we get up here. Every month for me and the option is take it or leave it. If they ask me for every 8 week I tell them they would be better to do it themselves.

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Panorama window cleaning
 
I don't understand the logic with 8 week cleans. I was working at a house with a massive bird muck right down the middle of the window. So theoretically it could be there 8 weeks? Not very house proud with 8 week cleans or maybe you don't get the amount of rain we get up here. Every month for me and the option is take it or leave it. If they ask me for every 8 week I tell them they would be better to do it themselves.
Yeah i see where you are coming from and i agree. I'm still trying to get a custumer base built though so am not going to say take it or leave it JUST yet....but may do in the future when i have a bit more room to play. People seem to think that cleaning windows every 4 weeks is completely unnecessary and wont go for it. I guess i can kind of see their side too but would be great to get them on board monthly if i could. Its all very interesting stuff.

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Clisty1989
2 minutes ago, Panorama window cleaning said:

Yeah i see where you are coming from and i agree. I'm still trying to get a custumer base built though so am not going to say take it or leave it JUST yet....but may do in the future when i have a bit more room to play. People seem to think that cleaning windows every 4 weeks is completely unnecessary and wont go for it. I guess i can kind of see their side too but would be great to get them on board monthly if i could. Its all very interesting stuff.

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Best option is don't offer 8 weekly, I state in there one a month. If they ask for 8 weekly I will with a slight increase in price, I just never offer it on a plate

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Panorama window cleaning
Best option is don't offer 8 weekly, I state in there one a month. If they ask for 8 weekly I will with a slight increase in price, I just never offer it on a plate
Lol i try not to but when i am quoting and say "i take it you are you looking for a regular service then " and they say " yeah what did you think" and i then say "well every 4 weeks is the norm" .... and they give me that look like im on ACID, i then say "well i could come every 8 weeks but we do charge 50% extra for that" then they usually say " yeah no 8 weeks sounds right i just can't see us needing it done EVERY month .

Hmmmm goal for rest of this week is to get 2 monthly customers on board and don't offer 8 weekly option. See how it goes

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scottish cleaning service

That's a good idea @Clisty1989 don't offer 8 week cleans. If they ask then try and persuade them that its not beneficial having dirt on the glass more than a month as its harder to come off. They used to do the cleans up here every 2 weeks but all my customers were happy to change to monthly. Monthly or every 4 weeks seems to be the optimum now. The reason I like beginning of every month is because folk usually get paid then. :1f609: 

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Panorama window cleaning
Lol i try not to but when i am quoting and say "i take it you are you looking for a regular service then " and they say " yeah what did you think" and i then say "well every 4 weeks is the norm" .... and they give me that look like im on ACID, i then say "well i could come every 8 weeks but we do charge 50% extra for that" then they usually say " yeah no 8 weeks sounds right i just can't see us needing it done EVERY month .

Hmmmm goal for rest of this week is to get 2 monthly customers on board and don't offer 8 weekly option. See how it goes

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Like i say i dont mind the extra money that the 8 weekly brings in.... but ultimately id like more monthlys. Why are you guys against 8 weekly by the way? You guys have so many custys that you can afford to charge more and take 8 weeklys on? Or is there a real sticking reason why you dont like them? Id really be keen to know as i could be setting myself up for a disaster. The only negative i can see is scheduling problems ?

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spruce
7 minutes ago, Redditch windy said:

once a month sounds better than 4weekly,which more or less the same thing but doesnt sound like it

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Once a month gives you 12 cleans a year. Every 4 weeks gives you 13 cleans most years.

 

59 minutes ago, Panorama window cleaning said:

I'm new too and im finding all my customers are going for 8 weeks frequency. I actually think this is great though because i do charge 50% extra and so when i get to my full capacity, ill be earning an extra 50% every month for the exact same customers and practically the same amount of work.... which would be a huge difference in terms of earnings. Only trouble is itll take ages to get there but will be well worth it. Lucky i still have the odd day of freelancing to take on every now and again (from my past career industry) to bring some money in if i need.

Sent using the Window Cleaning Forums mobile app
 

 

Gone are the days when we used to clean every 2 weeks traditionally.  Every 4 weeks was the exception and every 8 weeks was in the words of John McEnroe "you can't be serious.'

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