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  1. #1

    Decliners, how do you handle them?

    Ok fellas i gotta vent a little bit here. We have all been in this situation, furnace is marginally working or you find something that needs attention asap (Low reading on a capacitor, weak HSI, motor bearings starting to go out, etc.) You do the right thing for the client and bring it to thier attention and give them the appropriate pricing to get it taken care ofit. They him and haw for 10 minutes thinking you are trying to pull one over on them. They then tell you to leave the part in place and they will call back when it actually breaks down. How do you handle this situation? I have had a few of these lately and I know when those calls are going to come in, on a night or weekend. Of course they will tell you on the phone that someone was just out, but will omit that the tech reccomended repairs which they declined. Where I work, we will charge full price (diagnostic and repair) for any reccomendation that has been declined. How does your company handle it? Do you charge fully? Do you tell them "your too backed up" and they will have to wait until standard buisiness hours? (this only works if you remember the customer) I need a little advice guys, feel like I'm going a little crazy!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Chicagoland Area
    Posts
    4,625
    Why wouldn't you charge them full price, or on OT full price and 1/2? If they approved the repairs from the PM and you were waiting for parts, then I would use discretion.
    Officially, Down for the count

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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    NJ
    Posts
    76
    I was taught to charge for the time they waste for you. If you want a tech to come to the house, give it a look over, then wait when the weak part goes bad, it will cost more. Two trips cost more then one. I would always feel bad for people, but then realized that they only seem to care when I am there fixing, and would be a totally different person if I would not be able to fix it for a few days. I would look at it like a car, if the mechanic tells you you have to change the brake pads, and you wait a few months, you are going to pay for it then as well, maybe more if you tore up the rotors.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by 2sac View Post
    Why wouldn't you charge them full price, or on OT full price and 1/2? If they approved the repairs from the PM and you were waiting for parts, then I would use discretion.
    I'm only talking about the ones that decline the repair. IF they approve initially, they only get charged the quoted price.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2001
    Location
    Moore, Oklahoma, United States
    Posts
    4,290
    If a part isn't to difficult to replace while you are already in there doing another repair the customer just pays for the part. If we have to come back, then it will be another service call + labor. Most will pay to have the weak part replaced while you are already there.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Altmar, New York, United States
    Posts
    4,646
    i always explain to them the cost difference. if i do it now you will not be charged service call or extra labor. it usually changes the mind. you are alreay there, why not give a break on the price. if they say no they will just buy the part from the net.

  7. #7
    We have a policy where if you go out on a service call, diagnose the problem and the customer declines we charge a second service call. Or service call never changes. $ day night weekend holiday. We have no "business hours." Here's the kicker. You go out and only collect $ you then have to call in and get approval and it goes against you. So when they decline you call (in front of the customer) an "account manager" who will then discuss discounting the price so they will go with the repair. They will even try to sell them a cleaning if you are unable to find a problem. Beyond frustrating when you are out on a weekend or night time call and the customer has no heat and declines a repair. We go through lengths to try and close the repair while at the home!!


    Pricing not allowed per site rules
    Last edited by k-fridge; 02-10-2013 at 07:29 PM.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    British Columbia, Canada
    Posts
    521
    Quote Originally Posted by Cbssteve View Post
    I was taught to charge for the time they waste for you. If you want a tech to come to the house, give it a look over, then wait when the weak part goes bad, it will cost more. Two trips cost more then one. I would always feel bad for people, but then realized that they only seem to care when I am there fixing, and would be a totally different person if I would not be able to fix it for a few days. I would look at it like a car, if the mechanic tells you you have to change the brake pads, and you wait a few months, you are going to pay for it then as well, maybe more if you tore up the rotors.
    X2.

    You have to make it attractive to have the failing part replaced. Supply your customers with your company rate sheet so they know exactly what to expect.

    When a customer phones, collect their info so you know who you're dealing with.
    Never go out after hours for straight time for a customer that refused parts earlier. It's attractive to them to replace the part now instead of later when there is another service callout charge plus possible afterhours overtime rates.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    26
    Johnb01y sounds like we work at the same place. You work in Illinois

  10. #10
    Pretty safe to say we do if your asking that!

  11. #11
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Upper Michigan
    Posts
    3,588
    If I find a questionable part I always recommend replacement, if they don't want to just explain that you will charge full rates when it fails, document it and make them sign the sheet. There is no reason to worry that way, we can't make them buy the part and if something happens you have it on the work order to cover your butt. If a different tech goes out its there job to review the last work order, if they can't provide it then they should charge them full price and tell them to call the shop and hatch it out with them.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Sacramento,ca
    Posts
    196
    Quote Originally Posted by eaj761 View Post
    We have a policy where if you go out on a service call, diagnose the problem and the customer declines we charge a second service call. Or service call never changes. $ day night weekend holiday. We have no "business hours." Here's the kicker. You go out and only collect $ you then have to call in and get approval and it goes against you. So when they decline you call (in front of the customer) an "account manager" who will then discuss discounting the price so they will go with the repair. They will even try to sell them a cleaning if you are unable to find a problem. Beyond frustrating when you are out on a weekend or night time call and the customer has no heat and declines a repair. We go through lengths to try and close the repair while at the home!!
    I have been in resi hvac for 17 years now and seen many companies come and go and the one thing i have learned is the method your company is using to hard sell parts/services by having you call in front of the customer will loose you more customers and tarnish your reputation over time. I ask almost every one of my customers why they chose me over the others and they always say "you dont pressure, guilt trip, or spread fear to get me to do something".

    Just my two cents and some advice for long term prosperity

    I agree with charging them twice if they dont go with recommended repairs while on site.
    Last edited by k-fridge; 02-10-2013 at 07:30 PM.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Champaign Illinois
    Posts
    97
    Documentation is the key. I make detailed notes in the computer system as well as on the furnace stickers we use. I get some grief from other techs when I use almost the hole sticker for my notes. But on after hours calls we don't have access to the computer. If recommendations are well documented and can be shown to the customer when that part fails they tend to understand having to pay for an emergency trip. I also find that they tend to understand at that time that your not just there trying to sell them something they don't need. And if they don't get it then why are they wasting there time having maintenance done in the first place. I have also found through trial and error that a lot of the time it's just the manor in witch the recommendation is made/ explained to the customer. It seams to me that if I try to make the explanation of what the failing part is and what can happen if it fails as simple as possible the customer does not fell as on the spot as if you use the high tech talk that you and I understand. I also end my explanation with yes this component is functioning now but it is not within the specifications that it should be, we don't have to do anything today however if it fails and we have to replace it on a service call it will be more costly and may cause more damage to other components, how would you like me to proceed. If I get the " I need to talk to the mysterious decision maker first" I say that's okay. I will give you the time you need if you call back within a few days and want it taken care of I will not charge you for a revisit and the part price will be the same as quoted. There's always going to be that rotten customer who wants to blame there misfortune on you or your colleagues. The only thing you can do is to make sure you do the best most professional job you can. If they still feel they don't need to pay for service I tend to make detailed notes and tell the customer I'm sorry you feel this way and I will have my manager contact them A.S.A.P. typically by the time the office calls them they have had a chance to think about the situation and there are no hard feelings.

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