“Please submit a proposal”
“Could you provide an estimate?”
“How much will it be?”
We’re asked all the time by our Cleveland neighbors to provide pricing information for locksmithing, access control, and security cameras. There are a few reasons why it’s often times complicated to provide an exact price. We’re not trying to be obtuse and hide pricing – it’s just more complicated than most would imagine and there are several reasons why.
Pricing Approach – materials versus labor: Some people will charge $100 for a part and $100 for labor. Some will charge $200 for the part installed. The result is the same price. There is some psychology involved. Some people don’t mind paying for materials with a manufacturer warranty and installer gaurentee but don’t like paying for labor. Some people don’t want to pay more for a part than they can get it online for and don’t mind paying for labor. It’s tricky to make everyone happy. But we strive to provide competitive pricing that’s fair and transparent.
It costs $100 on Amazon: Yes it does. However, ordering the product, doing the invoicin, accounting, opening up the package, disposing of the packaging materials and preparing to install it can easily take half an hour. That’s not including actually installing it, testing it, and putting our name on it with a warranty.
Apples to Oranges: The other company was $200 cheaper. Maybe. Are all the products exactly the same? Do they have the specialized tools and training to install it correctly? What kind of warranty are they providing? If they find something needs a 5 minute fix or adjustment will that do it and bill extra for it? Are all of the consumable products (wire, connectors, cat5 cables etc) quality UL rated products?
Just Come and Look at It: At Lock Alchemy Locksmiths & Security we love doing site visits. It’s great to come out and meet people in person. Get an in-person view of what we are qouting out. Unfortunately, some people have ruined it for everyone. Some people like having service workers come out to give specific product information and try and buy them and install them on their own. Part of our service is designing a system. We won’t come out and qoute smaller jobs. It’s just not time or cost effective. We will provide over the phone/email/text qoutes though. We qoute it and we stick to it. This often time doesn’t work in our favor and we do an extra hour of labor. We’re okay with this because it’s the best way to fairly and efficiently take care of customers. Of course we do site visits for larger projects at no cost. We’ve found that this balance works for us and our customers.
Hourly versus per Job: At Lock Alchemy we are a results based company. Opening a door may take 5 minutes and installing a difficult cameras may take 5 hours. Either way we price things out by the job / result. This transparency allows us to know what we’re getting into and for the customer to know. No surprises!
Tiers: Option A, B, & C. We try to provide various options and price points for our clients and educate them about the differences between different options.
How to Evaluate Qoutes: The other company was cheaper so we’re going with that. Look at the cost, the quality of products, the level of professionalism, and the total cost of ownership. A difference of $200 in a qoute can easily be eclipsed by additional work costs, frustration of call backs, and total cost of ownership (contact fees, licensing fees, replacement parts etc.)
Harder than we thought? We agree. Pricing out work is a necessary part of our company and we strive to make it as painless, transparent, and fair as possible. Reach out to us for any proposals or bids you’d like for your next locksmith, door, security camera, or electronic access control project!