Just starting and a bit scared …


Hey Steve,

I’ve got my very first job (with a neighbor) booked for next week. Now if the client doesn’t want furniture moved in a 14×15 room do you only charge for the area cleaned? What’s standard practice?

Also, I am using a portable out of the back of my pickup for now. How do you tactfully explain to a customer I can do as good a job with a portable as a truck mount can do? (I’m not putting down truck mounts. I intend to get one as soon as business conditions warrant it). I thought of telling them that the reason many companies use truck mounts is to save TIME so they can get on to the next customer quickly and that I will probably do a better job with my portable because I’m small and spend more time doing careful work. Thanks in advance, Steve, for your advice.

Overwhelmed in Reno

You are worrying needlessly, Overwhelmed.

1. Many (not all) customers could care less about a truck mount. They are much more focused on YOU. How you carry yourself, how you are dressed and of course, your confidence level as a “seasoned professional”. (And yes, I know that is funny!) NOTE: I do agree with your point re: buying a TM as soon as you can for exactly the reason you bring up- TIME, which is your most precious asset as an owner-operator.

2. I almost never deducted for not moving furniture. On the extremely rare instances when the question even arose I just stated it basically is as much work to edge around an item as it is to move it. That almost always handled it.

Remember, Overwhelmed, you are not your customer. So the things that loom large in your mind may be nothing. Of course, what is really scary is the reverse is true. The things that you think are nothing …


P.S. On this “first job” point did you ever think that somebody has to be a brain surgeon’s “first case”? Do you think the tell the patient? I doubt it. Neither should you. Go get ’em Tiger!

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