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Beware – Up Front (Flat Rate) Pricing

Up-Front Pricing

Have you had the experience of accepting a proposal for an AC repair from a service provider that performed a diagnostic, returned with a price for the repair and informed you that the amount quoted was the TOTAL cost of the SERVICE and required that you ‘Okay’ the charge and he would begin work right away?  If you didn’t ‘Okay’ the charge, he wouldn’t be able to perform the repairs.

Probably, if you have encountered such a scenario, it probably didn’t make you feel good.  And you knew if something doesn’t feel right, you shouldn’t do it.  If your level of discomfort was extreme, you had other things on your schedule for the day, or you didn’t want to sacrifice the time to get a 2nd Opinion, so you decided to just go ahead and get it over with… We don’t do it that way!  Our estimate of repair is based on the actual cost of the part (with a markup) and an hourly rate based on an expected time to perform the needed repair.  We are NOT afraid to reveal our hourly rate.  We don’t waste our time coaching our technicians  how to evade hourly rate questions by tactfully, responding with a scripted responses, nor require training on a flat rate methodology that  is a couple of pounds thick.  Nor do we think adding a FLAT RATE pricing scheme for repairs to our overhead adds value to the service we provide to our customers.  In fact, we think that FLAT RATE pricing is a dis-service to customers .

We don’t use FLAT RATE pricing schemes because we haven’t seen a scheme yet that we think is fair to our customers.  Maybe we will discover one that is fair to the HVAC service provider AND those they serve.  The FLAT RATE pricing schemes we have seen thus far are too stacked AGAINST the customer.  Until we discover one that is fair to our customers, our integrity tells us NOT TO DO IT!

Cons of Flat Rate Schemes

Our PRICING Guidelines for Service Calls

If the number of system replacement options we could provide is greater than 400, given the number of HVAC service companies in the area, do you really think it is possible to have the parts on a service vehicle to guarantee a repair on the 1st trip?

Doesn’t a billing methodology like the one described in the column above versus the one on the left sound fairer to a customer?

It seems to me that the CONS in the column on the left significantly INFLATE the amount paid for a service call.

If you are considering contacting a service provider, we would want you to know what’s available for you before you call.  Participation in our Energy Savings Agreement program will reduce our charges by 10%.  Go here to learn about our Energy Savings Program.  If you are a 1st time customer, we will reduce the amount of the service call by the Service Call Fee.  Go here for more info.

If you are concerned about a repair that may cost a significant amount, you might want to call us for a 2nd Opinion offer at 843-399-0203.  Or you could email us at  Or you could schedule an appointment with a service technician here.  We would be delighted to have the opportunity to serve you.

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