$10k out of one customer this week, nice to be busy again!

Joined
Mar 8, 2012
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1,349
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MO
Agree on the deposit, but I don’t think the labor rates are exclusive to CA at all. I’m in a few professional tech groups and the labor rates being reported countrywide are in the range I described. I think there is a significant difference between the stereotypical old-school 2-bay independent shop and the 10-15 bay independent shops that are trying to match dealerships in expertise and amenities.

Most of our dealer rates here (STL) are $125-160 but the independent shops are 80-120. I agree those bigger independent shops are close to dealer prices. Expensive to keep a legit repair business up and running, that’s for sure.
 
Joined
Apr 27, 2012
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11,788
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MA
Most of our dealer rates here (STL) are $125-160 but the independent shops are 80-120. I agree those bigger independent shops are close to dealer prices. Expensive to keep a legit repair business up and running, that’s for sure.
There's a big indy shop I go to once in a while. Almost set up as a dealership with service writers at the front desk and a small waiting room with a TV. They even have loaners occasionally but I never asked about those. They're only slightly cheaper than the dealer at $90/hour. Used to just be a small two man garage.
 
Joined
Apr 25, 2017
Messages
6,303
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Ohio
and yes $129 is high however it's right in range in our area. We have no shortage of business most days.
When it comes to repairs, especially unexpected ones, very few people can shop around. They get the vehicle towed to "their" shop and pay.
 
Joined
Apr 27, 2012
Messages
11,788
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MA
He could've been a contractor who does a lot of cash jobs.
Or real estate broker/landlord. Sometimes we collect deposits or rents in cash. Most I ever got was over 10k in cash, but not unusual to have a few thousand in cash every month. When they pay in 20's, takes forever to count, 100's are much easier.
 

14Accent

Thread starter
Joined
Aug 3, 2017
Messages
1,736
Location
MN
Got the DTS done today, runs like a dream. Total bill: $4,200ish. With the $6,600 on the Escalade, he's at almost $11k in 3 days!

Yes, our labor rates are high, but perfectly average for the area. We DO charge book time for labor, and have no problem adding to that if the rust factor comes into play. Parts markup is a sliding scale: the cheaper the part, the more the markup. It ranges from 2.75x to 1.5x on parts over I believe $750. The only difference is engines and transmissions, we pretty much charge a flat $500 markup on those to stay competitive.
 
Joined
Feb 22, 2011
Messages
120
Location
MN
I am in the same general area as the O.P.

Those rates are par for the course. The guy I've used for years, and who is further out in the very outer ring suburbs, is at $150.00/hr. He is also booked a month in advance, which is why I am no longer able to use him.
 
Joined
Dec 28, 2014
Messages
1,601
It always surprises me to see people throw $5,000-$7,000 at a car with high miles and that’s old, BUT then they always tell me...it beats a car payment.

Saw a lady put a brand new transmission on a Hyundai with 300,000 plus miles on it, she said, hey, it runs great, I take of it, beats a payment, and she was 100% right. The tranny was only $1,200.

Once saw a guy spend $4,000 to keep the family’s LS400 in the family (it had been passed down generation to generation). Thought he was nuts...needed a starter, tires, brakes, belts, suspension. And then he wanted it painted - brand new paint job - but when that thing finally rolled out of the shop it looked great. And now that I think about it...a Lexus LS400 might be considered “collectible” in some circles. So perhaps he wasn’t nuts.

And last year i saw a guy spend $10,000 on a diesel Ford dually; he had the whole thing painted white, new aluminum dump body, brakes, brake lines, fuel tank, tires, rims. I said again, are you nuts, and he said...do you know how much one of these would cost me new? So I guess he had a point, but believe me, this guy is NUTS. Lol
 
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