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What to Charge??

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  • What to Charge??

    OK. I am only partway through the Penn-Foster Dog Grooming course, but am currently a top-notch kennel tech for a large local vet clinic, so I have lots of bathing, nail & ear care & brush out experience. I have had someone ask me if I would do this basic grooming privately & what would I charge?? I might add that I do have a basic table setup, bath & tools of my own for my own menagerie of dogs, cats, ferrets, & rabbits. I do see this as a possible way to get additional $$ & practice on my own...but what WOULD I charge as a total novice??
    Thanks in Advance for any advice!!

    Stephen: We don't suggest prices here according to the usage rules.

  • #2
    What you would charge depends on the area that you live. I know that the area that I live now charges almost double from where I used to live. The cost of living is much higher here as well. In South Texas i can rent a two bedroom for 500. Up here, its not less than 1,000. There is a way to figure out your pricing, but someone else will have to post that, as I am unsure.

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    • #3
      It's not just about pricing

      Number one is you need to be sure the large clinic you work for would be ok with you bathing, trimming etc...their customers and getting paid for this service, apart from the clinic. Most clinics consider their customers, their customers & would not want to share.

      Number two is where do you intend to conduct your business? Is your home properly zoned to do business there? Will you need liability insurance to cover vet bills in case a pet was hurt while you were performing your services?

      And lastly, pricing is difficult. It is an often talked about subject. Just look in the search area upper right hand side of your screen & type in price. Groomers do not talk about prices because there are laws that prohibit us to.

      Erica

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      • #4
        Hmm...valid points, all! Perhaps I'll just steer clear of that for now & concentrate on completing my certification & getting my experience with a shop!
        Thanks for the imput!!

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        • #5
          As a novice Eli is right you should not start grooming fully on your own until you are confident in your skill and abilities. Does you vet offer grooming services, maybe they would be interested in starting that up for you. If not then I would look to finding a job where you could grow into a grooming position or start out as one. So you can have an experienced groomer to learn from. I would not recommend starting out on you own with no experience but grooming school. But if you do I would not charge the client full price, and tell them you are still learning, so you are pricing your services at below market value so you can gain experience and knowledge. If people know the truth up front hey will be a little more likely to be appreciative of your effort, even if their pet doesn't look perfect. As for their constructive criticism, and learn from it.

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          • #6
            hey, for now you could donate your services for experience, or just charge a very small fee. i agree with the above advice, just be sure to not be stepping on toes. if you are up front about the novice part, i think you will be fine. think of beauty school students.

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            • #7
              really!!????

              Originally posted by eli View Post
              Number one is you need to be sure the large clinic you work for would be ok with you bathing, trimming etc...their customers and getting paid for this service, apart from the clinic. Most clinics consider their customers, their customers & would not want to share.

              Number two is where do you intend to conduct your business? Is your home properly zoned to do business there? Will you need liability insurance to cover vet bills in case a pet was hurt while you were performing your services?

              And lastly, pricing is difficult. It is an often talked about subject. Just look in the search area upper right hand side of your screen & type in price. Groomers do not talk about prices because there are laws that prohibit us to.

              Erica
              I didn't know there were laws prohibiting Groomers from talking about pricing. Wow! Why cant we talk about it? What does the law say?

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              • #8
                Originally posted by rnelson View Post
                I didn't know there were laws prohibiting Groomers from talking about pricing. Wow! Why cant we talk about it? What does the law say?
                Basically, we aren't supposed to talk actual dollars to prevent price fixing. If every groomer everywhere charged exactly the same, it would be unfair to the consumer.

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                • #9
                  I dont think the laws actually prohibit us from talking about prices (although the forum rules do). I think the law actaully comes into play when a group would get together and agree upon a fixed price for each breed or trim... that would be price fixing... At least thats how I think it works. Anyone?

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                  • #10
                    When I first started grooming for other people I was really nervous about charging too much, and I gave grooms away quite cheaply. The issue was I was actually doing a pretty nice job. They didn't look bad and even looking back they were decent.
                    Now a few months later I feel I am doing alright, my dogs look good, no sticky outies, smooth were they should be and even, I have upped my prices and I realize that I need to charge what I want to make.
                    I look at how many dog I want to do a day eventually (I am new and slow), I look at my expenses, and what I want to make as a profit working, after working so many days a year. That is how I based my prices. If a dog is diffcult and it takes more time I charge more, easy grooms, less.

                    Now my new probelm is those few customers I gave discount grooms to and coming back and I still give them those awful low prices. I feel like kicking myself!!! But they will be the first ones to get my price increase next year!

                    Don't do what I did and discount your work, even a good quality bath and dry is worth money and make sure you charge accordingly, or if you are still studying and need practice dogs, let them know that the price is lower while you are in school, and your finish date is such and such...

                    Good luck!

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