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Pricing for friends & relatives

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  • Pricing for friends & relatives

    Are we expected to do freebie or discounted grooms for all our friends and relatives and relatives of friends?? My daughter's best friend recently called me to set up an appointment to do her sister's 2 dogs. I mentioned my price and she said she'd get back to me, but never did. I got the feeling she was expecting me to do them for free.

    What does everyone do in these situations? Just refuse to do them?? Or give away your services?

  • #2
    At Christmas I give my family members a certificate to bathe their dogs for free (luckily, none require haircuts!) That's it. If they want to come to my shop and bathe their own dog when I'm not slammed busy they know they can. That's ONLY for family.

    Friends, if their dog is in the let's say $40 - $45 category they get the lower price. That's it, nothing beyond that (well, they get the prettiest bandana's and I'm sure to dremel the nails.)


    • #3
      A sister of a friend of a daughter?? I wouldn't give them a discount. And shame on them if they even expected a deal. And 10 to 1 the dogs would be a pain to groom. :-)



      • #4
        If they expect a discount , they need to go to the local 'discount' groomer, not someone who has bills to pay. I do not discount for friends or relatives, do'nt worry about it,
        ~~Everyone is entitled to my opinion!~~


        • #5
          My two sisters I groom their dogs for free. My one sister, if I didn't do hers for free they would never get groomed. My other sister, she watches my son while I groom her dog so I get a small break in my day from mommying, get to see her a bit and my son gets some time with his aunt. It's kind of like pulling teeth to get her to come over, so I'll use any excuse. My best friends parents I give a huge discount to. They have never asked, but when I was 12, the first time I was over to their home I smashed their basement window accidentally. Plus all the years I spent sleeping over, I took horseback riding lessons with her and her mom and often her mom would buy me dinner, etc. I figure it's simply time to repay all of that. My younger sister actually offered to pay, but I refused. She works at a restaraunt, a REALLY nice and expensive one, and on the rare occasion hubby and i get to go out, if we go there she gives us her huge discount. My father, he pays full price.
          What a caterpillar considers the end of his world, we call a butterfly.


          • #6
            I do not give any discounts unless I WANT to. So many people think by dropping names they will get one but I work hard and deserve to get paid properly for my years of experience and training.


            • #7
              No free rides for ANYBODY!

              I don't have the relative problem, thankfully. My oldest daughter has a dog, but she lives in San Antonio and I bathe her Shiba Inu when she comes to visit once a year.

              I offer a discount to the women of the American Business Women's Association of which I am a member, as well at to military and to my "preferred customers", those who book with me for a minimum of six sessions no more than six weeks apart. I've got some of those "preferred customers" booked for a year in advance.

              My youngest daughter has a dog and a cat, but she pays my going rate. She knows I have bills to pay.

              I don't do ANYTHING for free. I also don't GET anything for free. I run a business, not a charity.
              "With God's help, all things are possible!"
              Laura Lee Ray
              I am kats_melody on eGroomer. Follow my Twitter tweets - @ZOOMGROOM on


              • #8
                I am mobile and am picky about discounts. I always do my girlfriends's dogs for free at christmas, between the 3 of them, there are 5 mini schnauzers, 1 lhasa and a boxer. When they get their dogs groomed, I tell them to pay whatever they feel is reasonable. They know what my price is and they know I want to give them a little break. They usually pay me only $5 less per dog and in a wad of cash : ) I have one other 'friend of the family' who brings her dogs to me because she lives so far away. I told her my rates but since she comes to me, she could pay what she feels is fair, and she always pays well, too. I won't offer this from now on - I got lucky, but that is a stupid thing to do. I will just not offer discounts. There are a couple friends that I would never charge, but they do things for me as well. It is not a comfortable thing to get involved in grooming friends and families dogs. In some cases, I would prefer NOT grooming the dogs period, just so I don't have to stress over it, LOL!


                • #9
                  Heck NO!! LOL There some of my best paying clients LOL Since most of the dogs in my family are the one's I learned on, I never really charged them. I did always have a tip can, you know just in case LOL Heck most the time I got more money with the tip jar than I did if I would have set a price for them. LOL We have a friend that pays me $20 more dollars than were I work in the salon for there groom. I have told them they don't have to give me that much, but they would have it. I'm the only other person that can touch this dog other themselves without it flipping out. They said it's worth it ;-)

                  Not saying I wouldn't make exception from time to time for some people though =/
                  "No matter how little money and how few possesions you own, having a dog makes you rich." - Louis Sabin


                  • #10
                    My friends and family insist on paying. I wouldn't have a problem with giving them some kind of a discount, after all - they're the ones telling everyone about me and have helped build my business.... But they will not pay less than full price. So I can't complain...

                    I would never continually groom a dog for free, without a really really good reason... we are skilled professionals, my family is full of skilled tradesman, mechanics, etc - when one of them does me a "favor" - I pay them!


                    • #11
                      A parent or elderly grandparent, sure. Do not go beyond that giving discounts, trust me.

                      Pretty soon you will have relatives you gave a discount to calling to book appts for their friends or relatives with financial issues and they think you will cut them all a deal.

                      The last time I booked a 25 dollar discount dog for my uncle's elderly friend of the family and ended up spending 3 hours on a medium sized Border mix that lived on a farm, had never been groomed, was covered in mats, mud, and briars, and had (no joke) at least 65 engorged ticks all over it's body. NEVER AGAIN!


                      • #12
                        I do my parents two cattle dogs for free. But, my dad also gave me $20,000 to open my salon with. And everytime he comes in he throws me money anyway. A few $500 checks when I first started. He jokes that he has the most expensive dog groomer around, $500 for a bath. I haven't needed that in quite a while.

                        My brothers both have easy bath dogs too (a shep mix, a pit and a rott) but they don't ask me to do them too often and they pay me when they do. My dad actually took them aside and told them NOT to expect things for free since I was trying to make a living. One of my brothers has a zillion degrees in computer stuff and I did some free bathing for him after he set up my grooming program on my computer, and did my website.

                        Other than that. I don't really give discounts to friends. Most won't take it anyway.


                        • #13
                          OK.....this is what I told my sister when she asked for a "family discount"

                          " My success depends on my ability to make profit. Since we are related ,and I know you want me to be successful, wouldn't you want to pay me more than the usual grooming fee?"

                          that shuts them right up !


                          • #14
                            The "Family Rate" is 25% extra (cuz I gotta put up with their a$$e$).
                            Last edited by Smart-n-Pretty; 03-09-10, 08:57 PM.
                            "We are all ignorant--we merely have different areas of specialization."~Anonymous
                            People, PLEASE..It's ONLY a website!~Me


                            • #15
                              i use to pay 5-20$ for a groomer for my cocker and aussie before i started grooming because i knew the groomer..i always felt like i was 'cheating' her out of money and would always give her a good tip so she ended up doing the groom for the same price as normal, i hate it when people 'expect' to get discounts, so i don't give out discounts!