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Old 01-16-2012, 12:17 PM   #1
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Fish Maintenace Business

If anyone has a business in maintaining and setting up new aquariums please share your experiences and advice.

I just opened!

Mu questions:

How do you price a cleaning service? Per gallon, per visit?

I want top tier customer service, what would you expect from my business as part of the service?

Not interested in contracts, i feel it scares people... What do you do to attract and keep your customers?

Anyone have any equipment they would like to sell?

Open to all! Thanks for posting!

MyFishyBusiness

Tara
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Old 01-18-2012, 12:45 PM   #2
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per hour, generally.
Most of the service companies around here charge about 80 dollars an hour.
I charge by the amount of work needed. If I have to do a complete build with constructing a sump and tracking down equipment, I charge for my time and up-sell the components. In other words, I buy them wholesale, and sell them at a retail price, and pocket the difference.
My clients' tanks draw new customers. I don't advertise.
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Old 01-18-2012, 12:58 PM   #3
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It's a piece of art, I'd want you to make sure you understand my vision of what I want for the price I want.

Best of luck to you, how exciting!
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Old 01-18-2012, 03:25 PM   #4
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Thanks!!!
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Old 01-18-2012, 03:26 PM   #5
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Wow! 80.00 an hour! Wow.
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Old 01-18-2012, 03:30 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MyFishyBusiness View Post
Wow! 80.00 an hour! Wow.
$80 an hour sounds spot on. It's about the same all over California.

Like Doug mentioned before, word of mouth is your best advertisement.
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Old 01-18-2012, 03:36 PM   #7
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Well i'm in North GA. What i want is to provide a service thats affordable for every home.

I was thinking more like the above post... Per project and or service pack.

Like for instance:
10 gallon setup freshwater with fish and plants. Package $65.00 a month for filter cleaning, water chemistry, cleaning in and out and fish check ups including teaching about the fish and food recommendation which i will leave behind if they dont have it.

You never change your filter every month you rinse it. Changing it every three months will work and rhis will bump the price a few bucks more as it will be an equipment charge.

Whatcha think??
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Old 01-18-2012, 04:35 PM   #8
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I use to maintain personal tanks only. Charging 50 to 100 per hour depending on what was needed. 50 just for water change. But if tank was larger that price went up. But that per hour price included what would be considered weekly maintence. Most customers were high end clients that didn't care much other than it needs to look good when company came over. I also never was asked to do fw so not sure about that.

Also Ihad a 100$ initial visit that included testing and comprehensive work up. Then would set prices accordingly.

My wife became a hospital executive and the hospital wanted 300 fowlr tanks. So I got the contract (wonder how) and had to give up residential. As the hospital bacame a full time job. My friend and I co-owned the business and had 5 employees. Commercial paid way different than residential. Companies that big wanted a price per tank and that to include fish. If a fish died it was to be replaced with same fish of equal size. It got unfun real quick. I sold the contract last november and will start residential only again.
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Old 01-18-2012, 04:52 PM   #9
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Thanks! So charging per hour does look more common. I just don't want to rip anyone off. Thanks for the awesome advice!
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Old 01-18-2012, 05:57 PM   #10
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You could call around to any local maintence companies and see what the going rate is for your area.
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Old 01-18-2012, 06:23 PM   #11
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Old 01-18-2012, 06:34 PM   #12
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Following... I've been considering doing the same type of business. Idk if any exist already in my area.
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Old 01-18-2012, 07:08 PM   #13
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I'm starting one too but I'm charging per hour and also might sell fish!
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Old 01-18-2012, 07:37 PM   #14
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Very cool!!
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Old 01-18-2012, 07:49 PM   #15
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You have to charge a premium. The price of fuel alone to get to each customers house is expensive.
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Old 01-18-2012, 08:19 PM   #16
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I paid a company $45/month to maintain my FW tank at my office. They charged $75/ month for saltwater. It included two visits, about 5-10 min, water change, food refilled in auto feeder, included all food, filters (I had a fluvial canister so they didn't do anything to it at every visit). They would even bring me fish if I wanted different ones. Their saltwater program was similar, it was more if you wanted to rent their tank and fish, $125/month.

I'm in Ohio, that is about what I considered a good price to pay someone so I didn't have to do it. So about 20 min/work/month for $45. They timed mine with a business in town so they only made one trip in our direction.
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Old 01-18-2012, 09:51 PM   #17
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Mr x is everywhere! Lol

This premium... Like a fuel charge? I was gonna do that at 10.00 for within zip code and 20.00 outside.
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Old 01-19-2012, 09:56 PM   #18
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Hey so far i have my inventory!! Its $124.00!!! im so excited yall!!
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Old 01-22-2012, 10:40 PM   #19
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Got my first customer i think. He wants a 200-300 gallon tank!!!

Omg!!!!
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Old 01-23-2012, 12:24 AM   #20
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LOL. You better get hooked up with some tank suppliers then.
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