An effective quoting process can be vital for the success of your tradie business. Get it right and you’ll set yourself up for smooth sailing, but getting it wrong could result in stressful client disputes. Here’s how you can create better quotes in four simple steps.
1. Do your research
Never rush through a quote. If you don’t properly understand the scope of the project and its potential challenges, you might under-quote, and will be left to cover the difference out of your own pocket. If your plan is to pass the cost blowout to them, the alternative is having an upset client on your hands.
To avoid either scenario, you should make sure you have all the details you need (including costs for materials and potential sub-contractors), and conduct a detailed site inspection to identify any potential obstacles that may complicate the job.
2. Clarity is the key
After completing a thorough research process, you can start putting the quote down on paper. Include your standard business details, such as your address and contact details, along with your Australian business number (ABN), and any relevant licence numbers. Then compile a list that breaks down the job into specific materials and labour costs.
The more detailed you can be the better. It will help your clients understand exactly what they’re paying for. It also helps to include a clear project timeline. For larger projects, you might choose to set payment milestones to maintain good cashflow.
3. Focus on the details
When it comes to quoting, the devil is most definitely in the details. Include clear payment terms and set an expiry date for the quote. This will protect you from clients expecting you to honour a sixth-month-old quote that is potentially based on outdated material costs. You can also involve a solicitor in writing up some ironclad terms and conditions. This can help protect you from any legal grey areas. Last but not least, ensure the design of your quote document is consistent with the branding of your business.
4. Review it with your client
Don’t just email your quote to the client and wait for approval. Sit down with them in person, or organise a phone call, to talk them through the quote. It helps prevent any misunderstandings or disputes down the track. It also gives you an opportunity to answer any questions or concerns they may have and to make any adjustments to the quote if required.
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