Pricing an account

I need some help pricing a new client.


They are building a 250K pool, plus a 100k koi pond pool.  They are wanting a full service on it. 


Were not used to this type of clients here in KY, they are wanting a daily service.  So I ask, what would you guys charge.


It has full automation, in floor cleaning system, salt-system.  Not sure yet on the details on the koi pond ( what to use on this)


Thanks for the help.

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  • I always figure out what my costs are first. Then I figure out what I have to make per hour to stay afloat. THen I figure out the total time that the job will cost me. (Including travel) Say I need to make a hundred an hour. Say the job will take me two hours (Including travel) per week. Say that the costs of my personel, trucks, chemicals, ... average $75 per hour. That's $150 for the 2 hours required to do the job. Costs $150, profit $200 ($100 per hour x 2) = $350 per 2 hour pool service.


    If you are doing residential pools, and you are only doing the chemicals, backwashing, brusing the walls, steps and love seats, and the labor portion takes 10 minutes, and you only have 5 minutes travel time per pool, and the customer provides chemicals, and you need to make $100 per hour, then you would have a total of 15 minutes (1/4 hour) service time. To make $100 per hour, you need to charge $25 per week. If they aren't supplying their own chenmicals, add in the actual cost of the chemicals, plus your time and costs to pick up and supply the chemicals they use. For example, if it takes you 1 hour of waiting at the parts house every week, and you need to buy chemicals every week, then divide that 1 hr, or $100 by the number of accounts you are providing chemicals for. If that's 25 pools, then add $4.00 (4x25 = $100) to the cost of the chemicals for each customer.

           This way, if you are accurately tracking your costs, expenses, ... you can always bid things in such a way as to remain profitable. Pools that are 2 hours drive each way will be much more expensive to service (AS THEY SHOULD BE), because you could use that same time to service 1-2 more comercial accounts, or 6-8 residential accounts.  


  • Luke-


    Truth be known, I don't have any customers!  There is so much competition here for pool cleaners, and some drive the price down so low (like David said) that I have no desire to be a pool cleaner.  I leave that for the other guys, some of which do a really good job (and some who deserve to go do something else and leave our industry alone!).


    We only treat pools as requested.  If we get no calls, or referrals from other people, we don't work.  Such is the nature of a start up in this economy, and especially with a service that no one knows exists!  We started this gig about a year and a half ago, and we are profitable (and thankful for that), but neither of us has quit our day job yet!


    We are thankful for the pool guys that do refer us and see the value of our service.  We pose no threat to them or their customer base, so it seems a pretty symbiotic relationship!



  • it'd be interesting to note when comparing "I can clean this many in a week" to those that clean lesss or more it there were other parameters to compare against.  Size of pool, enclosed or not, and what the tripometer reads after a week on your route.    maybe even create a rating for a route and the rating allows similar comparison.  Similar to a realtor doing  "comps"on  a proptery when tryting to determing value.  



    Florida Leisure Pool & Spa

  • We have so many pools out here that it is not uncommon for my guys to do 15 or more stops a day (often in the same neighborhood)... and still do a good job. 


    A normal route for a regular pool guy is 60-75 stops a week (about $7,500 gross before repairs monthly)... you're not going to get rich cleaning pools in SoCal, BUT I know plenty of guys with about 150-200 pools that they clean themselves with 2 helpers and they do pretty well...

  • $90.00 for a weekly visit tells me you are in an isolated area, Luke.  An 18,000 gallon pool for $65.00 a week?  That would never happen here in San Diego, and we pay through the nose for everything.


    Going rate here is around $100.00 a month.  Filter cleans run around $100.00.  Most expensive pool I ever sold was 1.3 million, and he pays a couple hundred a month for service.  Try and get him for $90.00 a visit and you're down the road!


    It's all what the market will bear.

  •  I perform service on pools, spas, ponds and aquiriums and I'm a tax return preparer.  Tax training helps keep current with tax law and helps me know what to charge and I'll clean anything that holds water.  Ponds, aquairiums are biological systems while pools are chemical systems.
  • koi pond maintenance? now that seems like a very particular and specialized service.  Is it the same tool and skill set that a pool service tech would have?



    Florida Leisure Pool & Spa

  • FYI


    In SoCal we are on the HIGH side as far as service rates go and we are $110 MONTHLY chems included!!!


    It's all about the region you service.  There are a TON of guys here locally that are doing weekly service for $70 - $80 per month.


    We had 1 high end client/ high maintenance client at $300/month for twice weekly service, but he decided to have his own in house maintenance person take over... Our local market would NEVER support $360 + chems for weekly service... NEVER!


    You can talk about leaving money on the table, BUT if you have NO accounts, then your out of business!


    On the flip side... We regularly build backyard projects well in excess of $200K, and it is becoming increasingly more difficult to do anything quality for less than $100K, which in most regions of the country is highly unlikely...


  • Where do u charge 90 a week plus chemicals? Do u get it?
  • I think we might be missing the west Kentucky economics vs those of us in more expensive areas.

    Chris seems to know his local market.  My concerns would be the extra time for the xl size of the pool.

    And you haven't even touched the koi pond maintenance. 

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