Originally Posted by Ebs
So makeup the lost revenue on your end, even if they want to bring their own parts you still have to give them a price on the labor. Turning away customers never seems like a good move.
In a magical, wonderful world, this would work. If you've never been involved in the automotive business, and I say this politely, you don't know what you are talking about. Most people that want to bring there own parts in have zero dedication to a business or individual. Their one and only goal is to find the cheapest place to get their work done. Sometimes a shop can add their parts margin to the labor to make a job worth their time (I've done it) but most times Mr. Cheapfucker knows what the labor time/cost are because they've been to 6 shops already pricing things out. These customers tend to be a pain in the ass because they want something for nothing all the time or they tend to waste your time because if you do get the job and more parts are needed, the vehicle clogs your bay while they are out shopping for the best deal on whatever part you need. Since these people ALWAYS buy the cheapest part possible, they always expect you to warranty the shitty part they provided even if you didn't make any money on the sale. In the long run, these people make if nearly impossible to make a decent profit on their job because they are shamelessly consuming your time and resources.
In my business, I am working on building a clientele that are more interested in quality and honesty than bottom line price. I install premium parts and stand behind my work. Because I use good parts and I take a lot of pride in my work, I rarely have any comebacks or warranties. Because of my dedication to quality, I have a large percentage of new customers that come to me by word of mouth. A happy customer will tell two or three people, an unhappy customer seems to tell ten.
It's tough to make a living in the automotive trade anymore. There is a constant influx of mechanics starting their own shops because they think they've got it all figured out. They last for a year or two then they crash and burn because they don't know how to run the business (I've been there). We are also competing against a multitude of illegal repair shops/mechanics that are unlicensed/unregistered working out of their backyard. I don't have a problem with mechanics making a few bucks on the side but when they start advertising on Craigslist and other places, it's time to pony up and get legal or get the fukc out.