I agree with you, David:
“This should help you realize it is a good time to raise your price to what professional inspectors charge. I am hearing that some inspectors charge $375 to $450 in our area.”
If Roger is this busy and only charges 199. or thereabouts, he could jump to 300. immediately without any problems. After that he could gradually get up to the 400. mark. If there is so much work out there Roger would only have to do 2/3 as many inspections at 300. as he would at 200. to make the same money. At 400. he could double his income, work half as much, lower his liability by half and reduce his overhead by a lot.
Since I did something similar, I am actually making a lot more because you really only lose a bit of business and it comes back quickly. My firm’s minimum rate is now at 400. and we're busier than I was when I charged only 200. a few years ago.
I also find that I attract a better quality clientele at a more reasonable price. I believe that people should charge what they are worth. It’s unfortunate when people think so little about their own value that they give away the service for a pittance. I also find that people pay a lot more attention at the inspection if they have invested more money. We also feel comfortable being a bit choosy about which clients we will work for. Tire kickers get a bit of advice about the value of a real inspection and report and if they don’t come around quickly my receptionist gives them a couple names of people who will give the tire kicker exactly what he is willing to pay for.
On January 1, 2008 I am raising my personal fees to a minimum 600. and my other guys will be 450. minimum. Each year for the past three I have had to hire another inspector. I am about to advertise once more for another in the new year.
We can all make good money but we all have to show that we have faith in ourselves and our value.