The Reason Merchants Charge Call Fees | County Leader of St George and Sutherland

For commercial businesses, call charges are an essential part of being able to run a successful operation. Photo Shutterstock.

This article is sponsored by PT Doors.

While trusted professional tradespeople are always in high demand, our need for their skills over the past two years has skyrocketed.

Along with the increase in the number of owners requiring the services of a trade, there has been an increase in the debate over the call charges that the majority of trade companies incorporate into their billing structure, with some customers wondering why asks them to pay the costs. .

Call out charges are the amount that commercial businesses, from electricians to plumbers to chippies, charge to get to a customer’s home for work and are usually in addition to labor costs and of repair. This is the minimum that the customer must pay for the visit.

It covers the cost of the time it takes for the tradesperson to come to the house to meet the client’s needs, which can range from diagnosing a problem and suggesting a solution, to making a urgent repair.

Local business leader Karina Traill, who owns and operates award-winning Menai-based PT Doors with her husband Peter, said most business ventures will charge a minimum call out fee that reflects the value of their services and the running costs of a business.

“Our technicians and installers are highly skilled professionals and their time is valuable,” she said. “They are experts in their craft with thousands of hours of experience and training, including ten to 12 training sessions each year, just to keep up to date with new products and to stay accredited to go to certain sites and perform critical and emergency tasks.

“There’s the investment in the latest tools they use to make the job easier and faster, plus the fuel and truck costs to get our technicians to you, and the insurance to protect them and you. protect when we visit your site.”

The Traills started PT Doors over 15 years ago and offer the installation, service and repair of all domestic, commercial and industrial garage doors, as well as gate automation, in the Sutherland Shire and all over Sydney.

Their focus on delivering exceptional customer service and business integrity won them the Sutherland Shire Local Business Award for Outstanding Service and Trade in 2020. Ms Traill was named Young Entrepreneur of the Year at the prices in 2015.

A former vice-president of the Menai Sutherland Business Chamber and also the Australian Garage Door Association, Ms Traill said call charges vary from company to company but generally reflect a percentage of the hourly rate of the ‘artisan.

“For example, our call-out fee starts at $130 and includes 20 minutes of labor and all necessary consumables, such as nuts and bolts, lubricants, etc. ” she says.

“It’s a standard rate whether they’re there for 20 minutes or just ten minutes. They still had to go in there, get their tools out and assess a problem. We have calls for the different regions where we we render depending on how far we need to travel and also have priority and after hours charges.”

Communication is the best way for customers to avoid any confusion or surprises regarding service charges.

“Customers should check with the business how much the fee is for the merchant to come to their location and what that fee covers,” Ms. Traill said.

“Different companies may charge differently – this could be for distance traveled from business to work or a flat rate, so it’s important to know the details of the particular company’s structure.”

“We really want people to be able to have reasonable expectations of a business and be better informed so that they understand why so many business businesses have to charge calling fees.”

This article is sponsored by PT Doors.

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