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Fuel Surcharges Are Becoming the Norm


hausdok
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According to a recent article in the Washington Post, the high cost of fuel has got many companies passing along the costs to consumers in the form of fuel surcharges. Consumer advocates point out there are no laws regulating how fuel surcharges are calculated or implemented and no way for customers to tell if the charges are fair.

At the same time, some states attorneys general are looking into fuel surcharges from a consumer protection standpoint. A recent article in NAHB's Nation Building News points out that, without a contract specifically spelling out how and when surcharges are added, adding them might be problematical.

Do you add a fuel surcharge?

To read the entire Washington Post article, click here.

To read the NAHB Nations Building News article, click here.

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I averaged just under 30 miles, total, per inspection last year. Assuming I'm doing the same this year my extra fuel expense, even at $5 a gallon compared to say $3, is less than $3 per inspection. I can "absorb" that. I guess I could charge more for the longer distances (although I rarely stray too far) but it just seems like "nickel and diming" to me. I prefer to just quote a simple fee and stick to it.

I do normally bump my fees a bit each year but, due to the slow market, I have held off on that so far this year. Once it gets back to normal and I find myself having to regularly turn down work, I'll then incorporate the added gas costs into a fee hike.

But, that's me. Your mileage [;)] may vary!

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I do normally bump my fees a bit each year but, due to the slow market, I have held off on that so far this year. Once it gets back to normal and I find myself having to regularly turn down work, I'll then incorporate the added gas costs into a fee hike.

I toyed with dropping my rates due to the slow down, but then decided to raise my rates to make up for lost revenue. So far I don't think I have lost a job because of my fee and it has made up for less work.

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I have just raised my rates overall. The only price I publish is my minimal or small home/condo fee and it has to be under 1000sf to fit that fee. Not publishing your fees makes it very easy to adjust them as needed!

I do cover a large area simply due to all of the rural towns and developments in my area. I try to limit my time to an hour drive of my home. On the average my jobs have bumped up about $25-$50 on a normal home inspection and an extra 1 cent on homes over 4,100 sf(I now charge .13 per s.foot on homes over 4100sf)

That extra penny adds up![:-magnify

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Hi,

I charge an extra $30 to drive outside of a 20 mile radius. However, that's not due to fuel; it's due to the extra time involved coming and going. I believe that we should be paid for all of our time and the time getting there and getting back should be included in how we figure our prices. With the traffic hell around here, going outside of a 20 mile radius can add a significant amount of time to the overall time it takes to get there, do the job, and then get back, before I can begin to type up the final report. I believe in getting paid for that additional time.

ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

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  • 2 weeks later...

I think most people and consumers realize that it costs more to get where you are going. Especially if they're a little out there.

My neighbor the other day had some sod delivered, truck was dropping off the materials and he asked if there was going to be a fuel surcharge. He's just a regular joe, that made me realize there is some lateral understanding of the cost of business, albeit small.

Tim

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