Jump to content

Do You Charge A Shop Fee?

Recommended Posts

How do other shop owners charge for shop supplies, hazardous or other waste removal fees? (The cost of rags, cleaners, clips, fasteners, degreasers, silicone, etc.) Do you have a flat rate or is it a percentage of the overall job, parts, or labor?


I find that a lot of customers are outraged when they see on their receipt "Shop Fee / Miscellaneous." Is it best to avoid this and just markup the price of labor or parts to make up for it? Or to keep itemizing it out?



We try our best to satisfy every customer, but these shop supplies were stocked in the shop for free.


Thanks for your input.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

I work it into the parts. If I do a window regulator and I need 2 clips for the door panel I just mark the regulator up a few bucks... keeps people from getting mad over something they don't understand or didn't authorize...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I charge 8.01% on every ticket up to $39.97 total. I have been doing this for almost 4 yrs and haven't had anyone question this charge at all. I have plainly posted on the wall what this charge is for and it is included in the cost of the estimate so it doesn't show as an extra charge when they check out. Its worth a lot of money a year to cover all the "stuff" we can't charge out on every ticket.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 months later...

In the state of California we are not allowed to charge a "shop fee". Everything is billed out as a part. Rags are part of my overhead expense. Everything else is billed out on the invoice as a part even if I bill .1 for the thread lock I used. So if a bottle of thread lock cost me $10 and I would charge lets say $18 for a whole bottle I just divide the $18 dollars by how many times I would think the bottle would last me say 25 times. So .1 billed out would be .72 cents on the invoice. This system seems to work out for me and I have never had a complaint from a customer over 72 cents.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ours is 6% up to $40.00 on shop supplies line. As long as we include shop supplies and any taxes in the estimates there does not seem to be any questioning of the charge. For so many years we didn't even charge shop supplies and didn't realize the affect it had our ability to make a more "reasonable" profit. While there have been little or no complaints, we can't be sure it doesn't cause the customers some distress and they just aren't saying so. I really like method Joe uses above, of adding it in behind the scenes, it just sounds to me as a fairer way. I always felt a line for a shop supply charge was kind of petty.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I charge a "Shop supplies" charge. I did, then I didn't and now I do again. I used to avoid the topic but now I just tell the customer, here is what is needed on the job, parts, labor, shop supplies and sales tax for a total of...

I never have had a complaint regarding shop supplies. And one thing I found out, shop supplies are parts. So if your state is like Michigan and only parts are taxed, not labor, you better be charging tax on the shop supply total. i can see both sides of the coin, if someone is pricing it doesn't matter if you charge $XX for the parts, $YY for the labor and $xy for shop supplies, or if you are charging $XX.y for parts and $YY.x for labor, the total is still $XXYY.xy. Likewise it won't matter if the guy down the street doesn't charge shop supplies and his total quote is $XXYY.y he'll be cheaper than you. I think it is a matter of it makes up feel better to see that charge to pay for half a can of brake cleaner, a couple shots of penetrating oil, some chassis grease and maybe a nut botl and washer. When all the customer sees is my canuter valve replacement cost me 456 scheckles and 75 foibles. If they are scrutinizing the bill, nothing you can do is likely to make them happy, even discounting it, you are always going to be ripping them off.


Now on the topic of the hazardous waste disposal, in Michigan, last I knew, a shop could not charge more than their actual costs for hazardous waste disposal, within reason of course. If a reasonable estimation had you charging $$ on every job that had haz waste and you collected $$$$$$$ but only spent $$$$$$0 you were close enough but had to reevaluate for next year. But if you collected $$$$$ but only spent $$$$ then you should have reevaluated mid-way through the year and you would be in violation. Good luck with that one.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We charge both shop supplies and enviro fees. We have always charged shop supplies, and never had anyone question it. We started charging enviro fees this year, and no one has complained about those either. The key is to just make sure the price you quote the customer includes all of these fees, so that they are not viewed as an add on. We also use a shop management software that only adds them in at the bottom of the invoice, and not as a line item, where it is more likely to draw attention.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

When we first started to charge "Shop Supply Fees" years ago, we had some customer's question it. Now, customer's seem to understand it better. Our POS system just adds the percentage into the job. We DON'T charge that fee on tires that we sell. We kind of have a " Don't like it? oh well" kind of attitude because on many jobs we actually use more than the fee covers but not enough that we have to actually put it on the invoice.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Have you checked out Joe's Latest Blog?

      I recently spoke with a friend of mine who owns a large general repair shop in the Midwest. His father founded the business in 1975. He was telling me that although he’s busy, he’s also very frustrated. When I probed him more about his frustrations, he said that it’s hard to find qualified technicians. My friend employs four technicians and is looking to hire two more. I then asked him, “How long does a technician last working for you.” He looked puzzled and replied, “I never really thought about that, but I can tell that except for one tech, most technicians don’t last working for me longer than a few years.”
      Judging from personal experience as a shop owner and from what I know about the auto repair industry, I can tell you that other than a few exceptions, the turnover rate for technicians in our industry is too high. This makes me think, do we have a technician shortage or a retention problem? Have we done the best we can over the decades to provide great pay plans, benefits packages, great work environments, and the right culture to ensure that the techs we have stay with us?
      Finding and hiring qualified automotive technicians is not a new phenomenon. This problem has been around for as long as I can remember. While we do need to attract people to our industry and provide the necessary training and mentorship, we also need to focus on retention. Having a revolving door and needing to hire techs every few years or so costs your company money. Big money! And that revolving door may be a sign of an even bigger issue: poor leadership, and poor employee management skills.
      Here’s one more thing to consider, for the most part, technicians don’t leave one job to start a new career, they leave one shop as a technician to become a technician at another shop. The reasons why they leave can be debated, but there is one fact that we cannot deny, people don’t quit the company they work for, they usually leave because of the boss or manager they work for.
      Put yourselves in the shoes of your employees. Do you have a workplace that communicates, “We appreciate you and want you to stay!”
  • Similar Topics

    • By Changing The Industry
      Shop Marketing Pros Live at L&N Auto
    • By Changing The Industry
      The Basics of Owning An Auto Repair Shop - Part 6
    • By carmcapriotto
      The Weekly Blitz is brought to you by our friends over at Shop Marketing Pros. If you want to take your shop to the next level, you need great marketing. Shop Marketing Pros does top-tier marketing for top-tier shops.
      Click here to learn more about Top Tier Marketing by Shop Marketing Pros and schedule a demo:https://shopmarketingpros.com/chris/
      Check out their podcast here: https://autorepairmarketing.captivate.fm/
      If you would like to join their private Facebook group go here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/autorepairmarketingmastermind
      In this podcast episode, Chris Cotton from Auto Fix Auto Shop Coaching examines the JD Power 2024 US Customer Service Index Study. He offers strategies for auto repair shops to outperform dealerships by focusing on immediate service, convenience, and the smart use of technology. Cotton emphasizes the need for shops to educate customers and offer value through quality service rather than just competing on price. He advises shops to enhance their online presence and local advertising to attract customers. The episode is a guide for auto repair businesses to improve service and capitalize on dealership shortcomings to gain customer loyalty.
      The JD Power 2024 US Customer Service Index Study (00:01:10) Insights from the study on dealership customer service, wait times, and technician retention.
      Dealership Wait Times and Technician Retention (00:02:14) Discussion on the impact of wait times, technician retention, and the influence on customer satisfaction.
      Customer Preferences and Technology (00:06:25) Customer preferences for immediate service, convenience, and the importance of technology in service updates.
      Rising Costs and Customer Satisfaction (00:09:02) Increase in the average amount spent on dealer visits, the impact of inflation, and customer satisfaction.
      Adapting to Market Landscape (00:13:18) The need to embrace technology, improve communication, and address wait times and cost concerns.
      Advertising Strategies for Auto Repair Shops (00:14:22) Tactical approaches to leverage speed, convenience, technology, cost-effectiveness, education, and tailored promotions in advertising.
      Implementing the Marketing Strategy (00:19:05) Guidance on assessing current advertising channels, revamping content, and staying responsive to market changes.
      Connect with Chris:
      [email protected]
      Phone: 940.400.1008
      Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/
      AutoFixAutoShopCoachingYoutube: https://bit.ly/3ClX0ae
      #autofixautoshopcoaching #autofixbeautofixing #autoshopprofits #autoshopprofit #autoshopprofitsfirst #autoshopleadership #autoshopmanagement #autorepairshopcoaching #autorepairshopconsulting #autorepairshoptraining #autorepairshop #autorepair #serviceadvisor #serviceadvisorefficiency #autorepairshopmarketing #theweeklyblitz #autofix #shopmarketingpros #autofixautoshopcoachingbook
      Click to go to the Podcast on Remarkable Results Radio
    • By Joe Marconi

      Premium Member Content 

      This content is hidden to guests, one of the benefits of a paid membership. Please login or register to view this content.

    • By carmcapriotto
      Thanks to our partners, NAPA TRACS and Promotive
      Did you know that NAPA TRACS has onsite training plus six days a week support?
      It all starts when a local representative meets with you to learn about your business and how you run it.  After all, it's your shop, so it's your choice.
      Let us prove to you that Tracs is the single best shop management system in the business.  Find NAPA TRACS on the Web at NAPATRACS.com
      It’s time to hire a superstar for your business; what a grind you have in front of you. Great news, you don’t have to go it alone. Introducing Promotive, a full-service staffing solution for your shop. Promotive has over 40 years of recruiting and automotive experience. If you need qualified technicians and service advisors and want to offload the heavy lifting, visit www.gopromotive.com.
      Paar Melis and Associates – Accountants Specializing in Automotive Repair
      Visit us Online: www.paarmelis.com
      Email Hunt: [email protected]
      Get a copy of my Book: Download Here
      Aftermarket Radio Network
      Click to go to the Podcast on Remarkable Results Radio

  • Our Sponsors

  • Create New...