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About kellyurl13

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    Forum Beginner

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  • Business Name
    lauck motors
  • Your Current Position
    Shop Manager
  • Automotive Franchise
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  1. We are not a larger shop(just over a million a year) , but have used it for 7 years with fantastic results. None of the bells and whistles that go unused and are really just sales gimmicks. Massaging it into what you want is time consuming, but it is so easy after that and you can follow the accounting a lot easier. I spent 16 years using various shop management software that was "clunky" to use and not very intuitive. QuickBooks has saved me a lot of money, not just from software cost and fees, but from my accountant also. If I factor in the time spent creating a system that works for me, I'm still thousands ahead of the game.
  2. Rob, We started our shop about 2.5 years ago, and had an even lower front-end budget. We pinched every penny we could on the front end and kept our debt very low. One of the ways we did this is by using Quickbooks Premier as our operating system. It has good inventory controls and is very easy to massage into automotive use. Cost was less than $300 for 1 license on Amazon and no other fees. Since we use Intuit for payroll, we have to update the software every 3 years. If I can help or answer any questions, let me know I would encourage you to keep you debt low and buy what you have to have on the front end and add to it from a "wish-list" as you grow. Slow and steady wins the race. We were profitable after 5 months and continue to grow at a steady rate. Take good care of your customers. They are the best for of advertising available and the cost is low! By the way, we could use some good Memphis BBQ! Kelly Wilson Kelly & Stan's Automotive 770-992-7184
  3. What effects are the extended oil change intervals having on cars with clogged EGR, secondary air injection, or crankcase vents. I know at our shop, we see a lot of European vehicles with these problems. BMW's and Volvo's with clogged crankcase vents and oil leaks. Mercedes with clogged EGR tubes. BMW and Mercedes with clogged secondary air injection. Mostly with the Japanese we only see clogged EGR. They don't use the premium synthetics and have shorter change intervals. As an industry, there is something we are missing on the service side. The hard part is selling yet another system service in this age of power steering flush, transmission flush, fuel system flush, intake system service, etc. What problems do you experience with these vehicles and do you attribute any of it to extended oil services?
  4. Kelly and Stan's Automotive Service and Repair specializes in Japanese and European vehicles. With over 46 years of experience and 30+ years ASE master certification. Our goal is to provide quality work with first-class customer service and fair prices.
  5. The shop I left before opening this one has used loaner cars for about 10 years. Customers love it and don't mind paying a small fee for the convience. They were charging a $15 maintainence fee and replace the fuel you use. The down side was the cost of insurance, cost of maintainence, lots of customers did not replace fuel(especially when gas was higher) . We were constantly cleaning and refueling cars. I think it would be important to have someone inspect and clean upon return to avoid any body damage and low fuel. I would do a cost/benefit analysis and see if it would be better to work a deal with a local rental car agency.
  6. According to my attorney and my accountant, we are set up as an LLC, but sent a letter and received confimation from the IRS to be taxed as an S corp. I'm in Georgia, so checking with your attorney for state laws would be a good idea, but I suspect it would work the same in any state. You might want to take the time to check the IRS website. Good luck! Kelly Wilson Kelly & Stan's Automotive Roswell, GA
  7. Just wanted to add my 2 cents. When I first got into this business, 16 years ago, a wise man told me that not everyone who walks in your front door is a customer. That is why there are lots of other shops out there. Sometimes you talk politely, like the Ranger did, and invite them to go elsewhere. Sometimes it is just a personality problem. I have one customer who does not like to talk to me, but loves my partner. Doesn't hurt my feelings at all. It has always bothered me when people complain, after the repairs, about something that was explained and agreed to before. The same man once told me, it is not how you handle the things you do well, but how you handle the problems that will ultimately improve your business. Boy was he right. If someone is upset, they will tell a lot of people. It is worth something to mitigate that. Kelly Wilson
  8. Just wanted to introduce myself. I joined a while back just doing some research. I worked at the same shop for 16 years and the owner decided not to honor my "right of first refusal" he had presented me with some 12 years earlier. He sold out to a dealer tech who was a great guy, but clueless on running a shop. I was trying to explain why he needed to understand the front end of the business and stumbled across this site. I showed him some different articles and he just didn't want to follow through. Well, 18 months later..... I decided enough was enough, obtained some working capital, and my partner and I set out on our own. We now have a 7 bay repair shop and life could not be better. Although business is just ramping up, I continue to be encouraged by the response thus far. I have used this site countless times to research software, tools and equipment, management ideas, advertising, etc. What a wealth of information and variety of ideas! I hope to become more of a contributor as time goes on. Thanks to all of you for being willing to share you knowledge. Kelly Wilson Kelly & Stans Automotive Roswell, GA
  9. Mike, I've spent the last 16 years as a service/parts manager at a large independent in Georgia. I finally made the move in August and opened my own shop. Software was one of my biggest concerns. I had experience with a few and finally decided to go simple. Quickbooks premier can do most anything you want, but there is a learning curve and set-up involved. An established shop would not want to go this way, but for a start-up, it will handle everything you need including an accuonting package that will keep you financials straight. If you wanted, you can even accept/process credit cards with their software and the rates are pretty competitive. Good luck with the new shop. Glad to see I'm not the only one who believes this is a good time to make a go of it if you have some capital and a good reputation. Kelly Wilson

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