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help on quotations please?

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Post Wed Mar 27, 2002 10:25 am

help on quotations please?

bit of a problem with a large company...I gave a quote to do a job, at the bottom of the quote I state my terms and conditions, essentially 30% deposit for work over $500 and the balance withing 7 days of invoice date.
The quote was accepted, order supplied and then a fax came with a long list of legal term and conditions of their own. These incuded payment 30 days (this usually means 60-90 days) etc etc.

Who has the right to determine terms? the sign shop or the client?

What would you do, tell them to accept your terms or forget it, or bow to their demands?

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Gray Hodge
Cam River Signs
Tasmania
Last edited by Gray Hodge on Thu Feb 24, 2011 4:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Post Wed Mar 27, 2002 11:06 am

quick answer gray
im not sure! :smile: in the end its you that will have to decide. i guess if the company is large. and you think they will continue to use you in future then ide maybe go along with them on it.
if not, then they are the ones coming to you.
they should be adjusting to your terms.
if they have terms of there own that they expect you to stick to then they should have taken it up with you before you lifted a finger. not once the job is completed.
if they didnt then they dont really have a case.
again mate, im unsure.
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Post Wed Mar 27, 2002 11:09 am

help on quotations please?

Thanks Robert, it is a tough one, BTW the job is not done yet, just all the design work.
I try hard to be professional and cover all angles, but something always seems to come up.

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Last edited by Gray Hodge on Thu Feb 24, 2011 4:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Post Thu Mar 28, 2002 10:06 am

give their accounts dept a ring and just explain that to be able to keep the prices low, you work on a short payment basis blah blah blah

if they insist try adding a surcharge , i think its only fair really
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Post Thu Mar 28, 2002 10:52 am

I was stung last year by a larger company than we are, we priced works for three different jobs. They asked for quotes and we sent estimates, we used three different job numbers and three different sheets of notepaper for the prices, as I was not sure about the guy we were dealing with. We were awarded the work, we agreed to carry out the work for them. During the works which they were delighted with the gut was a total pain wanting extras and not wanting to pay for them etc, after we finished the job we asked for payment for the first job and they said no they would pay collectively. There was a heated discussion and we threatened to pull out all together. We were then told we were in breach of contract and they would sue us.
It is the law that if they use another company and they cost more than our price WE are responsible for any shortcomings in the price difference. We were lucky as we had estimated and not quoted for the work and we had three different jobs and not one.

Gray, if they are trying to change before you do the work or before they agree to have the work carried out then be careful as it is a contract and legally binding if you then work for them. Its a bit hard and does not make sense that they can all screw us this way but its the law. Scottish Law anyway, may apply to others.

Rob how about you speak to a recovery firm or collection agency for the group to get discounts?
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Post Thu Mar 28, 2002 1:18 pm

help on quotations please?

Well Stuart, there's the problem - Scottish Law! Only joking.

I would be interested to know what the difference is between an estimate and a quote. Presumably one is written in stone, the other is not.
If so, is it unwise to give a quote?

Your story certainly highlights the dangers that lurk for the unwary.
I have expanded the fine print on the bottom of my quotes,oops, I mean Estimates. But I did have a chance to remind the client today that the quote stated that its acceptance also meant acceptance of terms which include a 30% deposit and the balance within 7 days of invoice.
I do have 30 day customers, ones that are tried and true. But when big jobs come along they also mean big expenditures and you can get into trouble if things go pear-shaped with getting money in.

I just billed another customer who promised to pay in 7 days and hasn't. I have a $1300 crane bill to pay for that job.
BTW, just for you and Robert I thought I would listen to some scottish music and sip a scottish whiskey while I write this.



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Last edited by Gray Hodge on Thu Feb 24, 2011 4:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Post Thu Mar 28, 2002 4:05 pm

Well done but what did you say.....understood the hic bit??
You are right about the quote bit, its legally binding on both parties, an estimate is "a proffesional guess" and not legally binding. I tend to give new customers or awkward sods estimates and quotes to good repeat customers.
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Post Fri Mar 29, 2002 1:14 am

nice one gray... you sound like a guy missing home mate.

as for the credit thing stuart. i think that may be alot further down the line . but is somthing ive spoke about. i also like the overnight delivery services idea for the group.
anyway. in the members area there is somthing along these lines. being able expose bad paying customers etc.
passwords and usernames go out next week. check it out then.
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Post Sun Mar 31, 2002 12:34 am

help on quotations please?

Sorry Gray - coming in on this one a little late in the day - but - as I understand it if you estimate a cost - you can then charge upto 60% more than that without breaking the law! Shows just how 'loose' an estimate really is. but that's what also makes it a good tool. I often give estimates, or, I give a price for the sign or graphics and then estimate the cost of fitting.

Regarding the 'whose terms are relevant' question, well, as far as I'm concerned it is the person selling the goods that has moral high ground here - that's you!. Chances are it was the customer that started the whole process off by asking you for something and as such they are asking for your price, spec, terms etc. So, as someone else has said I believe, if they throw all this 90 day crap at ya' then simply get them to confirm that they will abide by your terms.


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Post Sun Mar 31, 2002 12:47 am

help on quotations please?

Thanks for your imput Mike, having the option of an Estimate layout and a separate "Quotation" layout in my software (MYOB) is a bit messy so I will stick with one or 't,other. But I agree with fitting, that is often an unknown factor that I am unwilling to commit on.

Sometimes I have given a client a fixed outside figure and said, if it takes me less time I'll charge you less'. This is a way of impressing them with your honesty and willingness to work with them on price.

As to this particular job, I have clarified my position, sticking to my terms, they can like it or lump it. I appreciate all the advice I get here. Sometimes it just confirms what I know to be right, but nontheless invaluable.

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