Should You Cut Your Fees?

Home Stager with Academy of Staging and Redesign

When times get more difficult and profits drop, the questions always come up - Should I cut my fees?  Should I lower my prices? Should I take a lower commission?

I've heard many viewpoints and I'll share three.

1) Make things more affordable so you can keep business coming your way. At first glance this may seem logical. But stop and think. Your overhead has not gone down. You may even need to work harder to get the same number of clients. Your worth has not changed. So does it make sense to devalue what you bring to the table?

2) Since it's harder to land a new client, and your operating costs may have gone up too, you should charge even more than before so that when you do get a new client, you'll earn more to make up for having fewer clients and higher overhead. But stop and think. We can only determine what the market will bear to a certain point. After that the market will have its way. The market is the most powerful force there is - and no one can rule over it.

3) This one is my favorite. Don't lower your fee when there are always ways to increase your value - or your perceived value. Look for ways to improve what you're doing. Look for ways to improve your services. Look for ways to lower your overhead. Work more efficiently. Use better wisdom. Improve. Focus more on your prospects and how you can sweeten the deal for them. You'll get your fair share of business and, hopefully, you won't have to work for less than you want or deserve.


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Comments (14)

Sharon Parisi
United Real Estate Dallas - Dallas, TX
Dallas Homes

I believe in increasing our value!

Apr 27, 2011 07:45 PM
David Myre
VIP Realty - Dallas, TX

Thanks for sharing, Barbara. Number 3 pretty much sums it up and is my favorite as well.

Apr 27, 2011 08:29 PM
MichelleCherie Carr Crowe .Just Call. 408-252-8900
Get Results Team...Just Call (408) 252-8900! . DRE #00901962 . Licensed to Sell since 1985 . Altas Realty - San Jose, CA
Family Helping Families Buy & Sell Homes 40+ Years

The next part is effectively COMMUNICATING that added value so that people choose you.

Apr 27, 2011 09:22 PM
Clint Mckie
Desert Sun Home, commercial Inspections - Carlsbad, NM
Desert Sun Home, Comm. Inspection 1-575-706-5586

I get calls all the time wanting me to do an inspection for a lower fee. If they are not a "new home buyer" Then I charge the same price. If they are a long time client, then I charge a little less.

Clint McKie

Apr 27, 2011 11:59 PM
Reno, NV

Barbara,  you have presented  great valid points for conducting small business in "these times". With the economy affecting most of us, we certainly have to take time to evaluate, make decisions, and adjust accordingly..... but, our self-worth and value should always be "soaring" upward!.... thanks for your post, "good food for thought"!

Apr 28, 2011 06:44 PM
Gwen Kelly
Broadmoor Realty, Inc - Long Beach, CA
Long Beach, CA Real Estate

Our "fee" is negotiable, we would all like to work with clients who recognize our value; some just value us more than others... 

Apr 28, 2011 06:50 PM
Patsy Overton
Patsy Overton Interiors, Atlanta, Georgia - Duluth, GA

It's so nice to have the experience to know that not everyone is my client.  When they nickel and dime you to death on the front end, it always goes downhill from there.  Initially there is a time to go in low, but with experience you can have confidence that your value and worth warrant your fee.

Jun 10, 2011 01:50 AM
Barbara Jennings
Academy of Staging and Redesign - Huntington Beach, CA

Thanks everyone for your comments.

It is true.  If you don't value your talents and expertise to set a fair price and stick to it, no one else will value it either.

We are not the answer for everyone. And everyone is not the client for us.

Only work with people who respect you and with whom you have a pleasant relationship.

Jun 10, 2011 05:42 PM


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