PRICING the topic most shops want to avoid. They have no idea of what their fixed costs are nor (in many cases) what it will cost to fix the problem, aka, repair your car. Pricing is such an issue that the Bureau of Automotive Repair has written a small book on pricing procedures. We have heard horror stories over pricing from dealerships as well as independent garages.
Unlike other shops, pricing is not arbitrary at Courtesy. Whether, we are busy or not, you are military or not, we like your car or not, you look rich or not, we made enough money today or not, has nothing to do with the price. Our price does not change because you drive a British car or a German car. Our hourly rate is $110.00 per hour period. That is based on what fixed and variable costs are to service your car. Additionally, we call two to three parts sources to find you the "best value" for your part/parts. Since we use a standard Gross Margin, you will pay less if we can buy your part/parts for less. This is Courtesy's pricing policy.
In this industry, there are some unusual and objectionable practices which rightly gives the industry a bad reputation and you will not find at Courtesy. They all involve pricing.
In the independent auto repair industry, there are from time to time, in many shops, cars which are called "sunshine cars". Your car may have been one and you would never know it. Isn't that a creepy feeling? Let us give you an example:
Recently we had a car brought into us which had been diagnosed with a rattling Flexplate (transmission part). The customer wanted a quote from us for replacing the rattling Flexplate. He had already received two other quotes for the same repair. This was a seven to eight hour repair plus the parts. The customer knew about what the repair was going to cost and the customer was resolved to pay for a $700.00 plus repair. We gave him the quote and we insisted that we diagnose the problem. He agreed and as our technician said, he was lucky that he came to Courtesy.
This could have been a "sunshine car".
In our diagnosis (which only costs $52.00 flat, whether it takes 10 minutes or two hours, it is $52.00), we discovered that the noise was coming from his starter, a half hour labor job to remove and replace the starter.
Some repair shops have been known to take a job like this and replace the starter as we did. But then they would park the car in the sun outside and out of sight and wait for the eight hours to pass before they notified the customer that the noise had been eliminated and the bill was still only $700.00 plus.
This is not "Service with Integrity" and this is not what happened in our example. The customer paid less than half of what he expected to pay and he had his car back within 2.5 hours. His car was not a "sunshine car" and you will never have a "sunshine car", if you bring your vehicle to Courtesy.
Further more we use published factory standard hourly labor rates which we will show you, if you want to see them and we search for the best parts prices we can find. We will show those invoices too, if you want to see them. Speaking of factories and dealers, if we by a part for your vehicle from the dealer, we will sell it to you at the same price.
Five years ago, a seasoned businessman from this industry said, " You can not run the shop like that...people will never know..." Our customers have proved him wrong and we are glad. We know, if you decide to bring your vehicle to Courtesy, you will enjoy "Service with Integrity" and we believe you will tell one or two of your friends or maybe leave a comment on the internet.