Monday, February 24, 2014

Why it's a bad idea to price shop automotive services.

 We often get phone calls from people calling around to different shops trying to get prices for services or repairs. Today I'm going to give you some incite into and reasons why this is not a good way to pick a repair facility to service or repair your vehicle.
I'm going to give some bullet points first, reasons that many may, or may not have considered before calling around. Then I'll give you a simple analogy that will hopefully pull it all together for you. Here it is: 

1. Consider that you are asking for a price for a repair on a vehicle, that the shop has not seen, and doesn't know the condition of, or if the repair you want a price on is actually what you need.

2. Consider that all shops doing a repair do not do the "same" repair, that is they most likely do not all use the same quality of parts, nor do they all have the same quality of Technicians, and many take "shortcuts" when performing procedures to keep the price down.

3. Prices quoted over the phone are not binding and will probably not be the price you will actually pay when it comes time to pick your vehicle up. (Most of us are familiar with the term "Bait and switch")

4. When shopping for a "price" what you are not shopping for: Quality, Honesty, professionalism or customer service.

 Now that analogy,
Let's say you start having chest pains, you think you may even be having a heart problem. Would you start calling around to Hospitals or Doctors asking "How much will this cost?" and choose where you will go based on price? You might say, "Well of course not! I'd find the best place to go to get checked out. I'm not going to roll the dice when my life may depend on it". You would want all the necessary tests done, and the best doctors doing them. And even if you did get prices, do you need surgery? Or will it turn out that the problem is just a bad case of heart burn? 
 When looking for a shop, ask the right questions. Is this shop professional, trustworthy, using quality parts and providing great customer service?