Follow that formula and you'd end up doing the same job requiring the same
amount of work for prices dependant on the cost of the stock. And that is
without figuring out labor and materials for different finishes on the same
You want to know what a commission is going to cost you and figure your
profit from there get a program like Cutlist Plus, plug in ALL the costs
associated with a job INCLUDING labor charges for various functions required
by the job IE. costs of going to get the materials, shop overhead for when
you are working on the commission, labor for milling, assembly, finishing (I
use different rates for each function since the skill and labor intensity
varies with each), materials like sand paper, screws, brads, glue, and
whatever, all that and what seems like a hundred and one other things. Don't
forget taxes on what you have to buy and any shipping costs for things you
have to mail order.
Once you have that all down you can figure in your profit or build it into
something like the labor rates since that is something that doesn't take any
out of pocket money.
By the time you finish I think you'll be a bit shocked in what it really
cost YOU to do a job for someone.
Note: I use two sets of labor rates. One I call standard and the other
preferred. I use the preferred rate for friends and especially relatives who
are looking of a deal and are "of course give you something for your
trouble". That way when they scream when I tell them what that "something"
equates to in dollars I can show them in black and white what I'd charge
someone off the street. It doesn't hurt either when my wife gives me the
look when I tell her that "simple little thing" she wants done is going to
cost four hundred dollars (with no labor or overhead figured in).
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