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TOPIC: Under Cut Pricing

Under Cut Pricing 24 May 2009 02:40 #1

  • BS-Horseshoeing
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We have a new guy or older guy restarting his career as a farrier in the area. He has a new add on Craigslist of course and has his prices listed. He will shoe a horse all a round for $55.00, and trim for $15.00 to $20.00 depending on travel time. He is good with bad horses (lists being able to train) and is good at theraputic shoeing. Also does race horses and lists a license number from the state racing board or something. All his words. I'm seeing alot of adds like this lately and I just wonder why these guys are working so cheap when they talk like they are the greatest thing to happen to horses feet. I should add that this guy says he has 18 years experience and is just getting back into this.

So instead of putting them down or griping about their idi88cy anymore I just wanted to ask a couple of questions. First off, how many of you can shoe a horse for $55.00 and make money (profit) if you are really running a business? How much does it really cost to shoe a horse in this day and age? How much is cost increased when dealing with lameness? Can you make money trimming for $15.00 to $20.00?

I really can't make sense of this around here so I thought I would see if this craziness was happening elsewhere. I think these guys have thier place but it sure makes it hard to charge more when there is such a big difference. Ok, just venting and asking questions. Thanks.
Ben Sturman
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RE:Under Cut Pricing 24 May 2009 03:46 #2

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So instead of putting them down or griping about their idi88cy anymore I just wanted to ask a couple of questions. First off, how many of you can shoe a horse for $55.00 and make money (profit) if you are really running a business?
None .Those kind if shoers usually shoe for cash, put a couple gallons gas in the old pickup truck pick up a 12 pack of beer for the night and never pay their taxes,.Some of them have wives with good jobs ans benefits bot too many just work day to day for pocket money and never advance.
How much does it really cost to shoe a horse in this day and age?
A lot more than 55 bucks, figuring a real business model with the business buying the replacement vehicles, all the insurance including health insurance, retirement plan etc and still having a little salary left over. .
How much is cost increased when dealing with lameness?
it depends on time and ,material involved . It may only be the cost of a pair of pads and a few more minutes to apply them, or it may be hours of complex work and expensive materials, into the hundreds of dollars.
Can you make money trimming for $15.00 to $20.0
A little, if all the trims are in one place and the trimmer just runs through them with little attention to the details and knocks one out every ten minutes or so... sloppy trims, usually , for that price .
Patty Stiller CNBF,CLS
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RE:Under Cut Pricing 24 May 2009 04:16 #3

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BS Horsehoeing wrote:
Can you make money trimming for $15.00 to $20.00?
Yes, but I'm worth more than that. :cool: Guys that do the thoroughbred breeding farms, do it in a lot less than 10 min. and often don't use the nippers, so add up the numbers and yes they can make a living, but still under selling themselves. I don't know any that work for that price. Frankly, if the horse stands nicely and has normal hooves and growth, anything over 10 min. is awfully slow. It means you either don't know where you're going or trying to sell a bill of goods. :rolleyes: You can't shoe and make a living for $55.
John
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RE:Under Cut Pricing 24 May 2009 04:37 #4

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Frankly, if the horse stands nicely and has normal hooves and growth, anything over 10 min. is awfully slow. It means you either don't know where you're going or trying to sell a bill of goods
or you are really accurate and detail oriented. :p
Patty Stiller CNBF,CLS
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RE:Under Cut Pricing 24 May 2009 04:46 #5

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BS-Horseshoeing wrote:
First off, how many of you can shoe a horse for $55.00 and make money (profit) if you are really running a business?

Yep, I can IF...you trailer the horse to my barn, provide the shoes and nails, are okay with a simple, no-frills, cold shoeing job and pay in cash. I won't do it, but if it's the only way I could make a buck, that's how it would have to be.
How much does it really cost to shoe a horse in this day and age? How much is cost increased when dealing with lameness?

I use $50 as a pre-tax baseline cost for 4 kegs and my overhead for one horse. Add materials for anything else. $35 bucks baseline for each additional horse at same location.
Can you make money trimming for $15.00 to $20.00?

Yeah, if I was single, living out of my truck and didn't have to drive more than a few miles. Practically speaking, there's easier ways to make that kind of money. Donating blood, fishing coins out of a public fountain, washing windshields on a street corner, panhandling, selling my body to elderly women at the local nursing home, etc.
I really can't make sense of this around here so I thought I would see if this craziness was happening elsewhere.

I know of two 'farriers' that have similar rates. Trim, nail on 4 kegs and done in well under an hour. I don't want to work that way and not interested in competing in that 'arena'.
I think these guys have thier place but it sure makes it hard to charge more when there is such a big difference. Ok, just venting and asking questions. Thanks.

I don't worry about this kind of 'competition'. You shouldn't either. If a caller tries to 'leverage' those kind of advertised prices, wish 'em well and send 'em on down the road.

Sooner or later, they'll be back.

Cheers,
Mark
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RE:Under Cut Pricing 24 May 2009 04:55 #6

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John Emsley wrote:
...Frankly, if the horse stands nicely and has normal hooves and growth, anything over 10 min. is awfully slow. It means you either don't know where you're going or trying to sell a bill of goods. :rolleyes:
John

Not to nitpick John, but I firmly believe that if you can provide a quality trim on a horse in 10 minutes or less, that horse wasn't due for a trim.

Cheers,
Mark
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RE:Under Cut Pricing 24 May 2009 11:00 #7

  • Mike Ferrara
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In this area lots of people are working for $7/hour. That's $56/day if you're lucky enough to have a full time job. You can make a bunch more than that shoeing horses for $50/head.

The last prices I heard for Amish farriers around here was $15 for a trim and $35 for shoeing.
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RE:Under Cut Pricing 24 May 2009 11:45 #8

  • Rick Burten
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BS-Horseshoeing wrote:
So instead of putting them down or griping about their idi88cy anymore I just wanted to ask a couple of questions. First off, how many of you can shoe a horse for $55.00 and make money (profit) if you are really running a business?
I could. That is, I could back in the early 1980's. :o
How much does it really cost to shoe a horse in this day and age?
I think that depends on many factors. That said, several years ago, Ray Miller wrote an article about this very subject and the number he came up with is, IIRC, ~$135.00 +/- per horse.

This isn't the article I am thinking of, but it is good reading and will give you something to think about: http://www2.horseshoes.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=274:farrier-industry-related-problems&catid=41:business-career-a-health&Itemid=72
How much is cost increased when dealing with lameness?
For me, it depends.
Can you make money trimming for $15.00 to $20.00?
Sure, but not nearly as much as you can make trimming for a more reasonable $40.00 to $50.00 +. Actually Ben, the question should probably be "Can you really do a proper job, earn a decent living, support your family, and not 'kill' yourself so doing for $15.00 to $20.00/horse. Speaking only for myself, the answer is, NO.
I really can't make sense of this around here so I thought I would see if this craziness was happening elsewhere.
IME, it happens everywhere.
I think these guys have thier place but it sure makes it hard to charge more when there is such a big difference.
Its a battle we always will fight, especially in bad economic times. Some clients will stay with you, some will leave. When/if those that leave come crawling back, they get to really pay for the privilege of once again being allocated a spot in your appointment book.

It has always been my custom that when a client quits me over price, I simply don't take them back. I've found that its really not worth it because eventually they will do the same thing again.
Rick Burten PF

In the immortal words of Ron White: "But let me tell you something, folks: You can't fix S-tupid. There's not a pill you can take; there's not a class you can go to. S-tupid is forever."
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RE:Under Cut Pricing 24 May 2009 12:25 #9

  • George Geist
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Rick Burten wrote:
Its a battle we always will fight, especially in bad economic times. Some clients will stay with you, some will leave. When/if those that leave come crawling back, they get to really pay for the privilege of once again being allocated a spot in your appointment book.

It has always been my custom that when a client quits me over price, I simply don't take them back. I've found that its really not worth it because eventually they will do the same thing again.
Good policy Rick. I do the same.

All I'll say about it is yes it happens everywhere. (try living around Amish:rolleyes:) Laws of supply and demand are very real. The more horseshoers flood an area, especially when the horse industry is at best stagnant and at worst declining the worse this will be.

Licensing would solve it guys;)
George
For another fun place to play........
www.horseshoersforum.invisionzone.com
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RE:Under Cut Pricing 24 May 2009 14:01 #10

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Mark Gough wrote:
Not to nitpick John, but I firmly believe that if you can provide a quality trim on a horse in 10 minutes or less, that horse wasn't due for a trim.

You can firmly believe anything, but I don't recommend clients wait until things look like garbage before calling me. Also in a stable of several horses there are always a couple that grow a little slower but are done anyways for scheduling sake. The 6-8 week scheduling is best for a majority of horses and the others that could use a little more time before breaking down aren't harmed if kept on the same schedule. It all boils down to client quality, if they're going to worry about getting every last min. out of your trim, they don't need to call me, I do have a life. :( There are some that I take 15 min. or so on, but I'm assuming we're talking about the regular average growth, everything goes smooth and I'm feeling alive. :)
As for accuracy, I'm great to have work done by, but tough to work for if your not into being accurate. Does that give you a hint about my nature? ;)
John
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RE:Under Cut Pricing 24 May 2009 16:29 #11

  • BS-Horseshoeing
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I'm not to worried about the Amish, we don't have them here. They live under a different life style with different needs, I feel bad for you guys that have to deal with that.

I know I could not make it charging the prices this guys and others are. I'd have to shoe and trim 18 hours a day to make enough money to just stay alive and I'd be killing myself to do so. That would not make any sense.

I'm not worried about losing any one to these guys, if the customer wants that kind of work, then I don't need them, and yes Rick, when they call back they get pencil whipped in the price area. I've been paying attention over the years here. In fact I am going to raise my prices at the beginning of next year.

These guys don't scare me any, just annoy the heck out of me for being so stu8id.
Ben Sturman
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Tough times never last, but tough people do!

Beware the lollipop of mediocrity, one lick and you will suck for ever!

Folks who think traditional farriery means perimeter fit don't know a heluva lot about shoeing. Tom Stovall,...
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RE:Under Cut Pricing 24 May 2009 16:30 #12

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George Geist wrote:
Licensing would solve it guys;)
George


George, that's not funny.
Ben Sturman
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Tough times never last, but tough people do!

Beware the lollipop of mediocrity, one lick and you will suck for ever!

Folks who think traditional farriery means perimeter fit don't know a heluva lot about shoeing. Tom Stovall,...
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RE:Under Cut Pricing 24 May 2009 17:31 #13

  • George Geist
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BS-Horseshoeing wrote:
George, that's not funny.
Wasn't meant to be Ben. To beat around the bush for other solutions is pretty futile when the most obvious solution is readily apparent.

Without letting this degenerate into another useless argument about that soon as Slowshoe, Gary M and Mike F see it, I instead challenge everybody to come up with a different solution. I'm betting there will be none. They'll just say that's the way it is, that's how it will always be.

Thus, we must resign ourselves to the fact that this is what we choose. It is therefore a system we must learn to operate within.
George
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RE:Under Cut Pricing 24 May 2009 17:44 #14

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BS Horseshoeing wrote:
I'm not to worried about the Amish, we don't have them here. They live under a different life style with different needs, I feel bad for you guys that have to deal with that.

Ben, we have the Amish here and I regularly recommend them for two reasons;1)They have stocks and 2)People don't figure in the trailering, fuel costs and the time spent going and coming. Once they've done that a few times their perception of cost changes.:cool::D

George Geist wrote:
Thus, we must resign ourselves to the fact that this is what we choose. It is therefore a system we must learn to operate within.
George have you ever operated in such a system you're advocating?:( How do you know it would be better? Another question because I don't think you have. If I wrong, question retracted. ;)
John
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RE:Under Cut Pricing 24 May 2009 17:48 #15

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George Geist wrote:
Wasn't meant to be Ben. To beat around the bush for other solutions is pretty futile when the most obvious solution is readily apparent.

Without letting this degenerate into another useless argument about that soon as Slowshoe, Gary M and Mike F see it, I instead challenge everybody to come up with a different solution. I'm betting there will be none. They'll just say that's the way it is, that's how it will always be.

Thus, we must resign ourselves to the fact that this is what we choose. It is therefore a system we must learn to operate within.
George

I don't think we need a solution. I'm happy with the price I get and the number of horses I have to shoe.

I just got home from shoeing a couple of local horses. I charged more than 4 times what the Amish charge and about double or so what lots of other locals are charging. But...apparently those solutions weren't working out well so the client paid my price.

It's all the same to me. I have plenty of other things I could do with my Sunday morning and I have to leave early in the morning to go shoe where I charge even more.

Look Ma, no license! Gosh, all the political and constitutional theory/ideology aside, If people are only willing to pay you $50 to shoe a horse then maybe that's what your work is really worth.

Instead of using the force of law (I prefer the term tyranny) to get paid what you want, maybe your time would be better spent getting better and/or better positioning yourself within the market. Accept some responsibility instead of looking to government to fix it for you.

The cheap guys mostly get the lousy clients and horses anyway. They're welcome to them.
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