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How much do you charge for your time?


Muriel
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Hi, I've been commissioned to make a little pet scene in a tin like I made for my grandmother a few months ago. I have worked out material costs, but have no idea how much to charge for my time! It has taken 5 hours to make, and I've enjoyed the time, but if I go by our national minimum wage (about $8.50) that'd be about £42.50 plus materials (~$12), which seems quite a lot...

What do you charge, or how much would you expect to pay per hour? Any imput would be appreciated!

I'm sure I've seen a thread on this subject before, but can I find it? of course not!

Muriel :banana:

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As with most things you make your self you can not charge minimum wage. Some people do double the material cost. If you can find something similar you can use that as a guide. Just for future reference you may want to work out the final price before you do the work. I have heard some bad stories about people who ordered something and then did not want to pay for it after it was all done.

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What a darling scene!

I don't think $50 US is too much to charge. But the first number that entered my head when I looked at it was $35 US. Did you give an estimate when you agreed to do the project?

The suggestion to set a price before you begin work is a good one. That's the time to negotiate, and if the person isn't willing to pay what is required, nothing is lost.

All of those animals, wallpaper, materials for the curtains and sofa cost about $12? Good shopping! :banana:

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I charged $1,000 per room for a renovation project (four rooms total) and that was a mistake. It took 20 times longer to complete than I had estimated, so I made less than minimum wage. If the tin is a project you have done before and you know that it will take a certain amount of time, then I would go with a fixed price, but only then.

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In my opinion a discussion before hand with the buyers is in order. Feel out the waters, and see exactly what they are willing to pay, and if you feel happy doing it for that. If it's too low, others could expect you to do it for them for the same price, and you fixed that price for yourself. If you go too high, then the chances of doing these things routinely, become fairly obsolete. Doubling the material cost seems to be a fair price to me... Good Luck!

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I think that doubling the cost of materials is reasonable. The few houses that Ive sold, Ive sold in this way. Charging for my time would make the price rediculous because it takes an enormous amount of time to work on miniatures. You would need a pretty well to do clientele to make a sale.

For example, if I were to charge the time it took for me to build the Beacon Hill, I would have to charge for a months worth of work, every day, 8 to 9 hours a day. Even at minimum wage that would be a small fortune. As you know, people arent willing to spend that much even on a custom, hand built miniature. It would take forever to find someone willing to buy it.

So as far as minis are concerned, the pay back for your time, is the love and fun you had while making them.

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Thanks for your advice people!

Didn't decide on a price beforehand, cause had absolutly no idea how much it'd cost. Also no idea how long it'd take. To be honest, in this case I wouldn't have worried if she'd decided not to go for it after i'd made it. Also she gave me about 15 dollars ahead of time for materials, so even if I don't get any more, that is materials covered anyway. It was fun to do ;)

But in future, especially if I didn't know the person so well, I'd agree a price beforehand.

I agree charging per hour wouldn't work, cause it takes longer than anyone'd pay for, but didn't know how else to work out how much to charge! I'll probably say around $30 I think.

:D

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Sometimes it is the cost of the labor that ends the deal. Often you have to price it so you make something and your costs are covered, but it isn't enough to live on. You would have to have a clientele or a reputation and that takes years. Do it for fun and learning now and a little pocket money - you can charge more when you get famous. I say about $25-30.

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I had helped a friend with her house. She had it for 10 years just waiting to find someone to do her electrical. The tapewire was already down, and still worked. I ended up adding all her lights, making her a spiral staircase, cut the hole for the stairs plus added plexiglass doors to the front. I put a ton of time in, and I enjoyed doing it. She gave me $30. I did feel a little jipped, but that is my own fault as I did not tell her before I started the work. She is planning on another house, but she can't build it or do the electrical. I told her we could figure out something before I help her out. For the building of the house with electrical, I would be happy with around $150.

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I do sewing and alterations for a living. If I make something where I buy the materials, The customer will pay cost of materials plus 1 and a half that amount again for my time. If they purchase all the materials, then I charge them 10.00 an hour. I have a contract that they have to sign, so they know up front how much I charge.

In 20 years of doing this I have had only one customer back out of the deal. She purchased silk material, thread, zipper, buttons and the pattern for me to make her a suit. She told me that she wore a size 8, I took her measurements anyway. They said she wore a 12. Even after telling her this she insisted I make the 8. So, that's what I did. Needless to say, when she came for a fitting she couldn't get in to it! Refused to pay me and stomped out. I actually ended up okay tho'. She left everything....the pattern, the extra thread, the extra lining material and silk. 3 months later, I had another customer that I do alterations for. She saw the suit and it fit her perfectly. She bought it for 2/3 of what I would have charged the other woman. I only asked for that price because I had used the extra materials to make other things that I had already sold. So, I still got the amount that I would have charged originally.

lyn

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I agree charge fairly for your time. If you don't get the job so what. You can have fun working on your own minis for free. You don't have to work on others for free.

If they get upset about it tell them you don't recognize them as a non profit charity.

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