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Re: Fees

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So....You lost two jobs in a tight economy but your client was able to get his peer review completed for a great fee. You should consider yourself lucky that you are able to tell these clients to go away. Many do not have this luxury.

Were you undercut by a some guy working in his basement? You may have been undercut by a qualified firm that has nothing to do and is willing to buy a job to get in the door with a new client. Maybe this engineer needed the $500.00 to pay the bills.

I have lost a number of projects to other qualified consultants based on fees. You can't justify your higher fee with quality when other firms are providing good quality for rock bottom fees. Things are really bad for small firms here in Southern California. The unsustainable low fees are not just from bottom feeders anymore.

There is too much supply and not enough demand for engineers that work on smaller projects in Souther California. The same conditions may be present for peer review services in Chicago. I was arrogant and would not reduce fees. I told clients the same thing. I lost some good clients because of it and now I am struggling to win these clients back. I wish we all could stand our ground and not undercut each other. Unfortunately, we all have bills to pay and sometimes a little money is better than none.

Have fun,
Alex Gordon, PE



David L. Fisher wrote:

Daryl:

The same “client” sent me ANOTHER RFP for a peer review this morning.

I told him to hire the same guy as last time and leave me alone.

David L. Fisher SE PE

Senior Principal

Fisher and Partners

372 West Ontario

Suite 301

Chicago 60654

312.622.0409 (m)

312.573.1701

312.573.1726 (f)

www.fpse.com

-----Original Message-----
*From:* Daryl Richardson [mailto:h.d.richardson(--nospam--at)shaw.ca]
*Sent:* Tuesday, August 18, 2009 12:47 PM
*To:* seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org
*Subject:* Re: Fees

David,

It's interesting that the numbers should be $3,500 and $550. Back about 1983 (when times in Western Canada were about the same as I expect some of you people are now experiencing) I was asked for a proposal to do a library about 60 miles out of town for an architect and those were virtually the identical numbers. My budget was for engineering design, drafting, shop drawing review, and five trips to the site. Even $3,500 was too cheap!!

It's a mistake to take projects for the $500 level of fees when even $3,500 is probably on the low side; $500 hardly even covers the insurance. Once you do take such a job you are labeled a "bottom feeder" and the best work you can get is designing one storey warehouses and miscellaneous beams for residential for architects in non seismic areas. You are better off to "tough it out" in my opinion.

Regards,

H. Daryl Richardson

    ----- Original Message -----

    *From:* David L. Fisher <mailto:dfisher(--nospam--at)fpse.com>

    *To:* seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org <mailto:seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org>

    *Sent:* Tuesday, August 18, 2009 9:12 AM

    *Subject:* Fees

    We submitted a proposal to do a peer review for a project in Chicago.

    Our fee was $3,500.00

    The winning bidder?

    $550.00

    Peer reviews in Chicago take about four days just to complete all
    the paperwork.

    **ouch**

    Things are really tough out there.

    David L. Fisher SE PE

    Senior Principal

    Fisher and Partners

    372 West Ontario

    Suite 301

    Chicago 60654

    312.622.0409 (m)

    312.573.1701

    312.573.1726 (f)

    www.fpse.com



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