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Computer Technician


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#1 Megaman1

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Posted 05 February 2010 - 02:57 AM

Hi,

If I wanted to work from home as a Computer Technician, What would be the best way to repair PCS,
should I pick up and and drop off most of the time and have no call out fee??

Basically any advice from anyone who has worked from home as a Computer Technician would be a good help.

I need any help from how to dress to how to get return customers etc..


Thanks.

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#2 audioAl

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Posted 05 February 2010 - 06:27 AM

Morning, I own T'S & Blues Custom Computers in Texas. I started in Houston and would wear a suit on appointments for sales. For service calls I were a polo shirt and blue jeans. Customers like someone that will come to their home and fix it there quickly. If you are there more than two hours they get anxious. So, try to be quick or come back again if the problem persist. I now live in Seadrift,Tx. People here would look at you funny if you wear a suit. It depends were you live. $40.00 to $50.00 service call fee. A lot cheaper than the Geeks! It will get you business. I advertise in a free newspaper for $10.00 a month, the paper comes out twice a month. Alan
Windows Vista Ultimate 64 bit/Intel e5300 cpu/ASRock G41M-LE mainboard/G max4500 onboard graphics/4gigs OCZ 800Mhz ram/ VIA onboard HD Vinyl audio/Yamaha RX-V465 HT receiver/ Cambridge SoundWorks and Infinity RS1001 speakers

#3 dpunisher

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Posted 05 February 2010 - 12:04 PM

$65 first hour. $35 for each addl hour.

Desktop hardware problems are usually an inhome fix. I get a lot of "setup" work, which is fine. Not everyone knows how to set up their hardware/DSL/internet connections/backup solutions etc. Laptops are easier to work on at home. I had one customer's kid looking over my shoulder/yakking/asking questions as I gutted their Dell lappy to put in a new power jack. Never again. Oh, and I don't like clients to see my "WTF" face I get sometimes when troubleshooting the strange ones (or looking at the weird furry porn they left in their documents folder).

The majority of the non hardware work I do is remove viruses/trojans/malware. It is nothing to sit around for two hours just waiting on various virus scans to do the job, not to mention backup time. That sort of stuff is carry in as I would feel guilty charging someone full tilt for twiddling my thumbs while their hard drive thrashes away. If I bring them home, I can work on 3-4 systems in the same time it would take me to fix one.

Overall I prefer to pickup/dropoff for most jobs. Makes it easier on everybody. It's mainly common sense as to what you can/can't do in someone's home. Trying to update software/antivirus rpograms on dialup are a losing proposition as well, so that is one of my main questions on talking with a customer before I drop in......"Do you have DSL or cable?"

As far as commercial accounts, I don't do sales anymore. I mostly fix POS systems, retrieve lost data, set up existing systems when businesses move etc. I used to have a fair amount of commercial accounts but I just lost the motivation to always "be there" to hold their hands. I am semi retired and commercial accounts just tie me down too much.

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I am a retired Ford tech. Next to Fords, any computer is a piece of cake. (The cake, its not a lie)

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#4 the_patriot11

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Posted 05 February 2010 - 05:14 PM

I do computer work as a side job (third job basically), and unfortunatly most of my work is virus repair, though I do custom computers and hardware on occasion. Since I do it as more of a hobby, I don't charge much, only work by referrals, and sometimes I pick it up sometimes they drop it off. I don't dress fancy-like I said most of my customers are either friends or friends of friends. Though, I imagine, If I were doing as a primary job Id prolly wear something nicer then a pair of blue jeans and a t-shirt. The big thing I found though is find a place to work. Unless Im setting the computer up for a customer, I prefer to bring the computer home, and i have a room where I work at it. I find it really annoying having someone who has no idea what theyre doing standing back and giving me advice, its distracting, I need a nice quiet work environment where I can work at my own pace. Oh and I never charge a fee to show up, in fact this probably isnt advisable if your doing it as a primary job, but I do all my diagnostic work free, and I only charge for the solution and thats normall far less then computer stores. I get away with that, because its not a primary job and I don't get enough work to make a living not alone compete with local computer shops. for example, a local non profit organization that I am involved in, got a virus that immitaded a hard drive failure. they called a local computer store who told her it was a bad hard drive and would charge 300 dollars to repair it. (I initially thought hard drive to) so they asked me instead, and just for the hard drive I would have gotten a new hard drive in it for under $100. Now, seeing as it was just a virus, and that it was a non profit organization, all I had to do was reformat the hard drive, and I ended up charging them nothing. (though normally I would have charged $50 for that) now off that, I have a computer im doing a repair job on that I am getting paid for, which is good. If I was doing it full time though I would likely charge a little more, and not do free diagnostics-I get away with this because I have other sources of income and do it more as a hobby for a lil extra spending cash then anything else.

Edited by the_patriot09, 05 February 2010 - 05:19 PM.

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#5 Eyesee

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Posted 09 February 2010 - 06:44 PM

I have owned my own teck business for 10+ years now. I used to be in Kansas City and did service calls all over the city. I always made the decision on whether I would pick it up or not based on the problem and how long I think it will take. Virus scans can take 4-5 hours sometimes. This would mean that I easily drove 1,000+ miles per month.
My typical service call fee was between $50-75 depending on how long it took.

Over they years I built up a client base of 500+ customers, all of which would never go to anyone else but me. You have to earn their trust, always tell them the truth and always do the right thing, no matter what!

I have since moved to a small town in the middle of Kansas. Abilene. Here I have a shop. Most people drop their systems off as the majority of the work is viruses and spyware which can take a lot of time.

Its really a matter of respecting people as you earn their trust and respect too.
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#6 Akthalian

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Posted 13 February 2010 - 02:42 PM

I work at a retail store as the store's Resident Technician and I also do tech servicing on my own time (but in a limited capacity since i'm still in school). In St Augustine, FL where I work we built up a solid customer base that essentially allowed my store to triple it's revenue for tech sales in the last year.

I've found that delivering fast and reliable service is the thing people like the most. Im always sure to communicate solutions instead of just telling them they have a problem. You have the make the customer comfortable and sure that you know what you're doing and they can trust you with their machine (and in many cases, their personal information). I will tell you however from personal experience NEVER go out to a potential customer's house for free or at the very least don't start working until you've been paid. All tech services I do now are prepaid, the reason being that I want to be sure there's a return investment for my time. Being screwed over on about 2 different occasions resulting in about 10 hours of unpaid work really gets to me.

Just be careful and come up for with a comfortable and reliable business plan that suits your personality and schedule.
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#7 the_patriot11

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Posted 13 February 2010 - 08:41 PM

thats good advice AK. especially if your doing this for a living. I do go out for free, and diagnose for free, I require money before fixing it though. the only reason I do the diagnosing and going out there free however, is that I do it A: by referall only. B: as more of a hobby with a little extra spending cash. I have 2 other jobs. in my case I can afford it, but AKs right, charge for your work, especially if its going to be bread money.

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Primary system: Motherboard: ASUS M4A89GTD PRO/USB3, Processor: AMD Phenom II x4 945, Memory: 16 gigs of Patriot G2 DDR3 1600, Video: AMD Sapphire Nitro R9 380, Storage: 1 WD 500 gig HD, 1 Hitachi 500 gig HD, and Power supply: Coolermaster 750 watt, OS: Windows 10 64 bit. 

Media Center: Motherboard: Gigabyte mp61p-S3, Processor: AMD Athlon 64 x2 6000+, Memory: 6 gigs Patriot DDR2 800, Video: Gigabyte GeForce GT730, Storage: 500 gig Hitachi, PSU: Seasonic M1211 620W full modular, OS: Windows 10.

If I don't reply within 24 hours of your reply, feel free to send me a pm.





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