Water Tower Inspection

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I have been approached by a smaller municipality to do inspections of some water towers. I have my part 107 license but don't know what they are looking for yet. I believe that they are just looking for photographs and video of the towers themselves. I was going to charge $100.00 per hour for the job. Does this seem off base? I don't think I would need to do much editing of the photographs and or videos so I thought $100.00 per hour seemed fair.

As a secondary question are pilots with the part 107 license creating LLC's to cover themselves? I was looking at Verifly to insure these water tower flights as both towers are outside of flight restricted areas.

Thanks in advance
 
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Here's my thoughts on pricing: They approached you. I would ask them what are they expecting from the delivery of your product, and then you will have to answer for yourself if you can deliver that. How many man hours are they looking to save, and the risk factor of a manual inspection also has a value. To charge $1,000 for a 3 hour gig when it saves them $10k or more isn't ripping anyone off. It provides them a choice. I've been self employed forever in various fields and have seen too many others short change themselves. I used to do it. I have never charged by the hour. Always by the job and the deliverables weighed against their other options. I am never the cheapest guy out there, and typically the most expensive, but I deliver top notch services and over deliver what was promised.

Hope this helps.
 
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Here's my thoughts on pricing: They approached you. I would ask them what are they expecting from the delivery of your product, and then you will have to answer for yourself if you can deliver that. How many man hours are they looking to save, and the risk factor of a manual inspection also has a value. To charge $1,000 for a 3 hour gig when it saves them $10k or more isn't ripping anyone off. It provides them a choice. I've been self employed forever in various fields and have seen too many others short change themselves. I used to do it. I have never charged by the hour. Always by the job and the deliverables weighed against their other options. I am never the cheapest guy out there, and typically the most expensive, but I deliver top notch services and over deliver what was promised.

Hope this helps.
Thanks for the reply. Do you have an LLC to cover yourself liability wise? Right now I am doing small jobs and have thought that I should create the LLC to make myself more narketable and protect my personal assets.

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Yes, my company is set up as an LLC.
Operating as an LLC gives you a little buffer in protecting your personal assets from a business lawsuit.

If this is your first business, contact your small business administration in your state, and S.C.O.R.E. If they have an office your area. Always good to get above on how to structure a business.
 
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Yes, my company is set up as an LLC.
Operating as an LLC gives you a little buffer in protecting your personal assets from a business lawsuit.

If this is your first business, contact your small business administration in your state, and S.C.O.R.E. If they have an office your area. Always good to get above on how to structure a business.
Thanks for the advice. I will be looking into both, here in Wisconsin.

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How do you guys pick up jobs, word of mouth, advertising etc?
 
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I have been approached by a smaller municipality to do inspections of some water towers. I have my part 107 license but don't know what they are looking for yet. I believe that they are just looking for photographs and video of the towers themselves. I was going to charge $100.00 per hour for the job. Does this seem off base? I don't think I would need to do much editing of the photographs and or videos so I thought $100.00 per hour seemed fair.

As a secondary question are pilots with the part 107 license creating LLC's to cover themselves? I was looking at Verifly to insure these water tower flights as both towers are outside of flight restricted areas.

Thanks in advance
I am not too fond of simply charging a flat rate. Our flat rate changes depending on so many factors, so we end up charging by the job. How do you know how long you'll be on site? You might run into problems (as often happens with these little tech wonders), so should your employer pay for the delays? Work those headaches into your expected costs. Also, the complexity of the job may depend on many factors - what is the area around the tower like? Are you in a high air-traffic area? Are there other buildings or roads nearby? Will you need multiple crew members to assist with the job? Costs add up quick. I think one of the biggest mistakes in this industry is undercharging and then finding you can't pay your bills at the end of the year. My 2 cents. Let me know if you have any questions or would like to chat, we've got some experience working with smaller municipalities on energy and construction jobs, as well as mining.
 

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