Now that we have your attention, do you know what a senior concierge is? It’s sort of a fancy way of saying ‘caregiver’ but in reality is a whole lot more than that. Essentially a senior concierge is a person employed to assist seniors with various tasks they may no longer be able to handle by themselves. In an effort to keep our parents living at home as they age, a senior concierge provides that option.
A senior concierge will provide unique and personal service to the seniors who they are contracted to work with. These tasks are generally described as being non-medical and non-housekeeping in nature although some of these services may be available depending on the specific concierge service being used. If you are interested in enabling senior friends and peers with the opportunity to continue living independently at home, then starting your own senior concierge business could be the perfect fit for your semi-retirement plans.
Setting Senior Concierge Rates
Here’s where it gets a little tricky. As a senior you already know that many are living on limited incomes. If you are contracted directly by one, this is something to keep in mind when determining your pricing program. However, what tends to be attractive in any pricing structure is package or discount rates built on the grouping of tasks or frequency of the tasks.
Before we explore that concept, it is also as important to understand that as no two clients needs will be the same, rates need to be flexible enough to address this. One of the best ways to deal with this is to start with a base or standard price rate and then add on to this depending on the kinds or tasks and number of times they need to be completed.
The Base or Standard Price
The first thing you need to do is determine what your base price will be when setting your senior concierge rates. Let’s assume you start at $30 per hour and that the base rate comes with a minimum 1-hour charge. Anything over one hour can then be charged as an extra rate. Typically that would be extra time charged out in 15-minute increments.
When promoting your business in whatever format you select and on your business cards you should note that estimates are free. This is an incentive for potential new clients to at least get an idea of what your cost will be for a specific task. This is one instance where flexibility can come into play. You may also wish to show some generosity at this point as well.
When offering a free estimate on service, be sure to factor in such extras as parking fees, highway/roads tolls and mileage. If you have already established a number of package rates, possibly an introductory price can be offered which would be a flat rate, slightly reduced from your regular rate, with all of these extras built-in. Additional jobs after this can then convert to your regular rate.
By using a reduced, “all-in” introductory package price, even if you don’t receive additional business from some clients, you will at least earn something from the one time jobs. It will provide you with cash flow and exposure with the potential of referrals and a better understanding of the needs of some seniors you won’t be servicing regularly. It may even be an extension of your business worth exploring further at one point where you can offer just “one time” special rates.
As you are going to be servicing seniors, your rates should reflect that with a senior’s discount. It’s up to you what age you will consider ‘senior’ with the range in the retail world going from 65 years to over 90 years old.
Your specialty packages can be as varied as you want them to be but for easy math and so your customers can grasp the discount they are receiving, build your discount packages based on hours of service. For example, one package can be for 5 hours of personal assistant service. You can set the restrictions on that, and provide a package price on that.
If your regular base rate is $30 per hour, a 5-hour package would be worth $150.00 under normal circumstances. As a package priced offer you may wish to chop between 5 and 10 percent off of that. So, let’s assume the package discount you choose is 10-percent. This makes it attractive, and gives clients an incentive to pay in advance to save money, provided you are not cutting your rates too low for yourself.
Additional packages can come from 10-hour, 15-hour and greater time offers. Plus, you can develop task specific packages and attach appropriate rates to them. As we stated earlier, it is important to be flexible as you may find some client needs will lean you towards a package program you may not have thought of yet. These may fall under the categories of house-sitting, pet sitting, errand running and much more.
Terms & Conditions
Other details you will need to consider when setting your senior concierge rates is what forms of payment you are willing to accept. This will also lead into when you will want to receive those payments. You could offer an additional discount for pre-payments and a surcharge for late payments. Regardless of how you handle these matters, hopefully we have given you some solid tips to get you started. You’ll find more in our complete guide, How To Start A Profitable Senior Concierge Service.