By Marco Horn / Tim Fisher
Before you drop your computer off at a local computer repair service or call them for in-home or in business service, there are several very important questions you should ask.
How Much Do You Charge per Hour?
Asking the cost of a service seems like a question you’d be unlikely to forget but I am always amazed by stories of customers in absolute shock at the hourly rate for a particular computer repair service — after the fact.
Rates vary, and so do charging schemes (some computer repair services are billed per service, don’t wait until it’s time to pay the bill to find out how much per hour you’ll be paying.
Can You Tell Me How Many Billable Hours This Might Take to Fix?
No one wants to find out that it took 9 hours at R600/hour to fix a particular computer problem when a brand new budget PC might be had for half the final bill. Having at least some idea of how much the grand total will be is important.
Do You Have a Minimum Charge?
Not all computer problems take several hours to repair. A computer repair service might only spend 10 to 15 minutes solving a particular problem. If your problem happens to be one of these “quick fixes” you should be aware of how you’ll be charged for it.
Should I Expect Any Charges Other Than the Hourly Rate?
Many services we pay for in life are rife with hidden fees. Make sure you know about any other charges before agreeing to the call-out
Do You Charge Extra for In-Home/Business Service?
Many times, especially with national chain computer repair services, in-store, and in-home/in-business repair services are considered completely separate services. You should always be aware of any billing differences for between these services before getting your computer repaired.
Do You Guarantee Your Service?
It’s important to know whether or not you can expect a guaranty on the services provided. No one wants to get their computer serviced again two weeks later for the same problem.
Will You Save My Files?
Your computer itself is really just a collection of mostly-replaceable parts. It’s the term papers, photos of your dog, and the first steps video of your little girl that are really important.
When Might I Be Able to Pick Up My Computer?
Aside from all the questions about how much this is all going to cost, it’s important to ask when you might be able to pick up your computer. If you’re getting in-home or in business service, a related question would be “When might you be able to come out to my home/business?
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