I was thinking the other day that I've lost a couple of potential clients after I've informed them of the cost for my services. I get it; $125 may seem like a lot of money right off the bat.
Here's the thing, though - my fee should be thought of like any normal vet visit fee. But, attached to vet visit fees come other fees; labs, urinalysis, follow-up visits, medications, etc. etc. etc.
When it comes to my fee, that's it. I don't charge anything more than that, and the follow-up conversations keep going until we're both happy with the results.
I'd also like to take the opportunity to compare my fees to other cat behavior consultants I've found. Unfortunately I'm the only one who does this in Chico, but in nearby Sacramento, the first consultation is $300 and each follow-up visit is $100.
Another consultant in Northern CA offers on-site visits for $410, an hourly rate on top of that, and clients can only email them for one month following the initial consultation. Like, what?
If we go North of us, in Portland, a "Full Service Behavior Consultation" (which is what I offer), is $375-450. A 60-minute visit is $140 without any follow-up. Mind. Blown.
I'm sharing this because coming up with my rate took a lot of thought and research. I wanted to come up with a rate I found appropriate for Chico, one that I thought would be found acceptable and not excessive, and one that would cover my expenses as well. $125 I felt was very fair considering what the services I offer and the amount of follow-up you will receive from me!
At the end of the day, all I want to do is help cats stay in their homes. That's it. It's not about making big bucks or becoming famous. If I can save even just a handful of cats from ending up outside (or worse), then I've lived a life I can be proud of.
So now the question is: How much is a life of love and harmony with your feline friend worth?