NABR recently shared the success story of Tiny Terrell, owner of Wilson’s Body Shop in Conyers, Ga., who significantly raised his labor rate
after subscribing to and actively using the Variable Rate System.
In the area of Conyers, insurers have paid their prevailing rate of $42 per hour for paint and body labor since 2010 or so, according to Terrell.
Like most repairers, Wilson’s Body Shop knew they needed to raise their rates but did not know how and did not believe they could, since no insurer had increased their payment to Wilson’s in the last five years.
After several conversations with NABR to understand how the Variable Rate System worked, Terrell invested in a VRS subscription and worked together with NABR through the company’s proprietary cost-of-doing-business exercise.
Actively using the VRS in his day-to-day business, and within only six months of subscribing, Terrell had raised his labor rate from $42 to $48. He now collects his higher rate from 18 insurance companies including Allstate, American Family, Amerisure, California Casualty, Elco, Esurance, Gallagher Bassett, GEICO, The Hartford, Horace Mann, Liberty Mutual, Loya, Markel, MetLife, Nationwide, Sedgwick, Travelers and Zurich.
“The VRS has been a real game changer for us,” said Terrell. “The system vindicates our labor rates by proving our prices are well within the market range for shops with our level of training, certifications and equipment.”
Richard Valenzuela, CEO of NABR, added, “Tiny’s great success raising labor rates is a direct consequence of his persistent, creative and active use of the Variable Rate System in his everyday business. Other shops who want the same results as Tiny need to have a similar high level of passion and commitment, and do the same things that Tiny is doing to get those profitable results; that would be a great place to start.”
Using much of the profit that the higher labor rates have brought him, Terrell reinvested back into his business to pursue additional certifications and purchase more equipment. Today, his shop is one of the two most highly trained, certified and well-equipped shops in Georgia.