Covid-19 Shut down

Post your windshield repair tips, questions, advice! Note there is a sub-forum specifically for business development questions.
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Dave M
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Covid-19 Shut down

Post by Dave M » April 27th, 2020, 7:43 am

Hope everyone is staying healthy! Just curious, who has shut down or has remained open during the Covid-19 virus? I have been shut down for the past 4 weeks and follow Maine's Governors State shut down, as Windshield Repair is not an essential business. Still no stimulus money, unemployment benefit or PPP loan....all on hold! I will not be judgemental on any reply and hope that others will do the same.

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Re: Covid-19 Shut down

Post by Dave M » April 27th, 2020, 3:48 pm

Update on my post. Received my PPP loan and should received my stimulus money by the end of the week.

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Brent Deines
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Re: Covid-19 Shut down

Post by Brent Deines » April 27th, 2020, 5:05 pm

Glad to hear that Dave! When will you be able to open up for business again?

In Oregon automotive repair services are considered essential services...so far anyway. We have a pretty low infection rate here and as of today only two COVID-19 related deaths in the county we live in. I would say business as usual for us except there are very few customers coming in for repairs and product sales have plummeted and we have to keep checking the phones to see if they are still working. No PPP loans or stimulus checks yet but we have managed to keep fully staffed, and most importantly we are all healthy.

Our thoughts and prayers are with all of our friends in the windshield repair industry. Sure hoping things will get back to normal soon!
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Dave M
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Re: Covid-19 Shut down

Post by Dave M » April 27th, 2020, 5:39 pm

I'm thinking of starting up next week but depends on what our governor says. I am mobile only and every single car I work on (as everybody else in this business) has been occupied by someone who I don't have a clue where they have been or if they were healthy. The vehicle likely has not been sanitized so I'm leery of working on it even with gloves and a mask. I glad you and your employees are staying healthy. Hopefully, more members join in on this topic.

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Re: Covid-19 Shut down

Post by RCRNR » May 9th, 2020, 12:51 pm

I also received PPP on first round however still waiting on state grants. My big concern is I rely mainly on mall traffic. I have been attempting to keep mobile repairs available. I have noticed that SGC seems to be trying harder than usual to steer my customers to them. I have lost several customers to them recently and every mobile I did said they tried to steer them more than usual. Has anyone else had the same problem ? I think from here out I will have customers that are not returning customers wait to call insurance til I get out there home so I can be with them when they make the insurance call to attempt to end the steering.

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Re: Covid-19 Shut down

Post by Brent Deines » May 12th, 2020, 5:46 pm

I know it is kind of a pain but I agree that is probably the best approach right now. We often start the repair before we make the call so it is impossible to steer the customer elsewhere. If you are careful to make sure the customer has full coverage with an insurance company that waives the deductible there should be little chance of them refusing to give you a claim number. Just be sure to take before and after photos, and complete a repair that customer is happy with. It's also a good idea to have a policy in place in case the TPA will not issue a claim number and to discuss that policy with the customer prior to starting the repair. I think it's reasonable to expect the customer to pay for the damage if the TPA will not cooperate, but in our experience that is not an issue so I feel comfortable telling the customer the repair will be free if I cannot get the insurance company to pay for it. Just depends on your experience and and salesmanship.
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Re: Covid-19 Shut down

Post by Zenner » June 11th, 2020, 5:49 pm

Your problem is the same as mine, I don't have any kind of commercial stimulus, I just hope that things change for the better.

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Re: Covid-19 Shut down

Post by RCRNR » June 13th, 2020, 2:48 pm

I live in Washington State, I will reopen on June 17th I am very happy to re open. Today alone had 5 customers looking for me there, which I will do mobile tomorrow. My only hope is that it is not too soon and we end up having to close again. I truly believe that while it seems bad now, that once the dust settles all of us smaller businesses will be busier than ever. I have never seen so may people in the same mindset of shopping with local businesses. Hang in there all this will pass in time, and we will come out of this better and stronger than ever.

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Re: Covid-19 Shut down

Post by Brent Deines » June 13th, 2020, 4:32 pm

Oddly, our windshield repair services are down 48% YTD but our headlight restoration services are up 102%. Since our windshield repairs are primarily billed through insurance and our headlight restorations are all cash I would have thought it would be just the opposite with so many people out of work but I've noticed the detail shops are super busy as well. Not sure what to attribute the boost in cash services to.
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