[componentheading]Yes, I Do[/componentheading]

People appreciate something more if they perceive value in it. I find that if we charge for a service, they respect the end result more, whether it’s an appraisal or an initial design. — Chuck Kuba; Iowa Diamond, Des Moines, IA

I put hours of work into a design, so I expect to be paid for my work, and I educate the customer as to the nature of the work. — Terry Parresol; Parresol Jewelers, Lakeland, FL

We offer a store credit on the design cost if they choose not to use the design. — David Mell; The Goldsmith Jewelers, Lawrenceville, GA

By locking the customer in and making them leave a non-refundable deposit, it commits them to the process and keeps us from making designs that never come to fruition. — Rich Bennett; P.K. Bennett Jewelers, Mundelein, IL

I don’t do work without a $500 non-refundable deposit that is applied upon purchase. I used to do it for free and people would waste my time. Now, only serious people come in! — Rafi Jooma; Icebox Custom Jewelry, Atlanta, GA

We will charge $400 for the design and the prototyping in wax if it involves CAD/CAM. For hand carvings we try to give one completed price. — Mark Goodman; Goodman Jewelers, Abingdon, VA

We charge $100, which will be deducted from the piece if it is made. It stops customers who have no intention of buying from wasting our time. — Shari Altman; B & E Jewelers, Southampton, PA

We charge based on how long the custom drawing takes to make. — Ericka Harville Goode; East Tennessee Diamond Co., Morristown, TN

[componentheading]No, I Don't[/componentheading]

We don’t charge until we have a model that the client is satisfied with. Our rate of success is high, and we feel that the clients who back out of a project would spread the word that they paid for nothing.  — Kent Bagnall; Kent Jewelry, Rolla, MO

For sketches and consultation, there is no charge. If the customer is pleased, we will move on to a minimum of $300 for a wax carving or CAD work. — Ken Hanchey; Hanchey Jewelers, Charleston, SC

People are leery of paying for an idea. The initial design is what sells the custom design. — Jennifer Choi; Rose Diamonds Custom Design & Repair, Springfield, MO

I charge for making the piece. I don’t charge for what I consider part of the sales pitch. — Steve Stempinski; Steve’s Place, Madison, GA

I couldn’t in good conscience charge a customer for my chicken scratchings that are only useful to remind me of what I’m doing! — Janne Etz; Contemporary Concepts, Cocoa, FL

We don’t want to turn off a customer if they are curious about having a custom design done. — Molly Lurth; Philips Diamond Shop, Marion, IA

I don’t charge for the initial design, but I’m thinking I should, due to the fact that so many people are balking at the price for the finished product. — Kris Schmid; Dieh’s Jewelers, Bernardsville, NJ

[span class=note]This story is from the June 2011 edition of INSTORE[/span]