There are a variety of strategies that farriers employ when raising rates. Many introduce an increase at the beginning of the calendar year for the sake of simplicity — new year, new rate. But is it the best time to do it?

A pair of California farriers find that the best time for them to implement a rate increase is mid-year, they told American Farriers Journal during a recent Live Q&A webinar “Business Advice During COVID-19 with Shane Westman and Alex Garcia.”

“Normally, I raise my rates 5% a year, give or take,” says Garcia, a Shingle Springs, Calif., shoer. “I usually sit down with my financial adviser after tax time every year and we go over a cost analysis of what my business is doing at the time. I apply it then because everyone is thinking about their money at that point.”

Westman, who initially shod horses in Bow, Wash., until becoming the farrier at the University of California, Davis, was among those who implemented increases around the end of the year holidays.

“It was my slow season and I was able to sit down and write them out,” he explains. “What I found was that’s when I had the most resistance because that’s when everybody is paying for stuff. Everyone is tightening the belt around that time. So, I moved it to right around tax time. That’s when you know your numbers best. It was a great way to get associated with what I was going to need to raise my rates. Then you introduce it in May, June or July. I found that was a much smoother transition.”

Get more business advice by watching a replay of the Q&A webinar “Business Advice During COVID-19 with Shane Westman and Alex Garcia.”