Friends/relations & freebies!

I am getting sick of friends and relations who expect me to fix their computers for free. Yet if I ask them to do a job for me eg fix my plumbing or do some building for me, they expect to be paid!
Do you have this problem? How do you deal with it?

geek_mrelijah, May 25, 7:59 am

Are you a computer fixer professional? If so, don't do it for free.
If you are just a geek/hobbiest, then just hope for some kindness in return.

geek_r.g.nixon, May 25, 8:30 am

I'm an occasional tinkerer with computers and have given some to friends and relations for free or parts cost only. Unfortunately, they seem to think a lifetime of free maintenance is included. Now, I tell them, sorry, I am out of practice and can't remember how to fix them.

geek_gasaxe, May 25, 8:52 am


Hope doesn't pay my bills!

Also, I've discovered it only takes them a few minutes to screw up their computer but it can take hours to fix! Especially if they don't do back ups.

I once knew someone who took Disk images at the outset and then when their friend had problems, just reloaded the disk image and said "bye bye, you've lost every thing you haven't backed up!".

geek_mrelijah, May 25, 9:18 am

Just learn to be more assertive. Say no or ask to be paid. It's quite simple.

geek_ross1970, May 25, 9:23 am

If i do a freebie, - which about 80% of what i do generally is,
then they owe me something else, no arguments,

be it money, labour, expertise, food, beer, old equipment for recycling, whatever I know they can provide, how much they owe me depends on how big the job i need to do for them is

i keep pretty good records, so i know who still owes me what, or whether i owe them one

sometimes the balance is a little unfair in either direction, but thats the way it goes

geek_pcmaster, May 25, 10:23 am

Pretty much this. I provide free support for mother/inlaw and thats it, after many very disappointing experiences with so-called friends (you have a lot more 'friends' when you can provide a valuable service for nix)

Anyways this pretty much sums up how i feel about it
http://www.techrepublic.com/blog/10-things/ten-reasons-not-to-fix-computers-for-free/

geek_king1, May 25, 10:40 am

Put up a large notice in your workroom saying "PC Repairs, configurations and installd $85.00/hr. Cash only". And make sure they are taken in there and see it. The guilt part should work and if it doesn't then your rellies must be pretty grim types.

geek_moltenfire, May 25, 1:49 pm

I'm always fixing things for friends, their mothers, etc.

Don't really get much for free, just do it out of the kindness of my heart lol

Sonetimes annoying when it's the x time in x weeks etc, but such is life.

geek_christin, May 27, 6:38 pm

Welcome to the world of every Tradie or Technician, family and friends don`t believe they have a life of their own, weekends don`t exist, they never sleep, their business is stocked with spare parts and "why the hell don`t\can`t you fix it".

geek_portly, May 29, 7:37 pm

Portly, you forgot "rich as sin".

geek_carter19, May 29, 8:52 pm

dont mind doing free stuff for my parents/wifes parents etc, but thats about it

The worst is people at work bringing personal laptops etc in for the IT dept to fix.

geek_csador, Jun 1, 10:34 pm

From the being helped point of view. my friend offered to help with some things, didn't want payment and the problem was sorted quickly - he went home with a box of preserves I've made from fruits and vegetables I grow - and with a big smile on his face. :-)

geek_goodbooks, Sep 27, 9:14 am

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