Did I say you were not supposed to? I don't think so. But I do think that the right thing to do is to first answer Nate's question. Which you have no real idea how to do. As is apparent from you last sentence. He did not ask you or anyone else if they would manage hives for him. He asked about what he should charge.
He also asked for input from experienced beekeepers. Do you feel you are experienced enough to fall into that categorey? I doubt that anyone who knows how to keep bees would hire you to manage their hives for them.
Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping
Nate Ellis there's is alot of that smart a-- replys here i just try to learn who the mean beekeepers are here and listen to the ones with many years behind them and not Sarcasm but there rants can be fun to follow . Some do like to fight.
Now i only been beekeeping for 3 years so i know not much but i have a business and have had 3 in 25 years the one i have now is 20 plus old so i know what my time is worth and if i was to maintain a hive for some else i would charge them for every visit if it's for a friend free for some one i don't realy know 25.00 per visit . 6 visits per year they get the honey. Good luck.
Say hello to the bad guy!
Well thanks to everyone that responded with useful information I appreciate it. I should've known when Ace was the first to respond that this thread would go long. Mark Im not going to touch on the reasons why hes looking for an alternative just that he's looking. thanks again!
Nate...Unless you are very close to the location where the hives are, Or, you want the experience, You would be far better off adding eight hives to your operation than to manage 8 hives. There are lots of factors, (love what you are doing, doing a favor, nothing else to do) but, you really need 25 hives plus, to make it worthwile to manage hives.
If you are taking on only 8 hives, I would not consider less than $100.00 per hive, and would likely want more in the range of $125.00. 18 visits for inspection etc at 35 cents a mile would be at least $100.00 right off the top.
A good starting price would be, how much do the locals pay for pollination. It might be better to move 8 hives in for pollination rather than a manage situation, Or an even better arrangement might be, move 8 of your hives, manage, and get all of the honey.
But, who am I to say, I have 2 widows that I take care of their 4 hives each for 1/2 the honey. How dumb is that?? I do it just to help them out. I suspect you are really doing this too. You can't make any money managing 8 hives. I really doubt you can break even.
Go for it, whatever the price, As you are working the bees just keep saying, a good boat costs $25,000.00. The fish you catch cost $273.00 per pound over a 10 year period. YOU CANNOT PUT A PRICE ON EVERYTHING YOU DO. ENJOY IT.
Forgive me if I've missed this, but I wonder if one should charge a fee that is separate from honey production. If you get paid in honey and have a bad year, you're not going to get anything, but the owner is still getting his bees cared for. In the end, you're using your time to keep his bees healthy. It might be best to charge a per hive fee, along with a cut of honey. Perhaps in that model, the per hive fee is lower...
I'm interested in this thread because I have heard people in the city asking about paying to have a person keep bees in their yards - and I really have no idea how one would approach that in terms of price.
I had an interest in this thread because I had two people approach me about setting a hive on their land and I would take care of it. That doesn't sound like a big deal to me because they could tell me what is going on or what they saw. Heck, today you can shine a smart phone at the hive and almost instantly see what is happening from across the world. At the time I was asked the hives were too big for me to move so maybe I will do it next year. But it is interesting what someone would want to do that.
Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping
Here is one local offering, guy must be driving around like a busy bee and doing hundreds of extractings a year :
Cleo let me first say I am a big fan and have used your trap out concepts (modified) to get 4 colonies started out of trees this year. My idea if I really decide Im going to do this and the owner agrees to the terms would be to charge .55 cents per mile as its a 50 mile roundtrip from my house. In addition there would be the $75.00 per hive charge for annual maintenance and I would say that should be at least every 2 weeks to be fair but some on here would disagree and thats fine. Any honey we would split 50/50. I am still going over this in my head but the reason I never put my own bees there is because its an orchard and I would worry about them. I like having my bees in my own backyard where I can watch them. These bees would be his bees...there is alot to consider the more I think about it. Thank you.
No problem Mark. I dont know the pollinator personally only the owner of the orchard.
sounds like the orchard owner is primarily interested in pollination. he sees it as a one time investment in bees and boxes for years of pollination. i would do it for 75% of the honey.
disclaimer: novice beekeeper here who knows just enough to be dangerous