Periodically on the VA forums to which I belong, a VA will post a question, asking what is the ‘normal’ rate for a particular service. There are a number of reasons why that question will cause challenges for them and I’ll explain it here.
Firstly, the VA forums have members from all over the world so the cost of living in the areas in which each VA lives and works will be quite different to that of many of the other VA members.
Secondly, the skills and experience of each of the VAs will also be different.
Thirdly, the currencies also differ.
If a VA in Melbourne, Australia for example answers this question for someone who lives in Florida, USA, based on their own skills and experience, the answer will not be the correct one for the VA in Florida. Even if their cost of living were similar, the currencies differ and the typing speed and ability of one VA could vastly differ from the other. Those who are more experienced will often command a higher charge rate than those with less experience and the US dollar and the AU dollar are different in value, not to mention the cost of living in both areas.
When a VA is seeking to find out the ‘normal’ rate for a service they are much better off looking at businesses local to them to find that out. There are also tools that will help a VA work out their base hourly rate for their business. Nina Feldman has a list of tools on her site, and many of the VA networks have tools available for their members.
Sometimes asking at the forum seems the quickest way to get the information but there are times when doing the research is really the right answer.Â KMT