JUCA Pricing

Sometimes customers get nervous when seeing our incredibly good products at very low prices. They think that if our products were really as good as they seem, we would be asking as much (or more!) than the much higher prices competitors ask for their products. There's nothing wrong with considering this. It suggests a healthy skepticism, which shows caution and logic. Actually, if we were in business exclusively for a profit motive, we have long known that we could raise our prices a bunch!

There are actually a number of reasons for our low prices.

  • Nearly all competing products (as well as almost all products of ALL types that you buy as a consumer) go through the hands of a variety of companies in the journey from the manufacturer to you. A Jobber, a Distributor, a Dealer, and a Contractor, and maybe others, usually all make a profit for storing or handling nearly everything you buy. And usually there are freight costs every time it's moved, and people have to be paid to put it on and take it off the various shelves it visits.

    We used to have that kind of distribution system. But JUCA now sees all that as expensive foolishness. Why not ship a product directly from the manufacturer to the end user? Or at most, through a single Dealer or Contractor? Makes sense to us. WE make the same amount, but there is a LOT less cost to the consumer. AND, it allows direct communication between the final customer and us, makimg possible a lot of customized choices that wouldn't otherwise be possible.

  • Most other companies are terribly inefficient. Whether in production, office, management or overhead, there is often astounding waste. Who do you think pays for that? You do, when you buy their products.

    JUCA is a lean, mean, manufacturing machine. We DON'T have a bunch of executives in shiny offices. At every stage of JUCA's operation, we have refined our operation to be as efficient as possible.

    We have discovered that our customers are almost always too far away to visit a showroom, so we eventually closed ours. That sort of thing.

  • Competitors also have massive advertising cost to be supported by you, the customer. In the case of automobiles, around $2,000 of the cost of every car sold is used for paying for those slick TV and magazine commercials.

    We'd rather save the two grand and do extra legwork when choosing a car. But we can't, because the advertising cost is embedded in the car's price. JUCA hasn't advertised (except one tiny time) since 1981, until our InterNet presence began in 1997. We had always relied primarily on word-of-mouth messages from happy (often ecstatic) owners, to create new customers. (We are REALLY low-key!) So we don't have to pass along the costs for huge advertising budgets! Another peculiar thing about us is that we are pretty sure we have NEVER approached or recriuted any dealers. All of the nearly 500 dealers we have had approached us to become dealers!

  • In the case of air-tight woodstove manufacturers, there are other costs. Since air-tight products had created (during the 80s) such a bad reputation for pollution and creosote production, the government got into the picture. The EPA instituted strict pollution limits for those products in 1988. This has caused manufacturers of air-tight products to have to buy hundreds of thousands of dollars of new equipment to do new manufacturing procedures, and then to document the results to the government, in very expensive testing.

    JUCA only manufactures non-air-tight products. Our unique design principles allow extremely high operating efficiency while allowing the fire adequate oxygen to greatly reduce pollution and creosote. Therefore, the EPA has specifically recognized and indicated that their requirements do not apply to products like JUCAs. See the EPA entry for more on this.

  • We have never offered time payment options other than a layaway program. This eliminates huge collection costs for the small percentage of people who don't pay their obligations. Those costs in other companies are paid for by the GOOD customers in higher prices.

  • We don't currently use MasterCard or VISA cards.

    We realize the advantages of Cards, but they charged us almost 5% when we took them. We had to consider increasing ALL our prices $50 to cover the cost. (The government said that it would be discrimination if we had two different prices for cash and credit!) We decided not to punish all customers for the benefit of the few who were used to buying everything on plastic. We hope you understand.

  • Finally, we aren't run by bean counters or anyone else who ONLY cares about the bottom line. Sure, we want to (and need to) make a reasonable profit. But for many years, we have known that we could probably have sold just as many units with prices $500 or more above the prices we charge. We Know! In the American system, we are supposed to gouge you for every dime we could get out of you. Sorry to disappoint! That's not our style. (You could always give the excess to charity!)

    We actually suspect that we would have sold MORE units if we had significantly increased our prices! People assume that a less expensive product must be inferior, otherwise the manufacturer would charge a higher price! Ah, the American free-enterprise system!

Text Font Face
Text Size
(for printing)
We hope you now see how JUCA has always been able to supply superior products at prices well below the competition. We see it that they are sort of gouging you for solutions to their past sins, and for supporting inefficient, top-heavy corporate structures. We don't try to extract every dollar from you. We HAVE considered raising our prices closer to the "other guys" prices to get more credibility. Some people would rather pay top dollar for products on the assumption that in a free-market economy; that the best products will necessarily be the most expensive. Over the years, there have been occasional customers who WANTED a JUCA, but then decided to get a more expensive (inferior) competing product, believing that. Well, maybe we still live in Kansas, Dorothy, but we don't think that way. If you really insist on paying more, then, as we mentioned above, just give to your favorite Church or charity in our name or yours. We'd be happier than if you insisted on us raising our prices!

A bunch of weird birds, eh?

Of course, we must add the usual disclaimer regarding the possibility that JUCA products' prices or specifications might change without notice. We don't expect this to happen very often. Since 1973, we've only had 6 price increases ever, (in 1977, 1979, 1981, 1984, 1989 and 2000) and the general dimensions and specifications for the B-3(B) effectively haven't changed in that time.

Since each and every JUCA is custom built to fill an order, and they are all built by humans and not robots, there ARE slight variations of dimensions and such in every unit. The dimensions and specifications we give are generally reasonably accurate. Think of it as contributing to the character and uniqueness of your JUCA!

Since these products are all custom built to fill individual orders, as with ALL custom built products from all suppliers, they are NOT later returnable. When a product is specially built for an individual customer, it generally may have no value at all to any other customer. For example, the L-8 fireplace insert is custom built to the six dimensions that a customer supplies. So, the unit built is unique! The diversity of fireplaces that exist is amazing, and I don't think we have ever gotten the same set of measurements yet from any two customers! Each L-8 is designed and built for, and can only fit in, THAT specific fireplace!

In the case of stock sized door sets, blowers, glass panels, and other electrical parts which have not been used, IF such items are to be accepted back, there must be written or e-mailed acknowledgement from JUCA, and there will be a 20% restocking charge.

Finally, please remember that all JUCA units are designed and intended to operate as NON-AIRTIGHT products. Recently, some towns and counties have passed rules and laws, inspired mostly by the problematical performance of airtight products and their pollution and creosote, that restrict just what may be installed in houses there. In general, JUCA units burn so very cleanly that they should be accepted almost everywhere, but you should confirm that our non-airtight unit will be accepted by local codes. By the way, our units should NOT have the door gasketed or the glass gasketed or the draft slider control sealed off. Those actions would seriously affect the NON-airtight operation of the JUCA, and have the effect of converting it into an airtight unit, which it is not. (There IS an exception to this: IF the Outside Combustion Air Option is installed on a JUCA unit, then THAT provides all the air for the fire, and gasketing, airtight doors, and sealing our draft inlet IS allowable.) In past years, an occasional customer has chosen to later gasket a JUCA's door (over our objections), and has changed the operation so much that it sometimes created huge amounts of creosote and pollution! And the safety implications that these entail. Don't do it!

Our chance to grumble!

OK! We've made a really nice, really informative web site. So, we think we've behaved very well, and therefore deserve one little chance to complain. So here it is:

That's all the venting we will do. Thanks for being tolerant of us!

The JUCA Home Page is at: http://mb-soft.com/juca/index.html

E-mail to: JUCA1@mb-soft.com