since i don't charge, i can be picky about the jobs. i don't want to get into something that will cause major destruction, or will take more time that it is worth to me. outbuildings are easy :-).
I understand being picky about the jobs, but I can't imagine not charging for cutouts, even the "easy" ones! How can you tell how involved it will be until you start?
It all starts with a very thorough inspection, paying attention to what's adjacent to the colony, electrical conduit, lights, water pipes, etc... You want as much info as you can before you procede, what direction do the floor or ceiling joists run, etc...
Even after that, there are hidden variables that come into play once you get into the job, the "surprises" I find revolve around construction tolerances or intolerances if you will, gaps that shouldn't be there, insulation that should be there.
In a nutshell always count on there being hidden surprises with bees, and then you don't always know all of the facts in regards to what has been done in the past by the homeowner or the people who owned the house before them.
Also, remember that what you see is not always what you get, they could have swarmed out more than a few times and what appears to be an easy job turns into removing 10,000 bees but comb that supported a 70,000 bee colony just weeks ago.
I try and give prices that have a range, top end or lower, and I explain that there are often hidden variables that affect pricing.