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Old 03-29-2013, 01:10 AM   #91
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What's funny about the Homeowners' naivete?


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But a couple of hours per week doing bookkeeping and returning calls is probably all it takes to be full time especially once there's word of mouth about your work. At $40/hr that's only an $80/week cost of doing business.
ROFL, you have no idea how to run a business by that statement.
People were saying a two day job isn't big enough. I can't picture a guy working for himself having offers for week-long jobs rolling in every hour.

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I used to do freelance work and I'll get back to it eventually but I never set prices.
So you didn't make enough money to keep being a freelance. I'm surprised.
I don't seek work from any old company that's willing to pay me when I freelance. I get paid the going rate for what I'm selling, and unfortunately that has become zero because my interest turned to essays in journals that don't pay for them. Everything on my short list of what to do now requires a computer that I'm still setting up.


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They did say at the end of the show, that 3 contractors fixed the problem only, and didn't try to add on extra charges. Took them about 10 seconds to say that. Gee, wonder why honesty wasn't worth air time. Guess because it doesn't increase the ratings so they can charge their sponsors more money.
I think that's OK, but the report I linked to should have been clear about how the companies were chosen.

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Old 03-29-2013, 02:59 AM   #92
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What's funny about the Homeowners' naivete?


show me how to do my bookkeeping and return my calls in 2 hours for an entire week, every week, and i will PRAISE you. I will pay you the extra 15 hours you are saving me ever week for a year!!!!!!!

Do you know the first thing about accounting? Creating accurate P&L statements, projections, budgeting??? Obviously not if you think this takes 2 hours a week. Maybe if I only did 2 jobs that week, didn't need to get gas or buy supplies.

Just read back over this topic and it gives you a perfect example of what contractors deal with. I can pretty much predict who would be an absolute pleasure to work for and I would produce grade A work, and who would be complaining about my pricing not realizing I purposely priced myself out as to not deal with the headaches.
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Old 03-29-2013, 06:41 AM   #93
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What's funny about the Homeowners' naivete?


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People were saying a two day job isn't big enough. I can't picture a guy working for himself having offers for week-long jobs rolling in every hour.

Of course not. It takes advertising. Street pounding. Making new contacts. Not the couple hours a week you said.


I don't seek work from any old company that's willing to pay me when I freelance. I get paid the going rate for what I'm selling, and unfortunately that has become zero because my interest turned to essays in journals that don't pay for them. Everything on my short list of what to do now requires a computer that I'm still setting up.

Going rate. Another way to say I don't know what to charge, or how to charge. I let others determine how much I make and how I live.




I think that's OK, but the report I linked to should have been clear about how the companies were chosen.
Its clear they were not random companies.

So you think its ok to only show the dishonest companies. Which of course is not reporting factual news. But an invention of how bad something may be.
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Old 03-29-2013, 06:57 AM   #94
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What's funny about the Homeowners' naivete?


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On another forum. One of the members was called on a truly random sting/check. He found the problem right a way. Fixed it, and informed the lady of what was wrong and presented his bill. He was paid and informed that it was a sting operation. He was congratulated on his honesty. And when the show aired. He wasn't shown. They did say at the end of the show, that 3 contractors fixed the problem only, and didn't try to add on extra charges. Took them about 10 seconds to say that. Gee, wonder why honesty wasn't worth air time. Guess because it doesn't increase the ratings so they can charge their sponsors more money.
Great, so the TV shows don't always cast things in a completely accurate light. This comes as no surprise.

But here's the thing, homeowners out there aren't dealing with TV shows, they're dealing with contractors and a great many of them aren't confident about the work being done for them.

When a TV show focuses on hyping the bad stuff they're certainly chasing the ratings, but they're responding to market concerns. All too often it's only the bad news dug up by the news programs that does anything to educate the consumer.

What is the industry being criticized doing to inform the homeowners about the situation? Quite often, nothing. Meanwhile irritated "contractors" dig the hole deeper attacking the customers, further widening the hostility. To what end? That does more to make the service providers look bad than anything else.

Some customers are never going to be happy. Learn to recognize whether you can make a profit working with that kind of customer, or whether you're happier avoiding them as early in the process as possible.
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Old 03-29-2013, 07:11 AM   #95
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What's funny about the Homeowners' naivete?


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Great, so the TV shows don't always cast things in a completely accurate light. This comes as no surprise.

Many people believe anything they see on news shows like that.

But here's the thing, homeowners out there aren't dealing with TV shows, they're dealing with contractors and a great many of them aren't confident about the work being done for them.

People should always ask for references. Find out who their neighbor used, and if they are happy ith the treatment and service they got.

When a TV show focuses on hyping the bad stuff they're certainly chasing the ratings, but they're responding to market concerns. All too often it's only the bad news dug up by the news programs that does anything to educate the consumer.

What they do is not educating. but more often, prejudicing.

What is the industry being criticized doing to inform the homeowners about the situation? Quite often, nothing. Meanwhile irritated "contractors" dig the hole deeper attacking the customers, further widening the hostility. To what end? That does more to make the service providers look bad than anything else.
Orgs like ACCA provide contractor selection criteria list.

Some customers are never going to be happy. Learn to recognize whether you can make a profit working with that kind of customer, or whether you're happier avoiding them as early in the process as possible.
I have customers that are never happy. But they are satisfied that the work they paid for was done right, and needed.
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Old 03-29-2013, 07:22 AM   #96
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What's funny about the Homeowners' naivete?


So what if people believe what they see on TV? It's your job to decide how to perform your business profitably. If that's in the face of an ill-informed consumer base then perhaps your costs will have to include educating the consumers about why working with you is the best course of action for them. Otherwise factor that mis-education into your equation on avoiding them. Because they're not going to suddenly get smarter unless someone takes the time to educate them.

The TV people wouldn't be shining a bad light if there wasn't something bad to shine it upon.
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Old 03-29-2013, 07:22 AM   #97
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What's funny about the Homeowners' naivete?


As in all trades there are good,intelligent--honest,ones and incompetent and some times crooked ones.

One of the hardest tasks for a general contractor to do is set up a team of honest hard working subs---

This is where a home owner has a disadvantage----I can ask other contractors for a referral---
and try the new guy out on a small job----

I have now got a darn nice little group of trades all tested and true----but the cost of weeding out the bad ones? Big bucks----

But we are all aware of how to protect ourselves----Lien Waivers---signed change orders--and time limits----along with other measures the homeowner needs to learn.

That's why this site exists------so we can help a person avoid the tough lessons taught in the school of hard knocks-----------
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Old 03-29-2013, 07:27 AM   #98
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What's funny about the Homeowners' naivete?


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So what if people believe what they see on TV? It's your job to decide how to perform your business profitably. If that's in the face of an ill-informed consumer base then perhaps your costs will have to include educating the consumers about why working with you is the best course of action for them. Otherwise factor that mis-education into your equation on avoiding them. Because they're not going to suddenly get smarter unless someone takes the time to educate them.

The TV people wouldn't be shining a bad light if there wasn't something bad to shine it upon.
I have a great way. $125.00 to come out and find the problem. It eliminates tire kickers.
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Old 03-29-2013, 08:29 AM   #99
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What's funny about the Homeowners' naivete?


125 dollars. Does that include fixing the problem? I simply can not afford to pull in your driveway for less than $200 dollars. Many times these simple fixes end up taking half a day If someone was a long time customer then I may not even charge them at all. For me it is not always the present service call, it is what I could be doing instead of working at your house.
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Old 03-29-2013, 08:31 AM   #100
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What's funny about the Homeowners' naivete?


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125 dollars. Does that include fixing the problem? I simply can not afford to pull in your driveway for less than $200 dollars. Many times these simple fixes end up taking half a day If someone was a long time customer then I may not even charge them at all. For me it is not always the present service call, it is what I could be doing instead of working at your house.
Nope, that just gets them a diagnostic. Repair is extra, and their option. I give them the price up front. They say yes or no.
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Old 03-29-2013, 08:52 AM   #101
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What's funny about the Homeowners' naivete?


Part of the cost of doing business is the expense of finding and qualifying it.

Having a fee for examining the situation is not uncommon, it's often a fine idea. It can certainly help set the tone for how the relationship with the customer is going to proceed. A lot of the time it's rolled back into the cost of the project if it proceeds. Otherwise it's an out-of-pocket expense for the homeowner to have educated themselves. Might seem like a lot to some, or not enough to others.

I had one situation like that during our new house build. An AV contractor was incredibly helpful in discussing the whole range of solutions and their possible implementations. But his estimate for the job was, honestly, ludicrously overpriced. I'm well aware of all the costs involved and his numbers were just crazy-high, on both materials and labor. The fee I paid to have him come out was worth it to me. Whether it was worth it to him is his business. He didn't waste his time for nothing, and I paid to pick his brain. I was fully prepared to have him do the work had he come in with a better estimate. Now, should I go back and forth with him to argue over the numbers? That just sets the situation up to fail.
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Old 03-29-2013, 10:29 AM   #102
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What's funny about the Homeowners' naivete?


If I was thinking about going out on my own to make a living and came here and read this thread first, I'd steer clear of working for homeowners. Many contractors do because of the increased costs involved in doing that type of work.

As to the value of a tradesman, I can think of many times I thought I was grossly underpaid because my life was on the line. When there's 7200 volts just inches from your head and you know one little mistake and you're instant barbecue, that hourly rate you're getting seems pretty dismal.

I know plenty of electricians who have been seriously injured and two who were killed doing their job. I've never heard of a doctor, a lawyer, an IT pro, a business person, or any of the other "white collar" workers I've known in my life, talk about the dangerous conditions they put up with at work but I've heard plenty of them say construction workers are overpaid.
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Old 03-29-2013, 10:39 AM   #103
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What's funny about the Homeowners' naivete?


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If I was thinking about going out on my own to make a living and came here and read this thread first, I'd steer clear of working for homeowners. Many contractors do because of the increased costs involved in doing that type of work.

As to the value of a tradesman, I can think of many times I thought I was grossly underpaid because my life was on the line. When there's 7200 volts just inches from your head and you know one little mistake and you're instant barbecue, that hourly rate you're getting seems pretty dismal.

I know plenty of electricians who have been seriously injured and two who were killed doing their job. I've never heard of a doctor, a lawyer, an IT pro, a business person, or any of the other "white collar" workers I've known in my life, talk about the dangerous conditions they put up with at work but I've heard plenty of them say construction workers are overpaid.
I kind feel that way about GC's. I was looking into plumbing a couple homes here for a builder. I wanted the drawings to work up a quote. As he handed them to me he said " I'll pay you $xxx to plumb this floor plan and $xxx to plumb this one" No thanks
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Old 03-29-2013, 10:50 AM   #104
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What's funny about the Homeowners' naivete?


So much for respecting others professions.

Everybody always thinks the grass is greener on the other side. Until they give a try. Take me the lowly highly overpaid ..underworked Real Estate Rep. I willing to bet most people think we make a boatload for doing next to nothing.

Try putting up with someone for 6 mnths , while you waste gas, pay baby sitters, draw up contracts, late night negotiations only to be told..no I think we will stay put after all. 6 mnths work down the tube....zero pay, tons of expenses.

And if the deal does come together, the commission is split 4 ways with a huge amount of fee's on top of that. all the while being told you are robbing them.

I'm not complaining..(maybe a little) but the point is, this is what I chose to do. If I wanted to be an electrician I would go to community college for 2 years and start the process.

If I wanted to be a Doctor then I'd head off to university for 10 years (way to expensive) to learn how to save lives.

Each of us is in our chosen field for a reason..there are no mistakes..but for gawds sake stop complaining ...if you don't like what you do , then change it

You are after all, living in the so called land of opportunity
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Old 03-29-2013, 11:53 AM   #105
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So you think its ok to only show the dishonest companies. Which of course is not reporting factual news. But an invention of how bad something may be.
You said the report mentioned how many honest companies there were. There's no invention there. Claims of fraud need evidence and they showed it like they should. There was no misinformation there, but the one I linked to was a little misleading.

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