Im looking to break out on my own anyone willing to share advice?

Merry Christmas
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Eli1211

Member
Location
Wisconsin
Occupation
Electrician
Lots of good advise from many people who have been doing it and know what they are talking about. I turned to this forum when I first started out and still do from time to time. I’m only a year into running my own show and everything has been a huge learning curve. Vastly different ballgame running your own business vs. working for someone else. All the advice you’ve been given is gold. I’d just like you to hear it from someone who recently has taken the leap you are contemplating, if you have what it takes, and enjoy it, running your own business is very rewarding. If you want time off then you just don’t schedule work for those days, you can choose to buy toys with your profits or grow your business, if you don’t feel like an individual or business is a good fit for you to be doing work for then you don’t do work for them anymore. I started off last year this time with 17k, that bought me a van and van stock, if I were to walk away today and sell my two vans/material, cash out the business checking account, I’d walk away with around 70k. Not bad for a little less than a year in, but I’ve worked my ass off for the past year, we are in decent economic times, I’m close to large metropolitan areas, I love what I do, many things go into being able to make a living at this. At the end of the day once all the homework has been done, all that’s left to do is just do it. Good luck to you!
 
Lots of good advise from many people who have been doing it and know what they are talking about. I turned to this forum when I first started out and still do from time to time. I’m only a year into running my own show and everything has been a huge learning curve. Vastly different ballgame running your own business vs. working for someone else. All the advice you’ve been given is gold. I’d just like you to hear it from someone who recently has taken the leap you are contemplating, if you have what it takes, and enjoy it, running your own business is very rewarding. If you want time off then you just don’t schedule work for those days, you can choose to buy toys with your profits or grow your business, if you don’t feel like an individual or business is a good fit for you to be doing work for then you don’t do work for them anymore. I started off last year this time with 17k, that bought me a van and van stock, if I were to walk away today and sell my two vans/material, cash out the business checking account, I’d walk away with around 70k. Not bad for a little less than a year in, but I’ve worked my ass off for the past year, we are in decent economic times, I’m close to large metropolitan areas, I love what I do, many things go into being able to make a living at this. At the end of the day once all the homework has been done, all that’s left to do is just do it. Good luck to you!
Thanks im gonna try to liquidate everything i have and just live on nothing for a year and go out guns blazing the only major issue i see coming is supply chain other shops have chinese wire stocked for 5 years worth of work thats the one big reason they can keep work and take all these jobs to force out competition. Pvc coated wire right now is outrageous.
 

xptpcrewx

Power System Engineer
Location
Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
Occupation
Licensed Electrical Engineer, Licensed Electrical Contractor, Certified Master Electrician
Do both the regular job (priority #1) and building your business (priority #2). Theres no rush to go out on your own. Ease into it and invest in learning specialized knowledge/skills so that you actually have a competitive advantage.

The regular job and having your own business will each have pros/cons - it’s all about trade offs and getting the best of both worlds. There will be conflicts of interest, and you should learn how to deal with them without compromising the regular job, your side business and most importantly your integrity.

Get licensed and do everything legally/ethically. Use your apprenticeship to get trained up even if you think the program sucks - extract the most you can and don’t overly rely on anyone to teach you what you need to know. You will never learn everything you need in one place, under one employer, with one training program, one person, or on a few jobs, etc. so don’t expect to learn the trade so easily. Don’t get discouraged. Focus on learning what everyone else knows and then figure out how to surpass them.

Ask tough questions, learn how to marry theory and practice, don’t lower your standards, learn to work smart, go to school and take extra courses if needed, get a grasp on the code, get educated on the law, risk management, insurance and economics. It’s no different in any other field or discipline.

Overall keep your cool and bide your time.
 

Fred B

Senior Member
Location
Upstate, NY
Occupation
Electrician
What all these guys said. Take advantage of all the training you can get, not all the training that helps most is pretty or easy. Some is part of "paying your dues", that every apprentice goes thru.
A direction to consider. I've been "head hunted" by a couple of franchises in the recent past, they offer quite a bit of help and name recognition that is useful for someone trying to newly break into the market. Just wasn't going to be much help for me as already established with name recognition in the local area, but if I was just starting out it definitely would be appealing.
 

jmellc

Senior Member
Location
Durham, NC
Occupation
Facility Maintenance Tech. Licensed Electrician
Set a goal for seeing profit and a limit on how long you will keep going with debt. I should have shut down after 3 years at most but I stretched out to 5 and ran up a lot of debt. I worked harder than ever with nothing to show for it. My family suffered a lot for it and my spirit has never fully recovered.
 
You say you have 8 years in, can you test for your license?
No i cant test for my license because i have nothing to my name and right now i owe 15k still on my truck. Even after selling my other truck for 3000 or so and scrapping all beaters i have parked up i wont even have 10,000 and u have to show 10,000 net worth. Unless im misunderstanding something. But yes besides for that i could take the course study and test in. Here we also need a business and law course and then u can get a vocational license which means up to 50,000$ projects to do bigger u need a contracting license....its weird how things are done here.
 
No i cant test for my license because i have nothing to my name and right now i owe 15k still on my truck. Even after selling my other truck for 3000 or so and scrapping all beaters i have parked up i wont even have 10,000 and u have to show 10,000 net worth. Unless im misunderstanding something. But yes besides for that i could take the course study and test in. Here we also need a business and law course and then u can get a vocational license which means up to 50,000$ projects to do bigger u need a contracting license....its weird how things are done here.
Yes indeed that is very foreign to me - all those obstacles to earn a living. Ridiculous.
 
Yes indeed that is very foreign to me - all those obstacles to earn a living. Ridiculous.
It feels like a prison i dont wanna be a whiner but i was born with nothing to my name. Ive busted my ass at every job ive worked at and left them when i couldnt get a raise to go somewhere better. I thought union was the golden ticket and was told that contractors would pay above scale for my experience well i did 2 1/2 gruelling years on peanuts and its broken my spirit that along with no work in our jurisdiction leading me to have to drive 4 hours unpaid every day is wearing down on me. And when i cant catch a ride its costing me in fuel and mileage on my truck. I simply am not making enough to ever have the capital to take classes, pay fees and cover upfront costs. I feel stuck. Im living with my grandma and feel like a loser.
 

James L

Senior Member
Location
Kansas Cty, Mo, USA
Occupation
Electrician
It feels like a prison i dont wanna be a whiner but i was born with nothing to my name. Ive busted my ass at every job ive worked at and left them when i couldnt get a raise to go somewhere better. I thought union was the golden ticket and was told that contractors would pay above scale for my experience well i did 2 1/2 gruelling years on peanuts and its broken my spirit that along with no work in our jurisdiction leading me to have to drive 4 hours unpaid every day is wearing down on me. And when i cant catch a ride its costing me in fuel and mileage on my truck. I simply am not making enough to ever have the capital to take classes, pay fees and cover upfront costs. I feel stuck. Im living with my grandma and feel like a loser.
Is there any way for you to move?

I've heard from a friend that Houston is crazy busy.
In Kansas City everybody's busy too.
 

petersonra

Senior Member
Location
Northern illinois
Occupation
engineer
Yes indeed that is very foreign to me - all those obstacles to earn a living. Ridiculous.
I'm actually kind of glad that someone who's not financially stable can't get a contractor's license. A person who has negative net worth not someone we should be trusting other people's money with. I could see some kind of a handyman type license where you could do $1,000 or $2,000 projects but a guy who's living off of his credit cards and advances from his projects is almost doomed to fail. And it's almost certain that he will take one or more of his customers with him.
 
I'm actually kind of glad that someone who's not financially stable can't get a contractor's license. A person who has negative net worth not someone we should be trusting other people's money with. I could see some kind of a handyman type license where you could do $1,000 or $2,000 projects but a guy who's living off of his credit cards and advances from his projects is almost doomed to fail. And it's almost certain that he will take one or more of his customers with him.
Well what happens when the economy is so bad and america as a whole has shifted to a credit based economy where the federal reserve has total control of money and credit to where poor blue collar workers cant afford to buy anything necessary in life without going into debt while also making it hard for americans to even build credit when they are paycheck to paycheck?

America has fallen to late capitalism it was built on entrepreneurship. Maybe the consumer should be more wary of what contractor they use instead of going with the cheapest. If you are bonded and insured what difference does it make if you have 5k in the bank or 10. People are smart enough to make their own decisions they should have the freedom to fail and the freedom to succeed. Why isnt this same true for all the illegal third worlders gc's hire en masse to frame their buildings, to insulate them, to mud and paint them, to lay brick and block. Have u seen the quality of work produced by licensed contractors? And u think people wanting to take the plunge want that?

Overregulation has caused this. If i dont branch out now i never will i learned that busting my poopy body parts for these companies is that there is always something to be learned and seeing what they pass off as work on these big union jobs i know i have enough to offer and i can upskill myself as needed as my company grows. Im looking to get into spec houses what electrician in the field for 8 years cant handle a house?

This is the problem with late capitalism it is the GATEKEEPING its only purpose is to keep people from having the means to be financially independent and it aims to keep those with the means, above those who have to work for everything they ever had. It is classism and the death of the american dream. Hopefully in the future crypto will bring about decentralized finance options for those in my situation today.

But if this doesnt work out ill save up penny by penny and ill probably be 35 spent all my life eating scraps so i can start a business so that maybe when im 40 i can eat something other than hotdogs and balogna haha. Just so i can wire the house for some trustfund manager who ate steak all his life because he inherited wealth through a classist system that doesnt reward meritocracy but allows people to be wealthy and let that money make them even wealthier just from making a few trade options on the stock exchange. And the mexicans that the GC hired can eat better than me because he commits identity fraud while also drawing welfare and GC can just pay off the next guy. Hippy dippy doo right now im working on a sheriffs station and the officers know they are all illegal and they dont care. None of these crony capitalists care. Why? Because they arent a part of the blue collar work force and they dont give a stick of gum who they abuse to get a better price because they have the money to make the government ignore them.

Ive been doing this rat race for too long eating lousy food im at a breaking point i want to either throw myself out there and give it my all or fail and just live the rest of my life homeless. Im near about at a falling down episode.
 
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I'm actually kind of glad that someone who's not financially stable can't get a contractor's license. A person who has negative net worth not someone we should be trusting other people's money with. I could see some kind of a handyman type license where you could do $1,000 or $2,000 projects but a guy who's living off of his credit cards and advances from his projects is almost doomed to fail. And it's almost certain that he will take one or more of his customers with him.
I guess we have a different opinion. I prefer less government involvement in this area.
 

xptpcrewx

Power System Engineer
Location
Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
Occupation
Licensed Electrical Engineer, Licensed Electrical Contractor, Certified Master Electrician
Well what happens when the economy is so bad and america as a whole has shifted to a credit based economy where the federal reserve has total control of money and credit to where poor blue collar workers cant afford to buy anything necessary in life without going into debt while also making it hard for americans to even build credit when they are paycheck to paycheck?

America has fallen to late capitalism it was built on entrepreneurship.

You won’t get anywhere blaming the system, capitalism, the government, or others (including undocumented workers). Those thing are out of your control so no use in getting worked up about them. Find a way to get better. We’re all dealt a different hand, it’s up to you to make do with what you have. If you don’t want to accept that then maybe you too are looking for a handout…
 
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You won’t get anywhere blaming the system, capitalism, the government, or others (including undocumented workers). Those thing are out of your control so no use in getting worked up about them. Find a way to get better. We’re all dealt a different hand, it’s up to you to make do with what you have. If you don’t want to accept that then maybe you too are looking for a handout…
Im not asking for anything just stating why this requires me to take on significantly more risk and how if i dont try to get out there with what i have i will never make it as anything the rant aside its good to rant sometimes and let it keep from being bottled up. That was just because he was talking about the 10,000 equity requirements and i explained how thats foolish.
 
You won’t get anywhere blaming the system, capitalism, the government, or others (including undocumented workers). Those thing are out of your control so no use in getting worked up about them. Find a way to get better. We’re all dealt a different hand, it’s up to you to make do with what you have. If you don’t want to accept that then maybe you too are looking for a handout…
Also those things are not out of my control. You should choose to see the world not how it is but as u wish to shape it.
 

xptpcrewx

Power System Engineer
Location
Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
Occupation
Licensed Electrical Engineer, Licensed Electrical Contractor, Certified Master Electrician
Also those things are not out of my control. You should choose to see the world not how it is but as u wish to shape it.

Personally I don’t understand how seeing the world in any other way than how it actually is really helps your situation. But I do see value in “being the change you want to see in the world”.
 
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