Tradeing work for junk?

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ceb58

Senior Member
Location
Raeford, NC
About a month ago I priced wiring a metal building for a guy. Simple work, 30 ft from outdoor meter combo, set sub panel, g rod, 4 recpt. 4 key-less lights, 1 switch. A lot of the material needed I had left over from a T&M job I had done about 6 mo. ago, pvc cond., ells, fittings and enough #6 thwn to run to sub panel. When I looked at the job there were a lot of items in building that would need to be moved to install material so I price it at $1100.00. Guy calls me last week when can you wire my building? I tell him I will start the next day, have my son dig ditch after school, I go by and we install conduit and panel. Next day we run every thing and pull wire, day after make connections and turn it on job completed. We have about 7 hrs. in job. Customer happy, just what he wanted. Handed him the bill for $1100.00. Guy says look I really dont have the money right now but would you be interested in trading for a motorcycle? He opens the door on a smaller storage shed where there is a late 80's model Honda 750. Front tire flat, rear tire slick as a onion, he said he thought the carb's needed adjusting he didn't know because it had been 3 years since he cranked it and it would need a battery. WHY did he push my PO'ed button? In my mind I am thinking, 50 miles one way to a motorcycle shop, 2 tires and what else in the world would it take to get it in good running condition to sell to recoup every thing I have in this elect. work plus shop bill and the hassle of selling it. I dont want the bike because I am just not into them. Finely I cooled off enough to ask him, if you did not have the money why did you call me to do this work or at least ask if I would do this work for trade before I started? ( customer was referred to me by a contractor friend who had done work for him in the past and had no problems with him) He smiles and says " well I tried" pulls out cash and pays. Has any one else taken trade for work and did you come out to the good or bad ?
 

480sparky

Senior Member
Location
Iowegia
I wouldn't even consider it.

I get paid for my work with one thing: Dead presidents. I can't take a used motorcycle to the bank to make a payment, or the supply house to pay my bill with. Why on earth would I accept a who-knows-what's-wrong-with-it crotch rocket?

Pay me with
, not
 

c2500

Senior Member
Location
South Carolina
In another life, I did a bunch of work for my dentist. He ask if I would like to trade out work for services. I agreed, and I had alot of dental work done at a point when I had no dental insurance. We traded service for service. So for me it worked great. He is still my dentist, and we get along great.

c2500
 

480sparky

Senior Member
Location
Iowegia
I'll admit, I've bartered stuff before, but it was agreed by both sides before work commenced. I installed a dedicated recep for an electric pressure washer for a tool box (for the back of my pick-up). I traded a ceiling fan install for a water heater exchange with a plumber friend. And of course, Ma & Pa are on my eternal "I-Owe-You" list.

At least this guy wasn't adamant about you taking the bike. Some folks stand firm, and will not back down from their 'offer'.
 

quogueelectric

Senior Member
Location
new york
Got tired of short end of the stick and work for dead presidents only now. Only funny was trading time with a plumber and had a leaky faucet filling up the cesspool. When he cut the main sewer line 4" the cesspool water came back at him just as my 8 month pregnant wife was walking around the corner. He was talking in toungues that havent been spoken in centuries. It was worth every hour I worked for him. My wife is still yelling at me reminding her of it. :grin:
 

Rampage_Rick

Senior Member
quogueelectric said:
Got tired of short end of the stick and work for dead presidents only now.
I need a spa pack installed... *Grabs a shovel and heads for Nixon*

Only bill he'll ever be on is the $300 "Tricky Dick Fun Bill"

Al Gore on the $1000 and Coolio on the quarter...

 

ITO

Senior Member
Location
Texas
I have had a similar stunt pulled twice by two guys who were ironically both jewelers and both from New Jersey. One wanted to trade jewelry for what he owed me, and the other wanted to renegotiate the contract after the work was done. Both ended up paying me the full contract amount.
 

ceb58

Senior Member
Location
Raeford, NC
mdshunk said:
I changed a light swtich for lunch one time.
The irony of it all, my son and I walk into a restaurant this morning, that we have been eating breakfast at for years. The manager ask " will you do something for free breakfast"? What? Take down a fan. In the smoking section they have a small fart fan, bearings are shot and it's on a circ. that runs half the lights in the room. 1/4" nut driver, chair. remove 3 screws unplug and were eating for free.
Now have I went down to Marc's level or went up? I just dont know:D
 

tmbrk

Senior Member
Location
Illinois
ceb58 said:
The irony of it all, my son and I walk into a restaurant this morning, that we have been eating breakfast at for years. The manager ask " will you do something for free breakfast"? What? Take down a fan. In the smoking section they have a small fart fan, bearings are shot and it's on a circ. that runs half the lights in the room. 1/4" nut driver, chair. remove 3 screws unplug and were eating for free.
Now have I went down to Marc's level or went up? I just dont know:D
As long as it wasn't just a pop tart or a bran muffin.:D
 

mdshunk

Senior Member
Location
Right here.
ceb58 said:
The irony of it all, my son and I walk into a restaurant this morning, that we have been eating breakfast at for years. The manager ask " will you do something for free breakfast"? What? Take down a fan. In the smoking section they have a small fart fan, bearings are shot and it's on a circ. that runs half the lights in the room. 1/4" nut driver, chair. remove 3 screws unplug and were eating for free.
Now have I went down to Marc's level or went up? I just dont know:D
I say you made out pretty good. I remember once shooting off an average price to "install a fan" to a guy on the phone. He scheduled the work, and all he needed done was have the little shaded pole motor replaced in his powder room exhaust fan. I carry these on the truck (they cost me all of 11 dollars), and it was replaced in maybe 10 minutes flat (that included washing the lint off the old fan blade). You bet your sweet bippy I charged him exactly what I told him on the phone, which I assumed was going to be installing a paddle fan in an old work situation.
 
Cash Discount?

Cash Discount?

A year ago, I was referred to a property owner by my wholesale house. He came in and bought 36 2x4 parabolic troffers. He needed someone to install them for him. I met him at the job, gave him a qoute that he immediatley agreed to and signed. We started the next day, along with t-bar guys replacing tiles, carpet layers, and painters, all of whom I was not told about. it took us two days to r&r the fixtures. I called him to let him know we were done, and he wanted to pay right away, like this minute. I did not want to turn him down, so I drove 10 miles and met him in the parking lot of an abandoned nightclub. We waited about 10 minutes, and he pulls up in his Porsche suv and asks me to get in. I had a strange feeling, but were were in broad daylight, on a busy street, and my partner (brother) was waiting in the truck. So I sat down in his car, left the door open, with one leg out, and he wanted to Know if cash was ok. Perfect I said, :D (So, do I get a discount, ya, know, for cash? You dont have to claim it, I wont 1099 you. I told him that I still had overhead and payroll and the money was going into the bank, therefore going on my books, So no discount. I also let him know I was being nice because I was not charging extra for working arround all the other trades, when I was told it would be just me. He grumpily handed over $2000 cash, and told me he had alot more work at other sites. that was a year ago! He must have found some guy with a cash discount :roll: After all this, I walk back to my truck, and my brother is in the driver seat, I asked what was up, and he told me he had a bad feeling about this guy, and that I was going to get "contractor-napped" and taken back to his dungeon! He was ready to chase us down it the work truck! Now that I look back, this guy did kind of have little "silence of the lambs" feel to him. "it puts the lotion on its skin"!
 

ceknight

Senior Member
ceb58 said:
Has any one else taken trade for work and did you come out to the good or bad ?
I don't think I'd call it trading for work, but I've made out pretty well from my friends' generous appreciations after I bailed them out of their various crises. What happens is I take care of their problems and never get around to billing them. Some time later a nice gift shows up. So it's not pre-arranged barter so much as me taking care of my friends and them doing their best to make sure I know they aren't abusing our friendship.

I can honestly say I've never gotten the short end on one of those deals. Over the last decade or so I've received a bamboo fly rod (made by the friend in need), several pieces of art from an artist friend, a freshly slaughtered and butchered lamb, 2 bottles of Barolo that you couldn't find at your local wine shop if you tried, a few bottles of scotch, a box of good cigars, and several very nice meals.
 
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