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Old 06-15-2020, 06:34 AM   #21
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I'll give you an example, one of my customers is a real estate company, they own a number of multi-tenant buildings. They have maintenance staff that handle the routine maintenance like replacing light bulbs, (ok LAMPS lamps) as well as shoveling snow, mowing the grass, painting, changing locksets, etc.

But over time the general mechanical aptitude and ability of their crew, well, let's just say it's not what it used to be, as people have retired. They could use someone to repair / replace switches, receptacles, ballasts, etc. (Of course someone that can do small plumbing repairs and HVAC maintenance would be even better.)

He could charge a wage that's a lot lower than contractor rates but a lot higher than he's making at work and it would be beneficial for all parties. This would in my opinion be a better option than uninsured side work.
He would still need insurance to do that work, especially in multi-family dwellings. In many areas (definitely mine), he would also need an electrical license to replace switches and outlets compliantly.

That type of work done by a non-electrician isn't going to pay well. I see these guys all the time when I am called to come fix what they couldn't figure out and messed up, they are usually crackhead level.
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Old 06-15-2020, 06:39 AM   #22
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This is like saying car insurance is for suckers, lots of people drive uninsured (drunk even) and never have an accident. No harm, no foul, right?
Risk vs. reward.

I pay a minimal amount of insurance which protects me from losing a $40K asset to an uninsured driver, which has happened. So even if it wasn't required by law, I would probably still opt to purchase insurance.

You cut out a lot of my post. Doing side work and making -an amount of money that I am not even going to say- while risking a $2,500 fine is low risk, no?
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Old 06-15-2020, 06:44 AM   #23
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He would still need insurance to do that work, especially in multi-family dwellings. In many areas (definitely mine), he would also need an electrical license to replace switches and outlets compliantly.

That type of work done by a non-electrician isn't going to pay well. I see these guys all the time when I am called to come fix what they couldn't figure out and messed up, they are usually crackhead level.
Here and I think most jurisdictions it's completely legal for in house maintenance to do repairs. It would be covered under the same insurance that covers the full time employees.

It would pay whatever both parties agree to. Obviously he's not going to work for less than his day job's wage, they are not going to pay what they could get a contractor to do the work. In between, there's plenty of room to settle on a wage that works great for both parties.
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Old 06-15-2020, 06:50 AM   #24
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Risk vs. reward.

I pay a minimal amount of insurance which protects me from losing a $40K asset to an uninsured driver, which has happened. So even if it wasn't required by law, I would probably still opt to purchase insurance.

You cut out a lot of my post. Doing side work and making -an amount of money that I am not even going to say- while risking a $2,500 fine is low risk, no?
You can apply that logic to the fine for unlicensed work, but not insurance, there's no fixed risk to working uninsured.

Even if you have very few assets and bankrupting yourself or your corporation is no big deal to you, you have an ethical obligation to carry insurance for your customer's protection, so your mistake doesn't bankrupt THEM.
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Old 06-15-2020, 06:52 AM   #25
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Here and I think most jurisdictions it's completely legal for in house maintenance to do repairs. It would be covered under the same insurance that covers the full time employees.

It would pay whatever both parties agree to. Obviously he's not going to work for less than his day job's wage, they are not going to pay what they could get a contractor to do the work. In between, there's plenty of room to settle on a wage that works great for both parties.
That sounds like a typical second job. I doubt it is going to pay any better than his fulltime job. It seems as if he wants to branch out into sidework (ie. Contracting Lite). It seems like a good opportunity to do so and get his license when eligible.

As far as the legality of a maintenance guy doing electrical work, here he would need a journeyman license to change out receptacles and switches. I am not saying that they actually get someone with the license, but if you want him to be by the book...
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Old 06-15-2020, 07:00 AM   #26
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You can apply that logic to the fine for unlicensed work, but not insurance, there's no fixed risk to working uninsured.
Agreed. But history tells us that the risk is very, very low. Once in a while you will see some stories like the lawyer/bakelite box one, but those have the likelihood of getting hit by lightning while winning the $300mil jackpot. And they can be avoided very easily, as explained earlier.

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Even if you have very few assets and bankrupting yourself or your corporation is no big deal to you, you have an ethical obligation to carry insurance for your customer's protection, so your mistake doesn't bankrupt THEM.
Oh come on. Ease up on the theatrics. We are talking about an electrician doing sidework.

Ethical obligation to the customer? The customer that got a sideworker to do it instead of a licensed and legitimate company?
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Old 06-15-2020, 08:11 AM   #27
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Ethical obligation to the customer? The customer that got a sideworker to do it instead of a licensed and legitimate company?
Well yeah I agree if it's someone who gets him through a friend of a friend to save some money and fully understands that they're getting someone uninsured etc. That person knows the risk.



But, if they put an ad in the pennysaver and gets a little old lady that doesn't understand he's not legitimate, then yes I am afraid that's unethical.



A lot of the stuff that happens is not going to be super scary, but still expensive. Think about the commercial / industrial guys that come through side jobbing at residential. They might not kill someone with a flung off ceiling fan, but they might nick some pex line and ruin some drywall and flood a basement.
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Old 06-15-2020, 08:14 AM   #28
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Well yeah I agree if it's someone who gets him through a friend of a friend to save some money and fully understands that they're getting someone uninsured etc. That person knows the risk.



But, if they put an ad in the pennysaver and gets a little old lady that doesn't understand he's not legitimate, then yes I am afraid that's unethical.



A lot of the stuff that happens is not going to be super scary, but still expensive. Think about the commercial / industrial guys that come through side jobbing at residential. They might not kill someone with a flung off ceiling fan, but they might nick some pex line and ruin some drywall and flood a basement.
Then they should pay dearly.

Like I said earlier, I am not saying that people should go out and do sidework. I'm just trying to be realistic about it.
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Old 06-15-2020, 01:44 PM   #29
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Pretty sure most guys have done a few side jobs before they got licensed. Not going to condone it, but that's the honest truth.

If your not licensed, theres some really good advice on here already. Home Depot, Lowe's and many other such places are always hiring "weekend part-timers". I also imagine hotel/apt/housing authority type facilitates are always looking for more maintenance men, even part time evenings & weekend guys. You'll learn a lot doing this type of stuff, make some more money and not risk any legal reprocusions.

If you are licensed, get your self some cards to pass out and advertise that you're available for work on nights and weekends. This is a great way to get your feet wet and not have to worry about whether you are gonna be able to make it or not.

As far as how much to charge....wow, so many ways to go about answering this question.
1) as a rule of thumb, you want to bring as much money in one day as you normally would in a whole week of work.
2) when calculating up what to charge, just know that you'll only get about a 1000 billable hrs out of a whole year. So keep that in mind.
3) charge for overhead, warranty and profit on EVERY JOB. Even of your running a the ring circus out of your garage. My personal suggestion is 15-20% for overhead, 5% for warranty and 10-20% for profit. Others may have different opinions.
4) here's a tough reality - people will not take you seriously if you don't charge like you should. You need to charge like your an actual legit business, cause you'll be dealing with the same issues that everyone else has to deal with and you will very quickly find yourself questioning "why" you are doing this, if you take on jobs that don't make any money. Be prepared. Charge accordingly. It's much better not to get a job that won't make any money, than to get a joband not make any money on it.

Good luck and God bless!
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Old 06-15-2020, 03:57 PM   #30
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50 years in the trade and maybe 4 side jobs 7 if you include houses I wired for family and friends under their homeowners permit.

BUT the number of electricians I know that did/do side work countless the number that got in trouble ZERO "0".
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Old 06-15-2020, 05:44 PM   #31
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OP Do what you need to do BUT.
Remember a mistake now can screw you up for life.
You need to sleep at night, not worry about what if something goes wrong.
Is it really worth the money.

I shut my business down 15 years ago and I finally almost stopped worrying about the what if's. Even after all this time some lawyer might find my name on something, and business insurance ended some time ago.

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Old 06-17-2020, 03:15 PM   #32
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Get a bucket truck,



You can charge more,...
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Old 06-17-2020, 03:27 PM   #33
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Win,
Just a few things come to mind.
I don't want to condone people doing side jobs without proper license, insurance, and workman's comp.
With that said,
You cannot present yourself as a bottom feeder and make the money your time is worth.
Start out by providing super premium service. This will set you apart for the people thinking they are running a business working for 2x their wage rate.
It's much better to invest your time and resources in jobs that will net you 2k per day rather than $200 per day.
Understand that your ego might think you are making money by bringing in $80 per hour but, the only thing you are doing is robbing yourself of your time.
Understand that not everyone is your customer, there are people out there that have a great need for quality of life electrical repairs and cannot afford to have that work done. I'll give you permission to do these at little or no cost, just don't get hustled, and don't do many of them.
Your customer is the one that invites you into their home or business and only wants you to be in and out as fast as possible and when you leave, make 100% sure you leave no sins of a disruption.
That is the word of mouth customer you want. They will pay a premium for your services.
Do not be the bottom feeder that takes anything and then fumbles around when collection time comes. Understand that it is very respectful to have the customer understand exactly what you are doing and what the expected compensation will be. That is what being a professional is about.
Amen to the value of "Word of Mouth" 100% of my work comes that way.
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Old 06-17-2020, 04:41 PM   #34
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One hit wonder
You guys scared another one straight, GOOD JOB.

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Old 06-17-2020, 04:44 PM   #35
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One hit wonder
You guys scared another one straight, GOOD JOB.

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Old 09-13-2020, 11:47 AM   #36
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Just a thought to keep in mind . If you get caught without a license or if you screw something up you might never work or get a license in the future . Its not worth the risk .

Example be this . One of our 2nd year guys who was a sharp kid hung a fan on a bakelite box . 2 months later it fell down on a kid who was sleeping . Daddy was an attorney . Dude got sued and we fired him . Last time I saw him he was working at a carwash . That was 4 or 5 years ago and he is still paying for the pain and suffering he caused . Daddy tried to sue us too and we spent tons of money keeping that pitbull of a lawyer off our a$$ and we sued him for the getting us into this mess .

We have tens of millions in insurance if it goes south you don't . Just think about what you do before you do it or you may never do again .
I personally don't want the liability of doing electrical work outside of my job. To each his/her own though. I'm not going to pass judgement on anyone that does.

I'm a 3rd year apprentice who knows that I don't know enough about this job to work myself out of some situations. Like a house that was wired years ago without any electrical code being enforced. I've been in those situations and was thankful to have an experienced electrician that was the responsible party who could offer up his help.
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Old 09-13-2020, 06:32 PM   #37
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I'll admit that I've been asked to do some side jobs.... quite often. Problem if (for the people asking me), I already run my own company and know what I need to charge to make side jobs worth my time... and that rate is the same as what my boss charges me out at (i carry my own insurance, WSIB, etc, but I don't do side jobs). It is the same price to go through my boss.

Now, there *are* some side jobs that i will do, but those are simple things. Changing basic light fixtures, installing dimmers to replace switches, no power calls (these start as a side job, and if it's more than reset a breaker or AFCI or GFCI, it becomes a service call through the boss), changing a bathroom exhaust fan. All of these are done for clients we already have a working relationship with. New clients all go through the boss.

Ceiling fans are something that is not side job worthy, neither is any new wiring, or even something like replacing a GFCI receptacle. Let's say there's an issue with the GFCI and someone gets injured, without insurance you'll get sued, although technically you could get sued for anything, there's a list of stuff that I will not do for anyone but friends and family as a side job, and even then, I'll have to trust them (I don't trust many people...).

Now, want side jobs that pay good? Get into networking and security cameras (unless your state/province requires a license for this work). That's how my company started, and now I've incorporated and I am looking into new business ventures, including owning equipment i can rent to electrical contractors! I hope to grow to a million dollar a year business within 3 years.... and all of this started as part time work doing low voltage cabling!

Now, I also have filler work that only pays 20$/hour cash doing drywall, framing, tile, etc. This i can do whenever the guy has work, if i want the work, and i can make my own hours. This isn't enough for me to live off of, but it's better than sitting on the couch at home! This is for days we don't have work, evenings or weekends.
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Old 09-14-2020, 10:33 PM   #38
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Hello everyone
I am working on the side trying to make money with the little skills I have but I don't want to beat myself by under bidding my jobs. My question is ; where can I find a book or online file with pay rates for the jobs I do? From residential to small commercial pay.
https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_nat.htm
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Old 09-16-2020, 07:49 PM   #39
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side work makes the dream work :-)
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