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Discussion Starter #21
I had no regrets about quitting that job. When I quit that job I was working as a software engineer. I went on to do several more software engineering jobs before I changed professions and became an electrician. Worked as an electrician for ten years before I opened my own shop. I had plenty of savings so I was able to handle starting up without any problems. I do mostly residential jobs. They are the easiest to get and actually pay better (per hour) than big jobs.
Thanks, I think I would be happy just sticking to residential. Are you doing new construction or anything residential?
Don't kid yourself, there's really no way to know whether you'll like being a contractor until you do it, all in full time. You can maybe get some idea mucking around with side work but it's just not the same.

You can make more contracting, you could wind up about the same, and you can make less or even lose everything, but bet on this, there will be more stress.

As a meter tech for a power company, you are in a related field but really your work is so much different from electrical service or construction work. It's hard to predict if you'll sustain an interest in the craft and trade once you've mastered the basics. You might like it or hate it or like it for a year then get bored with it.

It's not unusual to get an itch around your age, that restlessness is just life and by itself might not be a good reason to upset the apple cart at this point in the game.

I am not from California, but I believe they are like most states, to get licensed you have to work as an apprentice for 4-5 years making relatively low wages before you can get licensed, invest some capital, and spin up a contracting business, so if you quit your job and started an apprenticeship tomorrow, you'd be looking at probably 10 years before you are at a break even.
Don't kid yourself, there's really no way to know whether you'll like being a contractor until you do it, all in full time. You can maybe get some idea mucking around with side work but it's just not the same.

You can make more contracting, you could wind up about the same, and you can make less or even lose everything, but bet on this, there will be more stress.

As a meter tech for a power company, you are in a related field but really your work is so much different from electrical service or construction work. It's hard to predict if you'll sustain an interest in the craft and trade once you've mastered the basics. You might like it or hate it or like it for a year then get bored with it.

It's not unusual to get an itch around your age, that restlessness is just life and by itself might not be a good reason to upset the apple cart at this point in the game.

I am not from California, but I believe they are like most states, to get licensed you have to work as an apprentice for 4-5 years making relatively low wages before you can get licensed, invest some capital, and spin up a contracting business, so if you quit your job and started an apprenticeship tomorrow, you'd be looking at probably 10 years before you are at a break even.
Thanks for your input. I appreciate it. I was electrician for a few years before I started with the utility, I know the work is way different. I do have the experience for a license and plan to get it. I can't quit this job though as much as I would some times like to. I guess I would rather be bored and have a job than deal with the stress jumping in full time. I will just stick to side work and that will hopefully be enough to keep me sane. Most of my work before was commercial so still not super comfortable with everything residential. I will probably be here asking a bunch of dumb questions.
 

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I forged out on my own for about 3 years contracting before retreating back to be an employee again. Not in construction (and certainly not residential); better pension, and more time off. I like my trade for its technical aspects, not for the business side; too stressful for me.
 

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Thanks, I think I would be happy just sticking to residential. Are you doing new construction or anything residential?
...
Most of my work before was commercial so still not super comfortable with everything residential. I will probably be here asking a bunch of dumb questions.
I don't do residential new construction because it's the worst paying job an electrician can get. I do service, additions, and renovations. These all pay well.

Residential work is different from commercial and industrial work. I suggest you make friends with a residential service electrician. You will need someone to call when you get a job you don't understand how to do.
 

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Metering technician for utility company
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Discussion Starter #25
I don't do new construction because it's the worst paying job an electrician can get. I do service, additions, and renovations. These all pay well.

Residential work is different from commercial and industrial work. I suggest you make friends with a residential service electrician. You will need someone to call when you get a job you don't understand how to do.
Definitely looking for a someone to call. Good advice.
 

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I have a super cush job making over 6 figures. I want to quit and start my own business because it is boring and I don't know if I can last another 20 years. My wife is not thrilled. Any advice from anyone who started their own contractor business? I'm in process of getting c10.
Your an idiot if you give up your 6 figure Cush job. It wont be Cush if you go on your own.
 

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I have a super cush job making over 6 figures. I want to quit and start my own business because it is boring and I don't know if I can last another 20 years. My wife is not thrilled. Any advice from anyone who started their own contractor business? I'm in process of getting c10.
If you have a cush job that pays well keep it and enjoy life with your significant other. Or. Contractors whose wives are business partners are the happiest. Solo C-10 can be a lot of work and headaches. Also if one's wife is part owner, a woman owned business can get perks when bidding. You can always keep your job and part time the contracting.
 

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Estwing magic
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One thing you can never believe is “be your own boss”. The only people who say that are people who have never been in business. When you’re in business you have way too many bosses - customers, GC’s, the tax department, the licensing authority, municipalities, inspectors, blah, blah, blah. Your worst boss is yourself because you are your own worst critic.
 

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Speaking from experience I agree with others and say don’t quit your day job so fast. I work as a facility maintenance electrician for a utility company and nothing is more boring than changing light bulbs and such all day. To feed the itch I slowly eased my way into lots of side work, started as a trunk slammer and as things went along I ended up buying a van, getting liability insurance, legit LLC, etc.

At times I feel like I wish I could just do residential full time since I enjoy it so much more but as the main earner in my house I have to remember the six figures, outstanding medical (my wife never pays for Dr visits), very generous 401k, union company so my raises are already negotiated for the next few years.

And the biggest reason I don’t gamble all of that is longevity, I’m sure I can work hard enough to be successful now but how will my body feel when I’m late 50’s? Do I really want to rough houses, climb ladders, crawl through 120 deg attics at that age? The job I’m going to want at that stage in life I already have now so I just feed the itch on my own time while I have the energy and later in life I’ll sit back in the Maint shop and go change some light bulbs if the boss is around.

Think about it.
 
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