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Why does residential get so much hate? At least, that's what I keep seeing? Wondering about it.
 

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Electrician
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I can't speak for anyone else but myself. I don't hate residential but I prefer commercial/industrial. Personally I get along much better with commercial customers and their expectations of cost/value. I hate attics and under houses. I prefer larger jobs with more complicated controls. Most of the commercial jobs I go to the customer requires lic, bond, and very high insurance so it weeds out the trunk slammers, if you get into a niche market this really cuts down on the number of bids I do to get the same number of jobs. Also once you get a good customer base, you have a lot of regular repeat customers vs a huge customer base you see infrequently.

I spend $0 in advertising and zero time dealing with online social media,etc to generate or maintain my customer base. Oh did I mention, I HATE attics. Most of my jobs I build in enough profit where I'm not in a rush, I can do the work the way I want too for a better product, if something changes I can upgrade to different equipment and do what ever is necessary to make sure everything is right and the customer is happy(most of the time). The downside to the work I do is that supply houses dont usually carry a lot of the stuff I need on a day to day basis so I end up stocking a lot more material and parts. The other main downside is that a lot of the jobs you don't get paid for 30-90 days.

Do what ever you enjoy and are good at. There is money to be made in all the markets.
 

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Hackenschmidt
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I avoid residential work for the very same reasons @MotoGP1199 does. I find that in residential work it's very hard to find customers willing to pay more for better.

I also don't like doing work for customer's whose main criteria for judging who does the best work, is who wipes their feet and takes out the trash and vacuums up after themselves best. Understandably homeowners in their dream home are a lot fussier with cosmetic minutia than the average commercial customer. At a commercial site, if I leave a few insulation scraps on the carpet for housekeeping to vacuum up that night, nobody cares. In a house, it will be on Yelp how I could have killed their toddler if they found those scraps. Imagine a commercial job where the architect lived on the job, that's residential.

Industrial, if you don't spit on the floor and flush after yourself you're above average for cleanup but nobody cares.
 

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I have it easy because of a circle of contractors who refer me to customers that need the work done yesterday and pay a premium to meet a deadline. My customers need me and so I deal less with the whiney penny pinchers. But generally resi sucks compared to commercial because your workspace is occupied by little Johnny's Lego collection or Suzie's Barbie houses - all of them, ever produced. And Suzie is 55 years old. I often yearn for a frosty morning at 6am all by myself securing 12/4 mc cable with doubled over mechanics wire, but I'm just not there yet.

If I never apprenticed in commercial I would have never started my own business. There are so many valuable experiences in commercial, especially building materials and wiring methods, which have benefitted me in resi and saved my ass on a lot of jobs. Resi is kind of cookie cutter.
 

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Estwing magic
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I had a good run with a high end residential reno GC and I loved almost every minute of it. He paid well and expected high quality work. He believed in demo and starting fresh. I didn’t spend a lot of time crawling in attics and fishing wire. He routinely cut floors open for plumbing and electrical. It makes a huge difference working for a guy who sees big picture and understands trade coordination.

Now I do mostly commercial work and fail to understand the snobbery of working with high ceilings, armoured cable, T-bar, steel studs, EMT and pulling wire.
 

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Industrial Mostly, Panels and drives
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I feel the opposite in my trade lol. I'm industrial, but I find most construction / resi guys consider me a hack because I can't legally wire a house. I suppose it depends what side of the fence you sit on. I generally find automation to be more interesting but I do find enjoyment in construction as well. It is nice to see a job get finished! Automation is rarely ever truly done.
 

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Scada Supervisor
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Why does residential get so much hate? At least, that's what I keep seeing? Wondering about it.
Hate by who?
Workers hating residential work or Commercial worker hating residential workers?

As an industrial guy I hate doing Residential work.
As an electrician, residential electricians have their set of skills I have mine, but we are all electricians.
 

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Marine
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I feel the opposite in my trade lol. I'm industrial, but I find most construction / resi guys consider me a hack because I can't legally wire a house. I suppose it depends what side of the fence you sit on. I generally find automation to be more interesting but I do find enjoyment in construction as well. It is nice to see a job get finished! Automation is rarely ever truly done.
Haha I was testing grounding in a substation with a current test set and had a foreman for the EC tell me I didn't know anything about electricity because I was just pushing buttons on the test set and using a laptop lol, he was not kidding.

TBH construction guys, resi guys in particular, have most narrow understanding of the trade. There are so many aspects and niches in this trade its insane.

On the flip side I just ran 20 ft of underground to a well house for a receptacle and some lights and it took me way too long and a few trips to HD and the supply house.

I would have been fired twice lol. But it got done, it looks good and it's safe.

Just to play along with the thread that's why a lot of "industrial, controls, maintenance whatever guys" don't see construction guys as "real" electricians.
 

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Retired EC and Fuel distribution contractor
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When asked what I did for a living, I often would respond I'm a construction electrician.
 

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I always found residential all about the Benjamins. No one really cares as you can not see the work, they look at the paint and furniture. We all know that proper lighting makes all the difference. Proper installations mean no safety problems, ever. Does that count? not much. I really do not care for the restrictions most residential projects present. I did one house in Phoenix 600 amp 3 phase 240v wild leg service. I remember 3 5 ton a/c's on the garage (8 cars). We had his and her's steam rooms. Never figured that out. The property had a guest house with a 100 amp draw if there was anyone in there. Every thing was electric. Most everything else was cost driven.
 

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Industrial Mostly, Panels and drives
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I did one house in Phoenix 600 amp 3 phase 240v wild leg service. I remember 3 5 ton a/c's on the garage (8 cars). We had his and her's steam rooms. Never figured that out. The property had a guest house with a 100 amp draw if there was anyone in there. Every thing was electric. Most everything else was cost driven.
600A residential....Jesus. That is a lot of juice. I have put in some heavy equipment on a line that didn't come equipped with that much juice
 

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Yes they do get the residential rate. Which is a demand meter and the demand steps are not all that different from commercial or industrial here. I always assumed we would be called back for some form of demand control, never happened. I never looked at the meter once it was installed. To busy getting the rest of the electrical working.
There was a 20 horse pump shooting through and 1.5" nozzle in the bottom of the pool about 5 feet deep. The owner wanted a Las Vegas type water feature. Worked great unless there was wind. The patio was about 10' wide so a lot of the water would enter the house.
I was concerned with the amount of water shooting through the pool and having people in the water.
I was invited back after a year from completion. They did not run the fountain that evening.
 

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There is no shame in doing residential electrical work. The problem is the homeowner that want's to save a buck, and worse, not pay you, and the all the hack's and wannabe's from the Home Depot hiring hall that call themselves electricians. We've all seen the work these hacks do, but they are cheap. Turn the switch, the lights come on, all good. And the DIY'ers. We've all seen them too at Lo's or China Depot with j-boxes, plumbing fittings, and zip cord asking the sales guy how to do the job.

I've seen nails driven down the center of Romex for strapping, RG-59 used to wire a pool room, and a whole house wired in SO cord. How do you compete?
 
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Industrial Mostly, Panels and drives
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There is no shame in doing residential electrical work. The problem is the homeowner that want's to save a buck, and worse, not pay you, and the all the hack's and wannabe's from the Home Depot hiring hall that call themselves electricians. We've all seen the work these hacks do, but they are cheap. Turn the switch, the lights come on, all good. And the DIY'ers. We've all seen them too at Lo's or China Depot with j-boxes, plumbing fittings, and zip cord asking the sales guy how to do the job.

I've seen nails driven down the center of Romex for strapping, RG-59 used to wire a pool room, and a whole house wired in SO cord. How do you compete?
One of the big reasons I stayed away from residential. I have a friend who tried to strike out a bit on his own. Found a carpenter running speaker cord to a ceiling an in the bathroom. He fixed it, only to get screwed out of 15k on another job by a non-payer. Took him to small claims court, all he got was a lien on his house, which means FA until he sells his house...
 

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The most 'residential' I got in my apprenticeship was high-rise apartment condos. Concrete and steel stud... ENT, rigid PVC, ACWU, AC90. Even this realm is super cheaped-out. My employer at the time (union) didn't touch detached housing - there was no money in it. (This probably varies regionally though.)

When I got into my self-employed chapter, I quickly learned about the residential service customer. Too many have an over-simplistic idea of what things cost and the time it takes. Never got into the home-builder circuit. Nobody wants to look at you unless your sqft rate is less than the other guy currently doing it. Then you have the builders that want to 'lease' your license so their labourers wire the homes instead. :rolleyes:

Frustration with residential is probably more accurate than hate.
 
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