Electrician Talk banner
61 - 80 of 86 Posts

·
Big nosed attic troll
Joined
·
10,711 Posts
Does your local have residential guys at a residential rate? Is the $52 an hour the total package? So maybe the guy makes $30 an hour and tier 2 health care, small annuity and the same pension?
nope, most in the local are commercial nimrods and if benched, benched for a reason. its gonna be 90ish for their package.
 

·
Registered
36th year apprentice & Floor Sweeper
Joined
·
1,950 Posts
nope, most in the local are commercial nimrods and if benched, benched for a reason. its gonna be 90ish for their package.
I can’t see one of our local contractors doing single family homes with “A” guys. They would never get the job. Priced way out of the market for that type of track work. But my local has always had a “B” rate for small works. The rate is always around half in the check, same pension but reduced health and annuity. That type of work is right up their alley. I spent a few of my “B” years doing track work.
 

·
Registered
Electrician
Joined
·
1,655 Posts
I can’t see one of our local contractors doing single family homes with “A” guys. They would never get the job. Priced way out of the market for that type of track work. But my local has always had a “B” rate for small works. The rate is always around half in the check, same pension but reduced health and annuity. That type of work is right up their alley. I spent a few of my “B” years doing track work.
Is B rate like entry level? Who else would want to sign up for half pay?
 

·
Big nosed attic troll
Joined
·
10,711 Posts
I can’t see one of our local contractors doing single family homes with “A” guys. They would never get the job. Priced way out of the market for that type of track work. But my local has always had a “B” rate for small works. The rate is always around half in the check, same pension but reduced health and annuity. That type of work is right up their alley. I spent a few of my “B” years doing track work.
i cant knock it too much in terms of a jobs a job and we all gotta pay the mortgage but as the owner, u dont wanna put those handcuffs on....they end up strnagling u
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14,436 Posts
I can’t see one of our local contractors doing single family homes with “A” guys. They would never get the job. Priced way out of the market for that type of track work. But my local has always had a “B” rate for small works. The rate is always around half in the check, same pension but reduced health and annuity. That type of work is right up their alley. I spent a few of my “B” years doing track work.
Never heard of a second class union electrician. The only time they work for less is when salting. Then the hall gives them a pass on the book. Several halls got spanked for that. Remember, the union is for the whole, not for a select few. When you say they are priced out, you are right. Non union shops are building these houses.
 

·
Big nosed attic troll
Joined
·
10,711 Posts
Never heard of a second class union electrician. The only time they work for less is when salting. Then the hall gives them a pass on the book. Several halls got spanked for that. Remember, the union is for the whole, not for a select few. When you say they are priced out, you are right. Non union shops are building these houses.
yup.
 

·
Registered
Sub transient reactance X”d worshiper.
Joined
·
398 Posts
Hey. I really appreciate your reply. I am starting a small union residential shop. I contacted the chief estimator at the largest shop in my state (he's a friend). We went through the numbers together and he said if you had 2-3 guys and knocked out a house in 3 days it could be done. So I can adjust my number and trying to figure out a profitable number. Of course I would be working full time on this as well to start. Just trying to find a profitable number with the prints I have.
your company that you work for now does not do residential dwellings? Correct.

but you are using some of their resources to land the contract…

I'm going to need to go back to my estimator. I see what you're saying. Yes.
this can backfire on you eventually even if he is a friend.
There are liabilities involved that can come back to you and your former employer can start litigation towards you.

your costing is out to lunch. Math does not lie. You need to do a overhead evaluation of you operating expense now before you even get a bond for your company.

3rd party liability need to be acquired as well all this costs. The money has to come from someone. And that’s you.

transport, supply hose access, tools, consumable products.

WCB package, licensed fees. Work permits for ability to operate in a zone or township.

I can go on. But hockey is on and got to go.
 

·
Registered
36th year apprentice & Floor Sweeper
Joined
·
1,950 Posts
Never heard of a second class union electrician. The only time they work for less is when salting. Then the hall gives them a pass on the book. Several halls got spanked for that. Remember, the union is for the whole, not for a select few. When you say they are priced out, you are right. Non union shops are building these houses.
That’s funny you say that. You never heard of a second class electrician, but yet that’s what your calling them. There’s all sorts of nicknames. Residential retread was always my favorite. It’s more of a badge of honor though. Most Retreads run circles around JWs, and don’t even break a sweat. Some JWs are clueless as to what a struggle life could be, or how good they got it, or even how to do residential service work.

The area I live in is mostly residential and retail. Not much industry. It’s where people go to get away from the industrial part of the state. So we’ve had a residential division from the start of the charter. There used to be shops that were all “B” guys. They never did work that required “A” guys. They just did resi new and old work and commercial under a certain value. Over time the residential rate became too much to do any type of new construction track work. It’s always been a race to the bottom.

The program isn’t for everyone. If you’ve been in the trade for a while, and don’t want to start out as a first year apprentice, it’s not a bad route. Right now I think it adds one year, but probably isn’t a cut in pay from where they were working before. So you would do three years of school as a “B” guy, and then switch over, and do third, fourth and fifth year as an “A” apprentice. You have to do the school or you will never change over. I know it’s a different mind set, but NJ doesn’t have a requirement for an apprenticeship. So it doesn’t matter what type of school you had before, you have to go through theirs.

When they started the CE/CW classification nationally, we were forced to change our “B” program into the CE/CW program. Some things got better, somethings got worse. Up until then, we were the only local in the state that had a residential program. The way it is now, if you get in as a CE/CW because you have experience, they test you for pay scale. You get paid one of the CE/CW rates based on the test, but you still have to do the three years of CE school. Don’t do the school, never change over. But because they do the school, they move into third year “A” when they’re done with CE school. They aren’t considered apprentice’s as a CW, so there’s no reason to work with a journeyman. So a CW guy is usually running work just like any other electrician, and getting paid over CW scale. So how can that be? A second class electrician doing strip malls and small tenant fit outs? Because the guy probably already has his state electrical contractors license, and would rather work towards getting his “A” ticket than going into Buisness. When I changed over we only had to do fourth and fifth year. It was at the time they just changed to a five year apprenticeship, and they didn’t add the extra year to the change over guys yet. When I started it was a four year, by the time I changed over, it was five. Every retread In my apprenticeship class already had their state license. All had at least ten years experience by the time they went into fourth year. On guy was in his late 50s and I think he was doing this his whole life. He wasn’t just getting paid “B”rate. Some guys don’t want to change over. They are happy getting whatever they worked out with their employer. I was getting “B” foreman rate for half the time I was a “B” guy. But I never intended to stay in that program. One day I wanted to be a “real” electrician!:LOL:

I know, I know. I’ll get there someday!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
81 Posts
I’ve worked for some non-union companies owned by former union members. Why non-union, you ask? Only because the union position was the owners of a company cannot work on the tools. So from the get-go the company needs enough work for minimum 5-6 JW’s to carry the “office”. Great way to expand union influence and power. Have things changed?
 

·
Registered
30 yrs resi/light comm. 10 yrs solar resi/comm
Joined
·
16 Posts
I did tract houses in CA for 10 years. I got out (thank God) when the economy crashed in 08. I did work for Pardee, DR Horton, William Lyons, Griffen, Lennar, etc. They will chew you up and spit you out. Payment schedules suck. You bill monthly, so let's say you start on Feb 1. You bill 30 days later. Then they have 30 days to pay you. Best case scenario, they will send the checks out on April 1. If your supplier releases and all your paperwork have one T that isn't crossed, they will wait the 30 days, then kick it back to you, which means you've missed the boat and have to hope your paperwork is straight when you resubmit so that you will get paid on the next cycle, 30 more days later. If your paperwork is perfect, you should get paid 60 days after you start, so you will need deep pockets to pay for your labor, ins., fuel, etc. until you get paid. Trust me, they will find a reason to not pay you on time and won't give a damn if your kids don't get to eat. The only way you will make money with the bid you gave them is if the sales team sells a ton of options. You have to price your options high. If recessed lights and ceiling fans are included in every bedroom, you will not make money, you will lose. You have to be able to sell these options to make any profit. The big builders often hire new contractors, knowing that they can't do the job for the bid given. They will squeeze you until you pop, then replace you with the next sucker.

Something sounds fishy in your OP. If you are the sole contractor for 2 companies, how is it that they only want 4 houses per month? My company was doing 4 houses (4000sq ft) per day back in the day, just for 1 builder.

Be careful.
 

·
Registered
36th year apprentice & Floor Sweeper
Joined
·
1,950 Posts
I’ve worked for some non-union companies owned by former union members. Why non-union, you ask? Only because the union position was the owners of a company cannot work on the tools. So from the get-go the company needs enough work for minimum 5-6 JW’s to carry the “office”. Great way to expand union influence and power. Have things changed?
I’ve read that on here also. Our local never had that restriction. Doesn’t matter if the company has a single owner or several owners, if they have ticket, they can work with the tools. They have to pay into their retirement and health/welfare. If they don’t have a ticket, or shelved it, they are allowed to designate one officer of the company to work in the field. I don’t think they have to pay into the plan at that point, but obviously can’t collect on it either.

I’ve heard from travelers that their locals allow service company owners to work with the tools.
 

·
Registered
36th year apprentice & Floor Sweeper
Joined
·
1,950 Posts
I did tract houses in CA for 10 years. I got out (thank God) when the economy crashed in 08. I did work for Pardee, DR Horton, William Lyons, Griffen, Lennar, etc. They will chew you up and spit you out. Payment schedules suck. You bill monthly, so let's say you start on Feb 1. You bill 30 days later. Then they have 30 days to pay you. Best case scenario, they will send the checks out on April 1. If your supplier releases and all your paperwork have one T that isn't crossed, they will wait the 30 days, then kick it back to you, which means you've missed the boat and have to hope your paperwork is straight when you resubmit so that you will get paid on the next cycle, 30 more days later. If your paperwork is perfect, you should get paid 60 days after you start, so you will need deep pockets to pay for your labor, ins., fuel, etc. until you get paid. Trust me, they will find a reason to not pay you on time and won't give a damn if your kids don't get to eat. The only way you will make money with the bid you gave them is if the sales team sells a ton of options. You have to price your options high. If recessed lights and ceiling fans are included in every bedroom, you will not make money, you will lose. You have to be able to sell these options to make any profit. The big builders often hire new contractors, knowing that they can't do the job for the bid given. They will squeeze you until you pop, then replace you with the next sucker.

Something sounds fishy in your OP. If you are the sole contractor for 2 companies, how is it that they only want 4 houses per month? My company was doing 4 houses (4000sq ft) per day back in the day, just for 1 builder.

Be careful.
A little graft goes a long way. They’re all crooks.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
19,990 Posts
You are on your way to the poor house or jail.
2 men/ house for a week = $2,000 pay check/man then workers comp and taxes that you pay towards them ( SS, Medicare, ...) add $1,000/ man. You are now up to $6,000 per house + $5,000 material + markup= $12,000 Your time 60 hours/week x $100= $6,000. You have just lose money at $18,000 cost. This DOES not include business expenses such as medical, retirement, insurance, permits, vehicles and so on.

Do not try to pay these guys as W2 workers it will get you burnt big time. You need to give these guy that work for you benefits or you will lose them and if you don't have a way to replace them right away you will fall behind on schedule and watch out for the builder company to come after you for time of completion not met. Just a few thing to think on.

Good luck
Cowboy
I think you might mean don't get caught paying them as 1099 contractors unless they are licensed, electrical contractors.
Residential is only a problem if the GC gets greedy and or loses control of the customer.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,022 Posts
when I did tracks early 90s late 80s we worked for all of them . I was a piece worker and a 2200 square was one day and done . I did 5 houses a week . My boss did it to control labor cost . If I do it in a day he paid the same as one who did it in 5 . The incentive for us was to go fast but if we screwed up we didn't get paid to fix it . No hourly and work the hours you want .
All jmen worked solo .

I made more money pulling rope than anyone doing PW or union cats . The down side as stated above is getting paid . We were the third largest production producing shop in cali . We had 12 full time workers . The other two had more than 100+ . Point is give the boys an opportunity to make good coin and they will .

Then all you do is keep the money flowing but getting it to keep flowing is the pain .
Good luck hope you do well .
 

·
Registered
I am 100 % retired now. Enjoying life :)
Joined
·
2,223 Posts
the whole b thing is phased out in many places...
It used to be that in my local you just received greater retirement benefits if you paid the A dues as opposed to the B dues. I opted to stay as a B and put the extra money in my 401k. It was not that much more to be an A Journeyman and most of the B's made fun of them for feeling superior. "I'm a Journeyman A so you get your scrub ass out of the shop and get to work. I got paperwork to do." lmao
 
61 - 80 of 86 Posts
Top