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#164342 - 05/31/07 08:28 PM Sub-contracting?
u2slow Offline
Member

Registered: 09/18/03
Posts: 198
Loc: Salt Spring, BC, Canada
I've met up with another "1-man show" electrical contractor that is offering to sub-contract me. (He has 1 or 2 other subs off and on depending on work volume).

With the new(er) vehicle and associated expenses I'm looking forward to a spell of fuller work weeks and a little less responsibility - even though it would work out to less $$/hour.

Is there such a thing as an established discount off one's 'normal' rate for subbing?

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Business, Office, Estimating, Legal:
#164359 - 06/01/07 06:19 AM Re: Sub-contracting? [Re: u2slow]
sparky 134 Offline
Member

Registered: 09/04/04
Posts: 92
Loc: Joliet, Il, USA
Why would you discount your rate ? Does it cost you any less to do work for this other contractor ? I would consider him to be another GC. He is hiring you to perform electrical work. You will still be waiting for a check, same as with any other customer. Just my opinion.....

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#164361 - 06/01/07 06:55 AM Re: Sub-contracting? [Re: sparky 134]
u2slow Offline
Member

Registered: 09/18/03
Posts: 198
Loc: Salt Spring, BC, Canada
Sparky, my pocketbook likes your viewpoint \:\)

I've worked in other industries before where rates were discounted for business customers - and I've received that expectation as an electrician also from other trades (plumbing, HVAC, overhead door, etc) hiring me for a particular portion of work.

I haven't had any work from GC's per-se. Mainly service work done to a business's or individual's own facility, building, or shop; and occasionally work subbed from other trades as I mentioned above.

I hadn't considered non-discount to be an option. I will consider it. Thanks

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#164366 - 06/01/07 09:24 AM Re: Sub-contracting? [Re: u2slow]
EV607797 Offline
Member

Registered: 10/25/06
Posts: 756
Loc: Fredericksburg, VA, USA
We get dozens of calls from national service contractors per month asking us to do service work for their accounts. Their customers are usually national chain stores or restaurants. Of course, they want us to drop what we are doing to service them, they want us to drop our rates to what THEY are willing to pay and then they take 90-120 days to pay if we are lucky. We never get paid without dozens of collection calls, and once we start calling, they move on to another contractor who is a sucker. This is a huge problem in the telecom industry.

We have stopped offering discounted rates in hopes of getting "tons" of residual work as many of these companies promise. If they are willing to pay our regular rates and pay on OUR terms, then by all means, we will help them out. Otherwise, they can just keep dialing for dollars. There's somebody out there that may be willing to work for peanuts, but it's not me.
_________________________
---Ed---

"But the guy at Home Depot said it would work."

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#164373 - 06/01/07 11:33 AM Re: Sub-contracting? [Re: EV607797]
LK Offline

Member

Registered: 01/21/03
Posts: 1721
Loc: New Jersey
 Originally Posted By: EV607797
We get dozens of calls from national service contractors per month asking us to do service work for their accounts. Their customers are usually national chain stores or restaurants. Of course, they want us to drop what we are doing to service them, they want us to drop our rates to what THEY are willing to pay and then they take 90-120 days to pay if we are lucky. We never get paid without dozens of collection calls, and once we start calling, they move on to another contractor who is a sucker. This is a huge problem in the telecom industry.

We have stopped offering discounted rates in hopes of getting "tons" of residual work as many of these companies promise. If they are willing to pay our regular rates and pay on OUR terms, then by all means, we will help them out. Otherwise, they can just keep dialing for dollars. There's somebody out there that may be willing to work for peanuts, but it's not me.


One of the chain store managers, told me he had an electrician move some lighting, the guy was there for 2 days, he told the manager they paid him $524 to do the job, manager told me his main office paid the contract company $1400 for the work.
They get a job, then try to find the cheapest EC to do it, they will call 50 guys just to find one fish.

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#164374 - 06/01/07 11:56 AM Re: Sub-contracting? [Re: LK]
EV607797 Offline
Member

Registered: 10/25/06
Posts: 756
Loc: Fredericksburg, VA, USA
Very true. I heard of a recent situation where a phone cord was bad at a Wal*Mart recently that ended up being billed at over $350.00 TO PLUG IN A $1.00 CORD! The very same ones that they sell in their electronics department! It's insane. I don't understand why these chains don't allow their management to hire local contractors to work for them direcectly. The money would be spent within the local community, putting money in their customer's pockets instead of someone hundreds of miles away.

I understand that it would probably be a logistical nightmare, but if they looked at the millions of dollars that might be saved in doing business locally, they may think twice. I doubt it though. Under the current national contractor relationships, the little guys get paid a discounted rate, if we get paid at all. The chain store gets their problem fixed quickly and they pay five times what it should have cost. Ahh, the magic of retail.
_________________________
---Ed---

"But the guy at Home Depot said it would work."

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#164426 - 06/02/07 09:59 PM Re: Sub-contracting? [Re: EV607797]
Tiger Offline
Member

Registered: 05/04/05
Posts: 714
Loc: Crystal Lake, IL USA
Working at a discount in trade for more hours only works if the extra hours are productive. If you're increasing non-productive hours also you're only giving away your profits or increasing your losses. Contractors should have a rate for service work and a lower rate for new construction.

Personally I prefer all work at service rates because GCs waste all the possible increases in production.

Dave

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#164529 - 06/05/07 06:56 AM Re: Sub-contracting? [Re: Tiger]
ITO Offline
Member

Registered: 11/26/06
Posts: 341
Loc: Texas
Sounds like a bad idea to me. Be your own man, find your own work, and build YOUR own business.

Just my take on it, working for a GC and trying to cashflow with them is hard enough without having one more middle man in the way.
_________________________
101┬░ Rx = + /_\

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#165013 - 06/16/07 11:58 AM Re: Sub-contracting? [Re: ITO]
copper Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 04/04/05
Posts: 32
Loc: PA
I am kinda in the same boat. I currently do contract work at power plants. I don't bid anything. A recruiter calls me and tells me what the pay is and per diem. I either accept, or say pass. However. I am tired of traveling. I was thinking of leasing myself out to larger local construction companies, or manufacturing plants. You know when a company has a back log of work and they need it done now they hire temp workers because they don't want another full time employee. I was thinking of advertising myself as a temp worker to companies to bypass the recruiters that look out for their best interest. I just can't come up with a good rate. some thing competitive but I don't want to cut my own throat, or over price myself. My overhead would be a extremely low. I guess the best way is to call contractors up and ask them what they pay the temp agency for temp workers. So far I have been hearing $60/hr.
_________________________
"If your going to be stupid, You gotta be tough"

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