DIY Forum

 

Ultimate Handyman Ultimate Handyman Ultimate Handyman Ultimate HandymanUltimate Handyman on Pinterest

 

DIY Forum/Home improvement advice forum

 

 

A-Z CONTENTS | DISCLAIMER | DIY VIDEO | HOME | SAFETY FIRST | FORUM RULES

It is currently Fri Oct 20, 2017 3:20 pm
Visit Thermo worx


Time zone: Europe/London [ DST ]




 

 


Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 25 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next
Author Message
 Post subject: Contracting for work
PostPosted: Sun Sep 24, 2017 8:48 am 
Offline
Newly registered Member

Joined: Thu Apr 13, 2017 8:03 am
Posts: 20
Has thanked: 13 times
Been thanked: 10 times
Hi. I'm looking to go back self employed but I don't want to end up like last time subcontracting off of everyone and basically earning their living. Does anyone know how to get on to any registers to be able to price up for like council work or school work etc ? Or even like bigger corporate offices ? It may sound far fetched but working for 2 different companies the last 4 years the work they get and I've done I could easily do on my own or with a partner. And they throw 5-6 blokes at it and still make money. They must be charging extortionate prices !!

Any helps appreciated.

Thanks in advance

Nic


Share on FacebookShare on TwitterShare on DiggShare on DeliciousShare on Google+
Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Contracting for work
PostPosted: Mon Sep 25, 2017 12:34 pm 
Online
Senior Member

Joined: Tue Jun 15, 2010 7:22 pm
Posts: 3794
Location: west yorkshire
Has thanked: 701 times
Been thanked: 626 times
Nicharrison24 wrote:
Hi. I'm looking to go back self employed but I don't want to end up like last time subcontracting off of everyone and basically earning their living. Does anyone know how to get on to any registers to be able to price up for like council work or school work etc ? Or even like bigger corporate offices ? It may sound far fetched but working for 2 different companies the last 4 years the work they get and I've done I could easily do on my own or with a partner. And they throw 5-6 blokes at it and still make money. They must be charging extortionate prices !!

Any helps appreciated.

Thanks in advance

Nic
Hi. I've worked directly for a few builders doing newbuilds, refurbs and insurance work, and for a few years employed two decorator's.

I stumbled upon these opportunities as you often do, so I've never really approached builders or local authorities for contracts.

One thing I'll say is, such companies are always on the lookout for tradesmen to replace the ones they've fallen out with, and the reason? Money.

Unless you have a really good relationship with a company, and they pay you quickly, or you've got a fair bit of money behind you, it can be a struggle.

One Christmas I got a phone call from a builder saying he was sorry but couldn't pay us until January because he hadn't been paid. He was good to his word, but in the meantime, I had to pay my blokes wages and 2 weeks holiday pay. Thankfully I had an overdraft, but that cost me in interest.

Builders will always pay themselves and their staff first, followed by their suppliers. Everything after that can be a bit uncertain, hence why people become limited companies to cover their backs.

I'm not trying to put you off, but just bear in mind that if it was just a matter of getting in with someone and making loads of money, we'd all be doing it.




Sent from my SM-G850F using Tapatalk



For this message the author fitzy has received gratitude : Nicharrison24
Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Contracting for work
PostPosted: Mon Sep 25, 2017 12:58 pm 
Offline
Newly registered Member

Joined: Thu Apr 13, 2017 8:03 am
Posts: 20
Has thanked: 13 times
Been thanked: 10 times
Hi fitzy thankyou for replying. How did you get in with the builders to start ?

I'm thinking of emailing a few companies but don't know where to start to be honest. I'm not in a postition to start tomorrow if they offer me a day's work here and there as trials. Weekends are my best option. I've worked for many painters going through builders before and like you they say the same thing about money, and again I don't have much to fall back on. 11 month old daughter now and girlfriend just getting back into work so I've footed the bills for over a year now. But wouldn't change it for the world either they're the best thing to happen to me

I work 7 days when required and never shy away from the work. Just struggling to get my head around how I can move on to the next level to be fair and generate regular work direct for myself.

Sorry if my post sounded so naive as to just getting in with someone and making shed loads Of money, i didn't mean it that way.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Contracting for work
PostPosted: Mon Sep 25, 2017 1:12 pm 
Online
Senior Member

Joined: Fri Jan 20, 2006 5:51 pm
Posts: 7184
Location: Essex
Has thanked: 404 times
Been thanked: 1406 times
Councils tend not to go with one man outfits as they want all the child protection, equality and diversity boxes ticked which only the larger firms can get organised easily. Ideally you should generate some freelance work at weekends and pretty soon recommendations will build up and you should be able to slip into full time work on your own in due course. At this point you can foster relationships with any amount of contacts in the trade and work wil come your way. Relaibility, good workmanship and a fair price will see you through.

Good luck fella :thumbright:

DWD


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Contracting for work
PostPosted: Mon Sep 25, 2017 1:15 pm 
Online
Senior Member

Joined: Tue Jun 15, 2010 7:22 pm
Posts: 3794
Location: west yorkshire
Has thanked: 701 times
Been thanked: 626 times
Funnily enough, I got in with 3 builders via doing private work.

One builder was doing a house we were decorating, similarly the next story, and the last one was a wealthy private customer that decided to part fund a new building company.

I took on a site of 14 newbuilds, with more to follow, and the money was there, but then the problem of getting decent blokes reared it's head.

All the good ones are busy. The ones that remain usually have issues. Lol



Sent from my SM-G850F using Tapatalk


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Contracting for work
PostPosted: Mon Sep 25, 2017 1:17 pm 
Offline
Senior Member

Joined: Fri Oct 16, 2015 7:20 pm
Posts: 319
Has thanked: 2 times
Been thanked: 83 times
Can you work towards contracting directly to the customer? -ie retail

You can then price for labour materials and profit, but you then have to allow for time quoting and you will be the one chasing for money.

Lots of trades do a bit of both as far as I can tell

You could try signing up to nextdoor, which is a local thing just the local villages near you and adding a message for work. Also you could ask if any local builders need any painters.

You could say where you are based on this forum, you might get some interest.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Contracting for work
PostPosted: Mon Sep 25, 2017 1:19 pm 
Offline
Senior Member

Joined: Fri Oct 16, 2015 7:20 pm
Posts: 319
Has thanked: 2 times
Been thanked: 83 times
I know a local building contractor that got in professional decorators. He got them to do all the cutting in and had a labourer follow round with a 12" roller.

I dont think the decorators stayed long :-)


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Contracting for work
PostPosted: Mon Sep 25, 2017 1:26 pm 
Online
Senior Member

Joined: Tue Jun 15, 2010 7:22 pm
Posts: 3794
Location: west yorkshire
Has thanked: 701 times
Been thanked: 626 times
Notch1 wrote:
I know a local building contractor that got in professional decorators. He got them to do all the cutting in and had a labourer follow round with a 12" roller.

I dont think the decorators stayed long :-)
I had a similar thing a couple of years ago.

Builder had his labourer mist coat the walls and undercoat the trim. Wanted me to finish walls and gloss up.

I politely declined [WHITE SMILING FACE]



Sent from my SM-G850F using Tapatalk


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Contracting for work
PostPosted: Mon Sep 25, 2017 1:27 pm 
Offline
Senior Member
User avatar

Joined: Thu May 21, 2009 7:18 am
Posts: 3108
Has thanked: 705 times
Been thanked: 377 times
Personally, I wouldn't work for companies or councils. In my experience, in this and several other businesses, they take ages to pay and, in the case of companies, you run the risk of them going bust before you are paid. Also, as pointed out above, they want the work completed as quickly as possible so they are only likely to employ firms who can supply several decorators at a time.

If your work is good, why not go into the domestic market? They pay on time, as long as you communicate your terms before they hire you, they pay good money (I'm on £170 a day in the Midlands), and they are happy to hire one-man bands.



For this message the author Tom d'Angler has received gratitude : Dave54
Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Contracting for work
PostPosted: Mon Sep 25, 2017 2:36 pm 
Offline
Newly registered Member

Joined: Thu Apr 13, 2017 8:03 am
Posts: 20
Has thanked: 13 times
Been thanked: 10 times
Thanks for all the replys people :). Going to be hard replying to you all and not missing anything. All great points made. I have got a enhanced crb check only received it 2 months ago. I am in the Bristol area. It seems everyone and anyone can paint around here! The amount of jobs I do quote for then builders undercut me. Had it 2 weeks ago. Quote accepted for a whole house bar toilet/bathroom. Hour later customer emails "sorry need to put the job on hold will be in touch in the next week". My view is the other tradesman who was there pricing up offered her less money. I turnt up 10 mins early to quote for the job, greeted by "sorry the other tradesman arrived late, can you come back in half hour"! Then whilst discussing with the client the work she expressed how happy she was with my references and that I have the nvq 1,2&3 and I helped her write notes for the right paints to use for what areas she required.
I do think there are too many Decorators or so called Decorators.
Tom out of interest mate other then word of mouth how do you advertise ?

Thanks again for your replies notch and fitzy and DWD also. I get a bit of private work outside my work. Own but still not enough to take the plunge back into the world of self employed

Regards


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Contracting for work
PostPosted: Mon Sep 25, 2017 3:26 pm 
Offline
Senior Member
User avatar

Joined: Thu May 21, 2009 7:18 am
Posts: 3108
Has thanked: 705 times
Been thanked: 377 times
Quote:
I turnt up 10 mins early to quote for the job,


Turning up early is as bad as turning up late. Make sure your timekeeping, whether it is when you go to do the quote, or when you turn up to start work each day, is spot on. Most tradesmen have poor timekeeping skills. If you have good timekeeping you will stand out from the crowd.

Quote:
om out of interest mate other then word of mouth how do you advertise ?


The first thing I did was have some business cards printed. I handed them out to everyone I met, friends, neighbours, customers in the place where I was working at the time. As I handed them a card I kept my pitch simple: "I'm becoming a full time painter and decorator soon. If anyone says to you that they are looking for a decorator, please would you give them my number?" My first two jobs, one a small hallway in a bungalow, the other a whole four-bedroom house, came from two of the first cards I handed out to people I knew who came into the shop where I was working.

Those two jobs led to more jobs immediately through word of mouth.

Whenever my bookings dropped to less than four weeks' worth of work I would walk around my town in the evening posting business cards through letterboxes. I also took a £25 a month advert in the little local church magazine and I added proper vinyl lettering to the back and side windows of my car (I couldn't afford to buy a van at the time). All three: business cards, church magazine, and vehicle sign, all worked.

Now I have a decent van, with lettering on it, and I still have the advert in the church magazine. I don't really need either as most of my business now is repeat business or referrals from existing customers, but the van signs and church magazine let my customers know that I am still in business. The church magazine in particular is very good because lots of people have said "Oh, I knew you would be good because they let you in the church magazine!"

Don't bother paying to have a flash website. Have one that it very simple and to the point. I did my own using FrontPage because I had experience of using that but these days Wix and Go Daddy are apparently very good.

Don't bother with Yellow Pages or newspaper advertising. Both are very expensive and, let's face it, who looks in there these days? Also, there are far too many decorators listed in there for you to stand out.

The best thing by far is to a) have excellent customer service standards, b) do a very good job, c) always leave the customer's house cleaner than you found it, d) just be nice to people, and e) always ask customers to recommend you to their friends. Those five things will get you more new business than anything else.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Contracting for work
PostPosted: Mon Sep 25, 2017 3:30 pm 
Online
Senior Member
User avatar

Joined: Wed Feb 25, 2015 7:20 pm
Posts: 2878
Has thanked: 869 times
Been thanked: 849 times
Tom d'Angler wrote:
Personally, I wouldn't work for companies or councils. In my experience, in this and several other businesses, they take ages to pay and, in the case of companies, you run the risk of them going bust before you are paid. Also, as pointed out above, they want the work completed as quickly as possible so they are only likely to employ firms who can supply several decorators at a time.

If your work is good, why not go into the domestic market? They pay on time, as long as you communicate your terms before they hire you, they pay good money (I'm on £170 a day in the Midlands), and they are happy to hire one-man bands.


I agree. First profit's always the best IMHO. I didn't work for myself to work for other people. You end up as an employee without the benefits if you're not careful.

To the OP. Don't reckon on working 7 days as being the normal thing. You will sometimes anyway, but don't set out to do that.
Work to live not live to work.
Never sound desperate for work.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Contracting for work
PostPosted: Mon Sep 25, 2017 4:21 pm 
Offline
Newly registered Member

Joined: Tue Nov 24, 2015 5:38 pm
Posts: 79
Has thanked: 25 times
Been thanked: 36 times
Don't know about these days, but some years back local councils would advertise in the public notice section of local newspapers asking for trades to submit tenders for contracts. Done loads of work for various building companies over the years and the bigger the company the longer you had to wait for payment. The only new build work I do now is for a few small builders and they are great to work for. A small development of say ten big detached houses keeps you in wages for a year.



For this message the author ian gibson has received gratitude : fitzy
Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Contracting for work
PostPosted: Mon Sep 25, 2017 4:54 pm 
Offline
Newly registered Member

Joined: Thu Apr 13, 2017 8:03 am
Posts: 20
Has thanked: 13 times
Been thanked: 10 times
Thanks tom. I'm always early for everything. Parents drummed into me from a young age not be late, even to the point of I sometimes find myself sat a few streets away because 20 mins early and don't want to go in to early or be seen outside !
So true about the yellow pages adds, and likewise. I was suckered into believing when 20-21 that it'd generate endless business and paid quite a bit to this ! Won't again. I'm currently sorting a website/page out and have cards I hand out. A few customers I've gone back to work for have said they didn't give my number out as didn't want to seem rude passing it on !!! I say politely please give it to everyone and anyone who asks that's what I need haha. But thanks again. Reading your replies and how I try to come across myself I'm not going far wrong it seems I'm maybe needing a little break in luck. Thankyou

Dave - I would love to not do the 7 days mate but it's a case of having to most the time for rent , bills. Full time job Monday - Friday and trying to start myself up again on my own weekends. Who knows hopefully 6months to a years time I'll be back saying thanks a lot and not needing the weekends anymore :) I do agree though work to live not live to work !

Hi Ian - I haven't seen anything like that no mate, where abouts are you from and if you don't mind me asking for something like that how much would you charge a day ? I wouldn't know the first place to start as always on new builds and anywoek really it seems other trades always hold you up or damage finished work etc. I suppose if you're working with the same people all the time though you respect each other's work and it's a lot easier, or will you just charge a day rate and work hours ?

Thankyou again for all the replies



For this message the author Nicharrison24 has received gratitude : Tom d'Angler
Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Contracting for work
PostPosted: Mon Sep 25, 2017 5:05 pm 
Offline
Newly registered Member

Joined: Tue Nov 24, 2015 5:38 pm
Posts: 79
Has thanked: 25 times
Been thanked: 36 times
I'm in south Wales mate. For new work I've always been asked to provide prices per square metre/linear metre. This is usually par for the course in the construction industry. This link will give you an idea of what prices are like, there are other sites that show a similar set up.

http://www.constructionrates.co.uk/Rate ... co.uk.html


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 25 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next


Similar topics
   

Time zone: Europe/London [ DST ]


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Visit Hilti


 

 

 

News News Site map Site map SitemapIndex SitemapIndex RSS Feed RSS Feed Channel list Channel list
ultimatehandyman privacy policy

Contact

 

Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group

phpBB SEO