Contractor Talk - Professional Construction and Remodeling Forum banner

21 - 31 of 31 Posts

·
Punching above his weight
Joined
·
10,493 Posts
That was the issue we ran into most at my old company. Boss would try to hire hands from putting jobs in the paper, online, or asking my friends to work.
What you get is a collection of the most useless flakes you can imagine. Tell 5 American kids they start Monday at 7. Maybe one will show up.

You go down to the pick up spot though, there's dozens of guys there at 5am, dressed for work, carrying lunch, eager to get into a project. It's so much faster and produces such better results. We had a guy that was the company's most tenured employee at about 7 years that started out standing outside of Home Depot.
I wish they would tell high school kids about it. You go down to the unemployment office and maybe they stick you in LaborReady or whatever and you make under a hundred a day doing **** work with no promise of another day that week. Go to the pick up spot and they've basically unionized themselves into a rate of $125/day with a paid lunch. If it don't make dollars, it don't make sense.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
27,257 Posts
Not here in Mayberry but when I was in high rise work in Austin a sub contractor we used would send a van to pick some up for 120 a day cash and have them do a bunch of grunt labor, if they didn't bust ass they got canned and no ride back

He was a real pos, but I was just a hand running the job not the HMFIC signing the checks so it was what it was.

If it was a 120 back then it's probably 150-200 now
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
27,257 Posts
I'll do my usual bleeding heart thing and say that I've met a few of the hardest workers I've ever encountered after they got picked up at the Home Depot. I was low man on the totem pole at my old company so I was pick up and drop off guy as well as lunch provider. My Spanish sucks, but it gets me by.
Good people just trying to make it happen for themselves in the land of opportunity is my official review of at least 75% of the guys I worked with. Some had a huge chip on their shoulder and you could kind of tell felt the whole experience was beneath them. You never know what they came from. Met a few who fled bad situations, but actually were working in pretty well regarded fields before they fled.

In case OP was looking for a guide to picking up day laborers, no they don't swarm around you unless you pull over near them. Then they just get up close and list their proficiency. Some have signs that state their trades. If you've got a big job, grab a van load of them. You'll know by lunch who's number to take down. Usually there's one guy that's the brains of the operation. He'll know who else is worth hiring. You ask for those guys. You'll end up with a decent crew by the end of the week.


When I was in California I heard that the city was forcing Home Depot to build them shelters to wait under while they got picked up. ****ing California, man.
I'd agree with the hard workers part, although plenty of shirkerd too. Plenty got to walk 20 miles back after getting canned by that sub

My labor foreman in Mexican decent, first Gen in amercia. He calls them "them ****ing wets", always funny to me the dudes here legal are the most prejudice of the illegals here
 
  • Like
Reactions: Easy Gibson

·
Punching above his weight
Joined
·
10,493 Posts
Everybody's looking for somebody to kick. If you zoom out a little and look at immigration patterns from any time in any nation, it's always the newest getting kicked by the second newest. I'll bet there were some Irish cracking on the Chinese while their dumb asses were swinging the same hammer into the same railroad ties in the middle of the same damn desert.

I've never hired help off the street for my business. What I do is just too specific and I couldn't allow for a potential translation error to muck things up. I harbor no resentment toward anybody that hires day laborers though. My people did it too. Only difference was there was no such thing as income tax or immigration status back when they did it.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
27,257 Posts
Everybody's looking for somebody to kick. If you zoom out a little and look at immigration patterns from any time in any nation, it's always the newest getting kicked by the second newest. I'll bet there were some Irish cracking on the Chinese while their dumb asses were swinging the same hammer into the same railroad ties in the middle of the same damn desert.

I've never hired help off the street for my business. What I do is just too specific and I couldn't allow for a potential translation error to muck things up. I harbor no resentment toward anybody that hires day laborers though. My people did it too. Only difference was there was no such thing as income tax or immigration status back when they did it.
I imagine I am a bit desensitised to it, a good way to look at this though in America is to look at my views on it in my dads come others only a 21 year difference there. 38 I've spent my entire career working side-by-side with hispanics, my main trades were forming concrete in framing and some custom trim working cetera for custom home builders. Framing crews were about 50% Spanish band, concrete crews 80% . The crew I worked on most was for a very high end GC and we did it all, 50/50 amercian and Mexicans. The big difference between wet and legal didn't get big here until 06 or so when I went into high rise work. The framers didn't care we were all getting 1099, I never got taxes taken out until I went commercial and detested it as a hand so I have always done W4s.

When I was a kid my dad wouldn't have anyone, sub or hand, who couldn't speak clear English. A lot of retards would say oh he's racist, but actually no, he wasn't. His side of the family is a mixed lot Hispanic and white muts, just ate lunch with my cousin whose last name is Ribera and is half Mexican, his dad I still call uncle even though he and my aunt divorced years ago. But to him, as a patriot and an Amercia First guy, if you dont want to assimilate you can bounce the **** off his jobs. Lol

Now days, not going to happen for some trades, and lots of clear English speakers are illegal and lots of legals can't habla.

The labor foreman, I'd be mad too. I don't think most people realize how hard and expensive it is to get here legally. I'd be pissed too, but he oughta be more pissed at these open border traitors we have in office
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
27,257 Posts
One myth I'll lay to rest, having grown up close to the border down here in manyana land, I've never "competed" with an illegal in my life, as a hand or contractor. Not in trac chit houses, high end resi, commercial, never. They don't have the education to do the math, layout, communicate with the boss, client, vendors, other trades etc... not because they are dumb, but because they haven't had the education. To be honest the Get After It mentality isnt in their wheel house either. Work hard and steady, but efficiency, production and riding asses isn't in their culture on a wide scale.

Forming concrete, rod busting, framing, trac finish carpentery, even just labor work never once
 

·
Punching above his weight
Joined
·
10,493 Posts
I think you accidentally a word toward the end there, but I think I'm picking up what you're putting down.

If you weren't a 36 hour drive away I would love to hash this out in the most astonishingly ignorant way possible. I'm confident that you and I could come to a consensus on immigrant labor that any sober bystander would barely recognize as coherent thought.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
191 Posts
My grandfather on northern Maine around the great depression needed work. He went to where men would congregate to get work one morning.

A guy came by in a truck pointed to certain individuals in the crowd to come with him. My my grandfather was one of them. Slot of the other guys weren't happy because my grandfather was a new face. From there he never had to go back.

I've heard of some guys using labor like that, also heard it's not uncommon in the food industry. I saw guys like this at the Danbury H,D. This was over ten years ago. Don't know if they do. Economy here has changed alot since then. Never seen it here in Manchester.

I do get random people now and then leaving notes on the windshield asking for some work if I ever need any. No one has been of Ispanic, or Spanish decent...

Many people a few years ago quite regularly asking for a few bucks. I would give them my returns. Had one guy refuse them....
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
153 Posts
its a normal thing in Miami

they want , at minimum $150 a day here now. I won`t pay it .
you usually have to take them there , buy them lunch , and drop them back off at the home depot .
they have gotten picky. they question what type of work. they walk away when its not to their liking .
used to be , they would swarm your truck if you approach one guy.
now they seem to keep their distance.
mostly Mexican , or Guatemalan. usually hard workers who stay low key because they are all illegals.
( except , they always gawk at girls like they`ve never seen one lol)
i use to hire them years back when they were in the $100 range .
kept one guy on for 2 or 3 years , he became a good carpenter and painter , and went to work for a bigger firm .
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
27,257 Posts
150 is cheap, a 15 dollar an hour laborer on payroll cost more than that with burden

I wint a taxi, never in 13 years and more than 3 dozen hands ever picked anyone up for work. They just have to get to the shop, they are in our trucks after that. A good hand has vehicle problems I've been known to let them take their truck home
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,065 Posts
150 is cheap, a 15 dollar an hour laborer on payroll cost more than that with burden

I wint a taxi, never in 13 years and more than 3 dozen hands ever picked anyone up for work. They just have to get to the shop, they are in our trucks after that. A good hand has vehicle problems I've been known to let them take their truck home
This! Heck, I’ve been in such a bind for help that I let a sorry hand take MY truck home once. Any port in a storm.
Lack of help has made me a much more tolerant employer.
 
21 - 31 of 31 Posts
Top