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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Greetings, new business owner here. I have great relationships with successful builders, my homeowner side is slacking though. I would very much like to hear to opinions of everybody as to who you all place more value on. The builders who feed work at discounts, or the homeowners who seem fewer and further between. In addition, If the homeowners are providing you all with more success, what are some tips and tricks to seal that deal with these people who don't know what it take to install some of this finish work.
 

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I don't work for builders and really don't focus on that type of work, but I do get jobs on occasion doing new construction window/door installs through the company that sold them the products. In homeowner work, referrals are the key. You work for someone, then work for their friend/co-worker, and so on building the network. Do quality work, do what you say you're going to do, and clean-up after yourself. Basically giving your customer more value for their dollar. And that does not mean you work cheap, but rather you give them better service and quality than the other contractor. That's what I do in a nutshell. I'm sure others will be along to give you their insight as well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I don't work for builders and really don't focus on that type of work, but I do get jobs on occasion doing new construction window/door installs through the company that sold them the products. In homeowner work, referrals are the key. You work for someone, then work for their friend/co-worker, and so on building the network. Do quality work, do what you say you're going to do, and clean-up after yourself. Basically giving your customer more value for their dollar. And that does not mean you work cheap, but rather you give them better service and quality than the other contractor. That's what I do in a nutshell. I'm sure others will be along to give you their insight as well.
I don't work for builders and really don't focus on that type of work, but I do get jobs on occasion doing new construction window/door installs through the company that sold them the products. In homeowner work, referrals are the key. You work for someone, then work for their friend/co-worker, and so on building the network. Do quality work, do what you say you're going to do, and clean-up after yourself. Basically giving your customer more value for their dollar. And that does not mean you work cheap, but rather you give them better service and quality than the other contractor. That's what I do in a nutshell. I'm sure others will be along to give you their insight as well.
slow and steady huh
I don't pigeon-hole builders and homeowners. There's good and bad homeowners. There's good and bad builders.

The trick is to identify good people.
That is true, I agree with you. Ive been seeing it that way lately.
 

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I do a lot of new construction but I make sure I bid on the project with the GC who is bidding for the job themselves. That way, if I win the job, I know I’ve made what I want to make instead of subbing to the sub or what not. Also, in my experience for the most part new construction is easier to work with. If problems come up, the other trades are generally still there or can be easily called back and can fix it.

I do do some renovation work too but I just think customer’s are hard to work with (not all but a lot) and I always find myself doing free things because I feel sorry for like them or whatever. At least with a building site, everyone knows it’s a business and what to expect.
 

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33 years referrals only I've turned away every builder and many HO's. After 33 years the only thing I have is my reputation and it's all I need.
After 33 years, I hope you’d have a bit of money or a happy retirement show for it too.
 

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I do do some renovation work too but I just think customer’s are hard to work with (not all but a lot) and I always find myself doing free things because I feel sorry for like them or whatever. At least with a building site, everyone knows it’s a business and what to expect.
None of my customers are hard to work for and they won't allow me to do anything for free.

After 33 years, I hope you’d have a bit of money or a happy retirement show for it too.
Don't plan on retiring, my customers won't let me and they get emergency contact numbers when I pass away on the job.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I do a lot of new construction but I make sure I bid on the project with the GC who is bidding for the job themselves. That way, if I win the job, I know I’ve made what I want to make instead of subbing to the sub or what not. Also, in my experience for the most part new construction is easier to work with. If problems come up, the other trades are generally still there or can be easily called back and can fix it.

I do do some renovation work too but I just think customer’s are hard to work with (not all but a lot) and I always find myself doing free things because I feel sorry for like them or whatever. At least with a building site, everyone knows it’s a business and what to expect.
Yea I do appreciate the new construction processes more than customers. Paperwork is easy. I’m also really struggling to find people.
 

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None of my customers are hard to work for and they won't allow me to do anything for free.



Don't plan on retiring, my customers won't let me and they get emergency contact numbers when I pass away on the job.
Each to their own. I hope I’m not still working when I’m 90. Hobby’s yes but I don’t want to have to worry about ‘working’ everyday.
 

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Each to their own. I hope I’m not still working when I’m 90. Hobby’s yes but I don’t want to have to worry about ‘working’ everyday.
I work because I enjoy what I do if you don't enjoy it get out. I don't have any worries I'm making more while working less.

Didn't want to be the one to break it to you but you won't live to anywhere near 90.
 

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I work because I enjoy what I do if you don't enjoy it get out. I don't have any worries I'm making more while working less.

Didn't want to be the one to break it to you but you won't live to anywhere near 90.
here we go….and why will my life be cut short,
 

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I have been in business 17 years and only paint and hang paper, my work is word of mouth, yes very slow and steady but it works. I have great customers, my pricing keep away those who i do not wish to work for. I only sub contract for one builder and he and I get along great, it is high end work and pricing is never an issue.

To the OP, you will do what you need to to get work rolling in steady, you will learn who you like working for and who you don't. Know your pricing and what you need to earn to stay in business and make a profit, don't jump on the promise of "future work".

In my world people don't know paint or care what type of roller cover we use, what primer is what etc. and your customers will not care what product or technique you use, or what tools you use etc.
Return calls, meet on time, be courteous, listen to what they want and what their concerns are, let them know you are listening. Once you get the job treat people right, be nice, clean up.
Do quality work and people will recognize the time involved.
 

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I rarely work for other builders. I only enter into prime contracts for the most part.

Now I have no problem working for a home owner who is also a builder, which I've done.


Mike.
___
 

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Do you want to be busy or do you want to be profitable?

Hypothetically speaking:

Would you rather work 40 hours as a sub to make $2000, or would you rather work 20 hours for HOs to make the same?

I choose to be profitable over being busy. I’m too smart to compete with fools, hacks, and illegals.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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Wow, very little love for builders here. My work has been primarily with 2 builders for the last 20 years. My estimate is almost always the only one in my trade, demo/framing/exterior trim. If I don't make money, not their fault. I do some work for homeowners, but it is always by referral. I half jokingly tell them when they refer me, let their friends know I am expensive.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Wow, very little love for builders here. My work has been primarily with 2 builders for the last 20 years. My estimate is almost always the only one in my trade, demo/framing/exterior trim. If I don't make money, not their fault. I do some work for homeowners, but it is always by referral. I half jokingly tell them when they refer me, let their friends know I am expensive.
yea man my builders are great. We streamlined the estimate process down so everybody is taking 20%ish on any given job. They rely on me to come in correctly and I rely on them to sell work appropriately. I appreciate the trust and advice these guys have handed over to me.
 
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