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Discussion Starter #1
Hello everyone!

I'm planning on moving to California and it looks like it may be difficult to start my business there. I'm a licensed roofer in Colorado with approx. 1 year of experience HOWEVER my employee has over 10 years so I can honestly tell people here we have over a decade of experience and have NEVER had any problems

Looking at CA, I would need 4 years just to get MY license??? Am I reading this correctly??

I thought about forming a LLC, hiring a licensed CA roofer and having him listed as an officer so the LLC can be licensed BUT then someone said the bonding requirements for LLC's are very expensive in CA (I'm NOT bonded here in CO only workers comp). what kind of expenses am i looking at here?

any ideas how to do this? I'm too old to work for someone else and would rather own the business.

thanks!
 

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Bubble stick operator
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Where in California?

And not to be too blunt or harsh, but if I had a license and a guy with one year under his belt approached me and asked me to carry a ton of liability for his work, I'd laugh.

Good luck and everything, but this sounds like a long road ahead. (Plus, working for someone else isn't always sh!tty.)
 

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GC/carpenter
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Hello everyone!



I'm planning on moving to California and it looks like it may be difficult to start my business there. I'm a licensed roofer in Colorado with approx. 1 year of experience HOWEVER my employee has over 10 years so I can honestly tell people here we have over a decade of experience and have NEVER had any problems



Looking at CA, I would need 4 years just to get MY license??? Am I reading this correctly??



I thought about forming a LLC, hiring a licensed CA roofer and having him listed as an officer so the LLC can be licensed BUT then someone said the bonding requirements for LLC's are very expensive in CA (I'm NOT bonded here in CO only workers comp). what kind of expenses am i looking at here?



any ideas how to do this? I'm too old to work for someone else and would rather own the business.



thanks!


You not only need 4 years you need 4 years at a journey level. In other words unless you were born with a silver roofing ax in your hand, you will need to have learning time added to that experience. For all intent and purposes that's going to be at least a total of 7 or 8 years. 3 or 4 years to learn and 4 at a journey level. And yes they check your pay records to confirm your experience.


Mike.
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Discussion Starter #5
My current employee really doesn't have much liability b/c he works for my LLC that lists my license - technically I could hire a day laborer if so inclined but it's possible I MIGHT still need his experience and it just SOUNDS good to say you have over a decade of experience


Most of the residential jobs we've done have been relatively simple (not saying you don't need experience but this is one of the easier businesses to get into compared to say HVAC - imo


Where in California?

And not to be too blunt or harsh, but if I had a license and a guy with one year under his belt approached me and asked me to carry a ton of liability for his work, I'd laugh.

Good luck and everything, but this sounds like a long road ahead. (Plus, working for someone else isn't always sh!tty.)
 

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where do you get the 3-4 years to learn?? I can be a doctor or lawyer in 7-8 years and make real money. If true that is ridiculous

not saying you can't make good money in this business BUT the only way to do so is to own your own company. Otherwise expect to be treated like a donkey and haul 70lb bundles all day - I still do that but at MY pace, not someone else's


You not only need 4 years you need 4 years at a journey level. In other words unless you were born with a silver roofing ax in your hand, you will need to have learning time added to that experience. For all intent and purposes that's going to be at least a total of 7 or 8 years. 3 or 4 years to learn and 4 at a journey level. And yes they check your pay records to confirm your experience.


Mike.
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where do you get the 3-4 years to learn?? I can be a doctor or lawyer in 7-8 years and make real money. If true that is ridiculous



not saying you can't make good money in this business BUT the only way to do so is to own your own company. Otherwise expect to be treated like a donkey and haul 70lb bundles all day - I still do that but at MY pace, not someone else's


Sounds like you have it all figured out
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Sounds like you have it all figured out
California is making this WAYY too difficult.

I'm not saying a roofer doesn't need experience but it's not exactly rocket science either.

I started my roofing business in Colorado with no experience using my employee's license and then getting my own in less than 4 months

I can see 6months to a year BUT they don't even teach this trade at most city colleges. 7-8 years, yeah right - this is not neuro surgery
 

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GC/carpenter
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California is making this WAYY too difficult.



I'm not saying a roofer doesn't need experience but it's not exactly rocket science either.



I started my roofing business in Colorado with no experience using my employee's license and then getting my own in less than 4 months



I can see 6months to a year BUT they don't even teach this trade at most city colleges. 7-8 years, yeah right - this is not neuro surgery

Can you run all phases of roofing without supervision? What about commercial? I don't care what trade you're in, it takes more than just a year to become a journey level roofer, unless you're superman. Andy (A&E) is a perfect example of what a well seasoned roofer looks like. I can guarantee you his knowledge is measured in decades.

Oh and this isn't me, this is the board. You'll need 4 years at a Journey level. So just 4 years won't be considered realistic.

This is from the CSLB website

Frequently Asked Questions About Journey-level Experience

What is journey-level experience?

Journey-level experience applies to a person who has completed an apprenticeship program or is an experienced worker, not a trainee, and is fully qualified and able to perform a specific trade without supervision. However, that person does not have a license and is not able to contract for jobs that are more than $500 in labor and materials.

What is an apprenticeable occupation?

An "Apprenticeable Occupation" is one that requires independent judgment and the application of manual, mechanical, technical, or professional skills. It is best learned through an organized system of on-the-job training, together with related and supplemental instruction. For additional information on apprentice skills and programs, visit the Department of Industrial Relations.

I trained for three (3) months and was then given a truck and given job assignments. Does that make me a journeyman?

Most trades require one (1) to five (5) years of apprentice time to fully understand the complexity of the work along with codes, standards, business management, and troubleshooting. You do not qualify as a journeyman just because an employer sends you on basic jobs.

Time spent as an apprentice is valuable learning time that cannot be skipped. Writing an invoice and collecting for services is not the same as processing the invoice, depositing the money, balancing books monthly, paying expenditures, processing payroll, and providing the government with all applicable paperwork. However, time spent performing office work does not count toward journey-level experience http://www.cslb.ca.gov/Contractors/Journeymen/Journeymen_FAQS.aspx


Mike.
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GC/carpenter
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Do they even use tile roofs out there? That’s probably 60% of the houses here in so cal.


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I think snow and tile don't work well together. But you're right most of the homes here are tile.


Mike.
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sometimes I wish more states would make it harder to get a license
maybe there would be less hacks with no experience running around selling jobs they really have no idea about
not saying your a hack that doesn't know what your doing, just to many paper contractors out there with no real world experience to manage and run a jobsite

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I don't think it very smart to own a roofing company with barely a year of experience. You've got to lose a lot of sales when the words "i dont know", or "I'm not sure" come out of your mouth.

Also claiming to have 10 years experience because your one guy does is shady AF. Hell, I typically don't hand a roofing gun to a greenhorn until they've been with me for 4 or 5 months.....I wouldn't honestly even call you a roofer.

My definition of a roofer is someone who is PROFICENT with at least 3 roof systems. I do Shingles, single ply flat (tpo, pvc, epdm), metal, non torch mod bit. Thats 6 systems i know i can install with quality results. Sometimes you need to borrow a page from ine system for another.

Possibly going to learn tile here soon if the cards fall right, i already know i can do it...just never have. But i also know there are specific tile nuances that are critical i need to learn from someone else who verifiably knows their chit

I've been doing this for 15 years and was framing houses for 5 or 6 years before that so I already understood structure. I can usually find a leak by looking from the ground and have diagnosed a leak over the phone from 1,000 miles away.

Not trying to be an ass or discouraging, but roofs are what protects your customers everything...I didn't want that responsibility when i was a year in. You need to know your stuff.
 

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GC/carpenter
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I don't think it very smart to own a roofing company with barely a year of experience. You've got to lose a lot of sales when the words "i dont know", or "I'm not sure" come out of your mouth.

Also claiming to have 10 years experience because your one guy does is shady AF. Hell, I typically don't hand a roofing gun to a greenhorn until they've been with me for 4 or 5 months.....I wouldn't honestly even call you a roofer.

My definition of a roofer is someone who is PROFICENT with at least 3 roof systems. I do Shingles, single ply flat (tpo, pvc, epdm), metal, non torch mod bit. Thats 6 systems i know i can install with quality results. Sometimes you need to borrow a page from ine system for another.

Possibly going to learn tile here soon if the cards fall right, i already know i can do it...just never have. But i also know there are specific tile nuances that are critical i need to learn from someone else who verifiably knows their chit

I've been doing this for 15 years and was framing houses for 5 or 6 years before that so I already understood structure. I can usually find a leak by looking from the ground and have diagnosed a leak over the phone from 1,000 miles away.

Not trying to be an ass or discouraging, but roofs are what protects your customers everything...I didn't want that responsibility when i was a year in. You need to know your stuff.


He doesn't know what he doesn't know.


Mike.
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where do you get the 3-4 years to learn?? I can be a doctor or lawyer in 7-8 years and make real money. If true that is ridiculous
yea but you have to be smart enough to go to collage to be a Dr. or lawyer.
But roofing:whistling
 

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He thinks a doctor gets out of school and poof he's doing brain surgery.


Mike.
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Oh I agree Ca. and Hi. both make it very hard to get a license. Has to do with both being very liberal. The unions work hard to make it hard to get a license. Heck if it were easy everyone would have a license. The chinese come here and use the interpreter to take the test and he knows all the answers:laughing: what a racket:blink:
 

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link01 -

First off;
Colorado lacks state contractor licensing, so you have absolutely no clue & you're in for an education/enlightenment.

Unlike Colorado where anyone with a pulse can be a "contractor", (and are, LOL), California actually has authentic contractor licensing. CA licensing requirements disqualifies 95% of Colorado roofing contractors. It's an entire different business landscape.

No more demanding huge "deposits" prior to starting/completing work
No more cheating the system by misrepresenting employees as "independent contractors".
You'll need to possess actual knowledge & experience in your craft
You''ll need to pass an authentic trade examination as well as a test to ensure you have basic accounting/business law knowledge.
You'll have to have at least minimal credit worthiness
Post a bond with the state.
Acquire workers compensation insurance (roofing).....See "No more cheating" above)

Yes, you will have entered the adult world of contracting.

The benefit, is that you will be in a much smaller, as well more of an equal playing field, as opposed to Colorado where there is a much larger pool, (cesspool of shysters in COLO, LOL), of competition.

Not to say CA is void of unethical types - Just no where near what you have in CO.
 

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OMG! I just read through some replies.....

Let me share with some of you that haven't enjoyed the experience of contracting in Colorado-

"It's not rocket science"?....Well it must be for most of the pseudo contractors in Colorado, because the amount of sub-par craftsmanship is incredulous. And the sheer abundance of unethical/unscrupulous "contractors" is unimaginable.

Operating a legit roofing company in Colorado is just about impossible & I wouldn't recommend it as a career for anyone. It is just too damned dirty. It's all about salesmanship & $. Pride of craftsmanship, longevity, ethics have no place at the table in Colorado.

There are two primary driving forces for this in Colorado.
1. Lack of state contractor licensing
2. Hail storms.

A typical residential roofing contractor might, (and are), be a former insurance adjuster who decided to became a contractor to cash in.

A typical Colorado roofing contractor has very little knowledge of roofing. The most "successful", are most-likely former insurance industry professionals who know & work the insurance system.
They have "connections" & very sophisticated marketing systems, although generally still practice the "van full of day workers go through a neighborhood knocking on doors" method.

They "sub" all the actual roofing work to another roofing company who, in turn "subs" to his "independent contractor" workers. No payroll taxes, no workers comp. A perfect storm to bolster the illegal alien workforce. It's safe to say 99% of the residential roofing workforce in Colorado is made up of cash-paid illegal alien workers.

Most of these "subs" know absolutely nothing about roofing other than "chingles" & "how mush shew pay"?

And what makes it ever-sickening, is that's just fine & dandy with the home owners.

Huge stacks of materials left on every driveway, because the "contractor" relies on an insurance agent estimate or a google maps measurements, that go to the dump. Utterly disgusting.

Sorry for the rant -
 
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