Can't Depend On Contractors Anymore

Discussion in 'Sound Off' started by Polkahero, Oct 22, 2020.

  1. plugger

    plugger Premium Member

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    The residential field is going to suffer more and more from a lack of trained people. In times past, in urban and residential areas, the unions had active apprenticeship programs that provided excellent, but expensive training. Few residential contractors are willing to invest substantial dollars in training someone who may leave tomorrow. If they did make the investment they would be underbid on most jobs in normal times.
     
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  2. Polkahero

    Polkahero

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    A lot of people in this state who only make minimum wage don't make much more than that per week. It's called existing not living. Not everyone gets the breaks in life, sadly.
     
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  3. big buck 75

    big buck 75

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    no one that is my point how are people staying home. As far as increasing wages it would seem the demand for labor would be high enough that it would push wages up or people with the skill set would go out on there own. What I have heard on this thread that people can't get work done for months. It would seem people would be willing to pay more to get work done in a timely fashion justifying higher wages. I hear people in other industries are having a hard time hiring people not just contractors.
     
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  4. Polkahero

    Polkahero

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    I'm not even interested in estimates and getting into a bidding war with different contractors for the chimney flashing job. Name your price, this work needs to get done now.
     
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  5. usedtobeayooper

    usedtobeayooper

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    I’ve been warning people for 20 years now that they’re going to be complaining when their plumber’s getting paid $250/hr to fix their toilet… because he’s the only one around.

    My point for decades has been that schools have continued to minimize their vocational tech curriculums, slowly weeding out electives, while the feds and states push to increase the required number of math, science, and reading credits. Kids aren’t given the same opportunities to explore these fields before the guidance counselors and parents blindly tell them that you can’t make a decent living if they don’t go to college. It’s been a building trend for a very long time that’s finally gaining some recognition. Face it, not everyone was meant to be, or even wants to be, an Engineer or a Scientist, so blindly pushing every student to go to college is asinine. In the end, way too many of them end up choosing a degree in something ridiculous like Ancient Ecology of the African Warthog (because they were told they had to go, and had to choose “something” just to choose “something”) instead of maybe admitting that what they really wanted to do was instead enter an electrical apprenticeship… now, we have thousands of unemployable 20 and 30 somethings with a useless degree and a ton of debt… to go along with a shortage of trained/skilled individuals available to fill the trades gap where there are literally thousands of well-paying and rewarding opportunities available. Employers in fields like carpentry, welding, plumbing, electrical, etc. simply cannot find the help they need right now.

    [End Rant – Sorry]
     
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  6. Polkahero

    Polkahero

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    It's a great rant/point but with today's work ethnic or should I say lack of work ethic among most (not all) of today's youth (trying to CMA here), it's simply not going to happen. These are physically punishing jobs, not something most people can do until they're at retirement age which keeps getting pushed upwards and upwards.
     
  7. Far Beyond Driven

    Far Beyond Driven

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    So you're all saying at a time when there's ample opportunity for someone with ambition to make a pile, and no one's signing up for it?

    I don't understand people (my wife included) not jumping on an opportunity. Seems almost like these people are riding on the coat tails of those that subsidize them.
     
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  8. Shoeman

    Shoeman Mods

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    I just wonder how many small-time professionals are willing to hire an apprentice?

    I've been approached a few times, but honestly I would need to up my sales by 40K in order to pay for workman's comp, employee tax contributions, parking and provide some type of menial wage.
     
  9. Far Beyond Driven

    Far Beyond Driven

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    You mean my mechanic isn't pocketing all $90 an hour?

    I think most people have no clue what overhead a small business requires. A small machine shop owner I dealt with spent more time in the office than in the floor...
     
  10. usedtobeayooper

    usedtobeayooper

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    Unfortunately, that’s exactly what I’m saying. Speaking for my outfit, we searched for months to find a heavy equipment mechanic, and literally hire every welder that applies... because there aren't any and we need them. The same is true for numerous roles.

    As mentioned above, it has a lot to do with a lack of initiative, particularly in the younger generation, but it also has to do with a lack of available trained individuals because of the mindset that for years was put into a lot of people’s heads that the trades were for the dumb kids.... so they chose a different path. For way too long, for instance, folks were belittling plumbers, because they were led to believe that they were an underclass of folks that simply weren’t as bright as dentists. It’s difficult to really explain to people with that mindset the amount of know-how that goes into planning duct runs, balancing a system, understanding all the new equipment and latest trends, etc… because inevitably, in their head’s a plumber’s just the guy laying on the floor under their toilet with his pants falling off tightening a valve. I use plumbers only because the contrast is easy to highlight, but the same holds true with mechanics, welders, electricians… I could go on for days.
     
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  11. Jiw275

    Jiw275

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    “has to do with a lack of available trained individuals“.

    What about your responsibility to train the people you need?

    Union building trades have apprenticeship training and we train most of our people. I say most, due to the fact we also organize people into our unions.

    FR clothing on.
     
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  12. tincanary

    tincanary

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    This reminds me of a contractor I know. Great guy and does great work but his turnover rate stinks. His only consistent employees are his sons. Everybody else leaves as soon as they find a union job. He pays his guys in the $15-$20 per hour range, but at the same time lives a rather lavish lifestyle with a huge home and sizable car collection. In the same breath he will speak about not being able to find anybody reliable. I told him outright that if he lived a little more modestly and paid his guys more, he would retain a few of them. A good employee is a gone employee when they figure out somebody else will pay what they feel they're worth.
     
  13. Chessieman

    Chessieman

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    I found this out about two years ago. The neighbor I had roof my place was saying the other name brand local companies were just asking 25% more and they had more work then they could handle. If they got it , so what! Supply and demand proves it's point again.
     
  14. pescadero

    pescadero Premium Member

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    There is no pile to be made.

    There is lots of work, and a working class to lower middle class living to be made.
     
  15. pescadero

    pescadero Premium Member

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    That includes the great majority of folks who start small businesses.

    Well yeah... his job is "business owner", not "machinist"... and offices are where you run a business from.
     
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