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Old 02-15-2010, 11:24 PM   #1
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I know this can be a touchy subject - painting for family and friends. Where do you draw the line between helping them out with a project and just plain doing the whole project for pay? To me, it is almost like painting for people from your church. The more I do it, the less I like it. I know that sounds bad, but I have my reasons!

I'm all for lending a helping hand, a discounted rate, etc., etc., but in all honesty it becomes grinding after a while.

What say ye?
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Old 02-15-2010, 11:33 PM   #2
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I prefer to just give them free materials from my stock pile. Either that or I am going to want to get in there and spray everything. If they want me to treat it as a real job i want to get paid.
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Old 02-15-2010, 11:39 PM   #3
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I'll give a few pointers, make sure they are not making an big mistakes, and let them use any product I have kicking around as well. That's as far as my freebies go. If I spent time there working past that I will be charging for it like any other job. ( Though I DO have a family and friends discount, but that's up to the individual contractor of course, there are many reasons not to do this, but I do it anyways )
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Old 02-15-2010, 11:44 PM   #4
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I'm sorry, but my pickup just broke down and I can't make it over.
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Old 02-15-2010, 11:52 PM   #5
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We don't have a lot of family, so it isn't too bad. Rob has always done all the painting for his Dad for free, Dad buys material, food and beer! Since he has been in Idaho he has taped, textured and painted his Dad's one car garage and his Uncles 900 square garage, 5 accent walls and a lot of touch up!

He uses it to practice new techniques or materials.
As far as friends, we may give a discount on price, but they have to stay out of the way!
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Old 02-15-2010, 11:57 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnpaint View Post
I'm sorry, but my pickup just broke down and I can't make it over.
For family I help out when I can for the small stuff, and in return there's always a fridge full of beer when I visit.

For friends I lend them my fan deck and call in their order. They pick up their own paint at my discount and they do it themselves. I might offer a tip or two to make their life easier, but I don't paint for them.
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Old 02-16-2010, 01:04 AM   #7
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I try to work for people who can afford my services. I always learned if you give work away, you will be taken advantage of and not appreciated. I think I learned that from my parents - - who were always willing to pay me fairly for top quality work.



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Old 02-16-2010, 01:16 AM   #8
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I don't mind working for people from my church I treat them as any other customer. But do some stuff at the church for free. I don't cut friends big discounts but if they have something or offer a service I need or want there can be a barter.

But family, is a different story. If I work for my parents or grands, I just tell them what the materials were and they throw in some extra. But my in-laws think I should do it everything for half price. My thoughts on that are how is that any different from me wanting to charge double.

Every friend just as every family member is different and gets handled different.
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Old 02-16-2010, 09:11 AM   #9
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My mother and step-mother I'll do small projects for free, larger projects they pay for. Siblings pay also, but at my family rate. It's worked out real well this way for years.
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Old 02-16-2010, 09:41 PM   #10
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I have had friends ask me for work.. i give them my price, some hire me some don't
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Old 02-16-2010, 10:01 PM   #11
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I don't like to help friends becouse thay cant paint as well as I can and it bugs me every time I see thair crappy cut line or thay whant to use tape or somthing, I just kick them out of the room and do it for them for like 20 or 50 bucks, some pizzas and drinks or maby thay pay my way 4 the poker game or something, if its a big job I just charge them 100 a room and drinks.
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Old 02-16-2010, 10:20 PM   #12
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Yea small projects I don't mind at all. Heck, I'll even slap out some bedroom walls or something for family. But, I'm talking like full kitchen redos including cabinets, complete large deck refinishing, and in fact we even had one that wanted help with remodeling his whole complete house!!!

That is what is annoying. Its like they think that this trade is easy and they have no concept of what kind of time and money (even lowballer money ) it takes to do these large projects. I think I'm done. I try to be nice and give large discounts and it seems like some are still ungrateful for that.

Working for family and friends is worse than working for a pain in the you know what regular customer!

Hope that doesn't come across too bad. I don't hate family and friends, its just that the line has to be drawn somewhere.

Last edited by michfan; 02-16-2010 at 10:44 PM..
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Old 02-16-2010, 10:28 PM   #13
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YUP
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Old 02-16-2010, 10:43 PM   #14
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I'll work for free for close family members, they pay for materials, but thats about it. Guess i'm lucky that my family are really decent people, i offer to work for free but when they hand me a check for the materials there is normally a bit extra added on. I have seen people taken advantage of and honestly what kinda of d**k does that, i.e. my old boss sprayed his cousin's new build house, approx 4000sq ft, and it took other family members having a word for this guy to hand something over, and even then it was a couple of bottles of wine, jeez!
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Old 02-16-2010, 11:07 PM   #15
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if your cousin was a cpa would he do your taxes for free i think not , i cut family members a break and discount the labor pretty good and it usauly brings referals my way from their freinds but the only person ill paint for free for is my mom or the inlaws thats it.
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Old 02-18-2010, 10:46 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by daArch View Post
I try to work for people who can afford my services. I always learned if you give work away, you will be taken advantage of and not appreciated. I think I learned that from my parents - - who were always willing to pay me fairly for top quality work.
I'm closest to this camp. I used to do favours, but found I was blowing a weekend here, a few evenings there....helping someone out.

I guess there comes a time when you are self-employeed that you realize that every moment you spend doing something related to painting is time you should be being paid. Its not greedy - its self preservation.

Now, I flat out ask, "You want to hire me, or want my help." I'll work along side a family member or friend 'I cut - they roll' because doing a project is a good way to build a relationship with a family member/friend and I enjoy teaching, but I no longer 'do solo painting favours' for beer and food.

There are a few family members who are tradespersons and we do some exchanges, but even with that I'm very careful to take note of hours invested. In fact I make a point of writing it down and telling them,"hey, I owe you 4 hours." They always say, "don't worry about it", but I think it makes everyone a bit more comfortable knowing exactly where we stand with each other.

Its how I roll....I don't like grey areas or leaving anything to interpretation.
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Old 02-18-2010, 11:31 AM   #17
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Quote:
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Yea small projects I don't mind at all. Heck, I'll even slap out some bedroom walls or something for family. But, I'm talking like full kitchen redos including cabinets, complete large deck refinishing, and in fact we even had one that wanted help with remodeling his whole complete house!!!

Small projects for parents, inlaws, sister=no problem. They usually help out as much as they can, buy beer/food and bring friends to help so it can be fun. usually one day jobs with a group of people doing basic painting. Friends can be the same as long as the project is small. Large projects like described above that take a lot of time and skill get charged a fair rate whoever it is. Time is money. I don't ask my cousin to insulate my house on the weekend......



I think I'm done. I try to be nice and give large discounts and it seems like some are still ungrateful for that.

You are to nice man. It is your business and you are supporting your family. If they don't get that and don't appreciate it, than give them a price that your happy with for doing the job. I do this regardless. Especially in summer when we have a small window for making as much money as possible. I am usually a little more giving of time during the slower winter months.
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