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Old 03-10-2009, 09:28 AM   #1
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Default Where do I even begin...

Since the beginning of my life my father has been a painter. It's carried the families weight since the beginning. Whether is be working for another contractor or for himself, I could always assume that he offered a decent service for a good price, Or else he would have never survived.

Since 15 years of age I have been on job sites, helping out with smaller tasks like scraping and clean up at the finale of the project. By the time I reached 17 I had graduated to actually assisting in the painting process and continued on for several years.

When I graduated high school I had a decision to make like so many others. College or work? I chose to try out college. A month in I quit and decided to get a job doing something I enjoy. Yes, I got in touch with another painting contractor.

During this time period I started noticing something different about my father. It seemed as though he just didn't care anymore. First he dropped his insurance. I noticed that 9/10 jobs where he would collect a deposit the job would never get completed and he'd run. He would get the deposit and spend it on bills and food, Then completely screw over the homeowner by doing a terrible job and getting fired, or just by showing up on his schedule or not showing up at all.

Watching my father do a 180 has taught me a major lesson and instilled these values that I'll never let go. Commitment to myself, Commitment to my customers, Commitment to the quality and Commitment to the industry.

At the end of summer I quit working for the contractor I had been working for and decided to go out on my own. It's been a little rough, but I get by. I've got several exterior repaints scheduled and have been doing quite a few interior repaints.

My name is Robert I am 23 years of age and I want to be your friend and colleague.
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Old 03-10-2009, 09:35 AM   #2
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Welcome! 23 is a good age to start taking your career seriously. I hope you have learned by your Father's mistakes.
It is hard to fight the genetic code he handed you.
Good luck with the business we have all been or are there right now.
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Old 03-10-2009, 10:02 AM   #3
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Damn Robert, hell of an intro Don't hate the man,

Welcome. Lots of good cats here
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Old 03-10-2009, 10:07 AM   #4
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Thank you for the kind words. Though I do not have a "fancy rig" as of yet, or anything really extravagant, I'll get there. It's only a matter of time. I was expecting to get out there and do terribly/starve, but I am actually doing alright and all my bills are paid. Summer is right around the corner and with a little determination and some elbow grease my business will grow.

I've got just shy of 8 years being around and working in the industry. I made a choice. I could work for another company and make a 'decent' living ( maybe $14-15 an hour ) or get out there and do it myself. What makes the person I work for special in the sense they are the only people allowed to run businesses or find success? They were exactly me at one point.

I am sure when you got into business it was for pretty much the same reason. It's a realization that you deserve and can do better.
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Old 03-10-2009, 10:09 AM   #5
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Damn Robert, hell of an intro Don't hate the man,

Welcome. Lots of good cats here
Thanks Bender

I don't hate the man, I just wish he'd hang up his boots. How many times have you gone to a job that was completely butchered and the customer is hesitant to hire again because the first guy bailed with the deposit? It's people like this that give all contractors a bad name.

The fact that we have the same name is also not good.
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Old 03-10-2009, 10:33 AM   #6
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Thanks Bender

I don't hate the man, I just wish he'd hang up his boots. How many times have you gone to a job that was completely butchered and the customer is hesitant to hire again because the first guy bailed with the deposit? It's people like this that give all contractors a bad name.

The fact that we have the same name is also not good.
Sounds like you have your work cut out for you, working to change the name and image in your area.
BTW, get to work.
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Old 03-10-2009, 11:15 AM   #7
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Name & image is everything! Get yourself a logo for name recognition and a company name that has nothing to do with your Dad. Also purchase professional looking business cards and put them everywhere. You don't need a fancy rig, just be neat and clean in you and your vehicles apperance.
Good luck to you and welcome to the board.
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Old 03-10-2009, 11:57 AM   #8
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welcome On the coast: In this kind of economy some go one way some go another. Keep it up.
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Old 03-10-2009, 12:31 PM   #9
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Welcome, Hopefully your hardship with your father will make you into a better man. Great to here there is still contractors starting up in a time where it looks to be bleek for alot of people.

Dont let the man get ya down!
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Old 03-10-2009, 02:49 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by onthecoast View Post
Since the beginning of my life my father has been a painter. It's carried the families weight since the beginning. Whether is be working for another contractor or for himself, I could always assume that he offered a decent service for a good price, Or else he would have never survived.

Since 15 years of age I have been on job sites, helping out with smaller tasks like scraping and clean up at the finale of the project. By the time I reached 17 I had graduated to actually assisting in the painting process and continued on for several years.

When I graduated high school I had a decision to make like so many others. College or work? I chose to try out college. A month in I quit and decided to get a job doing something I enjoy. Yes, I got in touch with another painting contractor.

During this time period I started noticing something different about my father. It seemed as though he just didn't care anymore. First he dropped his insurance. I noticed that 9/10 jobs where he would collect a deposit the job would never get completed and he'd run. He would get the deposit and spend it on bills and food, Then completely screw over the homeowner by doing a terrible job and getting fired, or just by showing up on his schedule or not showing up at all.

Watching my father do a 180 has taught me a major lesson and instilled these values that I'll never let go. Commitment to myself, Commitment to my customers, Commitment to the quality and Commitment to the industry.

At the end of summer I quit working for the contractor I had been working for and decided to go out on my own. It's been a little rough, but I get by. I've got several exterior repaints scheduled and have been doing quite a few interior repaints.

My name is Robert I am 23 years of age and I want to be your friend and colleague.
Just remember to "own a business" and not "own a job" and you will go far.. There are some here who will help and some who will aggravate you, welcome from the Chicago area
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Old 03-10-2009, 02:54 PM   #11
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Quote:
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There are some here who will help and some who will aggravate you, welcome from the Chicago area
Care to elaborate?

Welcome from the sunny side, Cali

Last edited by ewingpainting.net; 03-10-2009 at 03:05 PM..
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Old 03-10-2009, 03:29 PM   #12
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Welcome, it must be tough to drag around your dads reputation. How big is the home city/town you are in?
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Old 03-10-2009, 06:47 PM   #13
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Welcome, it must be tough to drag around your dads reputation. How big is the home city/town you are in?
I live between Manchester which has a population of more than 100,000 and Portsmouth with a population of a little over 20,000. I was planning on registering a trade name under my whole name plus the word painting, But my father has burned so many people I think that would just be reckless.

As for "Owning a business" or "Owning a job", I do look at it as owning a business and in the future plan to expand should the work pick up more. Right now I am making enough money to live my lifestyle, But I am not sure if I would be able to make enough money to feed another man's family. If things get really busy, I will consider forming an LLC or Corp and taking on an employee or two.

Thanks for the great advice,

You guys are great!
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Old 03-10-2009, 07:01 PM   #14
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Welcome to the site, looks like you got some great advice!
You might want to consider setting up an entity(LLc or corp or sole) now rather than changing everything later. It may help to go see an acct or lawyer to explain all the options.
If you set up the business with all the required licenses, insurance, EIN # at first it is much easier to "add an employee".
There are groups like SCORE that will provide a mentor for the business side of things. One of the best things I did was sign up with a local ATC that worked with my acct and I to set up and learn Quickbooks. Keep a separate checkbook and pay yourself properly and track all expenses.
It ain't all slingin paint!
Good Luck
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Old 03-10-2009, 07:22 PM   #15
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Nice area I travel up to the White Mountians every year and allways make a side trip to Conway, Portsmouth or any of the little great towns in NH. Love that area...........Again good luck
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Old 03-10-2009, 07:39 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RCP View Post
Welcome to the site, looks like you got some great advice!
You might want to consider setting up an entity(LLc or corp or sole) now rather than changing everything later. It may help to go see an acct or lawyer to explain all the options.
If you set up the business with all the required licenses, insurance, EIN # at first it is much easier to "add an employee".
There are groups like SCORE that will provide a mentor for the business side of things. One of the best things I did was sign up with a local ATC that worked with my acct and I to set up and learn Quickbooks. Keep a separate checkbook and pay yourself properly and track all expenses.
It ain't all slingin paint!
Good Luck
Thanks!

I will more than likely do this shortly. All I have to do is print out the form on the secretary of state website to register, and I do have a good understanding of the taxes. When I decided to go out on my own I made an appointment with an HR Block rep who explained it all to me.

Saying as I am such a small operation I've considered just operating under my name with no trade attached, but do realize this would highly effect my advertising. When picking a name of course I would think of something clever and feel as though customers will expect a big paint contractor to show up to their home with a huge pickup with tons of ladders on top of it and tons of employees. I don't want a name to give potential customers the wrong idea.

Do you think sole proprietor would be my best bet?



Yes my area is awesome. Very scenic and tons of old homes.
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Old 03-10-2009, 08:00 PM   #17
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Welcome fellow New Englander. If I can help at all feel free to PM me. Good luck and keep your head up!
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Old 03-10-2009, 08:17 PM   #18
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otc, from your testimony it seems that maybe your father had some hope that you would help continue his business (or maybe inherit it) and after your college exp, going to "another" painting co., he said "to hell with it" out of depression....

Just a thought...

Welcome aboard.

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Old 03-10-2009, 09:42 PM   #19
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welcome Robert,

Sounds like your off 101. I have some NGPP friends in Chester and Danville. Both paint also. Prolly your competition. Small market up there.

I bet your father is near age 60. A fellow hanger and I (who's also a few months shy of 60) have noticed that many people at around age 57 stop caring as much as they used to. I've see so many get sloppy. I've had to re-examine my own old self and keep focused and not let the pride diminish. It seems to be a natural product of age.

Maybe if you partner with the old man it could rekindle his motivation.....?


Good luck

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Old 03-10-2009, 10:22 PM   #20
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welcome to the site Robert
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