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Old 04-12-2009, 02:43 PM   #1
 
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Default Painting and handyman, should I simplify?

Any thoughts on this?

I have a business called reliable painting and handyman service.

www.vancouver-renovator.com www.reliablehandyman.bc.ca

I do carpentry, painting and renovation.

For most of the time I've been in business I worked on my own. I liked the freedom and the hands on work and didn't particularly like employing people. Also at times in the off season I've taken off travelling for a month or more.

Nowadays I borrowed some money to buy a house off my sister and ran into some hard times with family etc, and raked up some credit card debt.

Because of this I have to earn more than I did in the past when I was working on my own.

Another development is that I have become allergic to paint fumes, so much so that 2 days on a paint job even wearing a respirator most the time and my sinuses are messed up...bit of asthma etc.

Also, I'm getting older and had an accident with a nail in my eye a while back. That really made me think about the whole running up and down ladders and the dangers of construction... effects on my health of working with dust and chemicals over the long term.

I thought OK, I'll expand the painting side of things, hire painters and I'll do the carpentry etc...

However what I'm finding is that it's a bit more complex than that.

I'll get one job that needs maybe 3 painters ... and then I'll get another job that requires say 2 carpenters and maybe one painter, or maybe no painters. Maybe another that requires a bit of drywall, tile, paint, carpentry, minor plumbing and electrical. (eg, bathroom fix up)

So I'm finding that I cant really offer steady employment to people because my next job might not need them. And so I end up doing them myself, which isn't making me much more money and of course I'm breathing the paint fumes again.

I figured I have a few options; and I put the downside to the options in brackets.

A/ just focus on a painting business and me completely off the tools.

( I would miss the hands on carpentry and the opportunity to travel in winter, also I'm not sure if its realistic, I think I'm more of an artisan/ creative design type than a full on business owner)

B/ become a GC and use subs

( I don't really know the GC game particularly well, not sure who I'd learn it off or if I'd like it/maybe find it's a bad fit?)

C/ find a niche, say bathroom remodels and stick to that, use plumber and electrical subs.

(could be OK, I like design, would involve time learning more about bathrooms? maybe take design course and offer design build?)

D/ give up on construction and get into another business, I've been in it for 30 years and maybe it's time for something else?

I've worked with people who got squashed, fell off roofs and died and lost toes in accidents, so maybe I should get out of it while the goings good??

(not sure what I would do? also I feel like I have a lot of knowledge and experience that I'd be giving up on?, 8 years with BBB A+ rating...could be the best move though)

At the moment I feel like I'm vacillating/flip flopping a bit... but at the end of the day I just want to make something that works and isnt going to end up in a disease or accident.

Anyone have any thoughts on this? Anyone out there have a painting and remodel business and can give me a few pointers?

All replies greatly appreciated.

cheers, Dave
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Old 04-12-2009, 06:56 PM   #2
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Hey when you figure it out - let me know, too!
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Old 04-12-2009, 07:07 PM   #3
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Why not find a couple good all around guys like yourself? Hard to find, probably want a little more than your average joe blow, but they are out there.

How you get a nail in your eye anyway?
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Old 04-12-2009, 11:53 PM   #4
 
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Not a bad idea! thanks. Maybe I wasn't seeing the wood for the trees? the nail bounced off the wall and got me in the eye ball.


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Originally Posted by JNLP View Post
Why not find a couple good all around guys like yourself? Hard to find, probably want a little more than your average joe blow, but they are out there.

How you get a nail in your eye anyway?
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