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toolman
02-07-2009, 10:00 AM
Just a little back ground. I have been welding for a living since i was 16. Now I'm 46 and have worked for the same company for 28 years the economy has sucked the life out of this job and I do not think it will survive. They told us Friday that our severance pay has been done away with so no reason to stay any longer. I have all the equipment and a shop I have used for hobby use and small side jobs for years.My question is about insurance and banking ( separate from my personnel finaces) for a buisness. So what do you guys do on these issues.

Thanks
Tim

mn welder
02-08-2009, 07:10 PM
theres a cool website welding tips and tricks.com that you should take a look at lots of helpful info on startin a weld biz 1st get some busniess cards and pass em out to parts stores and shops you gonna do just shop work or portable both im sure you are capable of all process and all 4 positions woudl be only help i can give im struggling myself

boatbuilder
02-08-2009, 07:10 PM
Start a corporation to separate your personal and business. Talk to a lawyer and account to see whats needed where you plan on working. Don't work to cheap, there are tons of people that will have there hand in your pocket. I like quickbooks to keep track of the billing and banking.(also easy for accountant). Find a product that you can make and sell in the slow times . Offer a good job at a fair price and stand behind your work and business will come.

Good luck,
Bob

gordfraser
02-08-2009, 09:06 PM
As around for a good accountant.
You shouldnt need a lawyer yet unless you have some big contracts to produce.

costs @ 1K to form a corporation, which will save you money every year...your accountant should be able to explain it...if he is any good.

open a bank account in the name of your business and use it for all your business stuff...ONLY.

I have General liability @ $3300 per year and Workers Comp (which covers me as i work for my company) @ $1800 per year.
I am also in the construction industry so i'd have these insurances for that anyway, but welding adds
$1500 to the premium.

Funny but getting certified didn't make the insurance go down.

Write down all your running expenses..all of them. If you dont know one guess.
Add them up for 1 year and divide that number by the amount of hours that you want / or think that you will work in a year.
That gives you your running cost per hour, then you have to add profit and wages.

Get the idea

Good luck

David R
02-08-2009, 09:35 PM
I have been on my own for 5 years(this time). Started a mechanic/welding business. The first couple years were 95% of my income came from fixing cars and a couple of small fleets of vans. I welded when I could find it.

Now I tell the car people I lost my key to my toolbox. I have been welding for about 2 months straight with no days off. It took a long time, but the payoff seems to be better than fixing cars and vans. Less tools, more skill.

I had a part time welding business for about 7 years before that. And a full time forklift repair/welding business for 5 years before that. (in a different area).

Oh yeah, I'm 48 and sure feel it. Welding is easier than working on forklifts, cars and vans, but still a lot of frikkin work.

I always tell my self, you have bad days at a regular job too.

If you keep good records, and pay your bills, you will make it :)

The biggest truth of em all, Its not a job, its an adventure!

David :)

toolman
02-08-2009, 10:43 PM
Thanks
I have been looking into a LLC. But have not made the move yet.

Tim

lugweld
02-08-2009, 10:56 PM
Getting incorporated and insurance is all a natural progression of a GROWING business.
But you have to crawl before you can walk.. Insurance is important depending on your locale and types of welding you will be doing. However, It is not, 100 percent necessary to do your first few jobs, if you have experience and knowledge to cover your behind. Now I can hear the keys angrily typing...But it is the Chicken or the egg thing... A proprietorship can work just fine as there are literally hundreds of thousands if not millions of them out there now. Some are going to tell you you need a fancy shop as well....If you gave poll to these weldors, many will tell you they started their company out the the back of their old beat up pickup with just enough money to split between the gas in the pickup to get to the site and their welder to do the job. If they were lucky, they got the job done that day and paid in cash so they had gas money home, and could pick up enough formula for their babies that week.

Fortunately you seem to be able to plan your "escape" and can plot a path to success. Many of us have to claw and scratch blindy to get there.

My advice, get a little checking account in your business name opened up, deposit some money in there. Start your business, work up to opening the necessary LWS accounts, and metal supplier accounts. Pay cash for what you can...keep receipts. After a year or so, and things are picking up, then talk to the bank about necessary loans and things, after you "know" the situation, because they will want to see a business plan. Only borrow what you need and pay it off soon as you can... Buy used equipment...you can fix or repair most welding items for less than a monthly payment on them.


I could go on, but in our economy and uncertain future...rolling up to a job site with that "new car" smell hanging on your clothes when you jump out of the truck and that new rubber smell on your leads can make a few perspective customers shy away, thinking you are the latest edition of flash-in-the-pan weldors that give everyone a black eye.

A "seasoned" look can go a long way to instilling confidence in your customers.

gordfraser
02-08-2009, 11:06 PM
after reading lugwelds post i think he nailed it.

the hardest part of starting on your own is getting the customer base and workload to keep going.
You do a good job and some people will hear and come to you.
Do a bad job and everyone will hear...for years!

Do what lugweld says and start of low key, unless you can get lots of big jobs lined up at the start.
the Inc. GL and WC get as you need.
If your going to work in your shop and do a good job the insurance can wait (IMHO) (here goes...fire away)

Your accountant can advise you adout llc or corp.
I thought id go LLC myself, but here i am a INC.

ed mac
02-09-2009, 12:44 PM
i went to legal zoom for s corporation it was $650.00 that was the middle package
they have one that less and one that cost more
they give you stocks official state seal with your
company name, tax forms tax id # so you can open a bank
account with your company name online help
a cd so you can print forms like
application for employees
request for reference
contractor agreement
final notice before legal action
band check notice
and around 30 more and then go to a company like nebs.com
you can get forms pens b card and shirts
every one likes the pens i give out with my cards

ed mac
02-09-2009, 12:48 PM
more pics

lugweld
02-09-2009, 12:56 PM
I suppose this is a good deal...but most all of this can be done with a little work...for free or much less total cost than 650.00

ed mac
02-09-2009, 01:04 PM
you can not be a corporation for free some states
are cheaper than others i have to renew every year
its $150.00 in FL. and if im late on payment its a
$500.00 late fee

A_DAB_will_do
02-09-2009, 01:57 PM
I agree with Lugweld too. My own business(parttime right now) is a sole proprietorship. There may be some tax advantages to LLC or S Corp; but the cost, in time and money, to establish and maintain these seems to outweigh the benefits for me.

I will offer the suggestion that insurance is a good idea, especially if you're working out of your own home. Your homeowner's insurance won't cover loss of business assets that are stored at your home. So if something should happen(fire, theft) you could lose your investment without business insurance.

The downside is that commercial policies aren't a la carte. If you want coverage for your equipment, you have to buy liability coverage too. It adds to the cost, but you really aught to have it anyway; especially if you're doing field work...

Find a good insurance broker and shop around for insurance. You can save $$$$ the quotes I received for insurance ranged from $1800 to over $5000. The coverage provided by the low cost policy is better than that offered by some of the higher priced providers. A good agent will help you find the best policy. They can also help with financing the premium for a modest fee(about $75 in my case.)

Good Luck...


after reading lugwelds post i think he nailed it.

the hardest part of starting on your own is getting the customer base and workload to keep going.
You do a good job and some people will hear and come to you.
Do a bad job and everyone will hear...for years!

Do what lugweld says and start of low key, unless you can get lots of big jobs lined up at the start.
the Inc. GL and WC get as you need.
If your going to work in your shop and do a good job the insurance can wait (IMHO) (here goes...fire away)

Your accountant can advise you adout llc or corp.
I thought id go LLC myself, but here i am a INC.

Thrash
02-17-2009, 10:18 PM
what kind of welding are you guy's doing?
Is it for company's or individiuals?
how much do you guy's charge a hour is there a minimum?

KChoate
02-19-2009, 12:48 PM
Look into a contractors license. It will open alot of doors and keep you out of the fire if you get in a bind.

toolman
02-22-2009, 11:06 AM
Sorry been very busy last couple of weeks.
I have basically been a sole proprietor for years (doing part time work for extra money to supply my tool habit) and have been very slective of who and what I do. But have had to turn down work that I did not have proper insurance for. So I'm trying to change that now and protect what I have now if somrthing does go wrong.

Thanks
For the information
Tim

Sparky#1
02-22-2009, 02:30 PM
Just a little back ground. I have been welding for a living since i was 16. Now I'm 46 and have worked for the same company for 28 years the economy has sucked the life out of this job and I do not think it will survive. They told us Friday that our severance pay has been done away with so no reason to stay any longer. I have all the equipment and a shop I have used for hobby use and small side jobs for years.My question is about insurance and banking ( separate from my personnel finaces) for a buisness. So what do you guys do on these issues.

Thanks
TimMostly what everyone said here is true but one thing someone told me a long time ago is you have to decide if you want to make money or make a living. If you want to make a living your better off working for a company. When you associate the cost of insurance,taxes,medical etc you need to make some serious paper to see a profit. Are you gonna work alone or take on a work force ? If you do take on one realize they get paid before you do.:)

CHainline
02-24-2009, 03:03 PM
First, I am not a welder, I do have my own consulting business. I admire the work that the member display in this forum.

Couple of points I would offer to the excellent advice offered by others. First, do think about where you want to go and plan for that. I work with shop owners that dream of being volume producers of low margin work for example. They have not thought about what that means, they just see the $. Your business needs to fit what you are comfortable with in terms of risk and reward. I have seen too many people try the get big route, grew too fast, and the business burned down overnight.

Next, think about cash flow. Plan on the lean times. I will use myself as an example. Last contract finished December 1. Have not had substanial work since then, but did plan on this. I am working on the next project, but all the work I had planned on disspapered around Oct. 1. We are all at the merey of forces we cannot control, so do your best to control what you can.

Customers are the key. Look at yourself as one day away from unemployment to keep yourself lean and prospecting.

Finally, do look for insurance soon. Accidents happen, and lawyers are as hungry as the rest of us. Pipe falls off a truck, something catches fire, etc are all actions no one ever plans on, but they do happen. Protect yourself.

Best of luck.