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What does an apprentice cost?

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  • #16
    Re: What does an apprentice cost?

    I was not trying to make this a union issue. You can't have one with out the other. In the US you have 18 states with their own plumbing code. For the remaining states you have IPC in the east and UPC in the west (generalization). Things are very different from jurisdiction to jurisdiction and everyone has different license requirements. WI has required plumbers to be licensed since July of 1898. Each person in the field must be a journeyman (5th year can work alone). 5 yr apprenticeship with 8000 hours on the job and 1100 hours in the classroom then 3 more years to write the masters test. The non union programs in WI require the same time limits but only around 80% of the class room instruction. When you look at the type of work the non union does it is mostly residential and light commercial. When you look at the United Association what do you see. These are the people that build the sewage and water treatment plants, the power houses, large industrial complexes, fire protection, med gas, the pipelines that criss cross this country that supply oil and natural gas and even the piping in the aircraft carriers that protect our great nation. The training is truly second to none. Your father can teach you the work ethic you need but not all of the training required to be in the pipe trades.

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    • #17
      Re: What does an apprentice cost?

      Originally posted by Plumbingbyjay View Post
      I have the best apprentice in the world. I started him at $10.00/ hour and explained that I would work on a system to make us both more money. Here in Texas you can get the apprentice a drain cleaning card, and he can snake drains by himself. He has been with me 2.5 years and is making $20.00/hour plus 10% commission off of the labor portion that he works on snaking drains or if I have him dig holes for me or etc. We use preset pricing, so I don't have to worry about him gouging customers. I have also found other tricks. In some States, you don't have to be licensed to flush or service water heaters, or repair faucets. Check with your State and ask direct questions. I have found that this works for me and this apprentice. The cost though is tough to figure out, when starting out with any new employee. I have found over the years that if you are paying them $10.00/ hour, you better be billing someone $20-25/ hour for the helper. That is just to break even. That does not include all the b/s if you get a bad one. Listen to your gut. The biggest mistake any business owner can make is keeping someone that his hurting their business.
      This sounds good.

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      • #18
        Re: What does an apprentice cost?

        Originally posted by Flux View Post
        Been there and done that with the employees (my father has).

        I'd much rather pay my cousin or best friend who are both Master Plumbers, $200.00 - $250.00 a day if I need the help, and build that price right into the job. When they need me for the day, I'm there and vice versa. Sometimes it works out that we are just working off the hours we both gave to each other, and no money changes hands.

        Not sure if I would ever hire a helper, as I just don't want the headaches associated with them.
        This,aslo sounds good.

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        • #19
          Re: What does an apprentice cost?

          If you find a honest hard working apprentice, he will make your life easier than a propress ever did. not only that, but if you actually teach him everything you know, and make him a plumber, you have a friend, and brother for life.

          We were all apprentices once. If you have never had the joy of working with a good one, make your own. Hire a green knows nothing smart honest hard working kid, and teach him how to plumb. It will be the best "tool" you ever invested in.

          Just don't forget that you were once too an apprentice. And someone had to teach you. So pass that along.

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          • #20
            Re: What does an apprentice cost?

            Grey hair !
            I can build anything You want , if you draw a picture of it , on the back of a big enough check .

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            • #21
              Re: What does an apprentice cost?

              I once had an old timer tell me "Why in the hell would I want to teach you my trade, you will steal my job!"
              We don't have preventative maintenance around here, we have CRISIS MANAGEMENT!

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              • #22
                Re: What does an apprentice cost?

                Originally posted by masterbeavis View Post
                I once had an old timer tell me "Why in the hell would I want to teach you my trade, you will steal my job!"
                What a silly thing to say that old timer was an IDIOT we all started as an apprentice knowing nothing sweeping the shop floor and doing and menial jobs getting lunches and our bosses had the patience to teach us and didn`t worry about us taken their jobs in the future as they knew the day would come when they would retire and we would proudly carry on their trade and also hire apprentices throughout our working lives as life goes on and money isn`t everything and if it is your in the wrong game.

                Tony

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                • #23
                  Re: What does an apprentice cost?

                  Originally posted by PLUMBER RICK View Post

                  my wife can pass the state journeyman's and contractors test with a 2 day crash course. doesn't make her a plumber.

                  rick.

                  That's exactly what it means. If she's got a plumbing license then she's a plumber. Perhaps not a good plumber, but certainly a licensed plumber.

                  Maybe we should consider this line of thinking a little further. If she got her license and worked as a plumber what about work attire. I'm guessing she probably wouldn't want plumber butt crack making an appearance so would you stick with Dickies and a dark t-shirt for her or go with something else?
                  Time flies like an arrow.

                  Fruit flies like a banana.

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