Business ideas and suggestions

15 Replies

I am a licensed electrician looking to potentially open my own contracting business. I also am a landlord of 2 rental properties and plan to continue expanding my portfolio. Any suggestions which route I should take?

1. Focus on building electrical company first then expand rental portfolio.

2. Concentrate on accumulating as many rentals as possible until I have enough cash flow to comfortably cover my monthly expenses then begin building my electrical business without the NEED to pick up jobs to survive.

I keep going back and forth but unable to make the final decision. I’ve got no issues with my current job just feel I’ve got more in the tank. I know if I start my business now, I won’t have much time for real estate which is a bit worry sum for me as I love real estate too. I’m also very handy with other trades, can do my own drywall, painting, flooring, plumbing, you name it. Which is where I could see a big advantage to going the real estate route and doing my own Renovations as a contractor saving a ton of money. Any suggestions input or help would be greatly appreciated

@Nick Cote

BRRRR is perfect for you.

House hack a distressed duplex. Live in one side; tenant on the other side pays the mortgage. This way you have no mortgage, and your tenant is building equity in your home.

Remember the last "R" is repeat. Use income from your job as a down payment on another property. Be sure the "electrician" LLC is separate from the holding company LLC, which is separate from the operating company LLCs. This is important for liability and tax reasons.

It is rare to find someone who can do electrical, plumbing, drywall, painting, flooring, etc,  and LIKES to do it all, so real estate is definitely for you!

Originally posted by @Nick Cote :

I am a licensed electrician looking to potentially open my own contracting business. I also am a landlord of 2 rental properties and plan to continue expanding my portfolio. Any suggestions which route I should take?

1. Focus on building electrical company first then expand rental portfolio.

2. Concentrate on accumulating as many rentals as possible until I have enough cash flow to comfortably cover my monthly expenses then begin building my electrical business without the NEED to pick up jobs to survive.

I keep going back and forth but unable to make the final decision. I’ve got no issues with my current job just feel I’ve got more in the tank. I know if I start my business now, I won’t have much time for real estate which is a bit worry sum for me as I love real estate too. I’m also very handy with other trades, can do my own drywall, painting, flooring, plumbing, you name it. Which is where I could see a big advantage to going the real estate route and doing my own Renovations as a contractor saving a ton of money. Any suggestions input or help would be greatly appreciated

 Can you do both? Build business during day - I realize starting a business is a full-time job, and then work on adding a rental unit a year - or whatever your goals are. 

Both. The rentals are a good long term investment. When they're paid off it can be a retirement. The business is good to make more money. If you're in a state that's expensive to buy rentals you might even find that a business has a better roi short term.

@Steve Hall

Thanks for the info Steve!

Actually I am currently doing that, have done it twice now. I'm currently living in half of my duplex and rented the other half. I completely rehabbed the place. Real estate in pretty expensive in my area of Canada, but rents are also high so it kind of evens out. I spent about 274k on the house, put in about 40k worth of work myself and it now rents for a total of $3,000 a month. Same deal with the last one I bought, I get about same numbers. I really enjoy doing it which is why I do think real estate is for me. Only think that makes it tough is to work a full time day job AND Reno my BRRRR property at the same time. That's why my thought was maybe some sort of my own company so I can schedule my own jobs and work on my houses in the down time. Or maybe split the time between company work 4 days a week and other 3 on my property which I can schedule myself.

That part I'm not too familiar with, keeping everything in separate LLC's and holding companies. What's the advantages to this?

I also feel if I quit my day job without having enough cash flow to support expenses, it’s a bit of a risk but I do have the advantage of being able to do any reno myself to build equity as well as pick up jobs through a self employees company.

Appreciate any input you could give!

@Mike Freske

I could do both it could just be a bit challenging considering I don’t know ALL the ins and outs of the business side so that would be a learning curve. Learning which I’m completely willing to do, maybe I’m just nervous to do it but I know I can

@George W.

It is expensive in my area to but real estate. I’m currently located in Canada. But buying a place to rehab myself can obviously put a lot of equity into it while doing something I really enjoy, and doing it for myself makes it that much better!

@nick cote 

Doing a brrr should definitely force some equity if you're able to. I'm just saying you might find that investing some cash into a electric business might make you more money a year but owning a business isn't for everyone. 

@Nick Cote how is the demand for electricians in Canada? That is one of the most sought after trades in the US right now. Huge shortage and they are making a killing.

It sounds like you need to keep working and earning income to buy properties? If you can't focus 100% on real estate without a main income stream then its best to go ahead and start your own business. You will be able scale that much faster and earn more than working for someone else. 

I started by building my business first then invested the profits into real estate along the way. 

You can hire a business coach to help you get going the right way and set you're business up so you can have the time to do the rentals as well. 

@Greg Dickerson

Electricians in my area are in pretty high demand, it’s not a massive city but it’s definitely growing quick. I think I could do well with a business from the people I know; other business owners that could bring in several referrals

Yes I would need to continue working to invest in real estate. I don’t currently have enough cash flow from my properties to allow me to continue to buy properties. What makes it slightly harder in my area is there aren’t any properties available that can be rehabbed and refinanced right away. It’s a booming market so need to pay a fairly high price for a property that needs some work. You wouldn’t lose money on the property, you just wouldn’t be able to refi right away as in Canada you can only refi 80% of the property value.

I do get paid well at my job I just feel like my own business would be a new challenge I would love as well as give me more freedom to focus on real estate and my own renovations at the same time. It might be tough to juggle it all at the beginning but I’m sure I’d pick it up pretty quick as I currently run quite large projects for my company so I’m very good at organizing my time, other trades, have a good idea of how long things take, how much it costs, etc..

@George W.

I can definitely see where your coming from. I do kind of like the idea of building a business and investing the business profits into real estate. I’m not looking to grow the biggest business in my area, I’m looking to build a nice sustainable business for myself and few other employees, as well as focus on real estate because I really enjoy doing it

Originally posted by @Nick Cote :

@George W.

I can definitely see where your coming from. I do kind of like the idea of building a business and investing the business profits into real estate. I’m not looking to grow the biggest business in my area, I’m looking to build a nice sustainable business for myself and few other employees, as well as focus on real estate because I really enjoy doing it

 Exactly. Having the biggest business around isn't always the greatest thing in the world. It comes with more headaches. It's good to have a construction business where all of the equipment and work trucks are flat out owned with few employees. The guys who I know that make the most pound for pound in the trades are ones who have low overhead and work out of their garage with all the equipment paid off lol. It's just not a very passive way to earn income. 

Originally posted by @Nick Cote :

@Greg Dickerson

Electricians in my area are in pretty high demand, it’s not a massive city but it’s definitely growing quick. I think I could do well with a business from the people I know; other business owners that could bring in several referrals

Yes I would need to continue working to invest in real estate. I don’t currently have enough cash flow from my properties to allow me to continue to buy properties. What makes it slightly harder in my area is there aren’t any properties available that can be rehabbed and refinanced right away. It’s a booming market so need to pay a fairly high price for a property that needs some work. You wouldn’t lose money on the property, you just wouldn’t be able to refi right away as in Canada you can only refi 80% of the property value.

I do get paid well at my job I just feel like my own business would be a new challenge I would love as well as give me more freedom to focus on real estate and my own renovations at the same time. It might be tough to juggle it all at the beginning but I’m sure I’d pick it up pretty quick as I currently run quite large projects for my company so I’m very good at organizing my time, other trades, have a good idea of how long things take, how much it costs, etc..

 It really wouldn’t be a juggle at first. The idea is you focus 100% on getting the business off the ground and stabilized over the first six months to a year then put systems in place that allows you the freedom to explore other investment opportunities. When you are in start up mode it’s 24/7 you do whatever it takes to get it up and running and stabilized once you get past that initial start up you can put it on auto pilot.

Originally posted by @Nick Cote :

@George W.

Ya exactly lol and the passive part comes from real estate. I’m sure I’d have lots to learn with opening a business but I think it would be a great challenge and also have some good perks with it

Yeah real estate is a lot more passive. Although being licensed, idk about Canada but in my state nj you can be a bonafide rep for a aspiring electric company own at least 10% of it and that could be fairly passive. You could most likely even still work a w2. Personally I would never bonafide rep though with a license because if something ever goes wrong it could still be on you. 

@George W.

Ya I’ve never looked into that in Canada. I think if I would think of going that route, I’d either do it all my own business or stay at my current job. I agree it’s not worth the license on the line when your not getting full benefits of it

Free eBook from BiggerPockets!

Ultimate Beginner's Guide Book Cover

Join BiggerPockets and get The Ultimate Beginner's Guide to Real Estate Investing for FREE - read by more than 100,000 people - AND get exclusive real estate investing tips, tricks and techniques delivered straight to your inbox twice weekly!

  • Actionable advice for getting started,
  • Discover the 10 Most Lucrative Real Estate Niches,
  • Learn how to get started with or without money,
  • Explore Real-Life Strategies for Building Wealth,
  • And a LOT more.

We hate spam just as much as you

Create Lasting Wealth Through Real Estate

Join the millions of people achieving financial freedom through the power of real estate investing

Start here