How hard is it to find good labor ?

4 Replies

I’m working on my first property that my father and I bought. We’re having trouble finding good help that can do some labor jobs for us. What are some good websites or resources that you guys use to find good labor relatively fast ?

if you want good labor hands down the best option is to ask some contractors if they have a son or cousin or something that wants to make some side money fast.

Other than that, craiglist works but you going to get the lazy crazy meth head from time to time.

You can also hire day labor, but its a toss up with them also

It is super hard to find good workers because the good workers are in-demand and already have plenty of work.

If you are not experienced with hiring workers, or tradesmen you need to do a lot of reading on the internet to learn how to protect yourself. When you hire non-licensed workers you have no recourse when they take your money and screw everything up. You can sue them, but you  will never get your money and you can't go after a license they don't have.

The biggest problems people have is they pay money in advance for work that never gets performed well. Then, those people (you) have to pay the full price for someone to start the entire job over. Never do business with a contractor who tells you he needs money to purchase the materials. Only pay 30% when 50% of the job is done, or less if you can.

Referrals are the best way to find contractors. Stop, when you see contractors working, look at their work and ask them to give you an estimate. Craiglist can get you a lot of contractors, but never pay more that the portion of work finished and even then you can get into a lot of problems.

I've been a contractor for more than 50 years and you really do get what you pay for. One contractor can be 50% the price of another contractor and the quality of their work can be the same, but if the more-expensive contractor completes the job in two weeks and does not give you any problems and the cheaper contractor takes 6 months then you lost a lot of time and money going with the cheaper contractor.

But, not every cheaper contractor is the worse contractor. There are many high-priced contractors who are some real screwballs. Every contractor talks a good game. You need a perfect contract. Never sign a contract without reviewing in for a few days because you need time to think about what may be missing in the contract. Always write a start date, completion date and a penalty charge for every day beyond the completion date. If the contractor cannot agree to a completion date with a small grace period then you may have problems.

My sister signed a contract to install a deck for $10,000. Like a dummy, she paid the contractor the entire $10,000. He ripped the deck out and did not go back for 6 months and only went back because she filed a complaint against his license. That is why you need a licensed contractor, or you need to be really smart about dealing with non-licensed contractors.

It's extremely hard to find good skilled labor. A good tradesman almost always has plenty of work. If you're talking about paying someone cash to moonlight, a good way would to be ask around in your family see if someone already knows someone who does it. 

@Martin Bastida I would suggest you read what @Account Closed wrote a couple of times. He pretty much nailed it. 

Are you looking to hire trades and run the job yourself or hire a GC? You could try Home Advisor or Thumb Tack to get bids from different trades. But as Jack said, do not pay upfront! You can work payment schedules after the agreed-upon work or tasks are finished. Like a draw. If they can't afford to pay their help, that's not your problem. 

Another good way to find help is to ask the realtor that sold you the house. They may know contractors, but still, don't let them get ahead with the money.

When you do find someone you like, treat them well. Most good ones are busy so you want them to work for you again on the next job. 

Good Luck. 

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