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  1. #14
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Near Chicago, IL
    Posts
    3,317
    Quote Originally Posted by sto2299001 View Post
    I have been working as a helper or apprentice with my dad who is a licensed HVAC contractor since June. I have also been attending a HVAC training program at my community college/training center since September. I am enrolled in a 12 month HVAC program which follows the curriculum of the NCCER. I wish I could see the future and know which path would be the better of the two. In the long run a union job would provide me a retirement package, benefits, and a great salary, my dad plans to retire in 4-5 years. As of now we are growing the business: have a website, doing local advertising, working with 3 different insurance companies etc. Anyone ever been faced in a similar dilemma? When you run your own business everything falls on your shoulders, and right now I have been acting as the apprentice, administrative assistant, accounts payable, etc...but the business does have it own perks. Any insight..

    -plus me and my old man bump heads alot, and its frustrating.
    You will only get those union benefits if you work enough hours and you will only get that union retirement if you are able to continue working enough hours through the years as you get older until retirement. Partial pension credits and breaks in service will really hurt.

    In my area, in the sheet metal union, internal union politics instead of skill plays a huge role in whether or not you work those hours during economic downturns. The BA's can either leave you alone (not do anything either way), help you or hurt you. Your "union brothers" can do the same. When it is busy, the demand for bodies will sustain employment.

    When you hit 50 around here, work starts drying up. Companies will not hire you unless you are well established or have some help from someone already working there... or politics.

    Many well qualified, hard working and decent people that I know have been forced into early retirement, at a substantial penalty, because they can't get a job and would be ineligible for that union subsidized health care because they aren't working enough hours prior to retirement.

    Once you retire, there are clauses that trigger revocation of benefits if you take a job to supplement your income. The list of prohibited jobs/fields is long.

    All of those things that appeal to you as a potential union employee are available to you as a business owner. If the business is viable, you would be a fool to toss that aside and go union as an employee.

    Stop bumping heads with dad, pay attention and show an interest in taking over and growing the company. That will get you further than a union card.

  2. #15
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Northern Virginia
    Posts
    209
    Quote Originally Posted by KnewYork View Post
    It's good you feel this way because when you own your own business it's 24/7/365 for quite some time. The upside potential is large, but it doesn't come without sacrifice. Some sacrifice their hobbies/free time, others sacrifice their health, others sacrifice their families...make sure the sacrifice you make is temporary and you own the business the business doesn't own you.
    AMEN!
    “One of the main keys to success I have learned through practice is the ability to develop habits (purposely). When you can intentionally and consistently create new and productive habits to counteract or even eliminate old destructive habits you are most likely at least half way to your definition of success.” CE

    HomeWarrantySuccess

    "I've failed over and over and over again in my life and that is why I succeed."

  3. #16
    I'd say join your Union Local, but don't quit your job. Only quit when the Local sends you to work on a service dispatch. The Sheet Metal Workers Union? The guy above must've had a bad life long experience with them. HVACR is UA work!

  4. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by neophytes serendipity View Post
    You will only get those union benefits if you work enough hours and you will only get that union retirement if you are able to continue working enough hours through the years as you get older until retirement. Partial pension credits and breaks in service will really hurt.

    In my area, in the sheet metal union, internal union politics instead of skill plays a huge role in whether or not you work those hours during economic downturns. The BA's can either leave you alone (not do anything either way), help you or hurt you. Your "union brothers" can do the same. When it is busy, the demand for bodies will sustain employment.

    When you hit 50 around here, work starts drying up. Companies will not hire you unless you are well established or have some help from someone already working there... or politics.

    Many well qualified, hard working and decent people that I know have been forced into early retirement, at a substantial penalty, because they can't get a job and would be ineligible for that union subsidized health care because they aren't working enough hours prior to retirement.

    Once you retire, there are clauses that trigger revocation of benefits if you take a job to supplement your income. The list of prohibited jobs/fields is long.

    All of those things that appeal to you as a potential union employee are available to you as a business owner. If the business is viable, you would be a fool to toss that aside and go union as an employee.

    Stop bumping heads with dad, pay attention and show an interest in taking over and growing the company. That will get you further than a union card.
    Thanks alot, gonna take your advice. Thanks for replying!

  5. #18
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Chicago, IL
    Posts
    4,567
    Quote Originally Posted by sto2299001 View Post
    Yea I have always wanted to be my own boss. I believe a 9-5 is for the birds.
    9-5 is for the birds. 24/7/365 is for the real men

  6. #19
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Near Chicago, IL
    Posts
    3,317
    Quote Originally Posted by MechanicallyInclined View Post
    I'd say join your Union Local, but don't quit your job. Only quit when the Local sends you to work on a service dispatch. The Sheet Metal Workers Union? The guy above must've had a bad life long experience with them. HVACR is UA work!
    Yeah, HVACR is UA work.

    I guess that's why the BA's, other union officers and teachers at a nearby UA local hold building trades cards, not the lower scale HVACR cards... or that new "residential" "R-card" even lower scale BS they came up with.

    Quote Originally Posted by sto2299001 View Post
    Thanks alot, gonna take your advice. Thanks for replying!
    Good luck.

    You can provide your own health insurance and set up your own retirement. Not that it's any better or easier to do it for yourself, but being part of an established company will help.

  7. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by craig1 View Post
    9-5 is for the birds. 24/7/365 is for the real men
    hell yea!

  8. #21
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    up in the hizzy
    Posts
    1,436
    Is kind of funny to read so many threads about the same nonsense, the title reads something like; " should I join the union or work for McDonald?" " should I apply to the union or milk a cow for living?, they make it sound like the union is begging them to come and join, the last coca-cola in the middle of the desert........then a former disgruntled "union" guy butts in a says something negative about it and thats the end of it, the imaginary union candidate always back out saying " I'm glad you told me that" or "know I know better"....... well guys, I could had been the CEO of a fortune five hundred but the job was never offered to me

  9. #22
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Near Chicago, IL
    Posts
    3,317
    I find it funny that someone that has the opportunity to own a viable business would even consider not taking the opportunity, although I understand that it isn't for everyone.

    Just as not everyone will make it down the yellow brick road that a union paints of your future within the organization. There are a few other people that have spoken up about "not making it" in a union, not from a lack of skill, either.

  10. #23
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Posts
    199
    I'm only in my first year apprenticeship, so I can't really speak of the pros or cons but, I don't think one person can really say that it is or isn't worth getting into since the experience can vary from local to local, despite them all being under the same organization (unless they're speaking specifically about their local).

    Your experience is a little different than a lot of the other threads asking about joining the union since you have a family business. I'd say you're getting better experience by staying with the family business since your learning the service and business side of things which will probably benefit you in the long run in the event that you decide to part ways with the family business. If you decide to go union later on or just want to work for some contractor, they'll definitely see that as a benefit over someone like me who just has service experience. Also, bumping heads with your dad might not be a bad thing. It'll teach you how to deal with people (hopefully) whether you work for someone or run your own business. Try to view it as a 'glass half full' sort of thing.

    I'm still a noob but that's my on the matter. Good luck with whatever you do

  11. #24
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Missouri
    Posts
    3,618
    What age is your Dad?

  12. #25
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    South Florida
    Posts
    54
    "well guys, I could had been the CEO of a fortune five hundred but the job was never offered to me"

    How do u figure ?
    I was homeless 3.5 years ago nothing was offered to me. i got my a$$ in gear and made things happen now the partner in an HVACR-llc. You have to be proactive do good work ,talk to people, and be liakeable. I for one will not give my biz to a jack-ass, a drunk, a junkie, let alone hire one. This is the USA we live in u get what u put in.... if u dont put in u dont get. I also had to sort thru scumbag a/c contractors till i found the right fit. I got my DL back in April 9mo later biz partner i worked hard brought in jobs im still broke but that's coming to an end

  13. #26
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    South Florida
    Posts
    54
    IMHO the days of the union thugs need to end. I was a teamster @ UPS and watched then guys gobble up dues and give it to politicians i didn't care for so i got out they did nothing for me . i git my butt out of bed at 2am was the best at what i did should have gotten merit raises but b/c the looser next to me got his yearly no merit b/s i say... anyway im in control of my destiny somewhat and down with the unions

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