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Getting plastered

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Wednesday 1 September 2004 9.35am
Your welcome Mapmaker

I just need to find a good builder for heavy labour (knocking out walls and supporting them, digging up the floor and relaying), a good electrician, a good chippie and a good plumber and then I can call Lindsey back to do some more plastering after our next major bulding works!

Any recommendations now or in the future gratefully recieved. As for wall papering if I can do it Im sure you could why not give it a go.
Wednesday 1 September 2004 9.58am

As for wallpapering, I struggle to find the time to put my green waste into bags... let alone learning a new skill. I may have found somebody to do some heavier work, I'll keep you posted...

For proper wood flooring, I intend to go to the salvage yard at Lassco, Rope Walk, SE1.
Wednesday 8 September 2004 10.39am
is 65 an hour expensive for a plumber?
Wednesday 8 September 2004 2.47pm
It's a lot of money, but is it expensive?

Well, with higher rate tax & VAT & NI about 56% goes to Gordon Brown.

So he's making 28 per hour, reduced to cover his overheads (van, etc). Doesn't seem like a lot to me.

Assuming 120 chargeable hours a month, that gives him 3,360 spending money (less overheads) per month.
Wednesday 8 September 2004 2.59pm
It's a lot to me!
Wednesday 8 September 2004 3.23pm
It's a lot to anyone. Using the assumptions above re tax, etc:

Net cash of 3,360/month, grossed back up assuming 56% has been taken as tax gives one a gross monthly salary of 7,636, i.e. an annual gross of 91,636.

Unless one is paid a (heck of a) lot of money, then I think that this is very expensive.

...if you press it, they will come.
Wednesday 8 September 2004 3.41pm
>>Net cash of 3,360/month, grossed back up assuming 56% has been taken as tax gives one a gross monthly salary of 7,636, i.e. an annual gross of 91,636.

It's a bit unfair to gross it back for VAT! *You* don't have to pay VAT on your salary - VAT is a real cost to a sole trader. And you haven't allowed for his expenditure

65 per hour, 1300 hours p.a. - 84500 - and I bet he'll be lucky to do that much work - I've given him a month for holidays.

VAT 14.9% (12590)

Van depreciation, diesel, tools (10000) - OK that's a guess, and it's probably more than that with vehicle insurance & damage done that has to be rectified.

Liability insurance (2000) - another guess

Congestion charge (1000)

Parking & fines (1000)

That then gives a gross salary of 59k, rather than 91k, Ivanhoe.

Which is a pretty good rate of pay, but far from outrageous - and that relies on his picking up 1300 hours p.a. - which I bet he doesn't, and I bet his expenses are higher than that. And face it, plumbers are hard to come by, and we all know they do quite well - have you ever seen a poor plumber? and would you rather it was done by a pikey bloke in a knackered old Astra van?

Wednesday 8 September 2004 4.09pm
If a plumber's getting paid 60K pa, I still think it's a blooming good whack.

...if you press it, they will come.
Wednesday 8 September 2004 5.14pm
In my experience quite a few self-employed sarf London plumbers make sure that their reported annual income is a safe margin under the 58,000 threshold for VAT registration, even though it means they can't reclaim the input tax on what they buy.

After a couple of co-ordinated busts by Customs and the Inland Revenue tax men, I suspect they now take the time off to play golf at their second homes in Spain rather than taking the risk on the undeclared earnings.

Substantial quantities of used twenties from long established clients may tempt them back.
Thursday 9 September 2004 12.19pm
Well this one must be doing quite well - he charged me two hours work, when he was only there for about an hour and twenty.

at 65 an hour that more than a pound a minute! so I should really have found more work for him to do to keep him there for two hours or told him I was only going to pay for the time he was actually working....

... but I didn't think about that till after he'd gone!

I probably could have done it myself, but would have had to obtain a plumbes spanner (for undoing the heating element), a length of hose, some small spanner or something for the outlet to drain the tank, I'd also have had to know what I was doing - and how to cope if anything went wrong (like for instance when the valve didn't open, and he had to tweeze it with long nose pliers, and then shove his thumb over the end to stop the water from going into the airing cupboard and not down the hose), and know that I definately knew what the problem was.

so all in all I'm glad that a proffesional did the job, even though it cost me more than I'd intended.

btw I used 'Blue Co.' as recommended by someone on the forum previously.
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