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Old 06-11-2012, 07:52 PM
dond dond is offline
 
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Default starting a buisness as a retiree

I plan to retire from the 9 - 5 job in a couple of years and am wondering if any of you have gone that route. My concern is I'm not looking to build an empire just looking for a little bit of work to supplement the pension and "SS". Any thougts.
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Old 06-11-2012, 10:17 PM
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It's easy to find one or two repair jobs per day that average $150 to $200 per invoice at 80% profit but that depends heavily on your target area demographics. Metropolitan area? Ding ding - you win. Live in the boon docks with low population density? Not so much.

Delaware County PA looks to have some of both so choose your audience wisely.

And good luck!
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Old 06-11-2012, 10:24 PM
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Not a bad idea...
Esp. if you have some computer knowledge under your belt, even better if you like computers. Know a few that do it more for the fun and to keep busy and current than trying to build empires.

Now - If you've never turned one on, it is going to be frustrating and maddening, so you might pick an alternative. A LOT of people take a class in HTML and decide that they are as qualified as someone with 15 or 20 yrs as a network administrator under their belt, and they aren't.

Don't know what you have experience wise - but since you have sometime before making the jump, you have some time to plan things out and brush up on things.

A lot of people out there don't know that they don't know and get into messes.

The battle is knowing what your good at and what your not good at, The key is knowing where to find the answers....
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Old 06-12-2012, 02:46 AM
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I've done what you are contemplating, having started a home-based monitor repair business in 1997 after being downsized, and morphing it into a computer repair business 4 years later. It was slow-going in the early years, but every satisfied customer became an annuity as they called back over the years. I don't make a fortune at this, but enough that, combined with our CPP (Canada Pension Plan--a meagre employee-funded pension plan) and OAS (Old Age Security), we rarely need to draw on our assets to get by and enjoy a month in Florida each year.

My advice would be:
  • make customer satisfaction your primary objective
  • keep overhead costs low, making the business pay its way
  • get yourself a website and be sure to include customer testimonials
  • treat customers with respect; be honest and fair; do what's right for your customer
  • make superior service (and your integrity) what differentiates you from the competition
  • don't undervalue your services; charge what you're worth
  • keep good financial records and regularly monitor how the business is doing; make a plan and adjust it periodically
  • have fun, enjoy what you do, and be proud of your work
Good luck!
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Old 06-12-2012, 06:35 PM
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Thanks All,
I have been working with computers for a while (started late 60's). I've been working with PC since before the big fizzle of New Years Eve 1999. Anyway, I have worked as a network engineer for a few years would run out to our branch offices and set them up after a move or upgrade, however we have a lot of young techs and I stepped aside. So now I work the help desk. I enjoy the challenge of problem resolution; it is just the hassle of getting up and traveling about an hour to get to work.
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Old 06-12-2012, 07:32 PM
altrenda altrenda is offline
 
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Target people like yourself. You know what they need, you travel in their circles, they should feel comfortable dealing with a contemporary, and it shouldn't be too hard to develop good word of mouth and referrals.
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