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Old 05-17-2008, 09:12 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Building Rigs for people, as a Summer Business

Looking to make money to get a nice car at the end of this summer, and so far ive put in about 10 applications, no calls yet. So, I want to start posting up little flyers and newspaper ads about building custom computers to suite peoples exact needs. Also, I can advertise doing repairs. But, I have a few questions.

Should I ask for money for the hardware when building a custom computer, even before I order the parts, just so If i do order the parts, then they back out, im not stuck with 800 dollars of parts, that I have to pay for?

How much money do you think is fair if I spend say 600 on parts, should I charge the person?

What are some good ways to get myself out there? I was especially thinking If i could target a business needing a few computers, I could make big bucks.

What if a part goes bad on them? I know you tend to have a few problems software-wise when you are first starting on a new custom pc, after I install the OS for them, should I just leave it as that along with putting on all the drivers, or should I tweak some things for them?
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Old 05-17-2008, 09:56 PM   #2 (permalink)
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For someone your age, and not having a business, I would HIGHLY suggest that you limit an activity such as this to something you do for friends & family only. I think your parents would be held legally responsible if there are any issues, etc. etc.

If you go ahead with this, I would suggest that if you are going to build a PC for someone, have THEM purchase the parts, and charge a flat rate to assemble it, install software, and update drivers & software, etc.

In this scenario, if a part goes bad, they will have to run through the RMA process (you could assist of course), and then re-install the new part.

Not trying to discourage you from earning some money for that car, but I don't think this would be something for you, unless you have an Adult work with, and create a business.....

When I was 15, most of my income came from mowing lawns, and taking care of people's houses when they were out of town (friends of the family mostly)... Also got my first job a month after I turned 15.... still there part time, almost 10 years now.

Also, if you do indeed proceed with this, are you going to be able to handle people calling/texting you at all hours of the night when they have problems?

I have a few friends that I have done PC work for, and sometimes it is aggrivating when they call me to say "You didnt fix my PC right, or I did a bad job".... come to find out they have limewire on it, and all sorts of viruses, or they deleted files they shouldn't have.... Thats why I limit my skills to close friends & family only.... friends of theirs, I have to turn down, gets to be too much.
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Old 05-17-2008, 10:11 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Building Rigs for people, as a Summer Business

I have considered this. I build rigs for friends that i know very well for free where as for people that I am acquainted with i charge depending on the cost of their rig. I build a persons rig that cost 1100 in parts for 80 bucks. I showed him that there were no computers from ibuypower or similar sites that even came close to the performance for 1200 bucks. I back the builds with myself overclocking them to a decent speed. I tell them that they can call me if they have any problems with the computer not turning on or anything like that but as far as a problem like a virus it's up to them. I warranty nothing except for i will assist with rma's and put in the part as etheral said. Another friends mom built a rig for 600 bucks in parts. I charged 50 bucks. I only do this for acquaintances.
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Old 05-17-2008, 11:29 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Building Rigs for people, as a Summer Business

I spoke to a previously successful shop owner who stopped building because he said that too many people just don't want to spend big bucks to build a custom rig when the prices from the major brands have come down so much over the years. It's just not as profitable to be a builder as it used to be. What he does now is recycle & "wash" old discarded computers & hardware obtained from corporations and the general public before properly disposing of it due to the material hazards of the various components.
Another shop proprietor that I know of does mostly on-site visits & repairs. He's become very successful and stays busy doing that, but he doesn't actually do many builds. He has an assistant who performs repairs and does builds for him at the store because he's usually on the road and too busy.
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Old 05-18-2008, 12:27 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Building Rigs for people, as a Summer Business

You will need a good written contract.

Specifically how those that you build for will stop calling you for tech support after a certain amount of time.
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Old 05-19-2008, 04:52 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Building Rigs for people, as a Summer Business

Man, you know I was considering this as well.

At first it seems pretty simple.. They pay for it, You build it..

But there are so many people that would exploit/complain/and blame your services. That it seems almost impossible to do without utilizing an already running business (or something like that )
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Old 05-19-2008, 05:09 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Building Rigs for people, as a Summer Business

You could make them sign a reliability waiver and say that you stress tested it and make sure it works perfectly

and if they try to exploit you... just show the reliability waiver
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Old 05-19-2008, 05:11 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Building Rigs for people, as a Summer Business

He can't have them do/sign anything.... he is a minor, contracts with him wouldn't be legally binding.... I am pretty sure his parents would have to be held responsible.... can't say for certain though, as I am not a lawyer.
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General Laptop: - Sony Vaio SVE141D1L - Stock (Mine)
Gaming Rig: BACK ONLINE!! ASUS Z87-PRO (V EDITION), Intel Core i5-4590 Haswell (Stock Cooling), HyperX FURY 8GB DDR3 1866,
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