Garage owner sideswiped by a customer’s comment!

I’m Scanning social media sites for some of my old-time friends and colleagues from our apprenticeship days. I heard this rumour they occasionally hung out at these places.

It didn’t take me long to come across a pal from our good old hot rodding days. As it turned out he is an automotive swap meet gypsy, like myself.

1100 words  5.5-minutes

Shortly after the web reunion we finally hooked up and proceeded to tell a few half-truths and out-and-out lies about our lives. Through the conversation, I find out he still operates a car, truck and classic car overhauling garage.

Amongst the bullshit topics we talked about, the retirement topic comes up in the chat as well.  He says; “What would I do? I have WD-40 in my veins.” I can’t stop now, I’m too well-oiled.

After a few chuckles, I too had to think about what we said!

I’ve been retired for a few years now and I know the chemicals and oil products are still coming out of my pores. So he’s right. A well-oiled machine for the next, probably a hundred years!

I’m swaying a bit from the original intent because hooking up with my old pal was not the gest of the story. 

It has all to do with people’s perspective of self-employed people and why they think they charge too much when in reality, most don’t.

In a moment of time, he must have had a down day. A long-time customer of his that was employed by a major tech company in the city said. “Why do you charge so much” Well that set him back. His door rate is half of the going door rate from any dealer.

Customer Says; Why Do You Charge So Much?

In doing research on some updated statistics say, “Thirty percent of the workforce in Canada and the U.S are self-employed.” That government information I found surprising,

He, like myself, are not born writers, we are trained technicians in the wonderful world of “anything that moves, we fix!” and may I add, with very little fan fair and appreciation.

As tough as my bud is, that comment must have hit home. He wrote this on social media for all to read.

This is his story

I would’ve worded it a little differently but the outcome would have been the same. This is what he wrote on Facebook for people that forget that 30% of Canadian workers fall into this category of self-employed and how hard it is.

Remember he is self-employed and an automotive garage shop owner.


If you ask yourself, why the self-employed charge so much for their services, they don’t get paid sick leave or vacation pay. They don’t get bonuses for outstanding performance nor for anything at Christmas. They don’t have insurance plans nor do they qualify for unemployment insurance but are still expected to pay into it.

Also, the skill set they have is expensive and needs to be compensated for along with their invested time to prepare for you or your affair. So next time you ask, “Why do you charge so much?” remember that the self-employed love being their own boss, but that love doesn’t pay the debts.

Being self-employed doesn’t pay the bills.

Happy ENTREPRENEUR Day! Repost if you’re your own boss or have a good friend that is!

Respect the hard-working self-employed.  Signed  Xxxxxx  Xxxxxx

Now, I like it!

Customer; “Why Do You Charge So Much” well the next story should explain it.

As a retired garage owner myself, this next story of mine is in part, still his story.  

I needed a little monetary help in my slow period. I went to see the friendly bank manager that sends me flyers in the mail. They read; if you need a hand or assistance, please reach out to us. “We are here to help.”

After a short visit to the “friendly” manager, this is what he had to say.

No, no and a big NO. We don’t lend money out to garages, service stations or anything transportation-related. Why, because you people have to keep retraining your employee’s skills every year. You have to pay premium wages for professional employees. The specialized tools and equipment you need to do your job are expensive.

For us to recoup our money your tools would be worth 10 cents on the dollar. And, that’s a maybe, not nearly enough for collateral on any money loaned.

He proceeded to say in comparison.

Variety store employees do not have to be retrained every month or year to be a cashier. You can pay them minimum wage and theoretically anybody will do. The collateral we need is in the store and products that could be returned.

At that point, I knew I wasn’t going to get any jingle from this guy.

He continued telling me as I’m walking out the door all the whys he and the bank were not going to invest in any mechanical institution he called it.…blah, blah, blah.

But he was right. The average mechanic could have at least $40,000 invested in tools. He does have to be re-trained every year. If you’re lucky enough to work at a dealership, your training could be free. However, if you are self-employed, the cost comes out of your jeans, with a loss of wages while you’re upgrading your talents.

Garage Owner Customer Say, Why Do You Charge So Much?

So “Joe” (not his real name)  the author in part for this article was right, the bank is right. The disgruntled customer has a salary of $150,000 a year with a bonus and matched RSP contribution, well you decide.

He could be wrong and should give what he says to a hard-working self-employed another thought.

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Extra Note;

Respect the hard-working self-employed people.  Remember, they are 30 percent of the workforce that pays their taxes and dues. Whether it’s an independent building contractor, commercial fisherman, logger or truck owner/operator or tow truck operator.

Did you know that all these entertaining reality shows on T.V.  Such as

Ice Road Truckers, Highway through Hell Tow Truck Operators, Swamp People, Timber Kings American Picker, Restoring, Deadliest Catch, Forged in Fire, Storage War, and Mountain Men, probably don’t have benefits or cash payouts that you all take for granted. 

Ask these hard-working people what kind of a pension plan or retirement fund they have after the reality show is over.

Classic Cars and a service station.

Still not retired.

As of today, my bud is still not retired per-se but, he has downsized with less customer work and working more on his own hot rods and classic cars. He has paid his dues without the fan fair.

Garage Owners Customer Say, Why Do You Charge So Much? Well, you are the Judge.

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