Anyone turned this love of VW into a business?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Graham Gunn, Sep 22, 2022 at 9:40 AM.

  1. Hi guys just wondering who out there has got so into their VW’s so much it’s now there business/career now.
     
  2. Dubs

    Dubs Sponsor

    Guilty as charged…
     
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  3. jivedubbin

    jivedubbin Moderator

  4. Poptop2

    Poptop2 Moderator

    Lots of people have but I’m afraid it’s seldom the cash cow people think it is despite some pushing prices through the roof.

    It was about like minded enthusiasts in the early days, sadly even a lot of private sellers have fallen into the ‘ it’s a bay bit worth a fortune’ trap.
     
  5. I'm using mine for weddings. Only as a side line. Have done around 25 this year.
     
  6. Zed

    Zed Gradually getting grumpier

    I did for 8 years, I took a 90% pay cut in the process! Other people have more business sense than I did, I was used to working for large corporations not real people who I found it hard to charge properly. :rolleyes:
     
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  7. blimey, so you're working like two weekends every month doing weddings? How much do you charge and is it worth the time you've giving up? I have a friend who used to do wedding photography, loved it but couldn't deal with losing so many weekends / missing time with the kids growing up etc.
     
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  8. JamesLey

    JamesLey Sponsor

    Me!
    I'm not full time on it, but have managed to go down to a 4 day week in my IT job. I quite like the mix of the work to be honest, and as much as it sounds like a good idea doing it full time it's probably a safer bet carrying it on as a side business.
     
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  9. theBusmonkey

    theBusmonkey Sponsor

    Yup. Enjoy every day :thumbsup:
     
  10. Depending on the location it starts at around £325. Obviously this is subject to tax and NI and when you take into account your time/ fuel insurance etc it's not a huge money spinner. I look at it as a nice holiday somewhere and some money to maintain the van. It's also nice being part of someone's special day, and the positive comments about the camper.
     
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  11. My experience is those that are good end up getting so inundated with work and feel they can’t say no and either go mad and broke and have to give up or start letting people down and fold.

    A hobby and running a business are 2 totally different things.
     
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2022 at 8:10 PM
  12. theBusmonkey

    theBusmonkey Sponsor

    Indeed they are. As Zed has pointed out many times, realistic pricing based on materials cost, labour and knowledge are hard sometimes to balance. At the end of the day we are dealing with someone's hobby and leisure vehicle. Sometimes I think that gets forgotten by the Emperor's New Clothes brigade.
    I guess so far so good here, having successfully run previous businesses gives us a big advantage over understanding margins and managing expectations. Having a partner who is fully engaged and has the eagle eye on the financials is also a massive bonus
     
  13. A certain vw "magician" in Dorset told me that doing it for a living for quite a while has kind of spoilt his love for dubs.
    Doing it for someone else all day takes the shine off doing it for yourself evenings and weekends.
     
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  14. No matter how much I grumble about recent experiences, I know that on average I get away with things because I can fix them later if they go a bit wrong. Which you cannot do with a business.

    Also this way round, I get a nice income working 8 hours a day doing something clean, then I can clean my mind by undoing 13mm nuts on my own bus.
     
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  15. Zed

    Zed Gradually getting grumpier

    Resto is the worst. Where do you stop? Panels are off, you think "Ah well, I'll just fix this while I'm in there" x 100 hours before you know it. Estimate is far, far out by this point. I know exactly what I was doing wrong - doing resto work. lol Mug!
     
  16. Some very interesting points on this thread. I asked the question as it’s something I’ve thought about for the last month or so. Currently a self employed kitchen fitter which I do enjoy to a certain degree but thinking towards the future and my later years. Combining a hobby with a job has its appeals. I wasn’t thinking of making bucket loads of cash that has no appeal to me but spending my working hours doing something I would look forward to getting up in the morning and doing is something I’ve been searching for my entire working life. Just wanted views of people who have been there and done it. I’ll carry on dreaming for a few years yet.
     
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  17. Are you thinking metal work resto or interior fit outs based on your current trade?
     
  18. Got to be honest I’ve not got that far .
     
  19. Zed

    Zed Gradually getting grumpier

    You'll end up with a workshop full of your own projects that you never work on with just enough room to wheel in a customer's vehicle! Ask me how I know. I think @Dubs will agree with me. You have to be pretty hard on yourself to do this profitably and combining it with a hobby is not advisable if you want to make ends meet.
     
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  20. Yeh that’s what I thought, that’s why I’m not jumping straight into it well that and the current financial climate. I’m thinking more in say 10 years time when I’m mid fifty’s. I don’t plan to retire as I don’t do sitting around home very well and I hate bowls! It would be more of a hobby with a bit of an income. It’s something I’ve thought about a lot in the last 10 years, finding something to keep me occupied and bring in a bit of income. More of a retirement plan. Maybe owning a few and hiring them out. Like I say it’s just a dream at the minute which keeps my mind if the depressing headlines in the news.
     

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