The YouTube Revolution is Changing the Appliance Repair Business

Fact 1.  YouTube Has Changed  the entire “How To” World

It is undeniable that the millions of YouTube videos have changed the “How To” world.  Appliance repair is just one of many service business affected by all this content. Plumbing and electrical issues, HVAC work and  medical problems all  look easily solved when you view them on YouTube.

I saw a great sign on the wall in my doctors office, it said “Please don’t confuse your Google search with my medical degree.”  I pity the poor doctors.

 

 

 

Fact 2YouTube has resulted in a proliferation of information

There is an incredible amount of how to information available on YouTube and elsewhere on the web.

Fact 3.  There is no editing or filtering of videos on YouTube.  Everything gets posted!

Virtually no web information is edited by any fact checker.  I’m certain that most content is well intended and not intentionally misleading.  However, accidentally or not,  a tremendous amount of questionable or completely inaccurate information is posted.  Every happy egotist proudly posts his solution to his problem. And his problem seems exactly like yours!

Fact 4.  There is no easy way to determine whether YouTube facts are accurate or inaccurate?

It is very difficult for the average person to determine if the solution is correct and is it going to work for them?

Fact 5.  The average Joe believes everything he sees on YouTube

Innocently, most people jump on the first popular how to video that they see  and follow the instructions as gospel.  They really have no way to determine if the help they are getting is accurate.  Oh boy, does that ever create a quagmire of trouble.

 

 

 

Fact or fiction? Nobody calls servicemen anymore, they use YouTube and fix everything themselves.

It has gotten to be common place for a customer to call for service only after they have exhausted themselves trying to fix it on their own. They open the conversation with a long story of how they have tried to fix their problem.

As servicemen we never know how many are successful and how many fail. We only hear from the frustrated failures. Some companies get huffy and refuse to work on machines worked on by others.  I can certainly sympathize with that policy; however, I prefer a different response.  It has been my experience that few customers get in very deep. They get frustrated quickly. In most cases you can easily solve their problems and become a hero. Now the customer knows an appliance expert who they can call plus they have your name to give to their friends.

It is safe to say that most of the problems solved by YouTube are simple ones. It is also true that there is so much repair work available that we are just as happy to not take the silly, simple calls. Middle to upper income families, the ideal customers by the way, seldom have time or interest in repairing their own appliances.  They have more important things to do and are happy to pay us for service. (Learn how to attract the ideal customers by studying Uncle Harry’s guidelines.)

YouTube is Killing My Business!

Blame it on YouTube

Recently at my local appliance parts supplier, I ran into a friendly competitor, Phil. He was curious as to whether I had any service calls and I said, ” Yes, I can barely keep up.” He complained angrily that his business was dead slow and he had an explanation. He claimed that since the advent of YouTube his business had died. He said, “Everyone goes to YouTube to figure out how to fix their own appliances and never have to call me.” He went on at great length and was quite bitter about it. I sympathized with him and let him rant.

The Power of Social Media

Unfortunately for Phil, there is a lot more to the story. Over the years I have watched his business tactics and listened to more than a few of his very unhappy customers who came to me to correct poor repairs done by Phil’s company.  Apparently he has a bad habit of both ignoring callbacks and getting irritated with customers.

Today it is extremely easy for an unhappy customer to post a bad review with full details of what a bum Phil is.

Facebook, Google My Business, NextDoor

and many others are all great platforms where people discuss interactions with service companies. Unhappy customers yell far louder than happy ones. A bad review is like stabbing a service company in the heart, it is virtually impossible to overcome.

 

 

I took the trouble to look up Phil’s Company on the web and found a very poor rating on all the platforms. It’s so easy to see why his business is slow. It’s a wonder anyone calls him.

Make Sure Your Customers are Happy

Over the years my pattern has been to bend over backward to make sure every customer is happy.  In the rare worst case I simply give them back their money so that they really have no justification for complaint.  The power of social media is so strong that service companies have to be exceedingly careful and avoid any negative reviews.  You can safely assume that every homeowner has checked you out on the web before they call.  It is imperative that you monitor social sites and check your ratings.  Years ago it was far easier for an unscrupulous company to survive.  Today we are all under the microscope.

The YouTube Effect

Getting back to Phil’s complaint about YouTube, there is no doubt that YouTube has stolen some service calls.  However, the YouTube effect is complex and covered in far more detail in another post.  Overall good business practices, though slow and sometimes painful, always win in the long run.  Phil finds it easy to blame YouTube when in fact his own business practices are where the fault lies.

For details on the best customer service techniques see UncleHarry.com. That’s where I got my start. Uncle Harry is an expert in building long term relationships with customers. He’s been doing it for over 50 years.

How to Wire a Three or Four Wire Dryer Outlet

It is very easy to understand why many people get confused when attempting to install an electric dryer. For starters, the heavy cable used on an electric dryer may have three or four heavy wires. Since 2000, electrical code states that four wires are required. For many people fooling with these heavy wires is very intimidating. The wires are heavy gauge because the dryer heating element draws 15 Amps. Normal lamp cord wiring will get hot and melt.   I have seen many novices cause a lot of trouble by mixing heavy and light gauges.  Most folks are frightened away by the heavy wires and leave the job to appliance technicians or electricians.

comparing three-prong and four-prong dryer cablesMany different situations are encountered. If a person moves an old dryer to a new house they may be faced with an old three-prong line cord on the dryer and a four-prong outlet.

Second, a new dryer does not come with a line cord. Often a retailer will sell the customer a four-prong cord (The current code). When they get home, they find that their house has a three-prong outlet and they don’t know what to do.  Of course, they are irritated because they thought all they had to do was plug it in and start drying clothes.  I must admit that fewer and fewer homeowners attempt to connect up anything involving 220 V.  It scares them to death.  However, this post will explain the logic behind the national code changes and how to handle these situations.

First, let’s review a bit of history. When electric dryers first came out 60-70 years ago they were all hardwired to the house (no cords were made back then).  The cable used was 10-3 with the ground. It included four wires. Three of the wires were 10 gauge a black, white and red. The fourth wire was 12 gauge, bare copper.

dryer cord wire diagram

The three colored wires were attached to the terminal block on the back of the dryer with the white wire going to the center. The bare copper wire was screwed to the metal frame or shell or the dryer. The red and black are interchangeable but typically the red is connected to the right-hand side of the block. Nothing could be simpler. It was hard to get it wrong. The white wire and the bare ground wire parallel one another back to the panel box and are connected together and to the earth. The neutral wire carries minimal current while the red and black carry the heater circuit. The bare ground wire carries no current and it’s purely a safety circuit.

As the years went by new homes were built with a dryer outlet already installed in the wall and three-prong line cords were made available to connect the dryer to the heavy outlet. These line cords were three wire only and did not include the bare wire.220v outlet

A cautious electrician or homeowner would add a bare wire, a ground wire, from the case of the dryer to the metal case of the outlet or a water pipe. This insured that the metal case of the dryer was directly connected to the earth ground through the electrical system of the house.  By doing so it was impossible to get a shock by touching the dryer.

 

dryer ground wire

A grounding strap was added next to the terminal block inside the dryer connecting the center tab (the white one) to the chassis metal of the dryer. This was the second way of ensuring that the metal case was connected to earth because the white center wire is connected to the earth back at the panel box. All of these shenanigans are in place to prevent or dissipate any voltage from appearing on the case of the dryer thus preventing electrocution.

dryer power cord

With the advent of the extra-safe four-wire heavy line cord the missing bare ground wire from decades gone by has reappeared within the line cord. It is the fourth wire and color-coded green. This green wire is to be connected to the chassis or case of the dryer. The grounding strap within the dryer (supplied by the manufacturer)  is removed. The new green wire takes it place.

setting up a ground wire on a dryerBack at the panel box the green wires, any bare copper wires,  the white center neutral wire are all connected together and directly connected to the utility ground and also to a heavy copper rod that is driven into the earth.

dryer line cordBack to the problem at hand, it is far easier to change the line cord then it is to change the socket.

 

 

 

 

matching line cords with the socket

 

 

Consequently, match your line cord prongs to the socket holes and by a line cord that fits.

 

Wire the matching cord as shown here.

three wire and four wire electrical

 

 

 

 

If you can handle connecting dryer line cords and outlets you surely have the aptitude for making money with your skills. Learn from UncleHarry.com as I did and start making yourself $100,000 per year. Ask to try out some of his free sample courses. It is a great way to make a living with minimal start-up costs.

How to Start an Appliance Repair Business

How to Start an Appliance Repair BusinessA few years ago I decided to start a major appliance repair business, and I succeeded.  Here’s a recap of how I did it:

1.  I looked for appliance repair training, including books, appliance repair training schools, free appliance repair training, and online appliance repair training courses:

  • The best appliance repair book I found was Troubleshooting and Repairing Major Appliances, by Eric Kleinert.
  • The best free appliance repair training resources I found were:
    • YouTube Videos (search on “appliance repair training”)
    • Repair Forums (check out appliantology.org)
    • Free Online Service Manuals (a good free source is appliancejunk.com)
    • Parts Sites (repairclinic.com has repair videos & partselect.com has DIY advice)
  • The best appliance repair technician training I found was Uncle Harry’s home study course. This training is the closest thing you’ll ever get to hands-on training in an online course – it can bridge the gap between reading the book and actually taking service calls.

2.  I put together my business tools:

  • I built my appliance repair business web site using Lunarpages.com because they offer economical hosting with unlimited resources for bandwidth, storage, and email accounts.
  • I got a toll free number using Ring Central, which is very economical for a startup business with one line.
  • I had business cards printed using nextdayflyers.com – they have great prices for full color, coated, two-sided business cards, great customer service and they’re FAST!
  • I had invoices printed using carbonlessondemand.com – they have excellent prices for your invoices.

3.  I put together my appliance repair service tools and parts:

  • I had most of the tools I needed already according to Uncle Harry’s list of tools, but I bought my digital multimeter using the resources in this post: https://appliancerepairstartup.com/multimeter-basics
  • I bought appliance repair parts inventory using Uncle Harry’s list of essentials.

4.  I promoted my business:

  • I got my appliance repair business website listed on free directories in this post:  https://appliancerepairstartup.com/free-online-business-directories/
  • I placed business cards in local grocery stores, businesses, and hangouts
  • I bought fairly inexpensive signage and had it posted
  • I contacted local appliance-related businesses to see if they needed assistance and succeeded in forming a partnership with a used appliance dealer who needed a service technician to refer calls to.
  • I signed up with home warranty companies.
  • I signed up with inexpensive paid lead services

5.  I started taking calls:

  • I would use the Uncle Harry resources to research the repair, including his wizard, his technical manuals, videos, and appliance repair service manuals
  • I would also call Uncle Harry personally if I had stumper calls, and he always answered the phone and helped me work through the problem.  I can’t say enough about this – his live support was huge!!
  • I would use online appliance repair forums like appliantology.org as additional technical resources.

6.  I’m getting paid and business is going great:

  • I opened a free business checking account and started depositing my checks.
  • I am currently taking 3-6 calls a day.
  • In my area, I charge a flat fee of $128.00 for my calls plus a 25% markup on parts, and my customers love it.

For more details on starting an appliance repair business as I did, read the rest of the posts in my startup blog, and for more on how my business is going, read my business blog.

Learning Appliance Repair Online

Uncle Harry's Appliance Repair School
Uncle Harry’s Online Learning

Appliance repair can actually be learned online. Seems amazing but true that you can actually learn a trade online. How is this possible? Well, I learned it from books just a few years ago and made out just fine. I supplemented my studies with hands-on practice in customer’s homes and gradually got better and faster.  Most modern universities now offer online learning and my mentor is now doing the same thing.  I have been checking out this low-cost program.  He has created a series of online video lessons broken into three areas:

First is a group on mastering the “Business Secrets of Appliance Repair.” This group includes a multitude of up-to-date marketing, building and operating tricks.  The course list is very interesting.  Link to more details.

Second is a group on “Mastering Laundry Appliances”. Washers and dryers represent half of what we repair in the appliance business. He covers all the new imports too.  Link to more details.

The third is a group on “Mastering Kitchen Appliances”. Refrigerators, ice makers, dishwashers and cooking equipment are fully covered here with new Samsung and LG  brands included. These Korean imports are a growing part of our repair world.  Link to more details.

I have looked at some of the samples and it looks like a well put together an online program.  It certainly covers all the hot areas that guys need to master as they get their business started.   Has anyone taken this online program who would like to offer comments?

Free Appliance Repair Training vs. Paid Training

Free Appliance Repair Training vs. Paid TrainingFree resources are available on the internet, and some of them are very helpful, but paid training can catapult you onto the next level that free training can’t.

Free appliance repair training can also take longer to accumulate the knowledge that paid training can condense into a much shorter period of time. There is a huge amount of free information on YouTube and elsewhere on the web but, unfortunately, it is unfiltered and often in error.  Rarely do you find accurate diagnostic instructions. Instead, you only find how to replace parts videos.

Paid training is also much more thorough, and fills in a lot of gaps that free training leaves.

If you spend your money wisely, you can get a great education in a short period of time and get your business started quickly.

  • Books:  Choose wisely and you don’t need that many of them. The first book you need to learn appliance repair troubleshooting is Troubleshooting and Repairing Major Appliances, by Eric Kleinert.  It’s like a troubleshooting encyclopedia. For a practical application of the techniques, it really needs to be supplemented with Uncle Harry (see below).
  • Home Study Course:  There is nothing else out there like Uncle Harry on the market.  Harry has worked since 1997 developing step-by-step repair manuals and videos and teaches you how to actually run your appliance repair business including advertising/marketing, parts inventory, customer service,  invoicing.  This training is the closest thing you’ll ever get to hands-on training in an online course – it can bridge the gap between reading the book and actually taking service calls. Getting text, email, and phone support are critical to your success.
  • Professional Training Schools:  Penn Foster has a professional appliance repair technician’s training course which focuses on theoretical training. The price is reasonable, but unfortunately, Penn Foster spends a lot of time on small appliances such as mixers and toasters.  Professionals in the appliance repair business turn down such requests and focus on major appliances where they can make $100 per hour.

Amazing appliance repair wizard tool – The perfect technician training tool

Uncle Harry’s amazing appliance repair wizard tool is a patented tablet computer that allows the technician to do many things. Drawing from over 800,000 pages of reference materials, it is very similar to having a huge library at your disposal.

It is important to know that the wizard materials do not need to be downloaded; the reference materials are actually already on the tablet. This very capable tablet never needs to be connected to the Internet.  No Wi-Fi or hotspot is required.  Let’s investigate the many capabilities of the wizard tablet.

First off, the technician can quickly diagnose appliance repair problems by using the checklist associated with customers common complaints. For example, he could research a front loader that makes a loud noise in spin, a dryer that will not heat or a refrigerator that will not make ice. The checklists provided will properly direct him from the most likely diagnosis to the least likely with associated pictures and videos. These checklists are designed to keep a greenhorn technician on track and out of the weeds. They are a perfect learning tool for training a novice. You can use it as a self-training tool or as an employee training tool.

Charts are provided which identify troublesome and easy repairs. 

Going even further, if a technician is not familiar with removing the cover of respective appliances there are videos showing him exactly how to open each type of appliance. For technicians who do not understand the branding tricks used by all major manufacturers, there are lists of designs associated with various brands to unravel this common confusion.  Sears Kenmore is a perfect example of brand confusion.  A chart is provided to decipher the various model prefix number in order to determine which manufacturer made a specific appliance for Kenmore.

The diagnostic section of the wizard breaks appliances down into the following categories, washers both top, and front loaders, dryers both gas and electric, refrigerators of all styles, ice makers, dishwashers and disposers. Also included are training manuals that cover all of the appliance basics. Notably absent from the wizard is any marketing, pricing and business techniques as they are covered in other sections of the platinum program for those wishing to start their own appliance repair business. This makes the tablet extremely useful for training employees.

The Wizard tool goes far beyond the basics. As all professionals know, new computerized appliances include self-diagnostic capabilities which are specific to particular brands and models. The theory is the same on all appliances but the specifics differ. Consequently, many thousands of manuals are included which are specific to each peculiar model. These are broken down by manufacturer and type. For example, in addition to all of the ordinary Electrolux, GE and Whirlpool products, the tablet includes such peculiar units as duel fuel Wolf ranges and Fischer Paykel dishwashers.  Virtually nothing is omitted.

To make life even simpler, a powerful search tool is provided on the wizard login homepage which allows you to search by model number, brand or complaint to locate information pertinent to your question.

This is by far the best tool in the industry for training technicians, supporting on the road technicians or having in your hands when you’re on the job site need immediate information.

 

Sears is Going Out of Business! – A Golden Opportunity

 Sears has over 7,000 technicians running appliance service calls and those technicians are scared to death that Sears is going under and that they are going to be out of work. This translates into a gold mine for all of the independent appliance repair companies. Customers will be scrambling to find someone to repair all of their Kenmore appliances. For many decades Sears has been the largest appliance repair Company in the United States. Not too long ago Sears sold 70% of all appliances in the US.

However, times have changed.  In my short time of being in the appliance repair business, I have had more and more people come to me complaining about the quality, reliability, and timeliness of Sears appliance repair service.  They have been stood up one too many times. It is only getting worse and customers are looking for alternatives. The word is now out as magazines and newspapers circle the dying dinosaur like vultures.  Amazon, Home Depot and Lowe’s have been chipping away at Sears market share for a long time. The technicians at Sears are demoralized and overworked.

I don’t need to read the articles in the newspaper to know that Sears has a problem. And how do I know? I know because Sears representatives have called me numerous times to run their service calls. It’s obvious that they cannot get the work done and need help. Their good people are all gone. I have turned them down half a dozen times and irritated at the numerous phone calls. I have no interest in being a representative of a national company that has a terrible reputation for quality service.

From Consumer Affairs

All of this creates a tremendous opportunity for anyone interested in entering the appliance repair business or growing their existing business or diversifying their business. Folks such as handymen contractors, plumbers, HVAC companies, and electricians should all seriously view appliance repair at this time as a huge diversification opportunity.  For anyone in the appliance repair business, it’s as good as the California gold rush!

Uncle Harry’s Mobile Appliance Wizard Review

Mobile Repair Wizard TabletLack of experience was the hardest obstacle I faced as a new appliance repair technician.  Nothing was harder when I  started out taking service calls than to be at a customer’s house and literally not be sure what my next move forward was.

Back when I started out, the only thing I could do was to study Uncle Harry’s materials ahead of a service call as much as possible, and once I got on site if I ran into something I wasn’t expecting, I had to tell the customer I would be back the next day, then go home and study some more.

Uncle Harry now has an instant Mobile Appliance Wizard loaded onto a handheld tablet that gives you immediate and targeted access to an enormous framework of service data, technical manuals and videos for any appliance or problem you might be working on.  Take a look at a sample video on YouTube.  It includes a handy search tool that makes it easy to locate manuals among the many thousands that are on the tablet. Quite impressive and useful.

I recently got a chance to review one of these, which was simply not around back when I got started taking calls, and I really wish it had been!

This powerful tool will instantly add years of knowledge, and the confidence that comes with it, to your new career while you’re busy getting real-world experience under your belt.  And it has everything I still use every day on my service calls as an experienced technician.

With the easy to use wizard, you don’t need to be connected to the internet – it works anywhere, anytime.  In seconds you can get disassembly instructions for any appliance, troubleshooting, and diagnosis for the specific problem you’re working on, and step-by-step instructions on how to complete the repair.

I remember that sometimes just being new was enough all by itself to get me stuck on something, even if I had studied it before.  And even when I thought I knew how to solve the problem in front of me, I still could have used some kind of confirmation that I was on the right track.

Having this Mobile Appliance Wizard at your fingertips can definitely take the mystery and anxiety out of getting started doing appliance repairs by fast-tracking the diagnostic and repair process. This will not only make you look experienced and knowledgeable to your customers but will most importantly help you complete your service calls quickly and successfully.

I have spoken highly of Uncle Harry’s program in the past, but this is why I continue to be a big, big fan.  I was proud it only took me 30 days before I ran my first service call, but with this powerful tool, I see no reason why anyone can’t get started in the appliance repair business immediately.

Why Running My Own Business is My Dream Job

Dream JobRunning my own appliance repair business is possibly the best job in the world.  I have a phone that rings, rates high enough to make plenty of money per call, and the ability to take time off when I choose.

Here’s how I dialed it in:

Charging top market rates means I don’t have to bust my butt doing call packed days in order to make my target income each week.

When I used to undercut the market average rate by 10%, I was converting 98% of my incoming calls and now that I’m 10% above market average, I only convert 95% of my incoming calls.  Hmmm…that math works out to a 20% raise with a 3% loss of market share.  No problem.

Being a one-man shop is part of the perfect appliance repair business for me.  I tried running a crew of contractors, but I found out I don’t really like being anyone else’s boss.  I’m just a technician who likes fixing things and making good money doing it.

All the extra work tracking other techs’ calls forced me to work in the office late every night, and early every morning.  In the end, I decided it was simpler just to do the calls myself.

Controlling my schedule is one of the main reasons I started my own business.  In order to do this, I had to learn to turn down work, which is the hardest thing I have ever had to do.

I had trouble resisting my instincts to run every possible call that came in but finally got good at telling people I was booked (which is a whole other blog post).

Now I work a 4 day week and stack all my calls on those days.  Those 3 day weekends come around fast, and I am really, really, enjoying my extra personal time.  Whenever I want to turn the volume up, all I have to do is book more calls.

I realize I am very fortunate to be running my own business, to have the freedom to decide how much money I want to make and how hard I want to work.  It’s some people’s idea of a dream job, and yes, I’m one of those people.

What Does it Take to Become an Appliance Repair Pro?

These are the phases I have been through as an appliance repair technician and what it took me to become a pro:

PHASE I:  AMATEUR  While I was a real estate investor, I worked occasionally on appliances in my rental properties to save money so I didn’t have to call a repairman.  I fixed maybe two appliances a month.

PHASE II:  STUDENT  After the real estate crash, I needed to start over.  I chose appliance repair and became a student, first by reading Troubleshooting and Repairing Major Appliances, by Eric Kleinert, then by studying Uncle Harry’s technician program intensively for 30 days so I could start making money as fast as possible.

PHASE III:  BEGINNER  After a quick, intensive study phase, I hung my shingle (put up my website and listed my business in online directories) and started running service calls.  I considered myself a beginner during this phase, leaning heavily on Uncle Harry’s support system before and during each call.

PHASE IV:  INTERMEDIATE   My beginner phase ended quickly and I turned intermediate during my “boot camp” days at a used appliance repair yard where I did warranty work for the owner who offered a one year guarantee.  He also gave me my own independent leads which he did not serve.  I ran an average of 6 calls a day most days, and in my downtime, I fixed stock on the lot.  I saw a large variety of appliance issues, became familiar with real-world appliance repair work and real-world fixes.

PHASE V:  PRO  I am proud to say I already consider myself a pro after a very short time in the business.  My definition of a pro is someone who can handle a minimum of 80% of calls with relative comfort and has no more than 20% of calls that are challenging.  Appliance repair is not a perfect science, and even the pros don’t always have an exact answer for every problem, they just have their solution for it.  I have found my style and my stride, and it just gets better from here.

For Ex-Retirees Only…

Lost Savings - Need Post-Retirment IncomeAbout 3 months after I retired, the Great Recession came down on me like an avalanche and basically wiped out my savings.

I could not start over doing what I used to do, which was real estate investing, because the real estate market had crashed, and I had little recent experience doing anything else.

I was over 50, unemployed, and literally did not know how I was going to buy groceries for the rest of my life.  I lost a LOT of sleep before I finally discovered the idea of becoming an appliance repair technician.

I know I am not the only one in this situation.

There are people out there over 50, post-retirement, that have either lost their savings or are living on borrowed time.  They need not just supplemental income but a day job, and are having more than a little trouble finding employment.  Even menial jobs are flooded with applicants, companies can have their pick, and believe me we are not first on the list.

Starting an appliance repair business is an exceptionally good fit for this set of life circumstances, even if, like me, you are starting from scratch with no technical background.

While age is usually an obstacle to finding a job, oddly enough it is actually an advantage in the appliance repair business for several reasons:

  • First, customers assume I have years of experience from the moment they open the door, and I can bypass the usual “newbie” scrutiny.  With the confidence, I gained by studying Uncle Harry’s course and relying on his support network while out in the field, all I have to do is keep my mouth shut that I’ve only been at it a short time, fix the appliance and be on my way.  If the customer is satisfied, that’s all that matters, and no one ever needs to know the truth.
  • Second, with my lifelong work experience, I don’t have a tendency to make some of the common business mistakes younger people often make. For example, I avoided overspending on my startup business in the first year.  I did not lease a storefront or an office but worked out of my home instead, I used my personal car as a service vehicle, and I only advertised for free on the internet.  Because I knew to proceed with caution, my business now has solid roots and continues to be successful.
  • Third, years of dealing with people have been the foundation of my first class customer service.  I get great reviews on internet search sites because I know how to treat people.  I know not to focus on making money, but on taking care of my customers.  These common-sense ideas are not new, but they are learned and reinforced over time.

With running my own appliance repair business, I do not have to worry about getting hired by someone else and competing in the marketplace with younger applicants.  I can also control the volume of calls I take, so I don’t have to work at a pace that would kill most guys my age.  And, all my years and wisdom are an asset that gives me an edge, rather than a liability to be hidden or excused.

I am grateful every day not only for an opportunity to work for a living, but to actually make enough income to start thinking about and planning for retirement again.