Should You Become a Plumber?

A frequent (unsolicited and unprompted) topic of conversation among me and my friends who live in Ridgefield, Connecticut is whether we should have not worried about college and decided to become a plumber.

At lunch today I was joking with a friend of mine that during middle school neither of us got good grades, which led to us switching schools and our grades improving such that we were able to attend good colleges.

We looked at each other and wondered aloud whether we would have been better off doing poorly, and becoming plumbers or electricians.

Nothing against electricians and plumbers… If you are one, congrats, apparently you’ve got it made.

At least you’ve most assuredly got it made compared to people like me and my friend… We work “white collar” shit jobs that will probably be replaced by robots.

Should You Become a Plumber?

Well… Think about it.

It’s logical after all. If you are a successful plumber, you can probably charge around $150 per hour for your time.

If you own a successful plumbing business this means that a FTE (full time equivalent) employee plumber who works for you could be charged out, 40 hours per week, 52 weeks per year, for around $288,000 annually.

If this is you, with a truck, and your own clientele, this isn’t bad at all. You can definitely live on that.

Plus you own the business and you are in control of your schedule… You also can hire additional plumbers and build your business. You may sleep pretty well at night knowing that your job isn’t going to be replaced by robots anytime soon.

Compare that with a person who works a white collar job who is bringing in $150K per year on a W-2 where almost half his $$ is being lost to taxes and he may be laid off at any time.

He may have student debt from going to college to get a (soon to be) nonexistent white collar job… Or maybe his kids are on the same track and he or she will soon have student tuition to worry about.

My friends and I joke about this all the time… But it’s a legitimate question.

Perhaps you should become a plumber…