Does anyone custom build computers to sell as a hobby.

I've been thinking about maybe putting an add in the paper to build computers for people, just as a hobby.

Know any idea how much i would charge for this, obviously it wouldn't be much, i'd do it mostly for the fun.
Also, how would everything work surrounding warranties, a piece of hardware stops working for them, etc.

Can anyone enlighten me on all the variables surrounding this idea?
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  1. ive thought about this. but there isnt really money in it cause of places like best buy/walmart selling built systems for cheaper. if your in a area that has high needs for nice gaming systems but just for daily users, yea if you did it for fun then you can go for it. its good for experience. if i had the money to build a first system id do it forsure. id give the people like 4-6 months on hardware. unless of course someone overclocked it. tbh no hardware should fail in the first 6 months anyways but then you could always call the company and get a replacement maybe?

    what i was thinking about pricing would be like take each part or so and add like $5-$10 could always just add the parts up and add a sum of cash and tell the customer/ or just have a flat rate to build the computer like $40-$50 bucks.... i know its not much but hey its still experience
  2. would you do it? Would you tell people to come and consult you and then go shopping for the parts and install the computer directly at their homes? Or you would just customize a computer and then sell it?
    I don't know what to say about's a little bit tricky here.
    I don't think you can offer them any warranty beside the separate warranty for each piece of a hardware you buy.
  3. id build them at first and start selling basic computer to sell to just basic home users then move up to gaming systems as my funds were raised. and if someone came to me and gave me a build that they wanted me to build, depending on where i was at with my current build id tell them that i could get it/wait till i finished my current build/or buy the stuff up front and pay like a $50 flat rate for me to build. ----geek squad alone charges $120 to install an OS.-----

    id put a special piece of tape on the case, if seal was broke warrenty is voided, if not id say 1-2 months warrenty. or if the bios was messed with/seems to have tried to been OC.. <--- something along those lines.

    after i finish school and find a company to work for, for about 10-15 years, im going to open a computer shop in my home town. all we got here is staples/walmart and couple small city shops that only sell crap like DDR2 ram and no name PSU -.- they seem to make money on virus removal and file backups so thatd be easy to make a living :)
  4. I have heard others do this and even thought about it myself but you are just asking for trouble. It is one thing when everything goes right but you have to be prepared for things going wrong.

    What happens when the build fails and you know its the users fault but they insist its your, do you refund them their money?

    How about the user that sues you because you fail to support your PC after that time period even though you have a contract in writing?

    What if he burns his house/apartment building down because he does something but insists it was caused by you?

    I have heard others who had no problems at all doing this for a little extra money and I have heard some who had major headaches because people want more than they are willing to pay for.

    If you do this for fun I would set up a few things first, use a contract and get everything from pay and warranty to testing and support down and with their signature before sending or giving the PC to them. Also stress test the PC, many companies like Cyberpower test their PC's after being built for a day or more, I would recommend this and send a copy of the results with the PC.

    I would also seriously think about setting up an LLC so the buyer cannot sue you personally and wind up taking your home because he burnt his down doing something stupid with his PC that you built.

    Jeff Gedgaud
  5. id just build the computer and have it up and running for 2-3 days to make sure nothing happens, then sell it to the customer AS IS, i mean if something goes wrong and they call you up saying, hey there is no video on my monitor? and you think it may just be a bad video card/monitor, that you know you can still RMA, tell them, hey i did sell you this computer as is, BUT this is what i can do, and tell them you can send it back for a new one, and you can either tell them youll take it out, they pay for all shipping expenses and you can either reinstall it for free or charge them a small fee, make sure if you do this to have everything in writing, like jeff said, there are some people out there that think if they drop the computer and it breaks then its your fault for making it.. ive been told its a hard business to get into but make sure you have everything together and contracts made, before you start putting it in the paper, who knows, 10 people might see that ad and want a computer built for them in the first couple weeks. good thing about if you sale someone a computer they will most likely come back to you for repairs, virus and spyware removal, which would also be profit. or heck why not offer free upgrades/virus removal to people if they buy a computer from you, give them a card or something that gives them free for 6 months or year, ya know.. that would kinda get you cusomters.
  6. Get an Ebay store, although there area about 8 other big online markets like ebay who do not screw the store owner so bad. Do a search for 'other online retail outlets, or opening an online store' Squidoo I think it was there was a good article over there. There was even a few videos over the explaining how ebayer's will have alternate accounts to shill or push bids up. Evident by going into bid history and checking activity with that seller. Usually anyone with more then 6% activity with any seller is a Shill. Unless it is a new account and they have only two transactions which then would reflect 50% One being the bid with that 'deal' Let that be advice or a warning to those who do business on that engine. I digress.
    However, being on the #1 online search engine your only competition is price and value. It is slow to start a store because those of us shopping on there do check ratings. One way is to open your account and buy 50-60 small ticket items and get a good buyer rating. (Hopefully they do not delve into your history and see they are all buys for 100% reviews.
  7. You will never make the money that proper eBay stores who work with big distributors make. In fact I think you would struggle to break even.

    Once you have funded for a mobo, HD, graphics, optical drive, cpu, case, memory, psu and OS you will make next to nothing when matching against someone who buys in bulk thus getting it cheaper. I think you would be wasting your time.

    As for fixing computers, its all well and good, I do it, odd job here and there for locals around my area. However, I wouldnt rely on doing it for a 9-5 as generally (if your good at what your doing) once you fix it, it may not break for a long time again so you got to wish for a lot of custom to be there.

    My advice would be to take out some sort of insurance which covers you when looking at peoples computers. You dont want to take there machine apart which needs memory reseating and you end up shorting the motherboard lol. Believe me it can happen and insurance is the only thing stopping them from suing your ass.
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