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Going Residential To Commercial What Were Your Biggest Hurdles

 
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Old 05-20-2015, 06:01 PM   #1
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Going Residential To Commercial What Were Your Biggest Hurdles


Hello fellow contractors. I am a GC that has been in the residential and light commercial field in austin texas for a few years now. Now about to take on some mixed use projects. I want to hear from the vets that went into commercial from a different market and or anyone that has solid advice. what were your biggest hurdles. what would you have done differently. What knowledge can you pass down to a young gun. Thanks guys!
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Old 05-20-2015, 07:17 PM   #2
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Re: Going Residential To Commercial What Were Your Biggest Hurdles


Higher insurance requirements, more safety regulation, longer payment terms.

I'd say the only real disadvantage is you need substantial working capital. Everything else about commercial is better.

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Old 05-20-2015, 07:24 PM   #3
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Re: Going Residential To Commercial What Were Your Biggest Hurdles


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Higher insurance requirements, more safety regulation, longer payment terms.

I'd say the only real disadvantage is you need substantial working capital. Everything else about commercial is better.
Too competitive.
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Old 05-20-2015, 07:39 PM   #4
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Re: Going Residential To Commercial What Were Your Biggest Hurdles


Dealing with a$$holes
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Old 05-20-2015, 07:42 PM   #5
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Re: Going Residential To Commercial What Were Your Biggest Hurdles


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Too competitive.
It's less competitive in terms of the number of competitors in the market, but you are always bidding against others.
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Old 05-20-2015, 07:55 PM   #6
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Re: Going Residential To Commercial What Were Your Biggest Hurdles


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It's less competitive in terms of the number of competitors in the market, but you are always bidding against others.
I don't compete against that many others. 75% of my business is referred and the rest comes through my site. Price is my worst enemy.
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You ask for your money frequently, and you collect it quickly, else you stop working immediately.
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Old 05-20-2015, 07:57 PM   #7
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Re: Going Residential To Commercial What Were Your Biggest Hurdles


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Originally Posted by TNTSERVICES View Post
Too competitive.
Many would say that about residential. The difference; the salesmanship rules the residential market. $$$ and who you know-build relationships with counts more in commercial.
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Old 05-20-2015, 08:38 PM   #8
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Re: Going Residential To Commercial What Were Your Biggest Hurdles


Residential your dealing with peoples emotions and the undercutters, commercial your dealing with people who do business and don't take sh!t personally
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Old 05-20-2015, 08:52 PM   #9
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Re: Going Residential To Commercial What Were Your Biggest Hurdles


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Residential your dealing with peoples emotions and the undercutters, commercial your dealing with people who do business and don't take sh!t personally
And you don't get dinked around on extras.
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Old 05-20-2015, 09:19 PM   #10
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Re: Going Residential To Commercial What Were Your Biggest Hurdles


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And you don't get dinked around on extras.
I want on your jobs, if thats the case
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Old 05-20-2015, 09:20 PM   #11
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Re: Going Residential To Commercial What Were Your Biggest Hurdles


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I want on your jobs, if thats the case
Want an extra? Send me the CO and I will send it back signed.
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Old 05-20-2015, 10:17 PM   #12
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Re: Going Residential To Commercial What Were Your Biggest Hurdles


bonding requirements can be tough. Arm, leg, wife's arm and leg, son's arm and leg... bonding companies want it all.
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Old 05-20-2015, 10:49 PM   #13
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Re: Going Residential To Commercial What Were Your Biggest Hurdles


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bonding requirements can be tough. Arm, leg, wife's arm and leg, son's arm and leg... bonding companies want it all.
And services
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Old 05-20-2015, 11:00 PM   #14
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Re: Going Residential To Commercial What Were Your Biggest Hurdles


Methods & materials are often different in commercial.

Lead times on material can kill you.

Submittals & shop drawings are incredibly important.

Be aware of unions & prevailing wage.

Review plans & specs with an electron microscope.

You will need to carry the job for 45-90 days.

Retention will be held.

Scheduling subs in proper order is critical.

95+% of commercial is pure business.

Review plans & specs with an electron microscope.

Be aware of critical path.

Have a subcontractor meeting & explain expectations.

Know the RFI/CO path of approval & time line.

You will need cash or line of credit.

Review plans & specs with an electron microscope.

Not sure if I mentioned it but review the plans & specs & know them front to back, sideways & upside down...

Find out if you can bond for the job before you bid it.

Good luck.
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Old 05-21-2015, 10:16 AM   #15
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Re: Going Residential To Commercial What Were Your Biggest Hurdles


Quote:
Originally Posted by Inner10 View Post
Higher insurance requirements, more safety regulation, longer payment terms.

I'd say the only real disadvantage is you need substantial working capital. Everything else about commercial is better.
Yep. I was a lead framer on a commercial job once that my boss had to front 90 days of pay/expenses before he could collect. And if you submitted anything in the wrong way, your invoice was delayed another 30 days............it puts loads of risk onto you.
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Old 05-21-2015, 10:22 AM   #16
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Re: Going Residential To Commercial What Were Your Biggest Hurdles


No one mentioned OSHA Nazis ?
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Old 05-21-2015, 10:59 AM   #17
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Re: Going Residential To Commercial What Were Your Biggest Hurdles


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No one mentioned OSHA Nazis ?
Generally expected to behave in an OSHA like manner.

It's the large GC's safety guys that make OSHA inspectors feel like your best friends. Typically hired iceholes who enjoy the job, waaay too much.

Tho better dealing with icehole than ER staff

Last edited by Texas Wax; 05-21-2015 at 01:06 PM.
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Old 05-21-2015, 11:01 AM   #18
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Re: Going Residential To Commercial What Were Your Biggest Hurdles


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Generally expected to behave in an OSHA like manner.
I wish resi did too
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Old 05-21-2015, 12:46 PM   #19
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Re: Going Residential To Commercial What Were Your Biggest Hurdles


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I wish resi did too
Why? I've never heard anyone want more govt regulation.
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Quote:
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You ask for your money frequently, and you collect it quickly, else you stop working immediately.
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Old 05-21-2015, 09:13 PM   #20
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Re: Going Residential To Commercial What Were Your Biggest Hurdles


Quote:
Originally Posted by griz View Post
Methods & materials are often different in commercial.

Lead times on material can kill you.

Submittals & shop drawings are incredibly important.

Be aware of unions & prevailing wage.

Review plans & specs with an electron microscope.

You will need to carry the job for 45-90 days.

Retention will be held.

Scheduling subs in proper order is critical.

95+% of commercial is pure business.

Review plans & specs with an electron microscope.

Be aware of critical path.

Have a subcontractor meeting & explain expectations.

Know the RFI/CO path of approval & time line.

You will need cash or line of credit.

Review plans & specs with an electron microscope.

Not sure if I mentioned it but review the plans & specs & know them front to back, sideways & upside down...

Find out if you can bond for the job before you bid it.

Good luck.
Nailed it...can't add anything except...you mist have money to make money in big commercial

A revolving line of credit would be invaluable.

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