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Beginning GC for Women??

2724 Views 16 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  kurf
Hello Everyone!!

I have been reading the different threads on this site and have come to the conclusion to ask for advice...

Hmm..ok..this is how I will start:

I am a 25 year old woman from Chicago with NO personal experience with contracting of any form, but my husband is a framer. Eventhough I was born in the US I have a Polish heritage and my husband is "off the boat" or so to speak, with no knowledge of the way things work here in America...he just knows how to do his job.

I want to build houses!! The first step I am taking is I have signed up for a General Contracting course at our Community College that lasts 14 weeks for 3 hours a week. I believe that I CAN DO IT!

Many of you here that I from Chicago know that Chicago is a very competetive market amoung sub contractors ( and I know this because everyone that my parents know build houses and own their own contracting business etc..too bad my parents went the way of trucking!!). The thing is, I still believe that you can succeed here. That there is an immense value of building a home for someone as if you were building it for yourself.

My question is this, how difficult would it be for a women?? Where would I begin??

I was hoping that since we have some equity in our home, I would be able to refinance and take a cash out so that I can purchase some property. Then I would go to the bank to get a New Construction Loan. I have no idea how difficult this would be , but we have pretty good credit so that shouldn't be a problem. Another thing I have no idea about, is if I can turn around and sell this house after I am done building it? Do I have to BE GC in order to be the Owner/Builder? Should I incorporate, or do it personally see if I can do it, and then incorporate?? I know that I can call my dad's accountant and she can help me with the financial questions, but I feel that I would like an opinion from experience.

Please let me know, and thanks for reading this long post...what can I say, I am a woman--we LOVE TO TALK!!! He he he.. :cheesygri
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14 Week Contractor Course?

I've never met a GC that attended a course of any kind. I do a lot of work for General Contractors, 20% go out of business before I come back to trim out and 50% go out of business before I've known them a year.

I've met a lot of people that wanted to be managers and administrators and didn't feel the need to know how to actually build *anything*.

I hate to be the lone dissenting voice, but you will be competing with people who actually know how to build a house and have done it with their bare hands. "Running" your parent's business isn't good enough. You need to know construction. You need to have been there and done that.

I've had female "project managers" send me out to do rough wiring on houses that haven't even been framed yet. I'm a speciality contractor but am in a very good position to know what it takes to be a good GC as I've dealt with litterally hundreds:

1. Experiance in the trades. Really, no kidding. Sweat, blood, the works.
2. Good business skills. Read the E-myth contractor and Markup to Profit.
3. Credibility.

You have no experience and no credibility. Your Daddy worked hard to build a business that you step into and if you say you're a good businesswoman, I'll take you at your word.

Now, the good news, nobody started out with experience or credibility, that's earned, and not at the local community college, you have to get dirty andpay your dues. The fact that you're here and sincere and are eager to apply yourself is good. But not good enough.

Strap on a set of tools and learn it from the trenches up, it's the only way.

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