Contractor Talk - Professional Construction and Remodeling Forum banner

1 - 20 of 20 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
60 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Juat curious if people are busy or slow so far this year. We are in the dayton Ohio area and it seems slow around here. I dont know if people are broke from the hard winter or what.
 

·
Hair Splitter
Joined
·
18,330 Posts
Jason, Once you build a real base the famines are shorter lived and less painful.

I had to make a big adjustment last year and it cost me nearly two months. I am just catching up from that lull, but am also booking for late Summer early Fall. I just received 7 calls today alone.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
902 Posts
We stayed busy most all winter this year, and are continuing to stay a couple months booked...I agree with TNT that our company being pretty well established (since the late '40's) our low times seem short lived, which is great for us...keep at it, you'll keep seeing busy times come quick enough, people remember you and talk about you as they need projects done!
 

·
Livin the dream...
Joined
·
6,624 Posts
Jason, Once you build a real base the famines are shorter lived and less painful.

I had to make a big adjustment last year and it cost me nearly two months. I am just catching up from that lull, but am also booking for late Summer early Fall. I just received 7 calls today alone.
Just for the sake of learning what was the adjustment that cost you two months?
 

·
water re-locater
Joined
·
7,511 Posts
Thanks to a totally brutal winter with tons of ice and snow :thumbup: So far spring has been off to a very good start.. First time since the economy took a crap in 08 that we are actually busy...Too bad Jan,Feb and part of March i lost my shirt.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,104 Posts
Pick your poison- stress about not having work or too much. I like closing and installing within a week. This was a late start for everyone I know up here.
 

·
Hair Splitter
Joined
·
18,330 Posts
I have told the story on here a few times and Ron and Angus are pretty familiar with it, so I apologize for those that have heard it before.

In late 2011 I had a buddy of mine passed off a tiling job for a local plumbing outfit. This shop has been in this town since the 60's. Dad owned the shop and retired several years ago leaving it to his son and daughter to run.

Well, I did them right by that job and they asked if I would be their "tiler". I agreed and we came to terms. Over the next several months it became painfully obvious that daddy was still pumping money into the operation to keep it running and that his kids knew nothing about running a successful business.

I ended up being the unofficial GC for a large kitchen job, but really more like the jobsite supervisor. They used my Electrician (Ron) and my HVAC contractor. Here's how bad it was. The day that Ron showed up to start piping the "project manager/designer/world's biggest idiot when it comes to construction and remodeling", him and I had to lay out the kitchen cabinets. Here pen drawings on old 3 hole punch were surprisingly unaccurate. We sat there for the better part of two hours laying out the design and making the proper adjustments.

To make a long story short, they had so much work coming in that I was unable to really support any of my own. It was pretty good money. The problem was I had tied myself to them and had no real base any longer of my own.

Well I should have known how they operate because when I was brought on they already had a contractor working with them and instead of telling him what was going on they just stopped using him.

In December of 2012 we finished up a bathroom and I then took off two weeks over Christmas break. We had 6 jobs in the wings and were going to hit the ground running. I called them the first week in Jan of 2013 and they told me everything was on hold for a a week. That week turned into two and then they stopped returning my calls. I got the hint.

It put me in an awful position. I had to basically start from scratch. It took those two months to update my website and shake the bushes, but in the end, it was the best thing to happen to me. It was a great lesson in business. Never again will I hitch my wagon to anyone's horses.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,104 Posts
I have told the story on here a few times and Ron and Angus are pretty familiar with it, so I apologize for those that have heard it before.

In late 2011 I had a buddy of mine passed off a tiling job for a local plumbing outfit. This shop has been in this town since the 60's. Dad owned the shop and retired several years ago leaving it to his son and daughter to run.

Well, I did them right by that job and they asked if I would be their "tiler". I agreed and we came to terms. Over the next several months it became painfully obvious that daddy was still pumping money into the operation to keep it running and that his kids knew nothing about running a successful business.

I ended up being the unofficial GC for a large kitchen job, but really more like the jobsite supervisor. They used my Electrician (Ron) and my HVAC contractor. Here's how bad it was. The day that Ron showed up to start piping the "project manager/designer/world's biggest idiot when it comes to construction and remodeling", him and I had to lay out the kitchen cabinets. Here pen drawings on old 3 hole punch were surprisingly unaccurate. We sat there for the better part of two hours laying out the design and making the proper adjustments.

To make a long story short, they had so much work coming in that I was unable to really support any of my own. It was pretty good money. The problem was I had tied myself to them and had no real base any longer of my own.

Well I should have known how they operate because when I was brought on they already had a contractor working with them and instead of telling him what was going on they just stopped using him.

In December of 2012 we finished up a bathroom and I then took off two weeks over Christmas break. We had 6 jobs in the wings and were going to hit the ground running. I called them the first week in Jan of 2013 and they told me everything was on hold for a a week. That week turned into two and then they stopped returning my calls. I got the hint.

It put me in an awful position. I had to basically start from scratch. It took those two months to update my website and shake the bushes, but in the end, it was the best thing to happen to me. It was a great lesson in business. Never again will I hitch my wagon to anyone's horses.
I didn't know that story Rob- I thought you were above all of us. Lol.

There is something to be said to owning your own dog and pony show.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
4,623 Posts
up and down here in about 2-3 week cycles........Unless big work is booked, I consider this normal
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
929 Posts
I'm not much for accounting but the two important events in a year for me are:
1. When I get in the black, and
2. How much I make in the year.

Since first quarter is the slowest I always start in the red. Last year I didn't get in the black until August 1, much later than usual, but it ended up a very fine year. The year before that is was late May. This year it was early May, so things are looking good so far.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
2,247 Posts
I have told the story on here a few times and Ron and Angus are pretty familiar with it, so I apologize for those that have heard it before.

In late 2011 I had a buddy of mine passed off a tiling job for a local plumbing outfit. This shop has been in this town since the 60's. Dad owned the shop and retired several years ago leaving it to his son and daughter to run.

Well, I did them right by that job and they asked if I would be their "tiler". I agreed and we came to terms. Over the next several months it became painfully obvious that daddy was still pumping money into the operation to keep it running and that his kids knew nothing about running a successful business.

I ended up being the unofficial GC for a large kitchen job, but really more like the jobsite supervisor. They used my Electrician (Ron) and my HVAC contractor. Here's how bad it was. The day that Ron showed up to start piping the "project manager/designer/world's biggest idiot when it comes to construction and remodeling", him and I had to lay out the kitchen cabinets. Here pen drawings on old 3 hole punch were surprisingly unaccurate. We sat there for the better part of two hours laying out the design and making the proper adjustments.

To make a long story short, they had so much work coming in that I was unable to really support any of my own. It was pretty good money. The problem was I had tied myself to them and had no real base any longer of my own.

Well I should have known how they operate because when I was brought on they already had a contractor working with them and instead of telling him what was going on they just stopped using him.

In December of 2012 we finished up a bathroom and I then took off two weeks over Christmas break. We had 6 jobs in the wings and were going to hit the ground running. I called them the first week in Jan of 2013 and they told me everything was on hold for a a week. That week turned into two and then they stopped returning my calls. I got the hint.

It put me in an awful position. I had to basically start from scratch. It took those two months to update my website and shake the bushes, but in the end, it was the best thing to happen to me. It was a great lesson in business. Never again will I hitch my wagon to anyone's horses.
I like the 'hitching the wagon to the horses' part. That is a great saying that I never heard before.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
358 Posts
TNTSERVICES said:
I have told the story on here a few times and Ron and Angus are pretty familiar with it, so I apologize for those that have heard it before. In late 2011 I had a buddy of mine passed off a tiling job for a local plumbing outfit. This shop has been in this town since the 60's. Dad owned the shop and retired several years ago leaving it to his son and daughter to run. Well, I did them right by that job and they asked if I would be their "tiler". I agreed and we came to terms. Over the next several months it became painfully obvious that daddy was still pumping money into the operation to keep it running and that his kids knew nothing about running a successful business. I ended up being the unofficial GC for a large kitchen job, but really more like the jobsite supervisor. They used my Electrician (Ron) and my HVAC contractor. Here's how bad it was. The day that Ron showed up to start piping the "project manager/designer/world's biggest idiot when it comes to construction and remodeling", him and I had to lay out the kitchen cabinets. Here pen drawings on old 3 hole punch were surprisingly unaccurate. We sat there for the better part of two hours laying out the design and making the proper adjustments. To make a long story short, they had so much work coming in that I was unable to really support any of my own. It was pretty good money. The problem was I had tied myself to them and had no real base any longer of my own. Well I should have known how they operate because when I was brought on they already had a contractor working with them and instead of telling him what was going on they just stopped using him. In December of 2012 we finished up a bathroom and I then took off two weeks over Christmas break. We had 6 jobs in the wings and were going to hit the ground running. I called them the first week in Jan of 2013 and they told me everything was on hold for a a week. That week turned into two and then they stopped returning my calls. I got the hint. It put me in an awful position. I had to basically start from scratch. It took those two months to update my website and shake the bushes, but in the end, it was the best thing to happen to me. It was a great lesson in business. Never again will I hitch my wagon to anyone's horses.
I know I'm relatively unknown around here but I think this is the most valuable post made by TNT.

Thanks for sharing - I think everyone can learn something for that
 

·
Hair Splitter
Joined
·
18,330 Posts
I didn't know that story Rob- I thought you were above all of us. Lol.

There is something to be said to owning your own dog and pony show.
How do you think I became so smart? Experience...and screwing up every once in awhile.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
754 Posts
everything is up and down, when it's down take a break, relax and focus on building it back up, when things are up hold on tight and work hard

my only problem is I took most of dec. off 10-15 hrs a week if that. It was a nice reward.

Since January 1st it's been pretty ugly, labor prices have shot through the roof, guys are demanding top dollar again, there is a massive shortage of skilled labor in colorado right now. I'm raising my prices again June 1st. My head has not been screwed on right since january.

I cannot keep up with proposals and paper work and for the first time in my life I drive around playing contractor, showing up for 1/2 hr to each job, lining subs out, and supervising and moving on to the next job. All I do is manage people and materials. Never in my life did I think I'd be a full on contactor I figured I'd be a on site working/contractor just chilling out.

The numbers are through the roof this year so far.

I'm sure it varies from region to region of the country. If you like snow in may (it snowed all week at my house this past week) can stand extremely high housing costs, food, gas, etc or like driving from some middle of nowhere town at least 50 miles each way move to the mtns of colorado there is tons of work and plenty of opportunity for trades people.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
819 Posts
ive been in business 8 years now and this is my best year...im up 20-25% over last year which was up 15% over the year before

ive been working 10-12 hour days and some Saturdays to keep up

homeowner calls have been very poor for 30 days now....but builder work is great..all large projects
 
1 - 20 of 20 Posts
Top