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I just finished talking with a gentleman who worked primarily in my liitle town for the past 18 years doing home remodeling and repair. And he was closing up his shop. He said his forecast was so bleak and under our current administration that he couldnt justify staying open as a full fledged company he would however rely on his customer base to keep him busy as a truck and ladder guy. As I was talking to this man it became apparent that he was not much of a business man. Apparently he has been operating in the red for the past 5 months. Now I am confident that he gained his customer base was built by being the low ball and I dont even think it was intentional he kept complaining about how these other companies were charging so much more......well they arent closing up shop are they. They have the money to advertise and keep operating. I guess its a contractors capitulation to freek and close up shop. One thing is apparent there are tons of truck and ladder guys low balling around here trying to stay busy it is definately a difficult time for everyone but when I see things like this it makes me think that recovery is right around the corner.

Of course I live in a town that will benefit from all that so called stimulus money there is a national lab right around the corner that will be getting plenty of money so hopefully there will be more jobs.

Whats it looking like where you guys are?:eek:
 

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U.S. service industries from retailers to home builders contracted last month at the slowest pace in nine months and this makes me also feel better about the 3rd and 4th quarter of this year now, the Institute for Supply Management’s index of non- manufacturing businesses, which make up almost 90 percent of the economy, rose to 47 -- higher than forecast -- from 44 in May. Readings less than 50 signal contraction this is the index’s third straight monthly improvement and reflects signs of stabilization in housing and consumer spending.

I think things are going in the right direction, I could sit and complain about how bad things are or I could get pissed and work hard and make some money. :thumbsup:
 

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I think the bottom was in about 2-3 months ago, then we kind of bumped along a bit looking better... looking worse... looking better... but it all seems to be trending up.

By the way - good riddance to the guy, this is the benefit of a recession - the weak of the herd gets axed finally. Good for the herd and real good for the strong in the herd. The pay off will be a slam dunk eventually for the good operators for awhile as a lot of the bottom feeders are gone for a little while. Enjoy that while it lasts.
 

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The Duke
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Blaming everything else and not taking personal responsibility for where you are is the characteristic of a loser.

Sorry that I'm off topic. I just don't read the hype, buy into the fear, or really care about the overall economic condition of the US or who's supposedly running things.

This guy you are talking about is getting exactly what he is asking for. Sounds like you are going in the correct direction.

If it were me, I'd stay away from this stimulus money. When things are too easy to get, it makes you lazy.
 

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Am I the only one?

But do you ever feel you can sense the good coming? Or the bad?

Honestly, the start of this year was ruff, and I felt it, I could feel it going through winter. I just felt like it was going to be slow. Which is fine cause it keeps me right on top of my game.

I really feel like things are coming around though, and we'll see improvments.

I have lots of friends that work in the automotive industry, or companies that make parts for them. I know they are very busy now. A close friend runs the company that makes the piston rings for the auto companies, Chrysler just got back on to ordering, and all orders are way up.

He went from laying guys off, a lot at a time. to hiring on more, and working 60 hours a week himself, and they just gave him a good annual salary raise.
 

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I think the bottom will drop out of the economy again this fall and the winter will be worse then last year .
The fight will be on next spring for those of us left standing .
I still have the same volume of work but I'm making a little less money . I think I'm just punking out and not charging enough for my WOC ?
I'm spending more time selling work and less time on the jobs . Ive had 48 good leads since march and only landed 7 jobs .( none) of the jobs where done yet, so its hard to figure. I'm booked till Oct now and I'm looking at a few nice projects. I hope i land one for the fall to round out the year.
 

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I agree with Wellbuilt. Things are going to get worse.

The money guys are holding onto their cash waiting to see what is going to happen in Washington D.C. If our leaders pass some of these crazy
bills companies may not be able to reinvest in their business. Their extra dollars may go towards new taxes and/or meeting new regulations vs. new employment.

This winter is going to be tough for a lot of people. The slow season will probably weed out a lot of contractors (and hacks) that can't compete.
 

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I dont think we have witnessed the worst of it yet, we have been "busy" but thats about it. Prices have droped a bit, built a Taco Bell in late 08 for almost 60 grand more than the current one we are now...same building, slightly smaller lot and using a few of the same subs to boot.

I have a good friend who is VP of construction for a national commercial construction / realty company, his analysts are saying that the recession hasnt hit commercial property yet and dont expect it to until late 09 early 10. They are trying to sell off as much as they can atm, even at a loss, to raise capital now and buy later for pennies on the dollar.

I do know they have laid off every Superintendent in Ohio except 1.
 

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JimmyS
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up slightly

We're a small GC in western Mass. The phone basically died Dec - April, but is picking up a little. We're trying to book for late-fall-into-winter work now. Lots of GCs around here are slow - the only one going strong has cut everyone's wages and trimmed the subs' pay and paying late. Nobody in the trades likes them anyway, and they're making do, I guess.
It does seem like the "recovery" is running on very few cylinders just yet.
Jim
 

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If it were me, I'd stay away from this stimulus money. When things are too easy to get, it makes you lazy.[/quote]

Every dollar of stimulus I observed has strings attached back to the White House.

The hacks here are in full swing and growing as all of the GC's know there are tradesmen laid off in the city & have no idea how to run a profitable business.
 

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For myself, I have noticed things picking up. Of course season has something to do with it, and possibly my change of location. But one thing is for sure, I've landed alot more remodel/addition jobs lately than new construction. People are staying in their homes and remodeling rather than buying new. Just my experience with our clientele.

Im not sure if we've seen the worst yet or not but I hope so. Good points above about the recession weeding out the "wannabe's" but on the other side it brings in all kinds of low ballers (Joe Smoe the drywaller who got laid off is now a "GC" in business for himself). No they dont last but it still impacts what the HO thinks things should cost.
 

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DavidC
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I'm finding that this year is following the same pattern as most other years, just at a lower level. We are holding our own and optimistic about the future.

It's a good time to fine tune some business practices and look at what type of projects you want to get involved in. I expect we'll be better for the experience once the dust settles.

It certainly would pay to remember, it will happen again. Running a business is not static, it is always getting better or getting worse.

Good Luck
Dave
 

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Well I thought for a while (a few months back) that things were picking up - phones were ringing, had a job or two... Now things don't look as bright. I agree that this winter is going to be even worse than last year -- I am in California and all I see is businesses closing up around town (all kinds of businesses, especially retail) , and now with the NUMMI plant closing in the Bay Area? - times are getting tougher I'd say.
 

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Our phone is ringing steadily and we are very busy. The niche work we aim for is the 5-10k level. These are very profitable if you have your act together. We also haven't lowered our prices nor do we compete with the lowballers.

I credit it all to my wife who saw this coming several years ago. She started taking marketing classes at the local JC, went through every class and is now at the UC. The work she is doing is priceless to our success. Marketing is so important.

I can honestly say that you have to be very aggresive. You can not sit back and do the same old marketing and you cannot relax for a minute. The hard work will pay off as things start to turn upwards.

Getting the phone to ring is the hard part. Selling the job and completing it is the easy part.
 

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Our phone is ringing steadily and we are very busy. The niche work we aim for is the 5-10k level. These are very profitable if you have your act together. We also haven't lowered our prices nor do we compete with the lowballers.

I credit it all to my wife who saw this coming several years ago. She started taking marketing classes at the local JC, went through every class and is now at the UC. The work she is doing is priceless to our success. Marketing is so important.

I can honestly say that you have to be very aggresive. You can not sit back and do the same old marketing and you cannot relax for a minute. The hard work will pay off as things start to turn upwards.

Getting the phone to ring is the hard part. Selling the job and completing it is the easy part.
SCUBA,

You are right on target......
 
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