View Full Version : Is anyone afraid of the current economic situation ???

White Gardens
10-01-2008, 01:16 PM
I'm curious to see the posts on this one.

Is the current state of the economy going to impact your business??? Personally it looks like I'll be having loan problems next year if I decide to buy more equipment. I might have to make my purchases on a cash only bases only because of the tighter restrictions on loans. That and are people still going to be wanting landscaping done after their investments have taken a down-hill slide.

Probably not going to be as many comercial developments next year either, so there goes commercial installs.

I don't have a lot of overhead, so a hit isn't going to hurt me other than the income.

Any thoughts.......

10-01-2008, 01:22 PM
Ill be ok as long as the BEER keeps flowing.

Seriousley now is a good time to have your fiances in order preferably be Debt Free

10-01-2008, 09:51 PM
I've got some customers who are freaking out, and I've had one or two fall through that I had figured were laydowns. On the other hand, the phone is still ringing. The financial sector tried to tell everyone that the world would end if the bailout didn't fly. Well, it didn't- and we're still here. I think a lot of folks are kind of shrugging their shoulders and going "I still have a job, and I still want that ______."

That said, I'm selling them hard and fast before Paulson can open his stupid mouth again!

White Gardens
10-02-2008, 01:05 PM
No more posts than this. I'm kinda disappointed, I thought I would get a flurry of opinions on this one.

10-02-2008, 02:46 PM
We have seen in the last week or so a number of company's state they are closing their doors for good.

Equipment is being sold about 40% under value and we have been buying them up as fast as we can.

Panic is a funny thing. When everyone starts to run away you need to hold your ground and hang on.

During the same time we are getting so many bids that we have two full time estimators scrambling, putting in 12 or more hours per day and working all day Saturday.

It only looks up from here for us and I think those with looking at the future holding opportunity instead of having the 'Chicken Little' attitude.

White Gardens
10-02-2008, 05:14 PM
See, that's what I'm thinking. If I'm establishing my business at a low point then it should only go forward. I've doubled every year for the past three, and for some reason I don't feel there is going to be any reason I can't double again next year. (My goal is to double for the next three)

I hope I'm savoy enough to pull it off, I'm guessing that's what it's going to take to keep moving forward.

Any Mods, or sponsors want to put in more input???

10-02-2008, 08:03 PM
It is my opinion that the media sends everyone running in a panic, the sky is falling, the sky is falling, meanwhile in real America yes ordinary people are finding it hard to swallow the crap that big oil and this Bush administration have been feeding us, also fueled by media B.S. but yet business continues and customers will always come and go. So I try my best to maintain a positive attitude and roll with what ever comes my way, I do not intend to let this political garbage take me down...

10-02-2008, 09:46 PM
at this piont in time i have done giving up on the american government, they are suppose to do the good for the people, but all they care about is doing good for themselfs and big corporations.

DJ Contracting
10-02-2008, 09:56 PM
When i started my business i came in knowing i had to generate my own income so whats different now, it seem that the phone keeps ring for more quotes in the lawn care, snow plowing, seal coating, and concrete work. I agree the common public is still moving on, i don't have millions invested in the stock market so i'm not worried.

10-02-2008, 10:39 PM
I think it is some thing to have great concern of. We all do a luxary business, from cutting grass to building walls we are not really needed. I mean if it comes down to a guy putting food on the table or paying for our services, what do you think he will ckoose?

10-03-2008, 02:59 AM
"This too shall pass." This time I think it may take awhile

AL Inc
10-03-2008, 03:36 PM
I agree, we could be looking at another 4-5 years before things start to improve. Sure I'm worried, as mike33 said, we are in a customer service driven, luxury business for the most part. But I've got to keep moving, I'm still working and will continue to make my investments. I believe people will still need to maintain their houses, so the market for maintenance will still be there. Worse case scenario I see could be me going back to running a crew with one or two guys with me. Not the worst thing in the world.
In the meantime, let this be a learning experience for us, keep your debt down, save money and don't live above your means.

Mike Leary
10-03-2008, 06:51 PM
I'm still working

I went through this in the late 70s & early 80s. At that time my client base was zip, I was just starting out..made it thru; the weak ones and low ballers were forced to another market and that's a good cleansing of our industry. :)

10-03-2008, 09:33 PM
I went through this in the late 70s & early 80s. At that time my client base was zip, I was just starting out..made it thru; the weak ones and low ballers were forced to another market and that's a good cleansing of our industry. :)

That's exactly why I'm hoping for a slow down! I have zero company debt and I don't think most in this business are in this situation. Those who have been irresponsible and have a pile of debt probably wont survive a extended slow down.

10-04-2008, 11:46 AM
What we think we are seeing is that people are 'nesting'.

Each time the economy goes bad they drive less, go out less and have to look at their own property and start to say.

Let's fix up our place.

Our residential business is up over 20% from last year and we cut back advertising and were preparing for a reduction.

Boy did we get corrected!

10-04-2008, 12:15 PM
Well it had to happen, and it's going to keep going until the transition is complete.

Fact is, the manufacturing sector needs to figure out how to get more done for less
so as to gain the ability to drop the prices to a sustainable level, and that is all that is
happening now. Companies have gone out of business in the past and companies
will go out of business in the future, it may not sound like the best event since
sliced bread but it happens.

"This too shall pass." This time I think it may take awhile

I would agree with that statement.

I think it is some thing to have great concern of. We all do a luxary business, from cutting grass to building walls we are not really needed. I mean if it comes down to a guy putting food on the table or paying for our services, what do you think he will ckoose?

It all depends, I think it boils down to perspective...
If it comes down to putting gas in my truck or putting food in my mouth,
gas goes in the truck, not because I like the pain of hunger,
but because I have to stay operational.

Doing just that has had an interesting effect, for the most part.

White Gardens
10-04-2008, 01:28 PM
Awesome Posts.

I was trying to get opinions on the matter, and I got some good ones.

The funny thing is in the current economy, is that nobody really is talking about it. I wonder if people are scared, or they truly aren't worried about it.

Anyways :usflag:

Doster's L & L
10-04-2008, 02:29 PM
I don't think there is much to worry about. The Senate passed the "Invest in America" bailout plan Wednesday and the House followed suit Friday. I believe this will relieve the credit stress and should grease the joints of this old capitalism machine again. Personally I believe we're bottoming out and should see a rebound in the economy soon. There are steps the Treasury will be taking to shore up capital and keep financing liquid. The huge drop in employment tells us about what happened in September. That's in the rearview mirror now. We're back on the road to prosperity boys and girls. BOOO YAAAA!!!! to you Cramer fans.

10-05-2008, 12:28 AM
Im a small company 2 men, 48 years old with 2 men. I have fair amount of equiptment but paid for. This year was different phone didnt ring as much but i got mostly say 80% what i wanted on bidding. Profit margain maybe down some but pretty close to last year. I do feel next year will be better. 1 reason i have FAITH IN AMERICA :usflag: In my area this year divided the men from the boys in business. I don't run my business on the big ego of being in debt on fancy looking trucks and toys. It bit some of them this year in my area who played that game. You def. had to know how to run a business and conserve. I listened the last couple of years at some of these clowns in my area and now i can laugh the whole way to the bank at them. 1 thing i dont own a dump truck anymore, i have a guy that trucks for me on a dime 60.00 per hour gets the job done. Now i see some of them for sale because they dont have the work and cant make the payment. Our area has an abundance of guys in the trucking business, why do i want one?

10-05-2008, 09:47 AM
All great points here! Stay lean and small and you should be ok. Keep your debt down. I think you'll see people spending money on their back yards and for small projects as people tend to lay low in these times. There's no joking that spending is down...Toyota 32% Do I have to mention Ford? ...HD down 10.2 on big bikes and is cutting prod by 40%, Plastic Surgeons have seen their business down by as much at 30-40%........all a sign of consumers tightening the belt. The banks..big ones are not lending as freely.

I've lost 3 high end maintenance accounts this month. $850.00/month income gone! Each one had called me/emailed on a Monday after they reviewed their budget over the weekend. They have all bought their own lawn equipment and started to take care of thier own yards! I've checked on each property and I wasn't sold out to another company. These are people who are in homes ranging from $600-1.25 mil. But....I have a customer in a $160k home who just had us install a $4,000.00 pavestone patio! So....

There's work out there, but you'll have to lower your rates I bit to grab it. If there's any doubt about that, look at the lay offs and the price cutting going on across the board in retail and the food service industry. Small companies should be able to reduce their rates and survive if their debt isn't killing them.

I sold my toro dingo, dump trailer and a 1968 Camaro all within the last 3 months! Paid off almost all of my debt! I have a mortgage and some land payments as investments. I made 600.00 off the dump trailer and a couple hundred off the dingo. The camaro was bought back from the guy who originally restored it for $1800.00 more than what I bought it from him for 4 yrs ago. He called me last week saying that if he had been paying attention to Wall St....he would have held onto his cash! :) He's got a nice investment in his garage, he'll be alright. I wanted the cash and to spend more time mtn biking and kayaking instead of looking at a show car that was too nice to drive anywhere! My Honda Rincon is on the market also! Another toy I really don't need.....

One of the largest landscape firms here in Atlanta rents all of their bobcats and equipment! There's no reason why I can't! Same with trucking...right now there are guys with $800.00 payments and + willing to truck and deliver for you ....a dime a dozen.

Stay small and under the radar boys......this is going to be a long winter! If you can make thru this downturn.....after the dust clears, you'll be cashing in!

10-05-2008, 12:23 PM
I agree very much.