Still busy?

Discussion in 'Heavy Equipment & Pavement' started by Scag48, Nov 9, 2007.

  1. Scag48

    Scag48 LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,068

    For those of us in somewhat "seasonal" climates, who's still out working? Here in western WA, the work season is pretty much year round. On the eastside of the state, things are a little different. I talked to my dad a couple days ago, they're done for the year landscaping. Barely got a big paver job finished, he's ready for snow now. His foreman is very experienced with finish work in houses and such, they re-tile bathrooms and do all sorts of maintenance/additions to the motel my dad owns during the winter. Keeps our foreman busy almost year round and helps keep that maintenance hog of a motel up and running. If you guys think wrenching on your equipment every once in a while is bad, 40 motel rooms is a maintenance NIGHTMARE, there's always something that needs fixing.

    Currently I'm writing an 18 page research paper due in 3 weeks, good times. Really hating life right now with school and working 32-35 hours a week, 19 credits this quarter was not a good choice. Looking forward to Christmas break, a buddy of mine is looking to pick up an excavator that needs a bunch of work done on it, maybe I'll get my mechanic skills going again and lend him a hand a couple days a week. Spring definately needs to hurry up and get here, I'm ready to get back on the iron. With the summer months behind us, the "scenery" at the restaurant isn't getting any better, what a buzzkill!
     
  2. ksss

    ksss LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 7,128

    I have got work for the foreseeable future. I think the weather will give out before the work does.
     
  3. Gravel Rat

    Gravel Rat LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,544

    Thats one thing about living on the West Coast/Pacific Northwest area we can work all year round. What is snow :laugh:

    I do think we are going to have a colder winter than last year.
     
  4. mrusk

    mrusk LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,260

    We are going year round this year. The tents are ordered. The karosene heaters are orders. We are ready.
     
  5. bobcat_ron

    bobcat_ron LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 10,089

    My work has come to a slow trickle, now I am waiting to give my Local CAT rep a call and start trying out their MTL's, this time of year is always slow, but interest rates go down and buying new equipment is cheaper now.
    But I still have work with other machines on the side too.
     
  6. Gravel Rat

    Gravel Rat LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,544

    The Finning's salesman doesn't get around this part of the coast much see more Brandt Tractor and Conneco trucks more than anything then the odd time you see Wajax.

    Work does continue all year round in my area but as the realestate market has gotten way overpriced the market has gone from a sellers market to no market.

    Talking to a regular customer the other day he said he is watching the market and what to-do he would like to go back into the excavation business himself. He was said we are seeing the same repeat of what happened in the 70s with the Canadian dollar sky rocketing and the cost of oil is high along with a good economy then shortly after a recession started. One thing he said to me was don't buy a house right now the prices are overly inflated and they will drop signifcantly. He said there are people buying houses 100-200,000 dollars more than they are actually worth same thing that happened in the 70s. I was telling him I wanted to buy a house he said wait till 2011 when the house prices drop.

    I almost quit my job the other day I was so frustrated but I was convinced not too. With the good economy predicted to only last another 5 years and the signs of the local economy already starting to flop. So I got to stick with a job I really don't like, it looks like this winter many guys won't be working especially in the forest industry.

    Got to do what you don't like I guess have to look at the long term picture of things.

    I know many of the excavation contractors in the area now could pull the pin and call it quits they would. They want to get away from the 10 grand or more a month equipment payments and the stress. Most of them had to buy newer equipment to do the jobs and replace worn out equipment.

    One of the contractors I was work with last week was saying he would love to get out of the business but he can't he is too far into the hole with equipment payments. A familly friend who is a contractor got right out of residential excavating because the lack of profit and constant fight with getting paid from homeowners who has been in the busines for 30 years.

    It will be interesting to see what happens in the next 5-10 years not many new excavation companies are starting. The current companies operating will probably close up when the owners decide to retire. They are not hiring people to sell the company too. As I said in my last post the training of equipment operators isn't happening. People only have their sights on now and there is enough equipment operators to fill the jobs now not 5-10 years from now.

    Same with truck drivers supposidly there is a huge shortage of drivers but its so expensive to get a class 1 (A) CDL from a driving school its not worth getting your CDL. A barebones basic class A cdl at a driving school is 3 grand then goes up to 8 grand for more training. When I went for my CDL 12 years ago it was 800 dollars thats just to drive a tandem axle dump truck now its double that a class A was 1500 dollars.

    Anyhow enough rambling but trying to put a rosey spin on the situation is tough to do when everybody is looking at short term aspects to the economy.

    Right now its all about 2010 and the Olympics crap well when that 2 week event is over it puts the Province into debt and all those construction jobs disapear what is going to happen. There isn't any sustainable economy in B.C. its all about building expensive houses for retiring baby boomers.
     
  7. Scag48

    Scag48 LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,068

    There will be a shortage of operators and excavation companies in 10 years. That's just fine with me, even in a slow economy 1 guy alone can't handle a town of 6,000 people which is more than likely where I'll set up shop, back home. I'm just looking at the guys back home who are in business, they'll be done in 10 years, 15 years at the absolute most with nobody to replace them. There's at least 10 local guys back home in the biz, if they all retire, I couldn't handle all the work even if I wanted to in a slow economy. That's my plan, I'll be the only guy in a 35 mile radius in the business. My home town is small, but with people from Seattle flocking there to build summer homes and what not, we stay pretty busy.

    We'll see what happens, In 10 years I'll hopefully have $100K to throw down on some equipment, or at least a healthy down payment. The 3.5 acres I bought will put me into business after I sell it.
     
  8. bobcat_ron

    bobcat_ron LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 10,089

    I coughed up a meager $600 for my class 1 DL. I'm cheap!
     
  9. SiteSolutions

    SiteSolutions LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,114

    You should look into suspended animation like they did for Austin Powers. Just let em freeze you now and then thaw you out in 20 years when the economy is good again.

    Or, you could try to do something over the next five years and try to have your debts paid down (or paid off) by then. Maybe keep a little money in a separate account just to travel to somewhere better when the economy finally does collapse, someday.

    FIVE YEARS?

    Come on.

    If somebody told me a killer tornado was coming in five days, I would stock up on supplies for the next four days!

    If somebody could prove to me that we would only have five more good years around here, I would work my butt off to make as much as I could and see what happened, not crawl into the storm cellar five years before the bad times got here!
     
  10. bobcat_ron

    bobcat_ron LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 10,089

    But then some fat Scottish jerk comes along and steals your "mojo". :cry:
     

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