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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
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    Coral Springs, Florida
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    Default How's your business doing?

    It seems like a very large door has been slammed shut Thanksgiving Day.
    Business was starting to pick up and then all of a sudden nothing. I am still doing my marketing but man. I am located in south Florida on the east coast and I am interested to find out if this slow down is just happening to me alone or if this is happening to other inspectors?


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  2. #2
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    Oct 2003
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    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    Mark,

    Its pretty much over with now till the spring hits again.

    You can count on this time of the year to be slow if your been in this business for any amount of time.

    Time to kick back and grow your winter coat.

    rick


  3. #3
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    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    Yep, crummy time of year. I think we were a bit teased by the first time buyer's credit expring. It created a bit of a buying flurry in October and the first part of November. Once it got extended, all the urgency was gone.... right at the slowest time of year.

    I'm looking towards the spring as being a bit busier than last year as we slowly work our way out of this downturn/crisis/slump/etc/etc. IMO, the way out of this housing mess will be a lot slower than the way in. In the long run it's a good thing for those of us in this as our career. Booms and busts aren't good for anyone who's serious about this as a profession. Just some slow and steady growth for the next decade or so would be just fine with me....


  4. #4
    Ron Bibler's Avatar
    Ron Bibler Guest

    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    These time will test you in more ways... and that is good. a little book I have note a few times is back on my desk. I can say that I have never found more information in any book. other then the good book.

    How I Raised Myself From Failure To Success In Selling, by Frank Bettger.
    Its from the 1940s Small paperback.


    How I Raised Myself from Failure to ... - Google Books

    This a link to a small window of this book.

    Its worth your time guys. Best info I have...

    Best

    Ron


  5. #5
    A.D. Miller's Avatar
    A.D. Miller Guest

    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    Best info I have...
    RB: Sales boy, so that's it, huh? Best thing since sliced bread, no doubt. Another sizzle over steak thriller. Can't wait.


  6. #6
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
    Ted Menelly Guest

    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    I did some marketing to some Realtors. Yep marketing Realtors. I use that marketing to fill holes. I sent some mail out last night and this is one that I got back this morning.

    Yes AD. Marketing to Realtors. So much for the Fort Worth area. This is North of Dallas. I received it just before 8:00 am The highlighting is mine and the third highlighting is a come back even after I explained in my letter that I have been at this for decades and now in Texas for over 5 years.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------

    Thank you. I am always looking for vendors. Do you do pre-sale home inspections? Currently I do have someone that do these free as part of a training service. The second thing is I currently use an inspector who charges $0.10 a square foot with a minimum of $170 per home. Termite inspection is additional at a flat rate of $65. They do everything to meet my requested due dates. And I get a soft copy of the inspection by the next day.

    How does this compare with your service. I am always interested in helping someone get their business off the ground.


    Regards,


  7. #7
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    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    C'mon Ted. For .10 per square foot and a minimum of $170.00 per inspection, you too can get your business off the ground. And just think of all the great experience you'll get from performing those free pre-listing inspections.


  8. #8
    A.D. Miller's Avatar
    A.D. Miller Guest

    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    I did some marketing to some Realtors. Yep marketing Realtors.
    TM: The hell you say.

    I use that marketing to fill holes.
    TM: Try old cheese instead. It smells better than most agents and can be fed to rats after use.

    Yes AD. Marketing to Realtors.
    TM: Stop it right now!


  9. #9
    Bob Spermo's Avatar
    Bob Spermo Guest

    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    Home inspection business is down but the "energy side" of my business is up. Here is some good news - I am actually collecting some of Obama's (actually my own money!) money that he is giving out. Somebody is going to get it so why not me? I am instructing for the state. I give 2 40 hours courses in Energy Auditing and Weatherization to contractors that want to weatherize low income homes and receive federal funds. The state was given $380 million to weatherize houses for low income families. I like instructing better and the liability is non-existent!


  10. #10
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    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    I'm actually sitting around not doing a damn thing and enjoying myself quite well Thank you.

    Thinking about going to the Wally World, taking my special drink in a cup and watching the freaks get their last minute shopping done. Now there some real entertainment.

    rick


  11. #11
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    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    I'm going to the movie (Avatar) at Noon, does that tell you how my business is!

    Rick summed it up pretty darn good.

    Scott Patterson, ACI
    Spring Hill, TN
    www.traceinspections.com

  12. #12
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
    Ted Menelly Guest

    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Hurst View Post
    I'm actually sitting around not doing a damn thing and enjoying myself quite well Thank you.

    Thinking about going to the Wally World, taking my special drink in a cup and watching the freaks get their last minute shopping done. Now there some real entertainment.

    rick

    A little honesty here. I have been sitting around all week and all these people not calling me from the internet because the google map thing keeps folks from looking at the top placement organic search results have now called me and I have 3 inspections for the weekend. Oh well. Weekend or not, my backside is sore from sitting on it so I guess it is a couple Saturday and one Sunday.

    Tell me how the Christmas parade was at Wally World!


  13. #13
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    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    Scott,

    I got a sneak peak at the movie Avatar. A client of mine worked on the movie.

    It is going to be an awesome movie. Enjoy.

    rick


  14. #14
    Ron Bibler's Avatar
    Ron Bibler Guest

    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    Quote Originally Posted by BAGDAD BOB aka A.D. Miller View Post
    RB: Sales boy, so that's it, huh? Best thing since sliced bread, no doubt. Another sizzle over steak thriller. Can't wait.
    Say Bagdad Bob... I must say that some of the best HI are sitting home with nothing to inspect because they forgot they must sell there services
    first then they get to inspect.

    It's funny how we HI were just order takers over the past years. And now we need to become more pro active in sales if you are going to survive this economy. How long can some of you stay afloat if things say the same or get slower over the next 5 years? anyone paying bills with a credit card?

    That little book may not look like Much to some one like you that requires a higher form of Intellectual Capital BAGDAD BOB. but there are a few specks of gold in that book...

    Best

    Ron


  15. #15
    A.D. Miller's Avatar
    A.D. Miller Guest

  16. #16
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
    Ted Menelly Guest

    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    All those headaches from all that reading and you and Ron are sitting at a computer today......Go figure


  17. #17
    Ron Bibler's Avatar
    Ron Bibler Guest

    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Menelly View Post
    All those headaches from all that reading and you and Ron are sitting at a computer today......Go figure
    Like Ted stated thats a lot of stuffs go over... I'll stick with this little paper back... I've ran my company for some 20 year with info in that book.

    Best

    Ron


  18. #18
    A.D. Miller's Avatar
    A.D. Miller Guest

    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    To all who market to agents: this is not a new idea. Actually, it is the oldest:

    ***IMPORTANT*** You Need To Register To View Images ***IMPORTANT*** You Need To Register To View Images

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
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    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    I'm out the door to get doughnuts and more business cards.

    Thanks Aaron.


  20. #20
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    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Hurst View Post
    Scott,

    I got a sneak peak at the movie Avatar. A client of mine worked on the movie.

    It is going to be an awesome movie. Enjoy.

    rick
    Good movie! We saw it in IMAX and 3D. Took me about an hour to get to the point that I could drive my truck after seeing it!

    Scott Patterson, ACI
    Spring Hill, TN
    www.traceinspections.com

  21. #21
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
    Ted Menelly Guest

    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Hurst View Post
    I'm out the door to get doughnuts and more business cards.

    Thanks Aaron.
    Now That is funny


  22. #22
    Join Date
    May 2007
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    Tyler, TX
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    719

    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Menelly View Post
    I did some marketing to some Realtors. Yep marketing Realtors. I use that marketing to fill holes. I sent some mail out last night and this is one that I got back this morning.

    Yes AD. Marketing to Realtors. So much for the Fort Worth area. This is North of Dallas. I received it just before 8:00 am The highlighting is mine and the third highlighting is a come back even after I explained in my letter that I have been at this for decades and now in Texas for over 5 years.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------

    Thank you. I am always looking for vendors. Do you do pre-sale home inspections? Currently I do have someone that do these free as part of a training service. The second thing is I currently use an inspector who charges $0.10 a square foot with a minimum of $170 per home. Termite inspection is additional at a flat rate of $65. They do everything to meet my requested due dates. And I get a soft copy of the inspection by the next day.

    How does this compare with your service. I am always interested in helping someone get their business off the ground.


    Regards,

    That kind of makes me sick just reading it.

    November was a little off, but December has been very good...much better than other Decembers

    Bruce Thompson, Lic. #9199
    www.TylerHomeInspector.com
    Home Inspections in the Tyler and East Texas area

  23. #23
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    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    Last week was very slow and I spent some of the time cleaning out my desk/office. It is amazing the stuff we find way back in the drawers, and under the desk.

    This year is much better than 2008, but still way behind 2007. I don't really expect to work much the rest of the year, which is normal for the last two weeks in December.

    Cleaning out the office I found 4 cameras and 3 Dell Axims that are going on E-Bay tomorrow, along with some other stuff. Maybe one of my spare laptops will go too.

    I have spent a huge amount of time shredding documents from our old files, my Mother's papers, and my Mother in law's papers. I bought a surplus shredder from the Oak Ridge National Lab, and it will take like 30 sheets at a time without slowing down. So far about eight 32 gallon trash bags, and another dozen file boxes of paper that doesn't need shredding.

    I use the down time to get stuff done around the house, and spend quality time with my wife.


  24. #24
    A.D. Miller's Avatar
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    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    Is the term hibernaculum familiar to you?


  25. #25
    Join Date
    May 2007
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    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Feldmann View Post
    Last week was very slow and I spent some of the time cleaning out my desk/office. It is amazing the stuff we find way back in the drawers, and under the desk.

    This year is much better than 2008, but still way behind 2007. I don't really expect to work much the rest of the year, which is normal for the last two weeks in December.

    Cleaning out the office I found 4 cameras and 3 Dell Axims that are going on E-Bay tomorrow, along with some other stuff. Maybe one of my spare laptops will go too.

    I have spent a huge amount of time shredding documents from our old files, my Mother's papers, and my Mother in law's papers. I bought a surplus shredder from the Oak Ridge National Lab, and it will take like 30 sheets at a time without slowing down. So far about eight 32 gallon trash bags, and another dozen file boxes of paper that doesn't need shredding.

    I use the down time to get stuff done around the house, and spend quality time with my wife.
    That shredded paper makes a good additive to your compost pile.

    Bruce Thompson, Lic. #9199
    www.TylerHomeInspector.com
    Home Inspections in the Tyler and East Texas area

  26. #26
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    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    I have used it in the compost, I have also used it in the mulch, but there is just way too much - and a lot more to go.

    I found tax stuff from the 50's in my Mother in laws papers. I don't think they threw anything away.


  27. #27
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    so so, California
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    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    We're currently working on a one week back log @ two a day still. But like I keep saying, california is a whole different market, besides we market only to realtors and over the years we have been added to hundreds of so called "lists". It will slow down however. Usually until the middle of january.

    The MAZZA INSPECTION GROUP
    www.mazzainspections.com
    Level III Thermo-picture-taker-er...er

  28. #28
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    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    I find the shredded paper also keeps the poop from sticking to my shoes.

    We have two dogs and a cat, but not far is a cow/bull that spreads it around a lot.


  29. #29
    K Robertson's Avatar
    K Robertson Guest

    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    I like this slow time, my taxes are pretty much already done. Just waiting Friday to make sure I don't get anything last minute. Hopefully with the Obama tax breaks we all got, I will only have to pay 250% of what I paid last year instead of 300%. (yes, Rick, that was sarcasm

    Happy New Year!


  30. #30
    Join Date
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    Chicago, IL
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    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    This December was the worst - for the standpoint of HI business - I've ever had, it's IR and moisture intrusion work that is keeping me afloat. The only good new is the next year's E&O is already in the bank.

    Michael Thomas
    Paragon Property Services Inc., Chicago IL
    http://paragoninspects.com

  31. #31
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    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    Finished the year about 3% above 2008...... nothing to get too excited about except it's the first non-spiraling downward number I've seen in the last 3 years

    Happy New Year everyone!!!!


  32. #32

    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    I broke even with last year. Considering my rural area with a lot of "contractors" turned inspector lately I feel pretty good.

    Michael Carson
    Inspect It Right Home Inspections L.L.C.
    www.inspectitrighthomeinspection.com

  33. #33
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    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    I haven't crunched the numbers yet but 2009 was better than 2008 by a fair amount, but way off from 2007.


  34. #34
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    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    I counted up the numbers this morning and the actual numbers for 2009 beat out 2008 by 27 inspections. Not so bad as I thought it was going to be. Thought for sure I was under.

    Life is good.

    rick


  35. #35
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    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    My 2009 inspection total is 45 more than my 2008 total and about 10 less than my 2007 total. 2009 was good to me and I feel very fortunate.


  36. #36
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    Tyler, TX
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    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    Numbers are showing about 3% less than 2008 and 08 was a great year. I need to count up inspections.

    Bruce Thompson, Lic. #9199
    www.TylerHomeInspector.com
    Home Inspections in the Tyler and East Texas area

  37. #37
    Mark Barry's Avatar
    Mark Barry Guest

    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    I'm actually taking advantage of this slow season. I start college in January in construction technology. I have been able to keep my weekends open to do inspections on Sat/Sun. I like it when I can't loose, but only gain more opportunities.

    Last edited by Mark Barry; 01-01-2010 at 09:40 PM.

  38. #38
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    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Barry View Post
    I'm actually taking advantage of this slow season. I start college in January in construction technology. I have been able to keep my weekends open to do inspections on Sat/Sun. I like it when I can't loose, but only gain more opportunities.
    Absolutely! Though I didn't slow down like I expected, I studied and passed all 4 of the ICC code tests for residential.

    Bruce

    Bruce Thompson, Lic. #9199
    www.TylerHomeInspector.com
    Home Inspections in the Tyler and East Texas area

  39. #39
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    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    While I am cleaning out the basement, and shredding stuff, I came across some boxes from my early career.
    1. Looked at a report from 1989, probably my 75th inspection. OMG!!!!!! I know I wasn't even looking at some of the things I do as routine now days. Scary. Looking at the prices I charged was also scary. I was getting $165 then.
    2. Found some reports with Polaroid photos still stapled. While some of them have faded away, many were in pretty good shape.

    Here's, the reason for my post. January of 1992, I had ZERO jobs. Not one! I don't remember the details, but I think I thought that someone had come into my house and cut my phone line.


  40. #40
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    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    Jack,

    I'm shredding today also. I always keep any field notes that I write down for the year just in case I need to reference them.

    Guess what I came across?

    A check paper clipped to the back of a field note page for 450. dated last March. Its probaby no good now, so my loss. Oh well.

    Isn't it amazing how this person never called and complained or asked why their check hadn't cleared the bank.

    rick


  41. #41
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    May 2007
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    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Hurst View Post
    Jack,

    I'm shredding today also. I always keep any field notes that I write down for the year just in case I need to reference them.

    Guess what I came across?

    A check paper clipped to the back of a field note page for 450. dated last March. Its probaby no good now, so my loss. Oh well.

    Isn't it amazing how this person never called and complained or asked why their check hadn't cleared the bank.

    rick
    I think I'd call them and ask them if you can put it in now. Tell them, you just now need the money.

    Bruce Thompson, Lic. #9199
    www.TylerHomeInspector.com
    Home Inspections in the Tyler and East Texas area

  42. #42
    Join Date
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    Spring City/Surrounding Philadelphia area
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    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Hurst View Post
    Jack,

    I'm shredding today also. I always keep any field notes that I write down for the year just in case I need to reference them.

    Guess what I came across?

    A check paper clipped to the back of a field note page for 450. dated last March. Its probaby no good now, so my loss. Oh well.

    Isn't it amazing how this person never called and complained or asked why their check hadn't cleared the bank.

    rick
    That person is probably like me Rick. Once I write a check, I assume the money is gone. I rarely go back to cross reference it with my monthly bank statement to see if it cleared. If it is a personal check, it may still be good. If it doesn't have any verbiage about being void after 60, 90, 120, or whatever number of days, you should still be able to cash it.


  43. #43
    Ron Bibler's Avatar
    Ron Bibler Guest

    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Hurst View Post
    Jack,

    I'm shredding today also. I always keep any field notes that I write down for the year just in case I need to reference them.

    Guess what I came across?

    A check paper clipped to the back of a field note page for 450. dated last March. Its probaby no good now, so my loss. Oh well.

    Isn't it amazing how this person never called and complained or asked why their check hadn't cleared the bank.

    rick
    Now every one is going to start cleaning up there work space... L.O.L.

    I would cash it Rick... But give them a call first to cover it...

    You earn the money...

    Best

    Ron


  44. #44
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Ormond Beach, Florida
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    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Ostrowski View Post
    If it is a personal check, it may still be good. If it doesn't have any verbiage about being void after 60, 90, 120, or whatever number of days, you should still be able to cash it.

    I believe many banks put a one year limit on the checks if there is not a shorter limited specified.

    Being as that was only from last March, you may still have another 3 months to hang onto it.

    I would submit it with your next deposits and see if it goes through, if not, call your client and tell them you just found their check which you had misplaced and would they be so kind to send another one ... or just chalk it up to an 'Oh, well, I screwed that one up.'.

    Just thought about this ... if the people moved very far, they may no longer even have that same bank account, so you might want to check with your bank before submitting it with your next deposit.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  45. #45
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    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    I called up the clients and asked about the check. They as Ron said they never figured their checkbook so they didn't know it had cleared or not. Once I explained to them what happened, they said surely to cash the check as I had earned it. Luckily they still have the account open although they have since moved.

    Next, I'm cleaning out my glovebox on my truck. Maybe find somemore funds.

    So far as of 2010 I feel like I am at 450. and I haven't left the house as of yet. Looks like a good year.

    rick


  46. #46
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    Knoxville, TN
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    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    Rick,
    Money earned in 09, but cashed in 10??? Hmmm.

    I'm going to go check my couch now. We had people over on News Years Eve.


  47. #47
    Kevin Luce's Avatar
    Kevin Luce Guest

    Default Re: How's your business doing?

    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Patterson View Post
    Good movie! We saw it in IMAX and 3D. Took me about an hour to get to the point that I could drive my truck after seeing it!
    Worth taking time out of the day to see?

    There is a theater across the way from my office. There has been a few times I thought about putting the office work aside and take a few hours to watch a movie. Then I just have to think about how uncomfortable those chairs are and I get back to work.

    While I think many movies aren't worth spending the money to see in the theater, there are those few that are worth the time, money and uncomfortable chairs.


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