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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Spring City/Surrounding Philadelphia area
    Posts
    3,471

    Default Outlook for Business in 2008???

    Not that the first two weeks of the year are a measuring stick but I am slowly losing a grip on my normal optimistic outlook of seeing things turn around for business in my area any time soon. Two inspections done this month and a last minute cancellation yesterday that just adds insult. I have no idea when or from where the next job will come. Every article I read about credit woes and the mortgage industry seems to speak of things getting even worse. The major banks are reporting huge losses and consumer confidence shrinks by the day. I think this officially marks the burst of the housing bubble. The only hope I'm hanging on is that the closer we get to Spring, maybe things will show some uptick.

    This is like the first year in business all over again, only worse. I expected to be slow then. Sorry to be a downer guys. Your mind starts wandering with too much unrequested time on your hands.

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Dallas, Texas
    Posts
    4,112

    Default Re: Outlook for Business in 2008???

    Hang in there Nick, I think I know how you feel.
    Our area has not had the dramatic housing bubble that has been seen in other areas, but just listening to the national news with all the talk of a housing bubble bursting can tend to get even the most optimistic person down in the dumps.
    Just remember, everything in real estate is cyclical, always has been.
    For every low there is a high and vice versa.
    This too shall pass!

    For what it is worth, I have had my best Jan. ever. Lots of foreclosures and winterized properties, but still it is business.

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Dallas, Texas

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    Rockwall Texas
    Posts
    4,517

    Default Re: Outlook for Business in 2008???

    Jim,

    Same thing here. I've already surpassed Jan. 2007 number of inspections so I'm not complaining. The agents I've met at a few homes have all said they are busy so lets hope we have a good spring.

    Feb. is the usually the worse month out of the year though.

    rick

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  4. #4
    Richard Rushing's Avatar
    Richard Rushing Guest

    Default Re: Outlook for Business in 2008???

    I've been waaaay too busy for this time of year. I keep dropping more and more advertising that I used to have and the more I've dropped, the better things have gotten.

    Go figure. It's be a superb January here.

    Nick, hope things take a turn soon.

    Rich


  5. #5
    Kevin Luce's Avatar
    Kevin Luce Guest

    Default Re: Outlook for Business in 2008???

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Ostrowski View Post
    Not that the first two weeks of the year are a measuring stick but I am slowly losing a grip on my normal optimistic outlook of seeing things turn around for business in my area any time soon. Two inspections done this month and a last minute cancellation yesterday that just adds insult. I have no idea when or from where the next job will come. Every article I read about credit woes and the mortgage industry seems to speak of things getting even worse. The major banks are reporting huge losses and consumer confidence shrinks by the day. I think this officially marks the burst of the housing bubble. The only hope I'm hanging on is that the closer we get to Spring, maybe things will show some uptick.

    This is like the first year in business all over again, only worse. I expected to be slow then. Sorry to be a downer guys. Your mind starts wandering with too much unrequested time on your hands.
    I know what you are saying.

    Even though I'm still doing enough to pay most of the bills, the worry is there since this business is the only income to support my business and family (no income from wife). I'm glad that the savings from the past years are helping out for those unexpected items but still hate to see the savings getting smaller.

    I was surprised that there were some home inspectors around here that kept talking about doing well and then see one just went out of business.

    I also use to be on the cheaper side when it came to houses under 1,500 sq ft and then become more on the expensive side when it came to houses over 2,500 sq ft. Some of these inspectors that talked down at home inspectors that charge too little are now offering discounts that are $25 to $50 less then me on the smaller houses.

    From the information I have seen about other home inspectors businesses throughout the U.S., when it comes to the individial, the average home inspector (3 years in business and more) brings in around $50,000 to $80,000 per year. It will be interesting to see how those numbers change this year.


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Ormond Beach, Florida
    Posts
    25,313

    Default Re: Outlook for Business in 2008???

    Not to offer depressing news, but most projections now say that the real estate market will not likely turn around until spring 2009 ... , and to expect more foreclosures and prices to continue to fall until it does turn around.

    Of course, the housing market situation varies from geographical area to geographical area, and the housing market turnaround will vary too.

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

  7. #7
    imported_John Smith's Avatar
    imported_John Smith Guest

    Default Re: Outlook for Business in 2008???

    Most of my business lately has been foreclosures. These are good inspections. No furniture, no sellers following you around, and the utilities are always turned on. In addition, I hardly ever seen any real estate agents. Also I have been doing a lot of 1 year warranty inspections.

    To date, business has just been slightly slower than last year.


  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Dallas, Texas
    Posts
    4,112

    Default Re: Outlook for Business in 2008???

    Most of my business lately has been foreclosures. These are good inspections. No furniture, no sellers following you around, and the utilities are always turned on.
    You must be far enough south that they don't winterize

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Dallas, Texas

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Lake Barrington, IL
    Posts
    1,363

    Default Re: Outlook for Business in 2008???

    From what I've read, we have quite a ways to go with sub-prime rates re-setting - over 2 million more mortgages due in 2008. This is expected to continue to dragging down industries dependent on the housing market. As for the Fed further dropping rates - sounds like they're too late to really salvage the economy. Now the hope seems to be on foreign countries infusing some cash into our financial system. As long as money is tight lenders are going to be very cautious and stingy.

    Keep those belts tight!

    Eric Barker, ACI
    Lake Barrington, IL

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Oklahoma City
    Posts
    356

    Default Re: Outlook for Business in 2008???

    It has been slow here too Nick. I am down 50% from where I was last Jan. Jan is always our slowest month around here. However, the phone started ringing the past two days, I booked 7 in the last two days and had 3 or 4 price shoppers that didn't call back. That is a dramatic increase as I have only done 10 inspections this month. So hang in there, it can turn fast, I am hopeful it will hold up for another month and then we will be doing much better as mid Feb is when busy season usually kicks in here.

    On the bright side, with tighter credit, we should be getting better buyers and less folks with no cash trying to get into a house. Also less competition as many will hang it up. This is a good time to come up with some new ideas and marketing strategies as well. Maybe even other streams of income from second businesses. This will be my second year in pest management and I am using this time to get some things done to help on that end to get me through the down cycle. Termites and spiders don't care about the market.

    If it weren't for lawyers, we would never need them.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    Rockwall Texas
    Posts
    4,517

    Default Re: Outlook for Business in 2008???

    Richard,

    A 4K sq. ft. condo in Frisco? You working the ghetto again?

    Frisco is great isn't it. Nothing but huge homes to deal with. Right now there is over 140 homes over 5K sq. ft. on the market there. Many foreclosures in the smaller homes there though.

    I just finished out a 11K sq.ft. up there. Took 3 days to knock it out but I'm not complaining. Almost 3 mil. and paying cash.

    We're in the wrong biz.

    rick


  12. #12
    Richard Rushing's Avatar
    Richard Rushing Guest

    Default Re: Outlook for Business in 2008???

    Nope. Not slummin-it... to the contrary, everyone seems to be paying cash these days. Alot of these folks have too much money and are looking to pick up some good deals with all the foreclosures and such. Most don't even care if they have to hold'em for 3-5 years because the paper is so good.

    I've been considering moving across town to the Plano/ Frisco area so I won't have so much of a commute every day... Lotsa work there.

    Rich


  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    2,365

    Default Re: Outlook for Business in 2008???

    In Oregon we're off to a pretty poor start... about 1/2 of last year, which was no great year either.

    I talked to a friend yesterday who travels around to about a half dozen areas and finds investment properties for his clients. He says it's like night and day from one area to another. In some areas if the properties are too expensive for the rent they draw the investors just go elsewhere. Then factor in the lending crunch which excludes a lot of would-be first time buyers and over 1/2 of the potential biz is gone.

    That's pretty much what I've seen around here lately - mostly downsizers or people moving for work. Still the occaisional investor or first-timer but nothing like before.

    I've heard 09 before it gets any better too... I don't really know how anyone can predict it though. It's really just all speculative and will probably change as we get closer.


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