Hey Donnie Loves Jenny (on the block). We don't. But we do love the pictures of seriously delayed Hazel getting up to ramming speed. Check out the Block Party:
We would like to take a moment and apologize for our perceived absence. We are very much alive and around, but just a little mired down right now. This is threefold in nature.
First, we have entered the busy season at the day gigs. Crazy is as crazy does and we are crazy busy with the J-O-B. (Lots going on and scrambling to build an arc or two before the floodwaters roll in.)
Second, we are in the midst of looking at another business or two. That is, our Box Bend business needs our hand on the wheel from time to time because the systems we have either come up with, or that have been instituted through our professional circle, have allowed us to build a Google-like autopilot car of a business. Our day job is our day job, and although it can take up to 60+ hours per week, we still have 108 hours to deal with. All those hours cannot be utilized for sleep alone, and Box Bend does not require anything close to part-time work. So, we have decided to look at opportunities, and the pursuit of building systemized companies, as our "hobby" - although the word hobby does not do it justice. We know people who drink, play softball, watch endless TV, but spend little time outside of the day gig actually thinking about and working towards financial goals. We also know a few that pursue money and forget about the quality of life, or the fact that money is only one weapon in a large and complex arsenal of weapons. The pursuit of money alone, for some, is the end-all, be-all. Not us. It is a tool and a weapon. It is a fundamental among a cadre of fundamentals. We advocate tackling the challenge of the game of business on the road to financial independence, but we also advocate some form of balance and a healthy pursuit of life both spiritual and physical.
Finally, and actually continuing our second point above, our other business -the real estate franchise - is in the capable hands of a group of good people -including our business partner in that venture. This, too requires periodic correction and input, but for now we are mostly monitoring. However, be that as it may, and even with the autopilot nature from time to time of Box Bend, we believe strongly that only a genius or a fool has only one source of income. Since we are not geniuses, we would prefer not to be fools, and diversification seems like a good bet. So our last excuse is one of pure diversified interests.
Either way, we are still very much in the game and are actually looking for ways to scale up Box Bend while simultaneously pulling cash from the table in preparation for a potential recession within the next 24 to 48 months. That may seem like it is way out there, but for us it seems like it is closer than most realize, or would even consider as "close." And, to add insult to injury, we want to be in a cash reserve position should this probability of recession become a highly probable situation. If we are wrong, so be it. However, if we are right, cash will be king again, and opportunities will abound to pick up deals. The bandit signs will disappear and a scarcity in deals will become an abundance as all the "must-haves-at-any-cost" become the "don't wants-no-matter-the-loss." So... All that to say that we are working on a magic trick that we are not sure how to perform: scale up while stocking cash. We'll keep working on it . In the meantime...
We're here, so stay tuned.
New construction photo taken post-rain but pre-inspection of footer trenches. The GC had to pump the trenches out three times to get them partially dry before calling for inspection.
Stay tuned... And dry.
Well, it looks like we have another squatter. Many, many moons ago, when we purchased our land south of town, we had a squatter with a penchant for porn and the movie, Grease 2, living in the farm house on the property. We now have, or had, a squatter at the new rehab project. The Sheriff has been called and we are considering legal action -as we purchased an "empty house" from the seller. As soon as the squatter is out, we will board up the property and call it a day until we are ready to start our repairs and alterations. Which brings us to the topic of photos...
We have requested photos from our GC and are awaiting some shiny new photos of the foundation popping out of the earth on our new build. As soon as we get them, we will post them here. In the interim, the below photo will have to do as stand-in entertainment. (These are septic trucks)
We are back from California. La Jolla, to be exact with some Temecula, Ontario, Los Angeles (Glendale -Americana on Brand for dinner one night), and Carlsbad in the mix. The day gig was the thing. We were there whale hunting a prospect with a ton of business for our day gig handlers to salivate over. And us, too. That is, we enjoy the day gig and we enjoy wooing our customers and earning their business. None-the-less...
We do this thing of ours (Box Bend) because we don't see a good reason to limit ourselves to one source of income. And we enjoy this gig a lot. We see this as the escaping gravity gig. You know, the gig that sets you free from whatever it is that is tethering you to earth. Having the opportunity to stay or leave anywhere at one's discretion is a somewhat rare commodity. The ability to create systems to replace, and possibly surpass one's income is an outstanding value proposition that cannot be ignored.
So, back to Cali, we rented a car and drove from San Diego Airport to a place in Carlsbad. We were under the impression that while we were looking at the ocean, our little new build was well in hand, and well down the road. We found out tonight that we are actually four weeks behind schedule. We're not too sure that those four weeks can be made up. Why? Because the first two and a half weeks were due to weather. We're good, but we cannot control the weather. The remaining week-point-five has been due to a labor shortage. Everyone is soooooooooooooooo busy that they are not meeting schedules, much less appointments that they make. Our GC has been stood up twice by two separate companies for the same set of tasks, He is at the point where he will do it himself if no one shows up by Thursday... Which begs the odd question or three, but we won't ask and hopefully he won't tell.
The bigger issue here is managing our own expectations. We come out of architecture, now own a real estate company with a partner, and have been to this rodeo many, many times. So, we know that delays happen. And they seem to happen on the small jobs with a greater frequency than with the big ones. (On big jobs, one can assign LDs or Liquidated Damages to specific people who impede the progress or schedule. Good luck trying to assign LDs to a small 3/2 new construction that is stand alone.). So to be delayed should come as no surprise.
Being pissed off won't solve the issue. Better time management skills, realistic expectations, and some emotional intelligence will go a long way in handling these situations. So will staying tuned to the frequency and duration of such problems. Once the data is in, one can adjust future expectations by ten, twenty, or you-name-it percent. That management will either result in minimal disappointment, or pleasant surprises. Self-management is (or should be) the first order of business.
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