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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    7,764

    Reality Check...

    is what I need very seriously.

    The news and govt state in the papers and TV that unemplyment is down, economy is coming out of whatever you want to call it, people are spending money and there is a seemingly presentation of overall doing pretty good in this country.

    So, in the past month these are a few of my down and dirty on the street experiences.

    Called a lead tech from a really great firm around here for some leads to parts..he's telling me his company is probably not going to make it through the summer. All the installs crews have already been laid off. This is a quality company with tons of customers that has been in business for 20 years.

    Waitress friend told me she grew up with a guy that owns one of the well known HVAC firms around here. He's down to himself now. Laid off everybody.

    Another waitress friend told me her husband that works for another pretty good HVAC co. is down to 3 people including the owner. They typically run 8 to 12 techs.

    Drove by a firm of about 10+ guys today. All of their 4 install vans are sitting in their parking lot.

    Last week or so drove by another 10 to 20 guy firm and at least 10 of their service vans are setting in front of their office during the day.

    Just baby sat for a buddy that went out of town for a week. He watches over my business and I watch over his when out of town. We've been doing this for about 10 years or so. He does a ton of maintenance/replacement work for bottom feeding property managment companies. I'm always over whelmed with his customer phone calls while he is away. Got 3 phone calls during the whole week. He's says he's working part time for another co. to make some money. He's been around for a long time too.

    Have three restaurant owner friends that tell me they are just making it. One is a lady in her late 50's that told me she and her husband borrowed money on their house to keep the restaurant open. And that if they can't they are going to lose their home.

    Have two friends that are living off of unemployment.

    This is the short version of what I have run into in the past months.

    On the other hand we had lines of people sleeping out in front of stores to get the IPad thing. The news stories indicates something completely different and accutely opposite of my experiences.

    So, where is the reality here?
    "The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers it can bribe the public with the public's own money.
    - Alexis de Toqueville, 1835

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    1,275
    Reality is the US is broke, and so are a majority of its people. The wealth has been flowing westward for centuries, no point in stopping the trend now. Fact is those Ipads are made in China, and there is no American manufactorers that are even close to capable to fabricating parts for the thing. Except maybe the leather carrying cases, but even there are you better off buying a Mexican one. Game over USA, game over.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2000
    Location
    Eastern PA
    Posts
    68,944
    Another reality is that many of the techs who have been laid off for more then their unemployment period will be starting their own business and competing against the companies that laid them off.

    I see new companies cropping up every week.
    Government is a disease...
    ...masquerading as its own cure…
    Ecclesiastes 10:2 NIV


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    2,793
    Quote Originally Posted by RoBoTeq View Post
    Another reality is that many of the techs who have been laid off for more then their unemployment period will be starting their own business and competing against the companies that laid them off.

    I see new companies cropping up every week.

    That means nothing, being a good tech and being a good businessman have nothing in common. I think that I've even been lucky.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2000
    Location
    Eastern PA
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    Quote Originally Posted by air2spare View Post
    That means nothing, being a good tech and being a good businessman have nothing in common. I think that I've even been lucky.
    Of course it means something. It means that work is out there and that people are spending money. What it means is that companies are not marketing themselves properly in order to turn over every rock in order to obtain work.

    When a major repair is needed on a 10 year old system, how many of you try to show the consumer the benefits of replacing that system? There has never been a more beneficial time to upgrade systems. With tax credits and rebates the higher efficiency systems don't cost as much. With the cost of energy going up due to fossil fuel costs and electric providers no longer being regulated, the investment in a new HVAC system is the best return on investment you can find today.

    Consumer have money. They just need to be shown that $10,000 in the bank or stock market is not going to give them the annual return that increasing the efficiency of their heating and cooling system will. If a consumer is making 5% (a high yeild) on their $10,000 dollar investment, that works out to $500. If that same $10,000 is put into an HVAC system that will be cutting energy costs by 30% and the cost of energy is $5,000 with the current systems, that works out to $1500 in savings. So, is it worth $500 to lose $1500?
    Government is a disease...
    ...masquerading as its own cure…
    Ecclesiastes 10:2 NIV


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    SC
    Posts
    20,677
    Quote Originally Posted by RoBoTeq View Post
    Of course it means something. It means that work is out there and that people are spending money. What it means is that companies are not marketing themselves properly in order to turn over every rock in order to obtain work.

    When a major repair is needed on a 10 year old system, how many of you try to show the consumer the benefits of replacing that system? There has never been a more beneficial time to upgrade systems. With tax credits and rebates the higher efficiency systems don't cost as much. With the cost of energy going up due to fossil fuel costs and electric providers no longer being regulated, the investment in a new HVAC system is the best return on investment you can find today.

    Consumer have money. They just need to be shown that $10,000 in the bank or stock market is not going to give them the annual return that increasing the efficiency of their heating and cooling system will. If a consumer is making 5% (a high yeild) on their $10,000 dollar investment, that works out to $500. If that same $10,000 is put into an HVAC system that will be cutting energy costs by 30% and the cost of energy is $5,000 with the current systems, that works out to $1500 in savings. So, is it worth $500 to lose $1500?
    But all they have is the 30% of the original amount. Just stuffing the original amount in a pillow case leaves them with 100% at the end of the day.

    Cash flow, Robo. It's the cash flow that has stopped.
    No reserve. No retreat. No regrets.

    For those who have fought for it, freedom has a sweetness the protected will never know.

    http://www.airwarvietnam.com/16thSOSGunners2.jpg

    Proud member of KA Club

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    7,764
    A good number of my customers are very high income. They have pretty much stopped spending money and have invested overseas where there is a return, they tell me in so many words. No they have not given me details as they keep that to themselves and it's none of my business anyway, I'm sure.

    We also have a great many new techs starting their own business primarily because they believe that their previous company just didn't know what they were doing and that is why they got laid off.

    So they spend their hard earned money getting all the tools, licenses, bonds, insurance and truck to open up their own. In a short period of time they find out why their previous company laid them off. Some of my distrubutors have told me some of these guys are getting stuff and are not able to pay, which only compounds the problem.

    On the other hand I'm sure a few of these guys will succeed in one way or another. It's always been the case. But I also see that the cost of being in our business is increasing pretty much across the board here in WA state, but the ability to get a fair price for services is decreasing due to so much competition.

    I'm sure this must be true across the nation. And it's not making most of the installs that I have seen for a while better, but worse in a lot of cases.

    I like to look for opportunity where I see it but I'm not seeing a lot of opportunity in this present crisis, and it is a crisis, that we may or may not live through.

    To me, this still is not a recession, like most need to believe, but a destruction of our way of life. So we will not be getting out of it like in the past.

    Reallity sucks. I deal in reallity as a trouble shooter. People hire me to get their system working and I have to see what is wrong, not what I want to see is wrong. I'm seeing a lot of problems in this country with the average and skilled working person as far as employment is concerned.
    "The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers it can bribe the public with the public's own money.
    - Alexis de Toqueville, 1835

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Virginia, near the coast
    Posts
    1,174
    Quote Originally Posted by RoBoTeq View Post
    Another reality is that many of the techs who have been laid off for more then their unemployment period will be starting their own business and competing against the companies that laid them off.

    I see new companies cropping up every week.
    That's a trend I've noticed for years. Early in the summer, I see at least a dozen shiny, new service trucks with company names I've never heard of. That is usually the last time I see or hear anything about most of them.
    It's a mechanical device, designed by humans, built by humans and operated by humans. What could possibly go wrong?

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Posts
    2,736
    Quote Originally Posted by RoBoTeq View Post
    Another reality is that many of the techs who have been laid off for more then their unemployment period will be starting their own business and competing against the companies that laid them off.

    I see new companies cropping up every week.
    That is just what I did in 1992

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2000
    Location
    Eastern PA
    Posts
    68,944
    Quote Originally Posted by coolperfect View Post
    That is just what I did in 1992
    I'd say that it is the most common way that most HVAC companies get started.
    Government is a disease...
    ...masquerading as its own cure…
    Ecclesiastes 10:2 NIV


  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Posts
    2,736
    [QUOTE=DeltaT;6371702]A good number of my customers are very high income. They have pretty much stopped spending money and have invested overseas where there is a return, they tell me in so many words. No they have not given me details as they keep that to themselves and it's none of my business anyway Well they got to be feeling dumb right about now.The YTD for the DOW is over 5% and the S&P over 6.5%,thats on top of the 60% last year.And they are starting to spend,we have blowout numbers from retail,companys like Nike and Best Buy,Even Sears and Home Depolt

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2000
    Location
    Rochester, NY, USA
    Posts
    14,308
    Quote Originally Posted by DeltaT View Post
    is what I need very seriously.

    The news and govt state in the papers and TV that unemplyment is down, economy is coming out of whatever you want to call it, people are spending money and there is a seemingly presentation of overall doing pretty good in this country.

    So, in the past month these are a few of my down and dirty on the street experiences.

    Called a lead tech from a really great firm around here for some leads to parts..he's telling me his company is probably not going to make it through the summer. All the installs crews have already been laid off. This is a quality company with tons of customers that has been in business for 20 years.

    Waitress friend told me she grew up with a guy that owns one of the well known HVAC firms around here. He's down to himself now. Laid off everybody.

    Another waitress friend told me her husband that works for another pretty good HVAC co. is down to 3 people including the owner. They typically run 8 to 12 techs.

    Drove by a firm of about 10+ guys today. All of their 4 install vans are sitting in their parking lot.

    Last week or so drove by another 10 to 20 guy firm and at least 10 of their service vans are setting in front of their office during the day.

    Just baby sat for a buddy that went out of town for a week. He watches over my business and I watch over his when out of town. We've been doing this for about 10 years or so. He does a ton of maintenance/replacement work for bottom feeding property managment companies. I'm always over whelmed with his customer phone calls while he is away. Got 3 phone calls during the whole week. He's says he's working part time for another co. to make some money. He's been around for a long time too.

    Have three restaurant owner friends that tell me they are just making it. One is a lady in her late 50's that told me she and her husband borrowed money on their house to keep the restaurant open. And that if they can't they are going to lose their home.

    Have two friends that are living off of unemployment.

    This is the short version of what I have run into in the past months.

    On the other hand we had lines of people sleeping out in front of stores to get the IPad thing. The news stories indicates something completely different and accutely opposite of my experiences.

    So, where is the reality here?
    the reality is, the media is NOT YOUR FRIEND. The media/Government cheer leading team is making it seem like things are going well, but when the SHTF...........it will Bush's fault

    The Last four letters


    American = I Can, Republican = I Can, Democrats = Rats


    any questions

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