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Author Topic: Starting out fresh with a new business  (Read 1831 times)
Paul Allen
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« on: October 24, 2007, 12:57:56 PM »

Well, I finally got sick of working for "the man".

I just opened up a new construction company.

Now, all I have to do is get customers.

Anyone have any ideas?
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« Reply #1 on: October 24, 2007, 03:15:19 PM »

I had a landscape (construction) biz for a while. Long and short of it is I got sick of 16 hour days 7 days a week. Anyway....


I first drummed up business by finding a good leads service online. I got many great leads and they were cheap too!

Next I went around the surrounding neighborhoods and looked at landscapes that needed serious help and left a flyer with a hand written message offering my services at a discount.

Then I went to everyone I knew and let them know I was out on my own and that I would give them a great deal for helping me get started. This was an awesome way to get some quick biz and to strengthen my relationship with people in the area.

After that it was the occasional lead online and referal business. Referal business is what you are looking for. All you have to do is sit back and let it come to you and the people already know the quality of your work!

Also, I contacted some designers and showed them my work and asked that they use me as a sub. This works well with GC's and builers as well!


There are a million good ways to drum up business but in the construction biz I think these work best.
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Paul Allen
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« Reply #2 on: October 25, 2007, 06:49:36 AM »

I had a landscape (construction) biz for a while. Long and short of it is I got sick of 16 hour days 7 days a week. Anyway....


I first drummed up business by finding a good leads service online. I got many great leads and they were cheap too!

Next I went around the surrounding neighborhoods and looked at landscapes that needed serious help and left a flyer with a hand written message offering my services at a discount.

Then I went to everyone I knew and let them know I was out on my own and that I would give them a great deal for helping me get started. This was an awesome way to get some quick biz and to strengthen my relationship with people in the area.

After that it was the occasional lead online and referal business. Referal business is what you are looking for. All you have to do is sit back and let it come to you and the people already know the quality of your work!

Also, I contacted some designers and showed them my work and asked that they use me as a sub. This works well with GC's and builers as well!


There are a million good ways to drum up business but in the construction biz I think these work best.

thanks for the great advice!

if it's not too much of a hassle, where did you get your online leads from?
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« Reply #3 on: October 25, 2007, 11:38:50 AM »

Well, I finally got sick of working for "the man".

I just opened up a new construction company.

Now, all I have to do is get customers.

Anyone have any ideas?

Good for you!!!

What kind of construction do you mainly do?
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« Reply #4 on: October 25, 2007, 03:43:35 PM »

thanks for the great advice!

if it's not too much of a hassle, where did you get your online leads from?

Well, it was a landscape leads service called YardCrew.com. I also got things like concrete jobs on there, odd stuff sometimes too. I used bestcontractors.com as well but they sucked ass!

What is your business exactly? Concrete? Framing? Custom homes?
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« Reply #5 on: October 25, 2007, 04:51:48 PM »

Is your company based in USA? If so, i dont see a good future for it, at least for now.
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« Reply #6 on: October 25, 2007, 05:36:26 PM »

Is your company based in USA? If so, i dont see a good future for it, at least for now.

Yep housing market taking a big shit on us all
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« Reply #7 on: October 25, 2007, 08:42:16 PM »

There are ALWAYS people that need work done. You just gotta look. You may not sell many homes but that doesnt mean people wont hire you for a remodel to increase their chances of selling. I have a concrete company as well and the business is always there to be done. Driveways, city jobs, apartment complexes, strip malls, you name it. There is always money to be made.



Good luck and keep your eye on the bottom line!
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« Reply #8 on: October 25, 2007, 08:51:06 PM »

There are ALWAYS people that need work done. You just gotta look. You may not sell many homes but that doesnt mean people wont hire you for a remodel to increase their chances of selling. I have a concrete company as well and the business is always there to be done. Driveways, city jobs, apartment complexes, strip malls, you name it. There is always money to be made.



Good luck and keep your eye on the bottom line!
I agree with you, but paul is starting a new company, hence its pretty MORE hard than someone like you, already estabilished and running. Seriously, just take a look at the economic numbers related to the area you work with right now, and its all pointing to the same direction: disaster.

I really wouldnt try to start anything involved with homes in usa, but, if paul really have the money to do it and to keep his new business running during the "storm" i really can see a wonderful future.
You know, after the storm, the sun come, and we all know there's gonna be another construction boom in usa, but the problem is we dont know yet exactly when this is going to happen, and thats the risk.
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« Reply #9 on: October 25, 2007, 09:20:39 PM »

The fact of the matter is that you DO NOT have to work for someone else for 40-50k a year even in this market. It really depends on what your monthly "nut" is. If its low, thats good. Dont go jacking it up with new heavy equipment and a brand new dually. Gotta stay cheap but dont skimp on the quality. It is rough at first because you have almost nothing compared to an established company, but you have to take a different view.


You can offer the same thing in a little more time as a larger company and for less money because you have little to no overhead. All you have to do is sell a couple jobs a month to be well off. Other things come into play such as employees and such but at first you should be using PT workers or day labor (god do they suck but it works). Just be prepared to live on a taught tensile line if need be. That IS usually the case in the winter anyway.


I made very little at first, enough to get by. Shortly after that, all the connections I made paid off 1000%. I landed my first $20,000 dollar job through a friend of mine whos father needed a water feature. The next big job was $10,500 and it came from a concrete guy I knew. I took home $5000 off that job alone and it took under two weeks. The work WILL come if you put in the hours. Be aware though! This must be what you want to do or you will not last too long. I found out the hard way. I like working outside and building things but when I do that for 10hrs, come home to 10 voicemails, 4-6 bids to do and I work an additional 6 hours and miss the gym IM NOT A HAPPY GUY!


Put in the work and you will do well! Congrats!
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« Reply #10 on: October 25, 2007, 11:12:57 PM »

Other than acting I have been on my own since 1983.  That was the last year I used a timeclock.  I don't think I have ever had to fill out a job application except maybe as a kid in school
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Paul Allen
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« Reply #11 on: October 26, 2007, 05:17:08 AM »

hey guys, thanks for all the advice.

the company will be electrical contracting.  i am certified & licensed in my city, which has a 7 percent passing rate on its licensing exam.

so yes, i will do with electrical contracting exclusively.  why?  because a lot of my family has out of work electricians and i believe i can find them work.

now it's not a job bust per se, they all worked for a huge national contractor that went bankrupt in my sector and now 5 of them along with around 300 of their coworkers are out of work.  they did industrial electrical installation and due to tightened credit restrictions (yes, it happened in commercial industries as well) no one was giving them work.

i've started to work slowly into finding work.  i signed up at bidclerk.com, but as someone mentioned, i hit a roadblock when they ask me for references and completed jobs.

so right now, i'm somewhat stuck.  i still have a week left at my old job, (gave them my 2 weeks last monday) and then into the pit i jump.

i have a years worth of savings to get by comfortably (mortgage, no car payments, food, etc.) so i hope to get cracking soon.

as always, help is appreciated.
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« Reply #12 on: October 26, 2007, 03:42:10 PM »

Well I must say that if you are doing electrical work then contacting builders is the best way to go about it. Not just big builders but people who do drywall, framing and even landscape and concrete contractors. I used a friend of mine, who is an electrician, for odds and ends and he was very appreciative. If I needed an outdoor duplex or some lighting done I would just throw it his way because legally I cant do it and I dont want to. Electrical is one of those fields where there are almost no DIYers so you always should have work.


Like I said, keep up with the contacts you have and strengthen your relationship by discounting some work for them. That will start the word of mouth and while that is happening, hit up all the builders and contractors you can find. I also found some networking groups around my area that were great for starting out. There was this one that was somewhat exclusive because only one person in each field was allowed to attend. Im sure it really helped a lot of people because you got so much attention focused on you and your company instead of 100 assholes that all do the same thing trying to sell you on the idea that they are the best out there.


Anyway, please let us know how we can help!
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« Reply #13 on: October 26, 2007, 05:57:41 PM »

hey guys, thanks for all the advice.

the company will be electrical contracting.  i am certified & licensed in my city, which has a 7 percent passing rate on its licensing exam.

so yes, i will do with electrical contracting exclusively.  why?  because a lot of my family has out of work electricians and i believe i can find them work.

now it's not a job bust per se, they all worked for a huge national contractor that went bankrupt in my sector and now 5 of them along with around 300 of their coworkers are out of work.  they did industrial electrical installation and due to tightened credit restrictions (yes, it happened in commercial industries as well) no one was giving them work.

i've started to work slowly into finding work.  i signed up at bidclerk.com, but as someone mentioned, i hit a roadblock when they ask me for references and completed jobs.

so right now, i'm somewhat stuck.  i still have a week left at my old job, (gave them my 2 weeks last monday) and then into the pit i jump.

i have a years worth of savings to get by comfortably (mortgage, no car payments, food, etc.) so i hope to get cracking soon.

as always, help is appreciated.

Sounds to me like you have a lot of experienced guys all looking for work.

I'm glad to see you've got a years worth of savings... some people just up & quit, and 2 weeks later... they're behind.

Bummer about what happened, ...but that spells "dangerous opportunity". you can fill a void in a lot of people's lives.

Have you considered a "joint venture" at all? You have access to a large number of skilled experienced guys,
...but you have no "references". Have you considered subcontracting out to a contractor. you might not be in a position to bid on large contracts, but you can jv with someone who is in that position, ...but has a shortage of people? A friend of mine went off to the Bahamas for months doing all the electrical work when they built "The Atlantis". The money poured in and it was tax-free. Landing a gig like that could set you up very nicely, and provide you with the type of references you need to really get your company off the ground, ...as well as a very dedicated, very grateful, and very loyal crew.  Just a thought.
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« Reply #14 on: November 02, 2007, 10:44:41 AM »

Where are you located Paul? I'm an Architectural Consultant and do work in NY, Las Vegas, Cabo and Colorado's resort market (and surrounding areas). I can hook you up with some good builders.
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« Reply #15 on: November 16, 2007, 09:48:19 AM »

Where are you located Paul? I'm an Architectural Consultant and do work in NY, Las Vegas, Cabo and Colorado's resort market (and surrounding areas). I can hook you up with some good builders.

I just moved about a year ago to the Chicago Metro area.  If you have any connections here, i'd be more than happy to work with you.
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