Now more than ever outdoor living is in! While homeowners have increasingly invested time and money into their yards in recent years, 2020 saw interest in outdoor living spike to unprecedented levels as homeowners everywhere adjusted to a new normal by reimagining how to use and enjoy their exterior spaces.
Deck builders across the country are taking note of some of the biggest lessons they’ve learned and logging them away for the
North American Wholesale Lumber Association had just wrapped up its Leadership Summit early last March when the significance of the COVID-19 outbreak slammed home. Attendees had no idea then, but that would be the last in-person industry gathering for the foreseeable future.
It’s a great time to be what I refer to as a Custom Deck Specialist. With the pandemic, people are home and looking for some additional leg room. A beautiful new deck can add a tremendous amount of new floor space at a reasonable cost.
When we began our remodeling careers over 30 years ago, we quickly learned that doing good work wasn’t enough to guarantee a smooth project or a satisfied customer.
Whether you have multiple crews or you’re part of the only crew, most contractors have a predictable if not limited “buildout capacity.” At the end of the year, your profit is based on an achieved percentage of not what you sold, but the dollar volume you built out in a year.
For the last two years, I’ve run a $3-million-per-year solo consulting practice, but I have been out of money multiple times in my life. Today, I sell large six-figure consulting projects approximately once a month because that is all I can handle. But when I started doing this work, I was proposing (and getting rejected for) $7,500 projects.
Over the summer, home design and renovation hub Houzz reported a 178% year-over-year jump in searches for professionals to work on deck, patio and porch projects.
Like many in our industry, we have discovered that “necessity is the mother of invention.” We have not only learned to make the best of a bad situation, we have found ways to work smart, improve efficiency and trim costs. In the early stages of the pandemic we weren’t clear what the future would hold.