Monday, July 16, 2018

Are Modular Home Builders Happy?

First we have to learn what “Happy” means. According to the dictionary (for those that are under 30, it’s a book) it means feeling contentment, pleasure and delight.

Now the question becomes “Are modular home builders Content and Delighted?”

So let’s take a closer look at a typical week in the life of modular home builder.

Monday morning is the ‘rude awakening’ day for a lot of modular builders. The phone calls and emails start about 6:00 AM. An email from a customer asks to meet you at the house ASAP because they visited it over the weekend and saw something they didn’t like, ordered, saw missing, etc.

Then one or more of your subs contacted you saying they can’t make it to your job this week because their ‘truck broke down’; ‘they are sick’; ‘didn’t get the job before yours finished’; etc.

One of your workers didn’t show up and didn’t let anyone know. Oh, almost forgot, your factory sales rep called and said they didn’t get the special order of windows yet and your house will NOT be going on the line this week.

Tuesday sees local Code Enforcement red sticker your foundation because of a small infraction and tells you they can’t make it back to until Friday even if you correct it today. You call your sub asking when they can get to your job only to find out their truck conveniently broke down again at another builder’s jobsite. Your insurance agent calls telling you the premium is going up 20% next month.

Wednesday, hump day, starts off well but quickly goes downhill when you learn one of your potential customers is going to buy an existing home from the same Realtor that brought them to you in the first place. Not that you were counting on that sale! You only made three trips to their lot, had the factory draw out their plans (at your expense), priced out the house 3 times and submitted all your information to their mortgage company. Bourbon and a crying towel for lunch?

Thursday begins the long weekend for one or more of your laborers and subs. They work until noon and then slack off or disappear completely. This is usually the day your set crew wants to confirm the exact day for next week’s set only you forgot to tell them the factory called and moved the delivery date back a week. And let’s not forget about the draw that was supposed to happen yesterday that never showed up in your checking account and payroll will be written this afternoon.

Friday, absolutely beautiful Friday! A closing in the morning, two new prospects called for appointments next week and the payroll is met. The set is going great today with no problems and the cost of that custom home you were waiting on from your factory sales rep came in lower than expected. You’ll be able to get to your daughter’s soccer match on time and spend a wonderful weekend with family and friends.

OMG! That’s not your Friday, that’s the other modular home builder’s Friday. You've never seen a Friday like that one.

Back to the question, “Are Modular Home Builders Happy?”

They sure are or they wouldn’t come back the next week to fight the battle again.


Frannie G said...

Even all those things don't usually happen in the same week they do happen on a regular basis. Most of what you mention happens to every new home builder, not just modular builders, and if I ever had a Friday without at least one big problem to solve I would be so happy.

Roseann Jannetti said...

I read this article and it put a smile on my face! This has been my life for the past 25+ years. I have learned in this business you roll with the good and the bad. If there is someone telling you it does not happen to them, they are probably not telling the truth. Subcontractors come and go! You take the good with the bad, you learn from every experience and the one thing you can depend on is yourself!! So make the most of every day! :)
I love my job!