Edwin asked: "Let's start out with a few questions. Do you know how to
build decks? Have you built decks? Are you familiar with the building
codes for railings, stairs, footings? Do you know the differences and
pros and cons of using pressure treated, ipe, cypress, Trex or
I say: Yes, Yes, yes.
Edwin: "How do you want to position yourself in business? You can be
the guy that
does the down and dirty deck on 50 or 100 tract houses going up, or you
be the deck specialist doing custom work on the homes of millionaires.
Either way, you need a reputation with the clientele you want to
I say: I'll do custom decks with unusaul touches like a tree growing
through a hole in it, or hidden stroage underneath. Target customer is
the quarter millionaire.
Edwin says" "OK, now a few answers. How much can you earn? Plenty if
you have the
market, the reputation, the skills not just to build a deck but to sell
and have the confidence of the buyer. You also have to know how to
labor, figure a bill of material, manage the workforce, control
I say" How much is plenty. I already make "plenty" at my engineering
job. I'd sacrifice some for the love of buiding decks but I still need
to make my mortgage payment and help 3 kids in college.
Edwin said: "If you are worried about not hiring illegals and not being
are probably not qualified to run a business. If price is going to be
only selling point, there will always be a whore to underbid you so
start and lose your investment. "
I say: Price s not my only selling point but it is a factor in any and
all sales. My point is that I will not prostitute my principles (e.g.
against hiring illegals) to do this.