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Thread: Remodeling and Relocating?

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    Default Remodeling and Relocating?

    I own a remodeling company in the Denver, Colorado area. My wife and I are tossing the idea of relocating to AK. The question is not do we want to..... because the answer to that is a big YES. The question is, will I be able to support my family in the manner I do now.... We do home remodeling and by remodelers standards I would say we are pretty successful and very busy. Now that being said I don't make a ton of money but make a descent amount for our lifestyle. I have been in business here for 12 years and have been steadily growing my company since 2008. We do on average 40-50 jobs a year, which puts us in the $200,000-$300,000 gross revenue/year range, of which I make anywhere between $40,000-$70,000/year. SO....... I am trying to find out if I should continue my remodeling in Alaska, or sell my business and change careers. My wife does not work currently, but has a background in the medical field. I have 2 little girls ages 3 and 1. We have no debt and don't even own a credit card. We own our cars but do have a current mortgage with +/-$50-75K in equity currently. I know that is a lot about me but this is a very serious topic and I think all this information is relevant in having others help in giving me real solid advice. Any advice would be greatly appreciated, Thank you!

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    Member cdubbin's Avatar
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    Remodeling is going pretty strong up here...even during the downturn it was off the hook....I spent several years living off the grid in a non-road accessible town of 300, stayed busy remodeling, weatherizing, and updating year round....in the big cities it's guaranteed work.....once you do enough networking to get the word around. Just be prepared to laugh your ass off at how they built things up here in the 70s and 80s.....
    " Gas boats are bad enough, autos are an invention of the devil, and airplanes are worse." ~Allen Hasselborg

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    Member ChugiakTinkerer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cdubbin View Post
    Just be prepared to laugh your ass off at how they built things up here in the 70s and 80s.....
    Can't add anything about the market because I know nothing, but I can definitely vouch for cdubbin's comment when it comes to my house that was built in 1983. I live in a part of the Anchorage municipality that does not enforce building codes. So pretty much anything goes. My favorite is the downstairs bath vent that vented nowhere, just into the joist space. Thankfully because there was no air flow there was no moisture damage. Anyhoo, don't want to get too far off thread. You've probably encountered this type of construction before, but if not you want to make sure you and the HO know that there can be surprises in store.

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    CDUBBIN, when you are off the grid and in such a small town, how do you go about acquiring supplies for remodeling peoples homes? I would think that would be tricky, and if you forget that one darn item, you can't just hop in the truck and drive around the block to Home Depot real quick to pick it up.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ChugiakTinkerer View Post
    Can't add anything about the market because I know nothing, but I can definitely vouch for cdubbin's comment when it comes to my house that was built in 1983. I live in a part of the Anchorage municipality that does not enforce building codes. So pretty much anything goes. My favorite is the downstairs bath vent that vented nowhere, just into the joist space. Thankfully because there was no air flow there was no moisture damage. Anyhoo, don't want to get too far off thread. You've probably encountered this type of construction before, but if not you want to make sure you and the HO know that there can be surprises in store.
    Don't enforce building codes huh? this aught to be interesting! I've never worked anyplace that was not pretty strict. I hope I don't quote people how to do work the right way and they just laugh and say "NAAAHH just do it like this" and do some strange thing like run wiring outside with no conduit or something like that.... Yea I have seen a couple vents that vented nowhere ;-)

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    Quote Originally Posted by PSEshooter View Post
    CDUBBIN, when you are off the grid and in such a small town, how do you go about acquiring supplies for remodeling peoples homes? I would think that would be tricky, and if you forget that one darn item, you can't just hop in the truck and drive around the block to Home Depot real quick to pick it up.
    You learn in a hurry not to forget anything and but more then you need and learn the return policy of every vendor you use...

    Quote Originally Posted by PSEshooter View Post
    Don't enforce building codes huh? this aught to be interesting! I've never worked anyplace that was not pretty strict. I hope I don't quote people how to do work the right way and they just laugh and say "NAAAHH just do it like this" and do some strange thing like run wiring outside with no conduit or something like that.... Yea I have seen a couple vents that vented nowhere ;-)
    Well lots of variables on code enforcement and what not.. In Anchorage we have some of the tightest codes going especially being and earthquake area.. Outside Anchorage where there are no munis to deal with there are no building depts to deal with but if there is bank money involved you will be haveing inspections done, if it is real estate work for sales there will be home inspections so its not as easy as it sounds.. Yes lots places with no code enforcement but those places can also be hard to find work.. Cdubbin said it right there is work but there is also a lot of contractors and lots out of work.. Word of mouth for doing a good job is key... I moved my buisness to Anchorage 7 years ago and have never been(knock on wood) out of work for more then a 3 day weekend.. You have to be flexible and willing to go the extra mile.. I work anwhere from a 200 miles north to 200 miles south of my home but I get work and stay busy..

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    Member cdubbin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PSEshooter View Post
    CDUBBIN, when you are off the grid and in such a small town, how do you go about acquiring supplies for remodeling peoples homes? I would think that would be tricky, and if you forget that one darn item, you can't just hop in the truck and drive around the block to Home Depot real quick to pick it up.
    Like everywhere off the road system, materials come in by boat....luckily I lived in a town with weekly ferry service.....some communities get one barge a year! You can bet they double check those lists lol.
    " Gas boats are bad enough, autos are an invention of the devil, and airplanes are worse." ~Allen Hasselborg

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