Early indicators, black clouds on the horizon, a change in the wind direction, things you have seen before.
I think we are about to go into a recession in the housing market, I call it the Great Reset. I don’t know how long or how deep, the country is still short of homes, we must build more. But the wind is changing.
While the orders on new homes are deep and massive, most builders are booked for a year, and the quote file is at record levels… things are a miss.
BREAKING TODAY: Consumer prices rose 8.5% in March — the highest since 1981. We are paying 8.5% more for things now. 8.5%! A new house costs over 20% from just last year.
Interest rates are at 5%… with 6% just about guaranteed.
The BIGGEST PROBLEM is the media spin on this (Why do we listen to them?!)
The Federal Reserve is “selling” a fix.. higher interest rates… that they say will help surging prices and a tight labor market. And the media is shaking their head yes, higher interest are good and needed.
Let me translate.
The U.S. Government and supported by the major media (including google)
wants the interest rates to rise sharply.
What will this do to housing?
A 1% increase adds about 300 dollars plus a month to a $350,000 home mortage.
at 4%…. where we were at for a monthly payment on a $350,000:
at 6% (where we are quickly headed)
This will take a lot of people out of the house of their dreams.
A simple Google Search “will higher interest rates help”…shows that yes indeed it helps! It hurts short term, but long term by golly we will be better off.
This will help the labor shortage. Translation, fewer jobs. This will help demand. Meaning no one is buying anything.
Lumber is TANKING. That’s another key indicator. Mills are working 3 days a week to stop the supply. That isn’t working either. Remember mills make lumber every day. It’s a product in the forests that must be used. Tanking lumber means people aren’t buying it. 40% DOWN in a month.
LUMBER SALESMAN: DO NOT EVER USE WEIGHTED AVERAGE OR COST TO SET THE PRICE. USE A TIER THAT WE ESTABLISHED. TRUST ME… YOU DO NOT KNOW THE MARKET!
We are often in a recession LONG before we feel it.
We are there.
What is Drexel doing?
Get ready to acquire more market share (get more builders that are left). We are training new qbs, new cabinetry, and new flooring salespeople. We are driving consistency + stability = clarity. Taking on good business with good business partners for the future.
We do think the building will continue, just slowing.
Our robotic future and offsite construction will help builders that are left!
Over $8 trillion … 800,000,000,000,000 has been printed by the US government, flooding us with “more money, worth less”… the consequences have been brutal, but we are ready.
Our New Berlin yard is offsetting the cost of higher transportation costs.
We are low on new hiring positions, with only 6 full time in our entire supply company (we are growing our manufacturing division.) And really diving into WHY we need a new person in that department.
We have turned products into paid services (residential design, offsite is a process, not a product)…. all to prepare for the great reset.
If new home buyers can’t afford homes, they will rent. We have many fantastic builders that are preparing to build 8-12 units projects and rentable condos. If you can’t afford to buy new.. or think about this… locked into a 3% loan, why would you ever build for a 6% loan?… we do anticipate remodeling will soar…
Remodelers and remodeling projects require KNOWLEDGE, ORGANIZATION, AND INTRICITATE PROCESSES WITH COMPLICATED PRODUCTS… this is why our training is so critical. And in all departments why are sales people are required to have fewer accounts to be poised to help builders remodel.
Could I be wrong?
Of course. I have been in Vilas County, wetting a worm on a lake, and seeing what I believe is a storm brewing. We take in the boat. Put the water toys away. Put the tarp on the boat, and wait for the storm. Sometimes it blows over, misses us, or is very minor. At least we were prepared. No harm done. Sun comes back out.
Prepare now. But keep going.
The fun will be there. Supplying happiness is possible. We just must be prepared.
A HORRIBLE RECESSION IS A TERRIBLE THING TO WASTE.
Well here I am writing this in a coffee shop 2 years after the pandemic. Not a mask in site. No visors. No distancing. No signs. No shields. Just people talking, hanging out and you know being humans.
2 years ago, people “in charge” shut the world down, and specifically in the United States, 2 weeks to stop the spread.
I think we forget that. Or want to forget it. We can’t. We shouldn’t. We need to learn from it.
We were afraid to go the grocery store. Outdoor playgrounds were sectioned off. Churches did not hold mass. Just two weeks… you know slow the spread.
Then masks were the rage.
Then sort of all 3 combined.
Schools were closed. Virtual.
Really like totally weird stuff.
Vaccines were going to be mandatory until the courts stepped in to actually have a job.
I went to a few really horribly bad covid funerals.
My sister had a severe reaction to the vaccine and had major major heart surgery.
A good friend survived…in his words… due to the power of prayer.
Mental health, homelessness, lack of connection, and separation suffered horribly. Our country is in utter dissaray.
Yes, I am a “conservative.” You already now just judged this article and me. Knock it off. This is NOT political. Why is this subject so political?
We have to remember these policies NEVER WORKED. Not one ounce.
I just heard from someone today, well if covid comes back we are prepared. He felt uncomfortable shaking my hand. He actually commented, “We aren’t supposed to be doing this.” Says who?
We have to learn from this. All of us. Or as many as possible.
There was A DISCUSSION to be had that this wasn’t the right path. But the second you brought it up you were careless, a trumpster, or worse. My God it DIDN’T WORK. Me, us, we were RIGHT THE WHOLE TIME.
The virus had to VIRUS. that WAS THE SCIENCE!
We lost so much. So much.
Let’s learn. Let’s remember.
The government is not our friend. They are not always right. And question everything, always.
Last night I had the opportunity to take my 12-year-old son to a sectional girls game that our hometown team played.
There wasn’t a place to sit in the stands.
And the game was bonkers.
No team had a lead bigger than 5 and it came down to the last shot. Either team could have won.
It was a reminder to me, that if your child loves a sport… seeing it at a high level in high school, in a playoff atmosphere will no doubt increase the love. Which is a good thing.
Even if it isn’t, it is a ton of fun, and supporting the local community is cool too.
Plus I am an energy guy. I feed off it. Most of us do. And to be in a packed gym is ABSOLUTELY ELECTRIC FOR THE SOUL! The cool thing about a high school game, your child can see it is achievable. Sometimes top-level college or professional sports, you realize it IS unattainable. Your child can’t relate to someone being 7 feet tall that can run like a gazelle. But they can relate to that average size, average speed player, playing their ass off for their home team. I saw a girl last night just leap onto the floor for a loose ball. Anyone can do THAT. It was awesome.
Here’s a story of mine that I will share with you in an effort to maybe help you.
My athletic, sports addict 12-year-old son hurt his knee 5 months ago. A 3 to 5-month recovery we were told. We are now in month 5 and I just heard from the surgeon yesterday, he may need a 3rd surgery.
He is not walking. His leg is not bending much. He is not improving.
Yesterday I lost my shit. I did. Cried for a good 15 minutes on a drive. Had mass anxiety. Tired. Drained. DEFEATED. HELPLESS. I prayed over and over, GOD FIX HIS KNEE. I was desperate as an over tired 3-year-old.
In some way… in some situations far worse, or far less bad; WE, all of us, have been there.
I sucked yesterday.
I PRAYED. I asked others to PRAY. No this isn’t a story about how we woke up with his leg fixed this morning. I believe it still will be, but it will be hard and it may not be a path we wanted to go down. Or he may never walk again. Honestly, no one could know that. We will work diligently. We will be model patients. Do all that is required and beyond.
This is what I am going to do going forward.
Love: That is what we as a family are going to focus on.
FOCUS ON LOVE.
What I can control. And what I can control is loving my whole family. My wife. My other kids. And my injured son. And then I am going to do that again. By serving them. Taking out the trash and 1 million other little things to show my love for them. And then do that again the next day. More hugs. More talks. MORE LISTENING!
I am not going to beat myself up either thinking THERE IS MORE I CAN DO. I can not. I am not a therapist, a surgeon, or God.
I will not worry about the future.
(Yesterday: OMG he LOVES, LIVES BASKETBALL, what if he never plays again? Then what. Yesterday: This sh!t ain’t fair. He should be running. At school. Dominating on the court. Having fun. Improving. BEING A BOY!)
Today: He’s smart, witty, and still has a positive attitude about this. Today we are going to laugh, have fun, and try hard to get that leg better. And if doesn’t; we will try again tomorrow.
I will continue to pray. For healing, patience, but more than anything: peace. Peace in mind so I can love others the best.
He will end up with a STRONGER MIND AND A WARRIOR SPIRIT. How do I know that? I know I can give that training to him as a father. I can TRAIN HIM TO BE A SPIRIT WARRIOR. And if his knee comes around, that will be fantastic and I will cry often as I appreciate that gift from God. And if it doesn’t I know his spirit is strong.
I will no longer, like yesterday, get down on myself. SHIT COULD ALWAYS BE WORSE, FAR WORSE. FOCUS ON THE PRESENT. THE MOMENT. And if I do get down for a day or a minute, I will embrace that shit too. Head on.
This morning, his knee was better than yesterday. Not much. But better. He is spending time with his grandma today. He was able to attend almost all of his brother’s basketball games his brother’s senior year. He has great talks about life, gossip, and music with his sister. He’s gotten tougher mentally. He has spent a lot of time with mom and dad. There is much good in this that has come from this. If not for his injury none of the above would of happened. I myself would of missed a lot of my oldest son’s games coaching my youngest.
TODAY IS TODAY.
AND TODAY IS PRETTY WILDLY AWESOME.
life is a ride… get on with it. – Joel, God bless. FOCUS ON LOVE.
Did you spend your time growing up playing mind craft, sim city, legos? Did time cease to exist when you did this and you did it for fun, but also with a passion?
At Drexel, and stay with me here, people do that and WE PAY THEM HANDSOMELY. They also get to change how the industry works, save a bunch of customers, time, money and stress, be part OWNER in our esop, and well… SUPPLY HAPPINESS FOR OUR MISSION.
Also, they help do our home for a home projects. (Check it out at www.pauls.homes.)
Still reading? GOOD.
Material List Providers
We have over 100 VIRTUAL BUILDERS AT DREXEL.
DID YOU KNOW IT IS OUR #1 GROWING DIVISION?
We use the latest technology to combine sim city meets HGTV.
How do most companies provide a material list, load the plan on a computer, draw lines around the plan, and guess at some basic math equations. It’s a guesstimate. That is all it is. I guess. We know we did it for 30 years. It’s not bad. But it is a guess.
Now we do 3d models. When complete ANYONE in the building chain, builder, framer, homeowner, etc can view it.
Some smart guy with an Aussie accent did a cool video on it.
Years ago, I remember reading an article where a lumber salesman sold 30 million a year down South. He was on the cover as the best outside salesman in the nation. We at Drexel celebrated that. We felt we could have many outside road salesman (osr)… or as we call them here quarterbacks selling that much or more. We chased that for at least 10 years.
For about the last 5 years, I could tell our quarterbacks haven’t been truly the best version of themselves. It is blatantly obvious. We said, well that’s just salesman for ya. Stressed, vocal, tough, they just needed more support. Happy Sales Ninjas, I came up with at least 3 years ago.
The more support we gave them, the more they had to train people the more sale they had to com up with to support that staff. The less each customer saw them because they were stuck in the office training their support or chasing more sales to feed that support. And the cycle continued, all in an effort to have a quarterback get to a top number. God didn’t make many great salespeople, so let’s get the great ones more accounts we said. Always more.
Then it hit me like lightning in Jackson, Wyoming on a hike.
LESS IS MORE.
It seems to me the happiest quarterbacks and the happiest customers are when the quarterback is green (doesn’t even know a lot about the industry) but has time to invest in each customer, each project as a consultant. Organized, happy, and most importantly available. But then… you guessed it, they get more and more…and well you know how this goes.
What if we had a company where each quarterback has a handful, not over 100 as many of our quarterbacks do, but a handful of core accounts. The prospecting comes from penetration of each home, fulfilling all the categories of each house down to the lockset. Able and willing to make small deliveries, fix a lockset, install a screen, present a quote in person, and coach and train a bunch of people on their team as they go. And home in time to coach their daughter’s baseball game. No worries. That our quarterbacks would be the BEACONS of supply happiness. Not the overburdened oxen.
That means at least doubling our sales force. At least. Wow. And having some hard conversations of that MORE isn’t better. Yes, even less compensation to very well compensated people. It doesn’t matter if Aaron Rodgers make 20 million, if you take him to 15 million even if it is the best idea for him… it won’t and hasn’t already been well recieved. That’s ok… we must protect OUR CUSTOMERS, OUR TEAM, AND THE QUARTERBACKS FROM OURSELVES.
Our customers are SCREAMING for our quarterbacks to simply be available. Many still think, if I had a developed team below me, I would have more time. That is wrong and proven over and over and over again to be wrong. It’s less accounts.
Here is an example outside our industry.
Doctors. If I was dying from cancer, would I want the world’s best cancer Doctor to have 150 patients and 100 nurses to support him. Or the world’s best cancer Doctor with 10 patients and 3 nurses. Well that answer is pretty obvious.
How about teachers? The world’s best teacher in a class of 400, with 10 assistants instructing you. Or a class of 20 with one assistant. Um, yeah sign me up for the smaller class.
I have a few simple goals before I retire.
Make sure we are the leaders of offsite construction in Wisconsin. So much that this is a standard practice.
Make our quarterbacks happy. If they are happy, our whole team will SWELL WITH JOY. SWELL! The blog is a start of my emotions on this.
If you want to talk about it, I AM ALWAYS AVAILABLE, (I hope someday you can say the same thing). 920-979-4045 or my e-mail is fine 920-979-4045. My schedule is always full, but always has time in it.
Let’s help each other. It starts with the shift of the mind.
People over profits. We can change the industry and dominate with this new philosphy that is needed in our industry. Drexel, although difficult, will make it happen. We may even lose some good people over this change. I hope not. I don’t want to ever lose a good person. But if that is what it takes to make people truly happy, then so be it.
“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.” – Charles Dickens
Here’s my story.
The first time I was actually concerned about Covid was a Joe Rogan podcast.
A guy came on and started discussing, in scientific terms, that this indeed was a U.S. threat and it was real and it was gonna kill a lot of people. I was like Holy Buckets. Boy was I ready to fight this! Lockdown, isolate, whatever it takes!
That was aired March 10, 2020.
About a week later on a Friday I picked up my kids from elementary school. There I saw the 8th grade teacher and I said, “Well this might be their last day for a while. She laughed and said yeah right, I don’t think so.” I will never forget that conversation. By Monday it was over. We were locked down. The playground had yellow police tape around it; the kids could no longer play on the playground.
Our church went virtual. I taped the first broadcast. I wanted to help. Sacrifices needed to be made. The weak protected.
At work, all leaders were forced to make IMMEDIATE decisions based on limited facts and unknown consequences. It was mass chaos. We didn’t know if we were going to be essential or not. I am the president of a building supply company, if we couldn’t ship to jobsites, we would ruin our customer’s businesses as well. We were deemed essential. Looking back, if this thing was truly going to kill a ton of us… construction IS NOT essential. That was my first sign, my first thought of like, what the hell is going on? School was closed. Construction sites OPEN. That made no sense to me… if I followed logic.
But for 2 weeks in isolation (then 3, than 4…than more) it was a glorious time. I worked at home. I fixed up a 1916 model T that would of never got fixed up. I saw no one. Went nowhere. Sprayed down our groceries. I was scared to see my parents and in-laws in fear of giving them the Covid. It was the best of times, it was the worst of times… I spent 24 hours a day with the 4 people closest to me, my family.
My wife Pam’s gym closed. Then Trie Fitness did virtual. For free. It was bizarre.
We had the community make masks for our workers that were essential. I didn’t go in the office, I wanted to show resilience. We went to a 32 hour work week. I took no pay. Surely this would spark the worst depression in the history of time. Instead, we should of been HIRING. As cash flow soared people still had money and spent it. It was essential, so jobsites operated under normal circumstances. At job sites people didn’t social distance or wear masks..and guess what …outbreaks didn’t occur. Hmm… again I thought ..what the hell?
We came back to work. We allowed people to work from home, which was completely not allowed at Drexel previously. Now it is part of our culture, granted you are the right person and the right position for that. It works! Eureka! That was awesome. We wanted to go paperless forever. This pressure, like coal, indeed made a diamond! We embraced technology and got busy getting busy… we partnered with Monday.com and now have paper free work-sharing form tools. It is truly remarkable what we did at that time. I fired our top sales manager, redid the commercial department, reworked sales people’s pay plans, and much more… things we simply were ignoring in the “good times.” Most of these ideas came in the 10 days I was home. Maybe I was home for 3 weeks…
But I did come back. We wiped down the doors hourly. Stood apart and were like… wow this is weird. We started doing google meetings. Lots of google meets (zoom meetings). I had always hated them, now an essential tool in our day to day business. Nothing replaces face to face, but this is pretty darn good. We still do. I have a few scheduled for today.
We bought Blenker Building Systems DURING the lockdown, May 1st. I was advised TO NOT DO this deal, nobody knew the future, all deals were on hold, or priced reduced. A pandemic was no time to be shy.
Everything, and I mean everything was canceled. It didn’t matter what it was, it was canceled.
And then our governor declared masks were mandatory after the CDC initially said masks don’t work, but then announced they only said that to not cause a panic. That pissed me off. Our government intentionally lied to us, or did they? I wasn’t sure. And quickly around that time, it got political. I tell you I didn’t see that coming. This was the one time we should be working together. But no, it had to be Trump’s fault, or Fauci’s, not sure again. Everyone said to follow the science, but what science? We wanted the truth and there was none. Just opinions, normally slanted toward their political persuasion. Bizarre.
The Catholic church even shut down. No sacraments. Nothing. We turned our back on God when he was there for us the most. Why? Fear. Maybe getting sued… they didn’t want to lose money. The government mandates they followed closer than they did the Holy Spirit. People didn’t want to be blamed in any problems… True cowards emerged.
We came back to work. The governor came on the news, he said you must wear masks at all times. At that point, I was against it all. Not against the virus: I could see that was real. But I sensed it was 100% blown out of proportion. The national media slanted it all to look the worst possible. Fearporn was the term and the norm. But if you questioned it, you didn’t care about people and labeled a Trumpster. No, I was just relaying what I believed and researched. Individuals didn’t have a voice. You couldn’t see a dying parent, visit a relative in an old age home, and the kids couldn’t even hang out with each other. It was all canceled for the greater good.
So back to the mask mandate in Wisconsin. We sent an email to all 600 people. Time to mask up. After 4 months of lockdowns and wiping everything down, now it was ALL ABOUT THE MASKS.
**** here was original e-mail***
Caitlin Stoll <email@example.com>
Thu, Jul 30, 2020, 3:39 PM
Hey team… Starting Monday due to statewide restrictions Drexel will be requiring anyone within any of our locations to wear a face mask/covering.
Here are some questions you may have regarding what this means for Drexel: DO I HAVE TO WEAR A MASK? IF YOU ARE UNDER A ROOF, YES. This also includes manufacturing. If you are in an open shed, outside, or in your own trucks, or outdoors at a new construction job site it is UP TO YOU. … Installing flooring INSIDE? yep.
… Installing windows OUTSIDE? up to you. … If you work at home... no… (kind of a little obvious humor there) Will Drexel make Drexel logoed masks? NO. Too expensive. Takes too long to get. And we see no reason to do this. How will this affect Drexel? We are BEYOND BLESSED. In America the economy is down 32% this year (just announced). WE ARE UP OVER 20%…NOT INCLUDING OUR NEW TEAM IN AMHERST! It might not last but we will ride this wave HARD.
If I have a medical condition, am I exempt from wearing a mask?We will follow state guidelines. We are not having a “Drexel policy” and will not be playing “mask police.” We are just doing what the state requires us to do.Will we riot at Drexel? Not yet… but this lack of freedom is PISSING ME OFF. Thanks. As they said in karate kid: Mask on. Mask off.Of something like that.
There is nothing we can do. But then, that morning at my desk, in my mask, I read the governor’s mandate. It excluded people in the governor’s office or anyone employed in the government to wear a mask. “They” were all exempt. Why? If this was such a serious thing, wouldn’t ALL be required. NOPE. In the next few minutes I sent out another e-mail saying we were mask free. Your choice. Your freedom.
I took to social media often, offering my insights. I was attacked. I actually wasn’t ready for that. I thought we were all on the same page. Wow, was I wrong. I knew people died from it, but somehow I was called insensitive and much worse. This video, which I still believe in, was my most criticized. I naively thought this video would change people’s minds. But once a person’s mind is made up… it is very difficult to sway them…instead everyone dug in their heels, either you were PRO MASK TO HELP THE WORLD… OR ANTIMASK IN THE NAME OF COMMON SENSE….there were no winners, only losers. And yet the dying laid in beds alone, the kids went uneducated in a horrible virtual world.
My family and Drexel… never did buy into the new way of living… we fought the battles where and when we could. Did people at Drexel get Covid? YOU BET! Myself included. Did anyone die? No. Did we get lucky? Yes. On any given day if you don’t die you get lucky. Did we get Covid as a group any more than say Mercury Marine in Fond du lac (a company near us that to date still is not back in the workplace)? Doubtful. The numbers don’t show that.
I researched the crap out of covid. I studied viruses. I figured out viruses have a bell curve. They go up fast. They go down fast. And that’s that. And that’s what happened at maskless Drexel. In Wisconsin. In a hyper masked up Dane County in Wisconsin. In California. In Sweden. In Mexico. In Florida. I kept posting these facts. Things did spike. Hospitals did get full, they weren’t ready for the spike. But we got over it.
I helped a little to give Josh Cadman the courage to open up the school in the little town where I work, Campbellsport. And the crazy son of a bitch did it. He took it on himself and did it. I will always remember that. Some stuff opened back up with the weirdest rules. You can play basketball, with no fans, wear masks, and no jump ball or handshakes at the end. That is friggin hilarious. Always was. Always will be. But JOEL…THE RISK! Oh, bullshit I say.
We were told in 2020..this was all to slow the spread. Then it was to stop Covid. Then is was until we are vaccinated. And then it was “watch the variants”. No matter what we did the future was always darker. But the darkness never came. We were never told why it didn’t come, but only that it was going to get worse. Never discussed why the worst didn’t happen, only that this time would be worse, and that you better be prepared.
The future was always bleak. Wait until the kids go back to school, they said. Wait until Halloween (yes even getting candy was gonna cause an outbreak.) Until Christmas (please stay home) TUntil … we are all vaccinated but even then… not so sure we are safe.
Even on May 6th 2021… Fauci said we were only at the 6th inning. Then on May 13… the CDC, stated yeah if you are vaccinated return to 100% normal life.
Just. Like. That.
The CDC was given COMPLETE AUTHORITY over our lives, the economy, even our faith! And they are a completely biased train wreck of an organization. That much is obvious. So blatantly obvious. But even this statement will be takent as: Joel’s rant on politics. Bullshit. That’s the facts. Just the facts.
Even when we are now following science the teacher’s union says …not so fast… we aren’t there yet…. California..says just to be safe let’s continue the masks… just to be safe of course. So if you followed the CDC’s guidelines,… but now you aren’t… I question that logic.
To me that says: RESPECT OUR POWER. RESPECT OUR DECISIONS OVER YOURS.
The government gave out trillions of dollars because of the restrictions they caused, that we will pay for! Did I take the money? Hell yes! If the government is going to take our money and ethically I fall under the guidelines, I will take it. I don’t believe in it though. People are getting bonuses to not work. So they are still not working. Businesses are being propped up, bad businesses, because the government is giving them money. And on and on. Trillions! Quit it already.
And it never stops: BUT JOEL PEOPLE WILL DIE. PEOPLE HAVE DIED. Yes, tons of people died. Many of them masked up and still got it and most sadly died. Locked down in an old age home ALONE to save themselves and they STILL GOT IT. Even after their death, they asked in their obituaries, MASK UP FOR ME. We did…and so sadly you still died. Death happens. Will happen.
God promises us we will die but be saved. But it was all about US, as individuals. Self-protection under any means. Our own selfishness got us. And our bitterness against others.
Suicides are out of control. People are more bitter than ever. You must be FOR something OR against something. No middle ground. That is exhausting and a damn shame.
I hope we learned. I fear we haven’t. Hopefully the next pandemic is 100 years from now and somebody reminds us of the past. But history tends to repeat… It was the best of times, it was the worst of times….