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Landscape Design-Build Observations
As of right now, the landscape contracting work (and therefore construction business in general) is doing well where I am employed. (greater San Gabriel Valley, SoCal. We have crews ranging out to Orange County, Los Angeles sometimes and even southbound into San Diego if the contract's lucrative enough)

I hear our very abrupt and rude-ish Head Estimator matter of factly informing clients over the phone that want us to last-minute-PLEASE plant parking lot trees that he has no nope nada available crews for the work. We're booked solid. Six weeks out. Every day has been assigned. And SoCal is such that winter doesn't stop us except for actual rain. And that's not coming any time soon.

In the past week, my company resorted to putting out a sandwich board out on the sidewalk for laborers. That's rather unprecedented; during the high season, all the workers worth having are on the job. And positions were usually filled word-of-mouth. We're employing brothers, cousins, uncles, people who can be vouched for. Apparently we've tapped out that resource and are trying to scoop up strangers.  

Competing contractors are even trying to steal our guys. Head Estimator was bitching to a boulder sales rep about shady characters hanging around jobsites offering cash down for guys to get into their trucks. 

It's a delicate balancing act in terms of jobs in the pipeline/laborers to build out, though.

The estimate for my own custom house construction build has been stalled partially because the general contractor we're going with is so slammed with work and foreman duties that he can't sit down and look at the plans and estimate. (We're not pressed, of course, because ultimately the big limiter is the county Planning Department's schedule, not him.)

The back office side of contracting seems to have these backups in general. We're contacting multiple subs and it's all an ordeal for such things; pool guys. Deck guys. Gazebo guys. Concrete guys. Masons. Everybody worth hiring is running out in the field with their voicemailboxes full. 

In short, what everybody needs are estimators. And it looks like estimators come into being from being experienced foremen who knew costs for materials/labor and are too beat up physically to be outside anymore and so get kept because their knowledge is valuable and transitioned into an office job. 

I do not believe this is an ideal pipeline. But I have no ready answer for it because I've assisted with estimating when Head Estimator is so swamped that I can be of help and even then, what I do know is simply insufficient. The limiting factor is that even though I can and do manage to figure out the individual pipe pieces for an irrigation system by lineal feet and square feet and etc, I have no idea how many man hours it would take to build it out. That's the institutional knowledge Head Estimator knows and can't impart to anybody, apparently. 
Fuck it. I'll take one for the forum.

I dunno, goes from being so busy that they ran out of people to do more yardwork into estimators having to be broken to get a job?
Thanks Obama!
Looks like some sort of rant
Loderi hasnt been here awhile and thought spamming TL with nonsense was all the rage
You'll have to speak up, I'm not wearing any pants.

F18WrenchMonkey: NSF is grand master champion at being apathetic
Can we change the topic of this thread to Observations of Radical Islam
Yesterday's gone on down the river and you can't get it back.

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