Archive for this sucks

Cardboard Box

Posted in modo, this sucks with tags , on May 17, 2008 by erin
Just when I thought it couldn’t get any worse than this. I learn we could have our house taken. There’s nothing like the thought of a bank taking your house to make a person feel like throwing up. That’s exactly how I felt when Matt came home and told me the bank his company has several construction loans with is upset (and rightfully so) they are not getting paid. With condo sales down the tube there just isn’t any money to pay the bank with. So the folks at the bank took a peak at Matt’s and two others personal financial statements finding assets for collateral. Awesome. At least the bank Pres. (who is a very nice lady) had the decency to cry.

It looks like we’ll keep our house for now. They might take our personal rental properties but as far as I concerned that’s way better than the house where we live. Sigh. If you feel so moved a prayer or two would feel nice.

Matt keeps telling me most well known companies had to go something like this before things got better.

Take Starbucks for example. Howard Schultz was about to take his first family vacation in years and just before boarding the plane he gets a call from his company. There had been a huge freeze in coffee bean land and price per pound is steadily increasing. So Howard canceled his vacation and decided to purchase several years supply of beans only to find a few weeks later the price fell. Now he was stuck with years of coffee beans at a very expensive cost but he could not pass this onto the consumer.

You’ve heard of a small company called FedEx? Well, apparently the CEO, Fred Smith, once went to Vegas to make payroll.

Heard of EchoStar? They are based in Colorado and the company is doing well. In 2003 alone raked in 5 billion. Billion. Things didn’t start out so well for Charles Ergen either. After putting his life savings into two satellite dishes he was ready to test them out. He drove to the top of Lookout Mountain for their maiden voyage and a huge wind gust took them both out of his truck and smashed them on the road. He was able to salvage one and the rest is history. Billion dollar history.

I’m not saying our company will be anything like Starbucks, FedEx or Echostar but this is the bottom and we only can go up from here. If not there’s always Vegas and cardboard boxes.



It comes full circle…

Posted in modo, moving on, saddness with tags , on May 6, 2008 by erin

History…Do we learn from it or repeat it? Hopefully learn. That’s why we watched as British soldiers studied the battles at Normandy. What could they take away and use in this life time? What can we take away and learn from?

We moved to this city in 2003 young and full of spunk. With dreams. We moved here with $30 in our pocket but had hope that things would get better. Matt decided he was done working as an Engineer and I can’t blame him. That job took the life out of his eyes, I knew that. I didn’t want that for him or us. So he started a small company, Commercial Equity, with two smart entrepreneur buddies like himself. They started in coffee shops with meetings and ideas while I worked to help us survive.

Soon they had a goal, a plan and a building. They bought an apartment building built in the 50’s completely renovated it, putting 60 to 70 thousand dollars per door. With finishes that did not usually come standard: granite counter tops, stainless steel appliances, hard wood floors, glass tile, balconies and roof top deck with views of the city skyline. These finishes most developers would charge the buyer 2 or three times their cost but not us. We made our places affordable and they flew off the shelf so to speak. I quit my job and became their office manager/bookkeeper.

Things flourished in the next several years, more buildings were purchased, investors called us to see if we had a spot for their money, foreman and laborers were hired, partners brought aboard, realtors commissioned, work trucks purchased, I got an assistant, we got a fancy new name and purchased a fantastic office building .

It was awesome. We were the talk of the town. We hired a marketing expert, were written about in countless papers, threw amazing parties and still we grew.


Things are not so glamorous now. Blame it on the market. Blame it on growing too fast. Blame it on being too nice. Whatever or where ever the blame lays it doesn’t matter. The reality is the company is down to partners and two hired employees; we moved out of our fabulous office building and are scraping by. No money, no income, s.l.o.w. sales and slashing prices to get out.

My heart is heavy. I had hoped by now at our age and with a baby we would be financially stable. Not millionaires not even hundred thousand-air. Just secure.

The good news: I have my family, we have a home, and we will survive. My husband is smart and a hard worker and for what ever reason he was lead to get his broker license a few months ago. All is not lost. I believe they (we all) have learned. I believe some day we will have financial stability. I have a hope and a dream I won’t let die. Things will get better, I can feel it.