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Property Chat Businesses

Discussion in 'Small Business' started by RPI, 25th Jul, 2015.

  1. RPI

    RPI Property Lawyer, Town Planner Business Member

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    19th Jun, 2015
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    Location:
    Brisbane
    There are a lot of people on PC who have businesses and now that there is a small business thread it would be great to hear from people, and we did have some discussion on Somersoft, eg I used to really enjoy GeoffW talking about Subway.

    So PC Business owners, from Micro to Massive - please tell us about your businesses (property related or otherwise), current or previous, there is always so much to learn from other people.
     
    TaylorChang, Lil Skater, JenW and 5 others like this.
  2. HorribleWestie

    HorribleWestie Member

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    24th Jul, 2015
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    8
    Location:
    Sydney
    Hmm i guess i can start.
    I have a small sized laboratory operation for the construction materials industry mainly in Sydney, employing roughly 25 people.

    We're mainly focused on the quality of concrete that goes into all those massive new sky-rises you see in and around Sydney.

    Business is good.

    if anyone has any general questions about the construction industry, fire them my way.. more than happy to help.
     
  3. Ace in the Hole

    Ace in the Hole Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    Sounds like a great niche.
    Is 25 employees considered a small business?
    Seems pretty established, how long has it taken to get to this size and will you grow more?
     
  4. HorribleWestie

    HorribleWestie Member

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    Location:
    Sydney
    My father originally started the company 25+ years ago( came from nothing ) and liked the company small ( around 10+ people ) as he did not want the added stress of becoming larger.
    i have taken over as managing director in the last 4 years, and i'm alot more interested in expanding and have expended quite a bit already (Also operating in Wollongong and newcastle now )

    Realistically i could easily expand to 40+ staff in the next two years
     
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  5. DiligentPM

    DiligentPM Well-Known Member Business Member

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    18th Jun, 2015
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    Location:
    Brisbane
    My partner and I recently estanlished a boutique property management business servicing Brisbane and Logam areas. Learning so much however happy that I have worked in strategic HR and org Learning and Dev roles as many capabilities are portable. Also helpful being investors ourselves with multiple IPs Finding govt fees, licenses and taxes burdensome at times..curious to hear other peoples experiences re: moving from PAYE roles to building entrepreneurial businesses
     
  6. Harro

    Harro Well-Known Member

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    22nd Jun, 2015
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    Location:
    NSW North Coast
    Retired now, but had 2 Butcher shops. 1 owned along with a 2 Br residence upstairs. The other leased in a large shopping centre mall.
    Both were profitable and allowed me to retire at 50. It wasn't easy by any stretch of the imagination. Long hours, weekend work all par for the course.
     
  7. RPI

    RPI Property Lawyer, Town Planner Business Member

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    Location:
    Brisbane
    Nice. I like it. Sounds interesting too. Do you get any visits from certain companies needing to test setting times when they are being hassled by certain unions?
     
  8. RPI

    RPI Property Lawyer, Town Planner Business Member

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    Brisbane
    It is different. In recent years I joke that selling up and being an Uber driver sounds great, work when you feel like it sounds attractive. I couldn't work for anyone again after being on my own for so long but being in business can be stressful at times. But the rewards (not talking monetary) of building a business and systems far outweigh the stress. I love it hence the stupid hours I do.

    The govt, fees ,lic and taxes are crazy when you add them up. I haven't done a count up of all the duty we send to the state each week, last time I did it was north of a million dollars a week. Now it would be much more.

    My advice would be to start to put in place systems and processes so that you become redundant. It may be cliche'd but when you can spend all your time working on the business rather than in it you will really see results. Also if you process everything then as you grow you can have the people doing the job now use the process to teach the new and sign off.

    Enjoy the move to that side, look forward to hearing in 6 months, a year etc how you are growing.
     
  9. RPI

    RPI Property Lawyer, Town Planner Business Member

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    Location:
    Brisbane
    Retail combined with processing. It does sound like a hard combination with lots of hours. Obviously worked for you, well done.
     
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  10. DiligentPM

    DiligentPM Well-Known Member Business Member

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    Brisbane
     
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  11. DiligentPM

    DiligentPM Well-Known Member Business Member

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    Location:
    Brisbane
    Wonderful insights Thank you so much

    The challenge is working "on the business" instead of "in the business" without compromising the quality of our service....the risk is staying in "S" quadrant and not moving to "B" quadrant (Kiyosaki)
     
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  12. Joshwaaaa

    Joshwaaaa Well-Known Member

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    22nd Jun, 2015
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    Location:
    Adelaide
    Run a steel supply business in adelaide, only small compared to some of our competitors (employ 4 people) but been around for 25+ years so have a pretty solid customer base. been a bit lean since the good old pre gfc days with the slow death of manufacturing and all but we get by.
     
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  13. EN710

    EN710 Well-Known Member

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    Location:
    NSW
    Can't be considered business yet, just something I do on the side for fun - not scalable as it's me who do the work.
    • I make simple website for small owner operator business. So far it earns me free services. (I don't know what to charge, so I ask free stuff)
    • I paint people's pets (dog mainly) on canvas per fixed commission to cover mainly materials and shipping
    Maybe will try do develop this a bit further to for additional income, sometime in the future hopefully with a system that will make it scalable.
     
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  14. Ace in the Hole

    Ace in the Hole Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    We started a biz from scratch exactly 10 years ago now.
    Primarily an online business selling gym, weight training, strength, fitness equipment, although we do have a physical outlet/showroom in Sydney.
    We are up to to 9 staff now, including ourselves.
    Business has been good, and great for cash flow to fund property developments and accumulation.
     
  15. HorribleWestie

    HorribleWestie Member

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    24th Jul, 2015
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    Location:
    Sydney
    Have done things like that, but prefer to stay well away... usually i just put a ridiculous price tag on it or refer them to consulting/lawyer friend who is in the same industry.
     
  16. Timmyd02

    Timmyd02 Active Member

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    18th Jun, 2015
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    Location:
    Melbourne
    Have a Building business based in melbourne specialising in Units and townhouses. We help clients with their developments from purchasing a block, through the planning and construction stage to selling on their completed projects. We also work with a very good network of Designers, realestate agents and other consultants. We also do our own developments too ;)
     
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  17. devank

    devank Look, lets just get on with this, ok? Premium Member

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    Location:
    Inner West - Sydney
    I do two things outside my work.
    1. Animated Explanation Videos. It takes lots of time but it is fun. Sample is here


    2. Predictive modelling using Excel, R, SPSS or Tableau. Mostly my previous managers ask me to do small jobs.
     
  18. Foxdan

    Foxdan Well-Known Member

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    22nd Jun, 2015
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    Location:
    Hills district, sydney
    I have a business in the fitness / sports industry in Sydney that caters specifically to 2 related sports. We have around 6 staff that includes specialist coaches and a sports scientist. I think I may know which business @Ace in the Hole is because we have bought equipment from them when setting up our current facility 5yrs ago
     
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  19. Colin Rice

    Colin Rice Mortgage Broker Australia Wide Business Member

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    9th Jul, 2015
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    1,078
    Location:
    Perth
    Mortgage and Finance Broker with 1 staff member who takes care of the admin side while I prospect and serve clients who are a mix of first home buyers, owner occupiers and my favorite, investors. Working on the business instead of in it which Im loving.

    Looking to expand via JVs by setting up companies with other professionals in the areas of Insurance, Financial Planning, Property Sourcing & Feasibility Service for developments.
     
  20. Propagate

    Propagate Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    18th Jun, 2015
    Posts:
    282
    Location:
    Melbourne
    My company is now 3 months old and going great guns.

    I am a structural draftsman, (commercial & heavy industry type stuff). Served my time drawing Oil Rigs for the North Sea back on the River Tees, North of England 25 years ago until the industry died in the late 90's. Jumped over to nut & bolt drafting from Oil & Gas whilst mates were still chasing the Oil money all over the country, (of which there is now none and they are pretty much all out of work).

    My last "boss" retired in March, so myself and my colleague (& friend) who I ran my bosses company with started up on our own.

    We have taken on a great office 4k from my home in a great, quiet little village. There are the two of us as director/owners (also on the tools) and two staff, (although one guy has just retired so just the three of us now).

    We have got so much work it's just not funny. We had a great reputation in the industry but my boss rubbed a lot of people up the wrong way, so once people found out we were going out alone the tenders came flooding in. We've been turning work away.

    We'd love to take on another one or two people but it's extremely hard to find the level of draftsperson at the moment that we'd really need. We'd like to put on an apprentice at some pint in the future once we've got a suitable buffer behind us to be able to properly commit to one.

    We've massively streamlined our operating admin compared to how my boss ran the last company. With the advent of cloud based accounting and project management tools, (Harvest is a fantastic tool for managing our estimates and time tracking which we can then translate directly to Xero accounting for invoicing). It's so simple that I have been able to set up all our payroll, manage our accounts and do all of our book keeping in just a few hours each Friday without the need for a dedicated book keeper.

    So far, so good. August was our biggest invoiced month to date and last week we won our biggest contract yet and we have about 8 weeks worth of work committed to in front if us, which is about the best you can do in this game.

    Just looked at our tender list, we've quoted over $2.5m of work in 3 months. Some we won, some we lost, some don't & won't become projects and some are still pending and in with a shot. Hit rate is around 10% in this game and we're tracking pretty much dead on that at the moment.

    Happy Days!
     
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