Battling the Weather

We have about a foot of fine powder on the ground. That is a lot for the area of Wyoming where we live, usually a snowstorm just drops a few inches. Before those of you in snowier areas start scoffing, you must realize that while Wyoming does not get a LOT of snow in this area, Mother Nature makes the most of what does come down. A little goes a long way… Literally. We joke that snow in Wyoming buries cattle in Nebraska.
The snow blows into drifts, and when the wind blows hard, it creates a “ground blizzard”. You’ll be lost in a blizzard even though there is not a cloud in the sky, because of the snow from the ground that is blowing up into this dense fog. It does some other interesting things too.

So what does that have to do with business? We have a property management contract, where we are repairing some long-neglected houses and cottages. It is a good contract, but this is a hard time of year to make progress. The owner lives in another state (we document progress with reports and photos), so we do the work that needs done to clean up the property, seal the leaks in the roofs, repair broken windows and doors, and get the units ready for rental. It has been neglected for so long that it is a long term project, and we are having to progress one task at a time – first weatherproofing the buildings to stop further decay, next getting the three best buildings rentable by spring. Later, more intensive repairs and modifications on the other buildings, one at a time.

Anyway, he began the purchase in September. We hoped it would go through in time to get in a little late roofing so that the major buildings would not have further water damage. The title transfer did not complete until November. We had a fairly warm fall, so we continued to hope that if we repaired the roofs in a little bit of a non-standard way, that we’d still be able to do it this year. Otherwise we’d have to wait until late spring.

We got one of the large roofs done, and we had gorgeous weather for the week it took to do it. Then it got cold, and the snows hit. We’ve had storm after storm and have barely been able to begin work on the second large building that needs roofing done. It has been so cold that the other work that needs to be done is also going very slowly. There is no power on yet, so no heat, so we cannot work there long in the current cold.

Our business is pretty flexible most of the time, we have many things we can juggle around, so if his stuff is on hold, then there are other things to do for other clients. If they are also on hold, we have plenty of our own sites to develop. But working on our own sites means deferred income – work now, get paid a little each month for years afterward. So it also means we have to juggle finances if we have to juggle clients.

We certainly will have a White Christmas though. No doubt about that – unless the wind picks up between now and then, and blows it all to Omaha!

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