Since a building fire in October of 2017, we have felt in limbo for where we would settle down in a new shop and office. We looked at buying a building we were leasing, but when that fell through we started the design process for a new build and bought some land.

A Few Week’s Ago

We were all ready to go on building our new shop. Prints were submitted to the state, the tax abatement with the city was approved, it was ready to go once we finalized pricing. We needed to get things going so we could build before our lease expired, and the planning and design were moving fast. But then the final costs came in; and they were about 40% higher than our top dollar budget.

At first, I was pissed. Like really mad. I had plans. I had already told everyone I knew we were building. The contractor was on board, the architect was on board. We were IN the process. There had been so much work done by so many people up to this point. Now what were we going to do?

The best decision couldn’t be made in an I mode. So we removed our wants, looked at needs and what was truly the best decision for us long-term: what provided the best value to us, and what helped our team and customers?

Getting in over our head financially for a new building couldn’t make the cut. I’m no Warren Buffet, but from reading his shareholder letters for the last few years I knew he wouldn’t continue with the build. He would pause, and look for another way.

We were open to leasing for another year; finding something else. We didn’t know what the next ‘go forward’ plan was, but we had to pause the construction plan and wait for something else.

So What’s The Plan?

Through talking with the current owner of the building we currently lease, we chatted up an agreement for us to buy-out our lease and purchase the building. So for the 3rd time, we emerged into a purchase agreement for the building we have been leasing, and this time it went through, quick. Like nine days quick.

This Friday, Alexis and I close on (purchased) the building we have been leasing. It is now 100% ours.

The Back and Forth

There is a part of me that feels like a dud for building up the excitement about building the new building; sharing back and forth with the team what our next home would look like. But the other side of me knows that things change and you need to adjust.

I will continue to move boldly, and make bold promises; that’s a strength and I don’t want to water myself or dilute myself just because sometimes perspectives change. As Craig Groeschel says, “Sometimes it’s right to be wrong.”

I have to unmake a promise to build the new building. Once all the information was presented, it’s right for our business to pass here and say “Yes” to buying our current building. It’s a better opportunity — for us, for right now.

Everything Better.

We have a secret power in our business, it’s that for “Everything we touch, we try to make it better.” I have been sitting and waiting in our current building to do something. Now that we own it — we are going to make it nicer. We are going to do the work to make this building ours, to have a feeling of well done, one of good design, and beauty.

We still own the land and have a full set of construction documents and when/if we decide to build someday we are ready if that’s the best move.

We are going to keep making the best decisions at each moment in front of us, and right now that means…

A year and a half after that fire we are exactly where we are supposed to be. We have a new home, a building to call ours. It’s a place that people won’t believe when we tell them how crappy it was when we found it. We are taking something that looks dead and breathing new life into it. I believe the building, the industrial park, and that whole section of town is better for having us in this building.

Building Sketch by Alexis Dancer, ArtC