Picking Your Experts
Humans are funny creatures: many of us take considerable pride in completing tasks without help from others. From a very young age, you can hear a child protest, “No, I do it by myself!” We as adults continue this pattern – though we are less likely to have a tantrum in order to get our way. The ironic truth is this: there is no shame in asking for help, especially when you are attempting a task that you have never completed before. If you are considering Prairie View Properties for your next home, being a general contractor may be the project you are taking on – selecting carpenters, electricians, plumbers and other trades. In our case, the entire development, from community planning to road building to tree planting has been our challenge – much of which we had never attempted previously.
We have found the key to success is to find experienced knowledgeable people and ask them for input and advice on whatever task we are tackling. Note that “experience” and “knowledgeable” are important. MANY people will offer advice, whether they know anything about the topic or not. You know, those type of people who give you advice about raising kids, when they don’t have any kids themselves? One key decision at Prairie View, based upon research and inquiries with other acreage developers, has been to develop the landscape and surroundings (green space, trails, pond, utilities, etc.), preparing the vision for our future neighbourhood. When the market is ready for a new acreage community, we are ready.
So, what does an expert look like? Do have to be in their industry for a minimum number of years? Do they have to have a flashy business card and be a smooth talker? In our time seeking advice, we have gotten some good pointers and some suggestions that we chose not to follow. The rule of thumb we have used is to double check the ideas with more than one source. For example, we had one road builder who highly recommended a particular type of waste water handling system (that was a big clue: as a road builder, septic systems weren’t his expertise). After making a few phone calls to other people who sold and had used the system, it became apparent that the system was expensive to buy and maintain and was short lived = research time well spent.
An expert’s work and product should speak for itself, and their clients will gladly speak well of them. So, ask around. Does this expert have customers or business associates that can vouch for them?
While we weren’t experts in acreage developments, we have made it our business to become experts, through making dozens of connections and doing our homework – a good approach no matter what project you are taking on.