Until the recession, RKD Construction specialized in renovating bank buildings. “We have worked for four or five of the largest banks in the country for 20 years,” president Ron Drummonds says. “The bank and property managers are our clients.”
The company worked on full bank building gut and renovation jobs, many of which had to be completed in one weekend. Drummonds and his supervisors and subcontractors would start Friday after the bank closed and would finish the job in time for the bank to reopen the following Monday. His subcontractors on the commercial jobs have worked with him for many years and understand tight deadlines.
However, in the past two years, banks have closed branches and cut staff, so Drummonds is doing more facility work. His bank work has dropped from $150,000 interior remodels to $5,000 maintenance jobs. Bank and other commercial work has dropped from 80% of RKD Construction’s jobs a few years ago, to 20% now.
The residential work that Drummonds is picking up includes a few small kitchen and bath remodels and speculative remodels of foreclosed houses that he is purchasing, remodeling, and reselling.
Ron Drummonds says that he is in a good position to purchase foreclosed and short sale houses because he has cash reserves from when the market was booming. He also has a credit line set up through a brokerage firm. “That helps us get a better price because we can close in one day,” he says.
Drummonds uses his active real estate license to work with other agents on access to these properties.
He is considering hiring a former builder employee as a salesperson on commission to bring in, sell, and manage more residential work.
- Nina Patel