Volume 47, Issue 1 - January/February 2008

Window Guy
A dealer’s perspective
by R. Mark Reasbeck, Owner of Coyote Springs Window and Door of Las Vegas. Mr. Reasbeck’s comments are solely his own and do not necessarily reflect those of this magazine.

A Hand, Full of Memories
Good Things are Happening in Today’s Market 

If I wrote anything this month on the state of our industry, this would read like a program at a funeral. I have decided to take the higher road and kick off the year on a positive note and let you know that there are some bright spots along the way.

The Nevada Subcontractors Association (NSA) exists only because of one group of people—trial lawyers.

As an active board member, and one who has a 33-gallon garbage can in my office overflowing with construction defect lawsuits (CDL), I have learned what an uphill battle it is to try and change the construction defect laws because of these trial lawyers. Last session, we had a 112-page bill before the State Legislature that was canned eventually because of one four letter word—sole. The lawyers don’t want anyone to be “solely” responsible for their own work; they still want to be able to sue everyone who stepped foot on the job. (You’re probably asking, “OK, Mark, I thought this was going to be a positive column.” It’s coming.)

Five-Finger Commitment
I have always told my kids, “You are who your friends are.” Two years ago, the NSA stepped up and put action to words and committed to building five Habitat for Humanity homes. The Theme of “Giving a Hand” brought to light that there are five fingers on that hand. The first year we had a ceremony where we traced our hands on the concrete slab and wrote our names in them. The fact that almost all of the materials and labor are donated out of our group—a group that exists to fight for fairness in construction—is huge. Construction defect lawsuits are a cancer and drain the life out of a company’s resources, yet we’re still giving back to the community.

To Some, Just an Address
I believe it was last May when this little house on Upland Drive was starting to take shape. Scott Donnelly, an NSA board member who works all day in the roofing industry, coordinated all the subcontractors so we could have a dedication on July 25, 2007. There were only five windows in the whole house, but as I walked through the structure while it was under construction, I really felt a sense of pride to be part of this. The building really does take on a personality when you know the many hands it takes to construct it were there because of the goodness of their hearts. To the mailman, the electric meter reader or the paperboy, it’s just another address, but I know it will be the home of a family, who without Habitat, may have never known the smell of new carpet.

The end of July in Las Vegas means 100-plus temperatures by noon, so you better have a good reason to be standing on a hot concrete driveway at that time of day. We did, and I wouldn’t have missed it. After the invocation, it was easy to figure out who was about to become the new owner of the house. 

Handing Over the Keys
She is a single mom with a typical can’t-sit-still, got-things-to-do toddler. With her parents watching, this articulate little lady altered between laughter and tears, thanking everyone as if she had just won the Academy Award. After she finally quit talking, it was time for her to turn the key and enter as homeowner. Punch and cookies, hugs and smiles and the first memories of the home were just recorded. I am who my friends are. Friends just “did a good thing.”

Two fingers down and three to go. Of course, on the other hand …

© Copyright 2008 Key Communications Inc. All rights reserved. No reproduction of any type without expressed written permission.