Friday, March 4, 2016

Such a week!

All my plans kind of went out the window this week.

I woke up Monday after a great week end, with this strange heaviness over me. I was walking to work and wondering why I was feeling that way. "Carry on!" as they say, but at 9:30 am  I received a phone call from the building manager where I have my personal studio/workspace.

"This cannot be good" I thought,  and it wasn't. The factory where I am situated is evicting all its tenants because they need the space.

We have quite a history in the furniture business here.
It is an old furniture factory, built in 1900 and 25 years ago the building had a lot of unused space and they started leasing space to artisans who were grateful to have a reasonably priced place to create. There have been woodworkers, potters, cobblers, artists and yes tailors and cutters all clustered on a floor or two there.
Recently the business has been storing a lot of product there as the storage of wood products was grandfathered into the system, and they need their space back.

There is a potter and woodworker whose livelihoods are made by what they produce there. Myself and my colleagues - another cutter and a theatrical milliner and a wig maker are slightly better off in that we work part of the year for a large theatre and use our space to generate income for the time we are "unemployed" laid off. We can rent at the theatre but it is not guaranteed to be available when we need it and for some of us, our freelance projects overlap slightly with our "employment" and the rentals stop once the theatre staff start work. Which is totally reasonable.

Our situation is complicated because we had reasonable rents which meant we could absorb the rental costs into a partial year of earning potential, but these days, it is so difficult to find light industrial space at all, let alone at a reasonable rate. I see so many places that are empty (sometimes for years) but the landlords would rather they stay that way rather than reducing the rent and having a tenant.
There must be some advantage to them doing so I just don't understand it.

So we have to go. Where? I don't know, but the search is on and it is proving difficult so far.
We have banded together to look for another location and I guess I will have to put some extra projects on hold while I try to work this out.

So, that is my tale of woe.

p.s. a Facebook page has been set up for those of us who were members of the Cutter and Tailor forum, please visit it and lets keep in touch. I hope to see you there. If the link doesn't work check the comment section two posts back.

I am off for my annual ski week end (no wifi) and will come back refreshed and energized, ready to take on the real estate world!


  1. Sorry to hear about the loss of your working space, I know things like that are a real pain to deal with. Hope you are successful after you comes back from ski-ing.

  2. Oh no! I hope you find somewhere soon. Thanks for sharing the Cutter and Tailor forum information. I miss it so much already.

  3. "There must be some advantage to them doing so I just don't understand it."

    Greed trumping common sense I suppose. I hope this doesn't undo too much of your progress Terri, though it probably will for a while.

    My brother just lost the lease on his barber's shop after 25 years. Landlords can ruin people very easily.

    1. Well, i have seen a lot of overpriced real estate lately. I believe that the landlords get some kind of tax break if the space is empty but I cannot confirm that. What I do know is that the tax rate for commercial landlords is very high, and they are trying to recoup it. On the other hand there are a number of landlords in my town who have owned property for years and are making a killing I am sure. Nevermind. I was resigned to putting everything into storage, but today looked at a possible space that is not pretty but may work for the group of us if we banded together. Fingers crossed.
      April 30 as a moving date wow, I have a tech dress that day, my daughter needs help moving in Toronto, taxes are due and I am supposed to move as well. Not sure how this will work out at all. Trying to stay optimistic, but wow.