Two years went by and in 1998 my grandmother passed away and left me some money. The first chunk I got was fifty thousand and we put a down payment on a new condominium unit that was being built in lower Pinebrook. It was a three bedroom for one hundred and seventy thousand. We figured the kids were small and they could share a room, because we needed an office, until we could build on the lot in the next two years. It would take us four to get well enough established and be making enough money to finally look to build. In the mean time both our businesses were growing and we took the risk, with partners that liked our work, and built a spec house. This was our beginning with stated income loans. We put the house in our name with a separate agreement regarding our partner’s liability. It was a fifty fifty split with our partners, one of whom was a Realtor. We agreed if we didn’t sell the house quickly we would move into it until it did sell. We were throwing a Hail Mary, counting on our quality and determined to make a reputation for Dennis as a general contractor in town. The house sold fast and each couple made thirty thousand dollars. We were ecstatic. For us the other huge benefit was the real estate community saw what we were capable of doing, which meant the hope of other build jobs. It was time to build our dream home. In 2000 when we finished our personal home the market had softened a tad and the condominium we lived in to that point was upside down so we rented it. We’d done it before, we would hang on.