Tag Archives: Work Slow Down in Dickinson

Comments on Dickinson, North Dakota, October 2015

Hello everyone.  Thank you for reading my blog.  I have not added any posts to this blog in August or September because I was busy.  In June I went back to the state where my home is, to pick up a trailer full of equipment, so that I could come back to Dickinson and do some self-employment work, because my job in Dickinson was so slow.  I got some self-employment work in August, then my regular job was busy in September.  I have been lucky.

I look at the North Dakota Job Service website every week, and there are only about five oil-field/construction jobs posted each week for Dickinson.  There are some nursing and physician jobs posted, but there always are, because many healthcare professionals don’t want to live in Dickinson because housing is so expensive.  In October of 2014, there were about twelve  oil-field/construction jobs posted each week, this was just before the price of oil went down.

My estimate is, that about forty percent of the out-of-state workers have left Dickinson in the past eight months.  Traffic is much lighter, restaurants, grocery stores, and gas stations are much less busy.  I made a nasty comment in one of my last posts, saying that only the idiots were still coming to Dickinson, the people that don’t read or watch TV news.  I get the impression that even the idiots have quit coming to Dickinson now.

Supposedly, all of the companies have let go of their idiots and near-do-wells, and have retained the best employees.  This appears to be the case, there are not that many white-trash in Dickinson compared to last year.  People are friendlier in Dickinson now.  The ratio of men to women is still  probably 3:1.

Real estate people/property managers are trying their best to keep property/rent prices high.  I believe that property/rent prices will drop 20% in the next twelve months.

I advise people to not come to Dickinson at this time.

Housing in Dickinson, July 2015

Since 2009, homeowners, apartment owners, and property managers in Dickinson have really taken advantage of everyone.  The property owners increased their prices so much, that it was just barely worth it to come to work in North Dakota.  Yes, you could get a higher hourly wage and work overtime, but a one bedroom shitty old apartment would cost you $1,500 per month.  Now it is time for pay back, what goes around comes around.  Prepare to have your head shoved in shit and held there property owners!  Ha ha ha ha ha!  You caused everyone to have money problems, now you can have money problems!

I have explained in my blog posts after January of 2015, that approximately 20,000 oil field related jobs have gone away in western North Dakota.  The highest paying oil field jobs, those on the drill rigs, have gone away.  I would guess, that about 8,000 workers and about 8,000 of their family members have left the state of North Dakota since January of 2015.  However, there has probably been about 8,000 stupid people who moved to North Dakota since January 2015, those that neither read the newspaper nor watch the news on TV.

There are less oil field workers living in Dickinson now.  The oil field workers that remain in Dickinson are not as high paid as the ones who left, and there is much less overtime being worked now.  The demand for housing is not as great as it had been in 2009, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14.  Plus, plus, in the past year there have probably been at least 400 new housing units completed in Dickinson.  Ha ha, ha ha, ha ha.

Housing prices are going to go down, and down, and down for the next two years.  I have heard that real estate agents in Dickinson are telling people,”You had better buy now, prices are going to go back up in December.”  First of all you lying bitch, it’s 0 degrees Fahrenheit in December, cold and grey, nobody wants to be in Dickinson in December.  Don’t try to victimize me with your treachery and lying, anyone buying any housing in Dickinson will see its value drop about 5% by December 2015, and an additional 20% percent by December of 2016 after reality has set in.  I probably didn’t really figure the drop high enough, what do you think is going to happen when throughout every neighborhood in Dickinson, out-of-state workers are going to just pack what they can into their car and leave, starting about, now?  If there is no way to make your house payment, no way to get a good job in Dickinson, (like right now), what else are you going to do but leave?

I think that the oil field work will possibly pick up a bit in about two years, because of the amount of time it will take to come to the end of this slow down, and the lag time to start proceeding again with more oil field operations.  Think of it like a train, it takes a long distance to slow down, and it takes a long distance to speed up, it is not instantaneous.

Though I am not making much money at this time, one of the reasons that I stay here, is that I hope to be opportunistic when the housing prices reach bottom.  I think that it will take at least two years to get to a bottom.  I want to see housing prices go down and down, and then I want to buy something.  There is oil here, and in the future, oil field workers will have to come back here to Dickinson to get more oil out of the ground.  I would like to own something here in Dickinson because I see the likelihood, almost the inevitability, of oil field workers coming back to Dickinson in the future, and if I can buy something for a low price, and hold onto it long enough, I believe that I would eventually have something that was worth much more than what I originally paid for it.  However, if that ever occurs, I can chose to be reasonable in what I would charge for rent or for a selling price, I don’t have to take advantage of people in the way that other property owners have done in Dickinson.

Work Slow-Down in Dickinson, North Dakota

I have not posted anything to this blog for approximately six weeks.  I have been very busy due to changes in Dickinson.  Normally, there is a work slow-down in North Dakota from the beginning of December through the end of March.  This normal work slow down did occur.  It is difficult to perform different types of construction due to the ground freezing solid, due to concrete not being able to cure, and due to it being difficult to work outside when it is below 0 degrees Fahrenheit.  I would estimate that approximately twenty-five percent of the out-of-state workers go home at this time of year.

For the out-of-state worker, if you are not working more than forty hours per week, the cost of rent is so high in Dickinson, that you would probably want to go home in the winter, you see most of your money going towards rent, you are not getting ahead financially, there is not a lot to do in Dickinson, it is miserably cold outside, so you go home.  The long time residents of Dickinson say that the winter in North Dakota “keeps out the riff-raff”.  I agree with them on this.  I hate white-trash.  The high cost of rent, the high cost of utilities, the severity of the cold and snow, the lack of work, makes it difficult to get by in the winter in North Dakota, and the white-trash leave here like rats from a sinking ship.

In addition to the normal winter work slow-down, there has been a second contributor to the work slow-down, the price of oil.  Sometime in December, the price of oil went below $50 per barrel.  The oil companies here in North Dakota such as Whiting, Marathon, and Continental, have calculated that when they can sell the North Dakota oil for more than $80 per barrel, they are making a profit.  Once the price of North Dakota oil falls below $80 per barrel, to the oil companies, it’s like a car dealer selling a new car for less than it costs to manufacture it, they don’t want to do this, there is no point in pumping oil from the ground to sell it at a loss.  People here in North Dakota and across the United States speculate on how this will affect employment.  People that use sound logic and reasoning believe that under these circumstances, the oil companies will reduce the amount of oil that is pumped, and try to reduce costs wherever they can because they are not making a profit on the oil that is pumped.  In the “Dickinson Press” newspaper in late January, there was a front page news story about the Patterson drilling company parking forty of its drill rigs on land outside of Dickinson because contracts for drilling new wells had declined.  This newspaper story also cited another drilling company parking its drill rigs outside of Dickinson due to a slow down in drilling.

In national news, it was either Baker Hughes or Halliburton that announced they were laying off 7,000 people.  Schlumberger announced that they were laying off 1,000 workers.  Other oil industry companies announced lay-offs.  My estimate is that the Baker Hughes and Schlumberger lay-offs will probably remove at least one hundred workers in Dickinson.  Patterson drilling parking forty of their drill rigs will probably cost about four hundred jobs in Dickinson.  The Dakota Prairie Refinery in Dickinson is just being completed, this project had employed more than several hundred people at any one time, and these people are going to be laid off now.  When you add in the other drilling company that parked its drill rigs outside of Dickinson, just these companies mentioned in this paragraph will total about 1,000 jobs lost in Dickinson in January.

There are approximately six very large apartment communities that are just being completed in Dickinson, totaling approximately 1,000 new units.  At this same time, I believe that there are at least 1,000 jobs that have been lost in Dickinson.  It will be interesting to see what happens.  If you have read some of my blog posts from 2014, you can see that much of what I wrote about, was that the oil boom that Dickinson had been experiencing presently, had happened before about thirty years ago.  I think that in 2015 many people in Dickinson will experience a catastrophe.  Some people employed with Baker Hughes, Halliburton, or Patterson drilling, who had purchased a house in Dickinson in order to move their wife and children here, will not be able to pay their mortgage on the $300,000 house they bought, nor will they be able to sell it for more than $250,000.  People who purchased new travel trailers to live in RV Parks, and people who purchased manufactured homes in manufactured home communities will just walk away from their trailers because they will no longer be able to make the payments and pay the lot rent, and there will be no point in living in Dickinson anyway if they can’t get a job here.  People will walk away from their apartment leases.  Will the new apartment communities still be able to charge $2,000 a month for an apartment?

I would like to be here in Dickinson long enough to see some people have their heads shoved in shit, which is what I felt that some people have done to me, merely for coming here, and being from somewhere else.  Myself, and other people have come to North Dakota, with a college education, with no criminal record, with a work history of professionalism, and having lived and worked throughout the United States, and been treated like dirt by ignorant, uneducated, never-been-anywhere North Dakotans who temporarily and briefly have been given power over other people by the oil boom here.  I would like to be here to see some of the local people and businesses who have mistreated and taken advantage of people from out-of-town, get what is coming to them.