Pablo Maia Realty Group
Maia opened his real estate business in 1999, and at one point, he had 17 employees. But as you might expect, the housing crisis is not working in his favor.
"I'm in survival mode," says Maia. "We're doing a lot of short sales, which is keeping us going, and we just try to help our customers who are facing foreclosure."
Maia is finding the little business he has right now to be discouraging. "We will call the bank on behalf of our customers for things like loan modifications and wait for hours just to get a curt, unhelpful answer. I don't blame the banks - I know they're under a lot of pressure right now. But the situation is just very difficult."
Maia has had to cut his staff to nine to keep his head above water. "Now we pay only for the essentials," he says.
NEXT: Prepping for a bad year