Robert Mock knows how to turn lemons into lemonade. He suddenly found himself out of work as the service manager for Palmer Motor Sales, a business that had been operation since 1912, making it the oldest Ford dealership. When the full impact of the recession hit Chelsea, a bedroom community of Ann Arbor in October of 2009, Palmer Motor Sales closed its doors due to poor auto sales.
What seemed like another closed business on Main Street, USA actually became a dream come true for Mock. He decided to buy the building and start his own company, and entered into an agreement with the owner of the building to lease the property. Thus began Palmer Auto Service, LLC. Mock knew the business would be successful because during difficult economic times, people are more likely to repair their existing vehicle rather than purchase a new one. The company is a car and light truck service center which offers maintenance and repair of both foreign and domestic vehicles. The shop is equipped with a fully computerized alignment rack that allows the staff to work more efficiently.
Mock was able to finance the purchase of the building, located in downtown Chelsea, with the help of Chelsea State Bank and the SBA 504 Loan Program. The Michigan Certified Development Corporation provided $346,000 under the SBA 504 Loan Program and Chelsea State Bank financed the remaining amount for a total of $975,000. Fifteen jobs were created and Robert Mock continues the legacy of the original Palmer Motor Sales.