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  1. Thank you for your input Sussex. The thing about Texas is that we have larger homes and many of them are in the 60 SQ and up range. I am planning on getting business from homeowners who have not really been exposed to roof cleaning before and I don't want the price to scare them off. On a 60 SQ roof, 35 cents a square ft amounts to $2100. I have worked out my financial plan and think I can make enough profit on that to make it worth my while. Of course once I get started I might find that the unforseen cost will cause me to re-examine my pricing structure. Just curious, what do you think I should be charging in a market that is not over saturated yet? Also, how many roofs did you sell the first year you started? Thank you again for all of your help and I look forward to sharing my experience with you all, as I pay my dues.
  2. I am currently working on my business plan and am at the point where I need to do some financial projections. I am located in Texas, so I can pretty much clean roofs year round. I have been in roofing for many years and I can usually sell around 100 new roofs a year. I am projecting that I can sell at least that many cleaning jobs, as roof cleaning cost around 10% of the price of a new roof. I really have no idea what to expect, so I wanted to see how many jobs some of you all sold your first year. Also, I am going to need to charge at least 30-35 cents per sq/ft to make it worth my time. Is this a reasonable rate? I know each market will be different, but hopefully I am in the right ball park.
  3. If you are looking for more precise measurements you can get the exact number of squares for $18. There is a company called Eagle View Technologies that provides roof measurements for the insurance industry. When 10,000 houses get hit by hail, nobody has time to measure all of those roofs. Eagleview uses satellites to measure the roofs and you can get a basic report, called Quick Squares, for $18. Just go to http://www.eagleview.com to purchase. I wouldn't use this on every job, but is certainly worth every penny on the big roofs that are cut up and hard to measure.
  4. Haha. I am a roofing contractor and live in Northern Mexico (Houston, TX) so I know all about the effects of illegal labor flooding an industry. However, I don't know if the local Chamber of Commerce is entirely to blame for the nations horrid immigration policy. I don't like the situation anymore than you do, but I wouldn't say "Adios" to the chamber just because the federal government is incompetent.
  5. Great point Chris. Along those same lines in Angies List. I know they contact us regularly at the roofing company I currently work for trying to sell us some sort of partnership. On the roofing contractor forums, it is a big debate whether it is worthwhile. Does anyone use Angies List for roof cleaning leads? If you have, did you get a decent R.O.I.?
  6. I have been in sales for many years and one thing that I have always advocated was building a solid network of strategic partners. There are many service providers who are already calling on customers who could benefit from roof cleaning and developing a relationship with them can be key during slow times when your phone is not ringing. You can easily double or triple your sales effort by having a strong partnership. So, I thought it might be beneficial to start a thread and discuss who you have developed strategic relationships with that has heped your business. (Please note, while I do have an advanced degree in professional selling and 15 years of sales experience, I am just getting started in roof cleaning. I am including the examples below as ideas, but have not yet tried to market to them. If any of the more experienced guys on the board have tried developing relationships with any of these partners, I would love to hear some pointers) Realtors- When someone is selling a house it is all about Curb Appeal. You can instantly increase the perceived value of the property and possibly help it sale faster, by ridding the roof of ugly roof stains. The realtors can reccommend roof cleaning, but they can not accept any kick backs or commission. Instead offer to pass a discount along to their clients and set up a special discount code for their agency. Home Inspectors- Most people hire a home inspector when buying a house. Many home inspectors check the roof for defects and algae. If they run into an issue where algae is present you can have them discuss roof cleaning as an option. Insurance Agents- when writing new policies, many insurance companies require an initial inspection. If mold or algae is present, they will sometimes require it to be cleaned before the policy is written. Roofing Contractors- the first person someone usually calls when roof stains appear, is the roofing company they used to install the roof. Many roofing companies don't offer roof cleaning, but they receive calls requesting the service. You could work out a deal and give them 10% of the invoice for any business they send your way. In return, you can send them roofs you look at that need to be replaced or repaired and collect 10% of that bill. Painting Contractors- typically when someone is painting their house, they are trying to improve the way it looks. On most homes, the roof makes up 30% of the visible exterrior of the house. If the homeowner is painting the house to make it look better, it only makes since to clean the roof at the same time. Its kind of like a woman putting make up on but neglecting to brush her hair. Gutter Companies- if a person is adding gutters on their house, it means that they care about improving their property. The gutter guys are already going to be on a ladder, and will have a great view to check for algae. It wouldn't take but a minute to mention roof cleaning to the homeowner and drop off your card. Lawn Maintenance Companies- these guys are in charge of taking care of the property and usually see it on a weekly basis. They also usually have a ton of customers who obviously are not do-it-yourselfers. Could be a great way to get into some new customers. Powerwash Companies- if they don't already offer roof cleaning, you may be able to partner with them. In exchange you can givethem a finders fee or send them the powerwashing jobs you run across. Local Hardware Store- if you have a local hardware store, probably wouldn't work with the big chains, you may want to talk to the person that works in the roofing department. Im sure that customers ask about the stain removal products they carry, and if any of them ask for an installer, you can be the man. Anyways, these are just some ideas to get the thread started. Hopefully, we can get some good ideas that all of us can use to increase sales.
  7. If you really want to find out who is taking your signs, you could always pick up a $30 Game Camera from Wally World. You should get a nice picture of the perp in action. Then you could put up giant wanted signs around town with his picture on it, and he can steal those signs too. Just kidding. I have been in the hail storm roof restoration business and we have been using these same type of signs for advertising for years. My guess is that the real culprit Is not a competitor and they probably couldn't care less about roof cleaning. Those little metal stakes are $0.80-$1.00 each and everyone else in your town that uses yard signs knows that. When times are tough, it is cheaper for some of them to drive around and steal other companies signs to salvage the metal stakes, so they can then use them on their own signs. I have a few tips that I will pass along that should increase the time your signs stay out. 1. Put your signs in areas away from intersections. If you have to park and walk a ways to put up your sign, so will the person that wants to steal it. I usually find high traffic roads and put them between intersections. 2. Put signs on the right hand side of the road. If the person who is picking them up has to park his car and then walk around it to get to your sign, it is more difficult and a greater chance they will be seen. If it is on the left hand side of the road then all it takes is opening the door and the sign is right there. 3. If your signs are being picked up so that the stakes can be used, you can start putting a line of bright yellow spray paint on the stakes. Then when you see the local yard maintenance companies signs strt appearing with stakes with yellow stripes, you will knwo who to call to get your signs back. 4. Offer your customers a $25-$50 discount if they let you leave your sign in their yard for X number of days after you finish their roof cleaning. Signs in customers yards are rarely disturbed. 5. (Note: I have not tried this yet) I have noticed that many of the neighborhoods in my area have enterance signs with their name on it. Many of those signs have algae/mold/mildew growing on them. I was thinking about approaching the HOA's and offering to clean them for free/heavily discounted rate in exchange for letting me put a sign up to take credit for the job. If you get permission from the HOA, get it in writing and tape it to the back of the sign. Anyways, I hope this helps and I look forward to chatting with many of you on this forum. I just joined and am going to be entering the exciting world of professional roof cleaning. I am sure I will end up getting sucked into becoming a "Premium Member" here before too long, but I figure that I will enjoy reading all of the free content in the mean time. (Don't worry Chris, I already have my premium membership fees budgeted into my busness plan and can already tell this is going to be "ongoing expense")
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