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Too many roof cleaners equals LOW Prices

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Although half of you are under snow and not cleaning right now, some of us are able to clean if we want to work for pennies. 20 St George Pl Palm Beach Gardens, FL. Look it up. Around 10,000sqft barrel tile with full gutter system, newer roof, 4 years old, single story but high ceilings. She said my price was way off and that her old roof was cleaned for under $1000(with non-pressure and a licensed and insured company). I told her to call them back lol. The richest are the cheapest! Would you do it for that price?

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I've never done barrel tile so I don't know all thats involved, but If it can be done in one day I would do it. A grand a day is better then nothing. Cheap people are stubborn people. You will never convince her and she will call every roof cleaner till she finds someone willing to do the job at her price.

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Although half of you are under snow and not cleaning right now, some of us are able to clean if we want to work for pennies. 20 St George Pl Palm Beach Gardens, FL. Look it up. Around 10,000sqft barrel tile with full gutter system, newer roof, 4 years old, single story but high ceilings. She said my price was way off and that her old roof was cleaned for under $1000(with non-pressure and a licensed and insured company). I told her to call them back lol. The richest are the cheapest! Would you do it for that price?

This is what it has come to here in Florida, unfortunately :( 

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Granted the Florida market can't support the prices we charge up here in the northeast but even at $1000 bucks I would walk away. I'd have to agree with Ted on this one.

 

Years ago while working abroad I learned that competition is a good thing to a certain degree. 

 

Here is a photo of the home in question.

 

Hank

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I've never done barrel tile so I don't know all thats involved, but If it can be done in one day I would do it. A grand a day is better then nothing. Cheap people are stubborn people. You will never convince her and she will call every roof cleaner till she finds someone willing to do the job at her price.

My prices have gradually gone down since about 2005.

Back in 2005 I had reached $.19 a Sq Ft for tile and $.015 for shingles.

Now, the job I did today was barrel tile, 3200 SF under Roof, she talked me down to $385.00 and it came out at just over $.12 a SF.

In general, I get closer to .14, but, as Chris said, this is what it has come to in our part of Florida { Chis is 100 miles above me on the west coast of Florida. He's Tampa and I'm Port Charlotte }

If all roof cleaners were pros like Chris and myself, this never would have happened!

But lots of school teachers, on summer break and firemen on days off and Northerners, wanting to make a little $ have the prices set low.

Chris and I do top dollar work and our customers have years of worry free clean roofs. Those who "part time it" and got the prices down, don't care. They take the money and run!

Yesterday I did a roof even cheaper, because they were comparing pressure washing prices and it's cheaper to just blast all the algae off, all over the yard and all nearby structures. Their roofs last maybe 1 1/2 years, ours closer to 4.

This makes 24 years in business here for me and I made a lot more $ in 2000 than I will this year!

On the other hand, once you are set up and moving, less $ is required to keep on moving!

So, If I did a roof for $385 that was 3200 SF and another was 6400 SF and no harder, I would throw that extra 3200 in for probably much less than my original SF needed fee, and do it for $650.00

I know I will only work an extra 1 1/2 hours tops!

May as well win the bid - BUT I DON'T LIKE BEING IN THIS POSITION!

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Barrel tile is much more involved vs a shingle. You have to walk it 99% of the time, you have the front edge of each tile to worry about being clean, and you have to try not to break them and their shape makes runoff a sure thing. It might be able to be done in 1 day but I planned for 2 days with just me spraying. Yes, cheap people are stubborn, that's how they keep all their money. She will have no problem finding that price down here from someone.

 

Yes Ted that roof is ridiculous. The sheer size and shape of it is crazy. Not a typical A-frame shingle house from up north.

 

Thanks to Hank for posting the snapshot of the map. Granted our SH is half the price it is up north but we aren't doing half the work either. Its sad but something we have to accept down here to get work sometimes.

 

As Chuck said, people do it for extra money, price below market, do half azz work, take the money and run. That's why prices are in the gutter (so to speak lol).

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I feel the same as most as I would not do it for $1000 and maybe I would miss out but I don't like allowing the customer determine my prices and in turn under cutting the whole industry.

 

Of course things are related to a "what the market can bear" type attitude so yes I have taken less than I wanted on some jobs, but I do not clean roofs for .10 per sqft.

 

Also I am a firefighter and no this isn't a hobby.  I find the earlier comment somewhat offensive "on days off".  I work 9 days a month as a career firefighter, so you tell me which job is part time?  I get the question all the time "am I the one doing roofs for $100"?  No that's not me and I take this seriously and pass on low ball jobs just for the fact that I refuse to lower my price points

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I feel the same as most as I would not do it for $1000 and maybe I would miss out but I don't like allowing the customer determine my prices and in turn under cutting the whole industry.

 

Of course things are related to a "what the market can bear" type attitude so yes I have taken less than I wanted on some jobs, but I do not clean roofs for .10 per sqft.

 

Also I am a firefighter and no this isn't a hobby.  I find the earlier comment somewhat offensive "on days off".  I work 9 days a month as a career firefighter, so you tell me which job is part time?  I get the question all the time "am I the one doing roofs for $100"?  No that's not me and I take this seriously and pass on low ball jobs just for the fact that I refuse to lower my price points

 

 

Wow.  Chuck has offended you?  Allow me to interject if I may:

 

He's an industry pioneer for one,  That alone commands some respect.

He's a senior citizen, and a senior business leader.

He's had a very tough couple of years - it's his personal business that I certainly won't mention. Leave him alone.

If you reach out to him privately, he'll help you out in any way that he can.

He makes his living in this industry - it's not supplemental income.

He's mean as hell when you piss him off  :-)  We might just see what I mean here in a little bit  LOL.

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3200 sq foot for $365...yikes! I'd charge $1100 for that size roof. Of course I pay $3 a gallon for SH, we dream of roofs with nothing but GM on them and mine would take 3 hours of rinsing since it would be covered head to toe in moss and lichens....but still, even with only GM that is crazy. Only way you could make a decent living would be to put a monster rig together so you could hit that in under an hour. 

 

 That 10,000 sq foot job...I wouldn't touch it for less than $3500...$4500 if it had moss. 

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Wow.  Chuck has offended you?  Allow me to interject if I may:

 

He's an industry pioneer for one,  That alone commands some respect.

He's a senior citizen, and a senior business leader.

He's had a very tough couple of years - it's his personal business that I certainly won't mention. Leave him alone.

If you reach out to him privately, he'll help you out in any way that he can.

He makes his living in this industry - it's not supplemental income.

He's mean as hell when you piss him off  :-)  We might just see what I mean here in a little bit  LOL.

 

 

Oops, my bad

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That's just it, you could have the biggest pump in the world and it would do you no good on a barrel tile roof with no gutters. This is why Chris runs 1/2" pumps. He does these roofs every day and that is all you need for doing these style roofs. Find one and spray it with your 20 or 40 gpm pump and see what happens. What will happen is 90% of that chemical will be on the ground because the shape of those tiles takes anything more than a light mist and runs it down the roof. Not to mention all the mix that will then be wasted and left to kill the plants below. Ill bet Chuck sprayed that roof in 3-5 hours with about 100 gals of 50% mix. If it was asphalt shingle it would be more like 2-3 hours and 200 gals of 30% mix. At least that's the way its been in my experience. Then that monster rig/pump would be effective.

 

The price problem down here is just too many people cleaning and customers that are uniformed of the non-pressure method and/or just don't care to pay for the quality. Instead they would rather have it blasted by a pressure washer guy every 2 years for half the price and they are oblivious.

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From what I hear maybe snow removal from the roof might be a better business right now Gene lol. To put it in perspective last week I saw 3 other roof cleaners/pressure cleaners in the same neighborhood I was in within the 2 hours I was there. I couldn't name them all but ill bet money there's well over 100 in my county alone.

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That's just it, you could have the biggest pump in the world and it would do you no good on a barrel tile roof with no gutters. This is why Chris runs 1/2" pumps. He does these roofs every day and that is all you need for doing these style roofs. Find one and spray it with your 20 or 40 gpm pump and see what happens. What will happen is 90% of that chemical will be on the ground because the shape of those tiles takes anything more than a light mist and runs it down the roof. Not to mention all the mix that will then be wasted and left to kill the plants below. Ill bet Chuck sprayed that roof in 3-5 hours with about 100 gals of 50% mix. If it was asphalt shingle it would be more like 2-3 hours and 200 gals of 30% mix. At least that's the way its been in my experience. Then that monster rig/pump would be effective.

 

The price problem down here is just too many people cleaning and customers that are uniformed of the non-pressure method and/or just don't care to pay for the quality. Instead they would rather have it blasted by a pressure washer guy every 2 years for half the price and they are oblivious.

That's right...you don't have gutters. That is nearly unheard of here. Sheesh...3-4 hours for $360...by the time you are done paying for materials, insurance, helper, truck, fuel, advertising, etc. you might as well work for somebody else.

That being said...a bigger pump doesn't necessarily mean more material put on per square foot. It means more sq ft covered faster. You have to move a lot quicker and watch yiur nozzle selection. If you have excessive runoff, you are spraying too much, regardless of the pump used. The goal is to always have material on the roof and not in the gutters. Moss does admittedly make this easier as it soaks it in. It is the rinsing that kills you here. Takes me 15 minutes to spray a 2000 sq ft single story house, and an hour to rinse it.

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yep. no gutters = pita. I'd rather work slow and steady rather than hopping around quickly on fragile slippery tiles 2 stories high. Flat tiles are much easier but barrel tiles are a nightmare and take extra work because of their rounded shape. And no dead moss to rinse off down here. How much mix does an average 2000sq ft moss covered roof take?

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I'd say our average 2K sq ft moss covered roof, we do in about 60 gal of material with surfactant added. If there is only GM...very rare...then cut that in half (that is the beauty of air pumps...you can use tiny nozzles and get pretty much just about zero runoff).  Tiles roofs are rare. We do about 3 a year...though I've done two this week...one new client and one maintenance job. It is almost all asphalt, some cedar and the occasional metal...though I usually turn down metal roofs anymore as it is just more trouble than it is worth unless I can charge it at cedar pricing.  

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That sounds about right. All the shingles I get look like a fresh paved asphalt road and they need at least two hits and sometimes touch ups after that. Otherwise a gray shingle will be orange after just one hit. Tile roofs are the only reason I have an air pump. Just for the reason that I need to get it dialed down to a 10 nozzle to watch the runoff. Metal roofs are rare for me, maybe 1 or 2 a year. If I can hit it from a ladder they aren't that bad but if I have to walk on it I charge double for them because of the safety aspect with all the gear and extra time needed. Those things are like a slip and slide.

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Stay Clean, Im with ya, I am just north of you and I deal with the same BS all the time. Air Pump and #10 is what I send all 4 trucks out with, now, they have larger tips if need be but there is no need to run high GPM on tile roofs with now gutters. 

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Some times you just have to shake your head and walk away. It's not that there are to many in the busses it is there are to many that are not full time and having to make a living from it. With that said you part timers do not ask me for advise or help until you have to made the commitment to a full time gig. Sorry if this offends some but this is my solution income and the way I provide for my family.

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I did shake my head and walk away from that job. I have personal standards and wont work for someone if they aren't willing to pay me what I believe I'm worth. You're right, all the part timers in the business must do it as a hobby and probably don't intend to make any income at all to support their own families. They must do it for fun on their days off from their real full time jobs. They should all start out like you must have done with top of the line equipment, a website, #1 google ranking, and a big company with employees to do all the work they will have from day one. I'm not sure who you are referring to when you talk about "you part timers" and say "do not ask me for advise or help" but I have read this thread again and don't see where anyone has asked for your advise or help. Please correct me if I'm wrong. If anyone has asked for your advise or help you can simply ignore them and not respond. If this offends anyone, well too bad. Take it up with me in a private message.

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It is a good thing there are barely any dirty roofs in the Pacific Northwest.

Really.

None. At. All.

I do this as a hobby and NOT to make money.

Not worth starting a company here.

 lmao...

 

 And yes $4,000.00 minimum for a tile roof of that size if rinsed.  Additional for pitches, accessibility and whatnot.  We just finished the last tile roof in a neighbourhood where we did them all.  We charged minimum $2,000 for each one.  3 - 5,000 Sq Ft.

 

We usually always come in with higher bids then most competitors, but with confidence and good marketing / advertising which lands us the job most of the time

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