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Roofing Business Idea

You have experience in construction and you enjoy working outdoors; why not find out how to start a roofing business?

It’s the worst feeling in the world—after a heavy rain, a homeowner notices a damp patch on the living room ceiling.

And he knows there’s more rain in the forecast for tomorrow.

That hole in the roof needs to be repaired as soon as possible, so they call you–a respected roofer.

How To Start A Roofing Business – What a Roofer Does

A Roofer inspects the roof of a house or other type of building, looking for damage, leakage or mold. He can patch, replace, and waterproof the new material. He can also work on new homes, installing roofs.

He may work with a roofing contractor or independently.

What You’ll Need

The most important thing you’ll need as a roofer is experience. Since a bad roofing job can create damage throughout a house, most customers are looking for roofing professionals with proven records. So, if you’ve got experience as a roofer, you’re on your way.

If you don’t, it’s essential you acquire as much training and experience as you can before you strike out on your own.

You can apprentice with other roofing professionals or building contractors. Some organizations, such as the United Union of Roofers, Waterproofers and Allied Workers (www.unionroofers.com) have apprenticeship programs to guide you on your way.

Part of your experience should be a thorough knowledge of different types of roofing materials and safety education.

You will need a truck for hauling roofing equipment, and an at-home office system for maintaining schedules, billing and planning.

State regulations vary, but most require you to have bonding, worker’s compensation and general liability insurance. You will also want to provide your customers with warranties for workmanship and materials.

When finding out how to start a roofing business, many states will also require that your business is licensed.

Challenges and Advantages of a Roofing Business

Compared to many other businesses, a roofing company is a low cost startup business, however, given that you’ll have to buy the materials you use before receiving payment from your customer, it’s important that you have some savings.

Roofing work is very physical, and very weather dependant. Work may be seasonal if you live in an area prone to iciness or rain.

On the positive side, the roofing business is growing faster than average. According to the Bureau of Labor, employment of roofers is expected to grow 16% in the next few years. Another good thing is that even when the housing market is slow—and therefore the need for new roof installation is slow—the demand for roof repairs continues.

Marketing Your Business

For local contractor type businesses, word of mouth is the most effective way to advertise. That means impressing your customers so that they will tell their friends and neighbors what a great job you did.

Continue networking by being active in your local chamber of commerce. Look into professional associations such as National Roofing Contractors Association (http://www.nrca.net).

Consider an online presence with a website, and get friendly with the manager of your local hardware store. He may be able to give you leads, or refer you to others. Building lasting relationships is key when learning how to start a roofing business.

With experience, planning and hard work, you can have as much business as you can handle.

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