Storm Chasers


#1

Over the last 2 years companies in which I cALL STORM CHASERS HAVE BEEN ROLLING INTO TOWN FROM OUT OF STATE AND KNOCKING ON DOORS TRYING TO TALK HOME OWNERS INTO LETTING THEM DO THEIR ROOF AND HANDLE THEIR INSURANCE AND THE WHOLE NINE YARDS…I WOULDNT SAY I LOSE A LOT OF JOBS TO THESE STORM CHASING COMPANIES BUT IT DOES AFFECT WORK A LITTLE…IS ANYONE ELSE ON HERE FAMILIAR WITH SUCH COMPANIES AND IF SO HOW DO YOU DEAL WITH THEM?


#2

I would be lying if I said I never chased or trooped.(storm chasers are generally subs,storm troopers go in and setup to contract)I have seen the same in my area and every area that has seen any substantial damage.I just deal with it because its free enterprise.If a contractor is shady it won’t take long before the word is out.One thing you can be sure of no matter how unfortunate it is, you will be there to clean up the mess.Some contractors do some really good work while others…well you know.If your rep is strong all you need is several houses in a storm area and no matter how many knockers knock, your rep should keep you loaded.Then you can hire some out of state subs and have another post about how jacked up some of them are.Ha ha ha ha. gnikoJ tsuJ :mrgreen:


#3

Unless you’re planning on hiring a bunch of ruthless, tough guys to round them up and shoot them, not much you can do about “them”.

I try to look at business similar to playing a round of golf. Nothing I can do about the guy I’m playing, I’m playing the course. With this analogy in mind, the biggest impact you can have on “them” is to make sure you have your own game working well. Increase your advertising, improve your sales effort (both quantity and quality), make sure the quality of your work is at the highest level, work past Customers for references and if you aren’t doing it already, learn the insurance portion of the roofing game. You have the home court advantage, take advantage of it while assuming you’ll need to be at the top of your own game to win.

Good luck!


#4

thanks for the advice…i feel that homeowners nowdays are more focused on the price versus who does the work and where they come from and the quality of work being done…the roofs i sell are to the type of people who really care about their house and property, but it seems that more and more people are satisfied with simply getting a cheap price and a roof that doesnt leak…they dont care about felt paper and reflashing chimneys and using ice and water shield and other things that are important


#5

Working in Colorado we have fought storm chasers tooth and nail. As the above posts stated, they usually hang themselves soon. The top two we were fighting only offered 1 year workmanship warranties. Once we discovered this it was easy to work around them. We also discovered they weren’t pulling permits and weren’t even licensed in many cities.

Stay the path, they will take a ton of work, waive deductibles and make the mess. You can come back and get all the inflated repair prices.


#6

We had a band of gypsies roll thru here last summer
doing there handy work. There were a couple companies from Colorado and another one from missouri who claims
to be the third largest roofing company with just over 200 empolees. To do the amount of work they
claim to have done they would need more than 200, so
that tells me they have alot of subs. If you sub work
in this city you have to be licensed,insured and carry
workers comp. The only ones that had any of these
are listed as the owners of the companies. If you
suspect they are not doing things by the book. Check
up on them, call the state to see if there workers
comp account is in good standing call all the necessary people to make sure they play by all the rules. We did call workers comp on these guys and supplied them with addresses we new they were workin at but every time they went out to check they were already finished with the job. If there not using safety equipment call osha. I made it a point to try
and make it as miserable as i could for them.
Just for the record our population is just under
56,000 and there are 31 listings in the phone book
for roofing companies and at least 20 of those are from out of state. Most of these leave in the winter
but come back in the spring. By the way we did not have a big strom last summer for us to be blessed with their presense, they just new that there were
alot of homes that had the discontinued T-locks on them cause those were the houses they targeted.
They did make work pick up for us a little, but it’s the idea behind it. Nobody likes food taken out of their mouth in their own backyard,I don’t care who you are.


#7

We opened a branch near there recently. It’s a year round branch and we run everything by the book. While I understand where you are coming from the only thing I don’t agree with is bringing in OSHA.

We do everything we can to stay legal, (including getting people 10 & 30hr certified,) but OSHA doesn’t discriminate. They can come back on you and every other local contractor for things you didn’t even know you were doing wrong. In my opinion the further you can stay from them the better.

[quote=“T-Lock”]We had a band of gypsies roll thru here last summer
doing there handy work. There were a couple companies from Colorado and another one from missouri who claims
to be the third largest roofing company with just over 200 empolees. To do the amount of work they
claim to have done they would need more than 200, so
that tells me they have alot of subs. If you sub work
in this city you have to be licensed,insured and carry
workers comp. The only ones that had any of these
are listed as the owners of the companies. If you
suspect they are not doing things by the book. Check
up on them, call the state to see if there workers
comp account is in good standing call all the necessary people to make sure they play by all the rules. We did call workers comp on these guys and supplied them with addresses we new they were workin at but every time they went out to check they were already finished with the job. If there not using safety equipment call osha. I made it a point to try
and make it as miserable as i could for them.
Just for the record our population is just under
56,000 and there are 31 listings in the phone book
for roofing companies and at least 20 of those are from out of state. Most of these leave in the winter
but come back in the spring. By the way we did not have a big strom last summer for us to be blessed with their presense, they just new that there were
alot of homes that had the discontinued T-locks on them cause those were the houses they targeted.
They did make work pick up for us a little, but it’s the idea behind it. Nobody likes food taken out of their mouth in their own backyard,I don’t care who you are.[/quote]


#8

Gotta love people who think they are entitled to the local business just because they live there. Wonder if those locals own any Japanese Vehicles, Chinese made electronics, etc.? It would be poetic justice if OSHA were to show up at their job site and fine them for petty safety violations.


#9
  1. Set your self a part from your competition. What do you have that they dont?
  2. If your not knocking on doors, helping with insurance work, and meeting adjusters… you better start, and fast.
  3. Depending on what storm chasing companies your dealing with… They may run circles around you no matter what.

We had a huge storm chasing company come down to my area after a hail storm. 25 reps door knocking working insurance vs my 8 reps doing estimates.

They totally kicked our butts for awhile. So i studied their company, adopted some of their methods, and soon we gave them a run for their money.

Andddddd… now their gone. But id thank them if i could because i learned a lot from them.


#10

[quote=“RoofingRevolution”]1. Set your self a part from your competition. What do you have that they dont?
2. If your not knocking on doors, helping with insurance work, and meeting adjusters… you better start, and fast.
3. Depending on what storm chasing companies your dealing with… They may run circles around you no matter what.

We had a huge storm chasing company come down to my area after a hail storm. 25 reps door knocking working insurance vs my 8 reps doing estimates.

They totally kicked our butts for awhile. So i studied their company, adopted some of their methods, and soon we gave them a run for their money.

Andddddd… now their gone. But id thank them if i could because i learned a lot from them.[/quote]

Now there is a post from a guy that gets it!


#11

MAX,

If after the storm, you’re handing out free estimates while the out of town guys are signing contingency agreements, you’ll never catch up and you’ll never earn the same $ as the “chasers”. Written and presented properly, a contingency agreement tells the insured you and they are committed to each other and you are committed to getting their claim fully paid rather than giving them the low(est) price. That eliminates the shoppers who don’t care about quality and/or want to buy a new flat screen tv with the money they didn’t have to pay you.

HOW DO I DEAL WITH THEM (“Storm chasers”)? Become a 3RSystems Certified storm damage contractor! Feel free to PM me for details.


#12

[quote=“LMB”]MAX,

If after the storm, you’re handing out free estimates while the out of town guys are signing contingency agreements, you’ll never catch up and you’ll never earn the same $ as the “chasers”. Written and presented properly, a contingency agreement tells the insured you and they are committed to each other and you are committed to getting their claim fully paid rather than giving them the low(est) price. That eliminates the shoppers who don’t care about quality .[/quote]

So true.I hate a bragger as much as the next BUT I have not given a hard bid in 4 mos.The rest contingency/provisions.I Highly recommend anyone serious about insurance work to check into an adjusters Licensing,Missouri requires no certification but I received ours in Tx.But that itself won’t guaranty success since some of the people I knew that received certification could barely cross the street.Oklahoma city taught me so much pertaining to insurance work and assertive salesmanship.I make a hell of alot more $$$ than ever.And I get the ENTIRE claim plus deductibles and supplements.ONLY SUCKERS eat deductibles.Do you think the HO would give you an xtra $500-$1500? NOT A CHANCE.!!!


#13

[quote=“Authentic_Dad”]
Now there is a post from a guy that gets it![/quote]

Haha! Keep your friends close, and your enemies even closer.


#14

So tell me this…If you were based out of Alabama and you came to chase a storm in Kings Mountain NC and you did several roofs and one or two of them had problems 4 or 5 years down the road, would most storm chasers from 4 states away even remember where the hell Kings Mountain NC even is? No way…as soon as these chasers leave the area the homeowners warranty goes right down the road with it…thats my biggest beef with them, plus the fact that they roll into town with 30 mexicans who will roof all day for $40…no wonder they sell jobs and I struggle, I PAY MY GUYS WELL!!!


#15

[quote=“Max Baxter Roofing”]So tell me this…If you were based out of Alabama and you came to chase a storm in Kings Mountain NC and you did several roofs and one or two of them had problems 4 or 5 years down the road, would most storm chasers from 4 states away even remember where the hell Kings Mountain NC even is? No way…as soon as these chasers leave the area the homeowners warranty goes right down the road with it…thats my biggest beef with them, plus the fact that they roll into town with 30 mexicans who will roof all day for $40…no wonder they sell jobs and I struggle, I PAY MY GUYS WELL!!!

[/quote]

Max, that comment wasn’t directed at you, it was directed at the guy who called OSHA and everyone else he could think of on some chasers. Your questions and comments were very legitimate, you are simply asking how to best compete with the storm chasers.


#16

wasnt trying to snap back really just trying to pound the same point across on this blog as I do witht people i give estimates to in storm situations. I know giving prices per square out to other roofers is a big no no but since most of us will never compete for business, what are yall selling per sqaure on standard 30 year architect roofs with ridge-vent, reflassh chimney, new felt, pipe collars, etc? whats the ball park in your areas?

Max, that comment wasn’t directed at you, it was directed at the guy who called OSHA and everyone else he could think of on some chasers. Your questions and comments were very legitimate, you are simply asking how to best compete with the storm chasers.[/quote]


#17

[quote=“Max Baxter Roofing”]So tell me this…If you were based out of Alabama and you came to chase a storm in Kings Mountain NC and you did several roofs and one or two of them had problems 4 or 5 years down the road, would most storm chasers from 4 states away even remember where the hell Kings Mountain NC even is? No way…as soon as these chasers leave the area the homeowners warranty goes right down the road with it…thats my biggest beef with them, plus the fact that they roll into town with 30 mexicans who will roof all day for $40…no wonder they sell jobs and I struggle, I PAY MY GUYS WELL!!!

[/quote]

Yay! After the storm chasers leave… your get to do some high profit repairs! Wait… now i forgot what your complaint was?

I love hearing my NEW customers say…“I wish i would of called you guys” or “I wish i would of went with you from the beginning because your local”


#18

The reality of storm chasing is - some roofing companies actually come in trying to do good work. These companies may work under a local company - but they do this so they can offer a competitive and local warranty - the local company may end up doing some of the warranty work them selves, but definitely will be paid to do any repairs that arise. When a large storm hits there is no way the local companies can handle the substantially increase in work. This is when they seek additional man power by these storm chasers to help manage the storm. The long term effect for these local companies if set up with a well ran storm company is the amount of roofs that get replaced is well above there capacity, and when the stormers are gone they get the follow up referrals and job references - and all the sudden there roofing company is exposed to the 500-1000 or sometimes many many more installed properly roofs that these people think the local company did. For a under developed company sometimes it takes a storm to take the next step towards a high volume roofing company, and sometimes they need to be taught by these stormers how its done.


#19

I was so mad for a long time thinking Iwas being “infiltrated” by chasers.,But a fact IS afact…,A local company that does even a ridiculous amount of roofs per year like 1000+ per year could NOT handle a storm that damages 100,000 plus homes using LOCAL ONLY crews.I feel that if a contractor is crooked then it don’t take long for the word to get out.I know a couple troopers that put out some top notch work.Give me 5 houses in a storm zone and thats all it takes.$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$.
I could care less how many out of towners come in…Hell I will give them a tour.If you put out great work,control your subs,be honest,say what you mean and mean what you say…= Work.


#20

Screw the science and the only thing I am enthused about is hail that is bigger than a half dollar and some high velocity winds and possibly the after math of a good F-1 and above.(Resulting in NO deaths of course).In roofing terms a storm chaser is someone who follows severe damage that the storm leaves behind.Making money on mother nature.I have chased storms and I did it for the $$$ not for a hobby.