Student making a buisness plan


#1

hi there my name is mo I am a 27 year old adult student taking a buisness basics course I am required through class to make a buisness plan and I have chosen the roofing industry as my buisness.
I checked out this site and thought it may be a good place to get some information.if you are someone who has started your own roofing company I would love to be able to ask you some questions if you would not mind.example what made you decide to chose roofing?How long have you been in the industry?what are the estimated start up cost?again I would appreciate any feedback you may have and look forward to hearing form you thanks for your time
Mo


#2

[quote=“mo”]hi there my name is mo I am a 27 year old adult student taking a buisness basics course I am required through class to make a buisness plan and I have chosen the roofing industry as my buisness.
I checked out this site and thought it may be a good place to get some information.if you are someone who has started your own roofing company I would love to be able to ask you some questions if you would not mind.example what made you decide to chose roofing?How long have you been in the industry?what are the estimated start up cost?again I would appreciate any feedback you may have and look forward to hearing form you thanks for your time
Mo[/quote]

Hopefully by choosing the roofing industry you havent already failed your class , roofing is dog eat dog,all I can suggest is do what everyone else is doing ,apply for a government loan,now you qualify to hire their minority workers(immigrants)and now you have the qualifications to bid on large government contracts ,only bid on those that are 5000 squares and up,hopefully you will get one for over a 100,000 squares,now that you have made millions you can do as you please,hope you pass.


#3

You will probably find that a lot of us (not me, BTW) grew up in the business & have carried on the work. Some might have grown up in the trades as a whole & subdivided into roofing as a focus or specialty.

Unlike asking a bank for a loan or seeking out investors, most of us start out small & then over time invest back into the business first through increased tools, then probably the quality of tools…

Possibly a new(er) work truck, vehicle lettering or signage, a tool trailer or dump trailer.

Next is probably some better quality business cards, yard signs, advertising in a local (i.e. neighborhood or zip code specific) newspaper, a website…

Peppered throughout this might be in incremental addition of employees; hiring, firing, departures, etc.

As we move along, some of us might have started out learning commercial applications & possibly stayed in this line of work. This will lead to bidding on larger jobs as the experience & appropriate sized crews come on board. At some point, you may have built up to where you could compete for new construction or re-roofing on large scale “big box” type jobs (strip shopping centers, a stand alone home improvement store, etc).

Others might start residential, learn through various stages of commercial installations, etc. This will lead to various expansion opportunities as well.

But, by & large none of us go get a loan & seek to hire on 10 employees & start shopping for work.

It’s not like a restaurant where you find a good location with sufficient traffic, install fixtures, hire employees & get menus delivered door to door…

Nobody can afford to hire & have people sitting around daily just waiting for something to come up.

The type of construction we’re in (& most smaller related trades like us) don’t typically have a specific business model like what you’re looking for.


#4

The best business plan is to have deep pockets a strong back,steel nerves,thick skin a silver tounge,golden handshake and brass balls. also brass knuckles is always a plus. Balls being the biggest of the ingredients however.
Good luck you will need that as well.


#5

Ranch covered it pretty well.

First thing you need to do is figure out what kind of roofing company you want to be.
Do you want to focus on residential, commercial, or a little of both.

One thing that you need to remember is that this business is highly dependent upon skilled labor.
For instance, unless you just have too much startup money you won’t get the large commercial jobs.
To get these jobs require that you have manufacturer backing.
You can’t just get this overnight…
You first have to prove to the manufacturer that you know how to properly apply their product, they will come and check your work and give you a grade.
If you want to make as much money as possible in this business you will want to go with commercial roofing.
This is big business and expect everything related to big business to apply here.

Do you desire to start a smaller residential company?
This is a little different from commercial.
You will have more and varied customers, the length of your jobs will be measured in days instead of weeks or months.
You will need to have a high degree of problem solving ability, every job is different.
You will still need skilled labor.
You will need good people skills, and you will at least need to be able to sound like you know what your talking about…

For the purposes of your paper you should use commercial roofing as your business model.
If I were your teacher I would hone in on the labor aspect of your business model…
No matter how good a salesman you are, you are still Dependant upon the labor that carries it out.
They are the key to your success.
It is not as simple as hiring and firing people, they are not running cash registers…


#6

hmmmm interesting to say the least ok so now i am gonna ask specific questions if you dont mind looking at a buisness plan where it has not been something that has always been in the family obviously for my buisness plan i am putting that i have experience in the industry.so question estimate to me what you think basic start up costs would be what would you go to a bank with numbers wise obviously you need trucks trailers etc… what amount of cliental realistically were you hoping to generate in the first month and so on? and what was the net profit you as a company owner wanted to generate in the first year? what is the start up equipment needed other than the obvious and by the way i am a woman so maybe a little more detailed explanation being as i really dont know to much about the roofing industrie i however wanted a challenge for my paper for school and it looks like i am going to get that :slight_smile: again i appreciate any feed back you can give me
mo


#7

Unless you have experienced people in the industry in your employ, you can forget about that going to the bank for a loan stuff…
The only loan you are going to get is a personal loan, or a loan directly commensurate with the collateral that you lay down…

Now that we got that out of the way…

This is a labor based business, before you can do anything you must have the labor to do it.
Where is your labor coming from?
Are you going to “steal” them from the competition?
It is going to cost you, more than just money…
Are you going to advertise in the newspaper?
Good luck with that…

For the sake of argument we will assume that you are experienced in the roofing business for 10 yrs, commercial and residential.
We are going to assume that you know how to spot a problem and come up with the proper procedures to correct it.

We are going to assume that you have good hiring practices and secure yourself a good crew.
For the purposes of your paper a commercial roofing company will fit.
But in order to make it to the commercial level you must first prove yourself, in business and application.
More often than not you have to do residential and light commercial first.
To “cut your teeth” so to speak…

We will assume that you have a good crew that does quality work.
You have received your manufacturer certifications.
Your crew consistently does quality work.
It is all business from here…
Where are you going to get this experienced quality oriented crew?


#8

One other thing…
Since you are in college you should probably use better sentence structure, it makes everything easier to read and all that…


#9

ok so did you when you first started your company make a buisness plan? I realize most of the stuff you have metioned but some i did not obviously you want alot of clientel but what did you in the beginnig hope to generate in the first month and so on when you first started how many people worked for you compared to now?what were you hoping to generate for net profit in the first year? for commercial roofing how do you give quotes obviously you have to measure the roof and such and whether or not there is one layer or more to take off


#10

Sorry my " sentence structure" isn’t that great.
I am trying to make dinner and watch my kids and write a paper.
Please for future reference there is no need to be rude.
i am just asking some simple questions and hoping to get a response.
I really appreciate the info you have given and would love anymore you would like to share.
Mo


#11

I dont have the answers you are looking for,but I used to work for a national company and when a Hurricane hit he would buy out a local company that already had yellow page adds.What I’m getting at is ,you could call some companies ,explain your are in school and find out how much it would take to buy them out.After all,are you going to run your office out of your truck.
I’m sorry if my previous post sounded racest,but it was not meant to and is your best bet .The federal government dosent let immigrants enter the united states unless they find them employment,so in order to get a government buisness loan you have to agree to hire their minority laborers,now that you are getting government funding and useing minority labor you are in the click ,you can bid on government contracts.Some of the biggest constructions companies in the world are taking advantage of this offer,do you want to pass your class or would the truth fail you.


#12

i have tried to call some local companies they are not much help.
However i will continue to do so and will definatley ask about the buying out thing.
Previous post was fine no worries.
Thanks and anything else you can think of would be greatly appreciated.
Mo


#13

[quote=“mo”]i have tried to call some local companies they are not much help.
However i will continue to do so and will definatley ask about the buying out thing.
Previous post was fine no worries.
Thanks and anything else you can think of would be greatly appreciated.
Mo[/quote]

It would be nice if you could show the cost differences of starting a company and buying one out that is already established,either way you will need funding,I think I provided a means for some of the funding which you can follow up on also,I’ll see if I can find you that number,if I didnt throw it out.


#14

thanks i would appreciate it, and for sure it would be sweet to show the difference of starting fresh and buying out. great idea thx


#15

Mo, to find a co. for sale you can go to your local roofing supply house (not “Big Orange Box” or Jimmie Johnson’s NASCAR sponsor, but a REAL roofing supply house) & see if they have a copy of Professional Roofer around. There will be ads in the back showing people who want to buy co’s & co’s that are for sale.

I suggest you try to talk to a co. who buys because they probably have done it before.

Sentence structure helps us to understand what you’re saying, so this is for our benefit even if you’re typing in ‘stream of consciousness’ (BTW, BushHog… there’s a space after commas. ;)).

There are really just 4 basic parts to a roofing bid if you’re a one man band like me; keep in mind that I am in a state that does NOT require professional licensure (I’m in Texas; states that DO require licenses are Florida, Virginia, Ohio…) & my state does NOT require bonding or professional insurance & workman’s comp unless I have actual employees vs. sub crew labor, i.e. “independant contract labor” which is what I do have:

  1. Parts.
  2. Labor.
  3. Overhead (fuel, licensure expenses, continuing education if required, wear & tear on equipment that’s MINE vs. crew, any office space I might maintain… even a home office is still an office per the IRS). Workman’s comp & insurance fall under this, again only if state required.
  4. What happened to 4?
  5. Profit.

Say I go & look @ a house that has zero defects but the shingles are just old & worn out.

I measure the house, take note of any special areas of concern (chimney with normal re-flashing, pitch transitions, etc) & other slightly out of the ordinary components.

From this, I calc what my labor costs are (again, I do contract sub labor & it is paid by the 100 square ft. of surface area or a “square” in our lingo). Other co’s might have a cost per man hour & can tell by the size, pitch & extras how many man hours it might take to do the work.

I then calc & quote what my anticipated parts costs are with a bit of wiggle room for on the fly changes.

I add in a buffer & extra cost for “as found” repairs that might pop up.

I add in a certain % for covering overhead.

FINALLY, after figuring what the wholesale cost is for all of this, I add either a % or a fixed figure for profit.

So easy, even a caveman can do it.


#16

Hi Mo,

You do not need roofing installation experience to run a successful roofing company.

Most of us are good at installation that keeps most roofers in business. A lot of roofers that are self employed are just that. Self-employed they are not business people or are they really in business. So help on this subject can be sparse here.

The failure rate of roofing business’s is high. Most are out of business in 5 years. Because of no business plan.

I started with a set of hand tools, a borrowed ladder and a borrowed pick-up truck. A poor plan although I am still here 27 years later. I started to put a plan together 10 years ago. Without this plan I would still be employing myself instead of running a successful business.

So whatever business you decide to go into after school. The actual product is not as important as the business plan.


#17

Ladder,hammer and a six pack.


#18

listen to your mom and stay in school and study law.sooner or later you’ll come into contact with the roofing industry.


#19

i actually wanted to say “beer” in my commercial but they wouldnt let me. if you close when he is climbing the ladder there is a can of coors light in his tool belt.


#20

LOL ! come on man Coors Light ?? What kinda roofer is that ?! should be a bottle of Old Thompson and in the other tool pouch a bag of Red Man chewing tobacco.