Offseason work - Xmas light installation

So, do any of y’all do this kind of work?

I’m considering this as a supplement for the slow months & am wondering about all the “basics”, i.e. what sort of tools y’all use to hold the lights up, what kind of lights (if you are providing them vs. customer purchases), any particulars…

Oh, retail cost to the customer + what you pay the crews per installation & about how many guys for a 60 lin. ft, 2 story, 7:12 that you might need to use, + how long it takes to do a single strand on this kind of a simple face.

If you have photos of completed jobs (i.e. a daytime shot so it shows the house & a night time so it actually shows the lighted effect), that would be great to post here.

Any other suggestions would be helpful. It may be too late to get in on some for this year, but you never know…

Edit: BushHog, where’s your post?

Bush, I appreciate the response however like in roofing, I much prefer a set price per unit.

That way, I can give an accurate estimate to the customer (with a little bit of wiggle room for “whatever unexpected may come” & they don’t have to worry that we’re slacking on the work to pad time.

Also, I was thinking of value adds while we’re there, like:

–Doing a roof inspection & written analysis of the general condition
–Silicone to any exposed nail heads that might have been missed by the original installers
–@ Least a count of the pipe size, valley length & how many linear ft of hip & ridge, starter & drip edge there might be…

With all of that info collected, if there’s a hailstorm in the area I’ll already have this stuff compiled & if I wanted to be lazy, I could use an insurance adjuster’s calculation & maybe add 1 or 2 squares for ‘just in case’ variables.

Depending on my costs & how cut up the roof is, I might even do a full on sketch of the roof.

I reread your post and deleted mine when it became too complicated for me to give estimates for installing christmas lights.I still think figuring a flat hourly rate plus materials is your best bet because every house is different and will have to hire estimators and salesmens.Just figure a minimum price and an hourly rate plus materials and let them sign on the bottom line.If you are going to send a 2 or 3 man crew out to do it ,300.00 minimum and 150.00 an hour,1 man with the truck furnishes gas and equiptment gets 30.00 an hour plus a helper.Just tossing some figures out there Ranch ,I think there are people who are willing to pay for this service and others who will make it a family event and like I said just drive some nails through the shingles to hold the lights up.
I see where you are coming from by giving the homeowners a roof inspection and sealing their potential problems but that is roof maintenance that most roofing companies also charge 150.00 an hour to send a trouble shooter /repairman out .I dont know what others are doing on this subject I just heard about roofers wanted to install christmas lights for the first time a week ago, and the more I think about it I like the idea more ,but it is going to cost to have it done.

Well, I don’t have any sales people. It’s basically a one man band + my sub crew (again, 95% or better of the labor force in Texas for work like this is NOT employees on an hourly basis).

Given the sub labor market, that’s why it is better to give a fixed price (similar is my desire to have a fixed figure for the customer so they will know what to expect).

I’m also thinking of one added component to my tools (that I don’t have now) is a ladder based scaffolding system. I’ll have to look into those, I guess.

I once re-installed some Xmas lights, in July…
It was at customer request. it took about 15 min for 1 man, it was about 25 lin\ft.
I didn’t charge for it…

I know there aren’t any thieves in texas .I guess you would have to trust the man with the truck to keep up with the hours.

30.00 an hour is a generous offer for him to furnish a truck,gas,and equipment and you furnish him a helper.Everyone can’t be the boss and it is contract labor.

Maybe doing it this way it will give you the experience to bid the way you want next year and the oportunity to make some money this year.

Maybe someone else will chime in with a better idea,its the only one I have without knowing the cost per square footage that installing christmas lights will end up being,material and labor wise the same way we figure our roof jobs so we can give the customer a price.

Why dont you do your house first for free of coarse ,but it might give you an idea or a ball park figure of the cost per square footage.

I’ll tell you what guys,cleaning gutters is another nice little side add on not a lot of guys consider.

RooferJ, what do you charge for this?

…it’s like pulling teeth on this thread.


labor rate is 65.per man hour but there is a minimum service charge of $260. more if they have wood gutters that have to be scraped and linseed oiled.
We also have a gutter install crew for seamless.032 gauge,thats around $10.per foot, downspouts $5.00

[quote]RooferJ, what do you charge for this?

…it’s like pulling teeth on this thread.


Well Ranch.
It is a time and material thing, you have a rate for this.
I can see a lot of houses taking more than a half day for 2 men.
At the same time there will be many that only take a couple hours…

Ranch,I thought most companies charged by the hour for troubleshooting/roof repairs/and roof maintenance.

All the companies I have done this type of work for charges 300.min. and 150.00 an hour plus any materials used.Ballpark figure 300-600.00 on most jobs.

I am paid 30.00 per hour,my truck,my gas ,and my equipment.They pay for my helper.

It’s as easy as pulling teeth. :slight_smile:

My frustration (of sorts) is that in roofing, we can calc a rate based on squares & any added components, i.e. steeps, 2 stories, very cut up, hard to work shingles, upgrades in components.

Do you think you could get work if you charged by the man hour + shingles?

I was hoping that if any of y’all did this sort of work (gutters or lights) it was parts + cost per linear ft of fascia, 2 story, steeps, special lighting concerns.

That way, your customer won’t be concerned by someone who is padding the work - they have a set figure that won’t be exceeded unless something odd comes up & even then, that’s spelled out up front as to what it could be & in the event, what those “odd incidentals” might cost (i.e. roof @ this price - set figure - plus $ x.00 per for damaged decking or fascia).

so, i was totaly freaked out at lunch today. i went to lunch with a friend who flips houses and his wife who is a realtor. in the middle of a conversation she just blurts out…“Do you hang christmas lights?”

My jaw hit the ground because i had never heard of, or even thought of it before (until last night when i read this thread). i thought that was kinda strange and thought i would share that with you guys.

I guess I’m going to have to waste a few co’s time & call for a price on hanging lights on my house so I might figure out how they do it or what they base their prices on…

I’ll get the in-laws to call these same co’s for prices as well, that way I can make a bit more of an educated comparison.

For those of you up in the Hinterlands, what do y’all do during the snow seasons other than emergency repairs?

I try to line up as much new construction as I can.
We are ripping a nice big pig right now…
Insulating it and applying a new roof.
The house is on a large inland lake, it is 25 degrees out, the wind is blowing @ 20 mph and gusting to 30…
There is snow too, can’t forget about that…
I love my job, I tell myself that every morning.


we snow plow, ice dam removal (alot),repairs, interior paint, replacement windows, and i leave for florida monday 8)

Lets see,Monday’s forcast.New York…Sunny and mild

Florida…Artic Blast :shock:

[quote=“bushhog109”]Lets see,Monday’s forcast.New York…Sunny and mild

Florida…Artic Blast :shock:[/quote]

what the hell is that[/size]? im gonna be in florida on monday!!! it better not look like NY!!

Marshall, are you going to the Tampa area? I think Gweedo needs some lessons on how to remove all the felt from a roof, add NEW felt TO the roof & properly balance ridge vents with intake vents.

I have connections in Orlando, Fort Pierce / Port Saint Lucie, the Fort Lauderdale area & suggestions if you head all the way to the Keys… call or send a PM if you need a hookup.

[quote=“RanchHandRoofing”]Marshall, are you going to the Tampa area? I think Gweedo needs some lessons on how to remove all the felt from a roof, add NEW felt TO the roof & properly balance ridge vents with intake vents.

I have connections in Orlando, Fort Pierce / Port Saint Lucie, the Fort Lauderdale area & suggestions if you head all the way to the Keys… call or send a PM if you need a hookup.[/quote]

taking the wife and daughter to disney. my father lives in st. pete (which is actually where gweedo is) and i lived there in '97.