Reply to ROOFER R about "why Roofing?"

When I was 18, I was arrested for possession of cocaine with intent to deliver, and am now a convicted felon. That really slims down the choices A LOT as far as picking out a career. When I sat my 6 months in jail, it was mostly with people older than me that had a fair amount of convictions, and guess what? Most of them were either in the constuction business or roofing. Not to say that everyone in the business is a criminal, but that’s how it was in the cell block I was in. I have a son that is a little over a year old, so I have to pay child support. I work at taco bell right now so after child support and taxes and all the other bills I have along with it I really don’t have much money at all. I know even with a felony on my record there are still other options, but not many. Roofing is something I think I could stand doing for a long time without getting so sick of it that I would want to quit all together. Besides that, I think there would be much less hassle with background checks and persecution because of my record. I would be very pissed to go to school for something for 2 to 4 years, put all the money, time, and effort into it, and then not be able to get a job. One of the guys I sat with told me he went to school for it, and others told me they kind of just got into it by knowing someone who got them a job etc. Hope that answers your question!

Depending on the area you live in, I certainly don’t believe you need to go to school to learn roofing. It certainly wouldn’t hurt, but there is nothing like hands-on training when we are talking about roofing. In fact, I’m a roofing consultant, but before I was a consultant I roofed for over 10 years. That is why I don’t respect MOST consultants, since most of them learned from books and not experience.

Anyway, with your conviction you will be left looking for jobs in construction or lawn maintenance. Roofing isn’t a bad way to make a living, but it sure is a hard way to make it.

May I suggest that you go out and try and find a job as a roofer if that is what you want. Then, when you get the job learn as much as you can from drawings, specs, manuals, etc. Knowledge is power, make it work for you. If you find someone willing to take a chance on a convicted felon, they will likely also let you grow within the company. Use this time to take CADD classes, blueprint reading classes, CSI courses, etc. When I started out I was a lowly laborer who spent his first day of work cutting Carey Tread and flashing in roof drains on a 3,600,000 square foot coal-tar pitch job. Today I mostly work on a computer, or I’m taking digital photos.


When looking for a company to work for one, interview them. Find out if they do pre-employment drug testing and random drug testing through the year. This will increase your chances of making a career out of roofing and not just a job.

If you have not stopped using yourself. Then that is the first issue you need to tackle. If you can go on a job interview and explain your past and how you are addressing it. Then tell them what you are willing to do for them and explain how you would like to go with the company through experience and education.

I have hired people that have historys. Most are liars. A few have turned their lives around.

Never met a roofer who learned the trade in a class room.

I met a general contractor who got his general contractors license and had a felony aggravated assault charge 13 years prior. He kept out of trouble from that point and the state gave him a license after checking into him for three months.

I’ve got a speeding ticket and two parking tickets, even my juvenile record is spotless.

My brother in law is a convicted felon and he never has problems finding good paying welding jobs. He’s said that at some of his jobs it’s impossible staying sober because every co-worker uses.

Roofing is a great vocation for anyone. People that are honest, regardless of their past history, do well. It can be hard work, but like any trade it is rewarding to those who put in the hours and labor to learn their job. I often tell people that the roofing business takes care of its own. Meaning if you work at it you’ll always have a job. If you go into commercial roofing, seek out a contractor that is doing single ply. The single ply market, at least in the west, is desperate for trained craftmen.

Maybe I should have made my post a private message instead.

yeah im a roofer.
yeah ive been to prison.

maybe roofing makes you a nut job.
hey that would make me nut job.

a pirate nut job.
im from a pirate town ya know.


Hi RooferR,


My original post on this thread… I said somethings that if a homeowner came here looking for advice, it might give them a negative view of roofers. Not what I was trying to do.

I liked caballer’s honest response. I gave him my take on his situation. The next day I thought about it, decided wrong place for what my ramble was about.

A couple years ago I got a job from a home owner checking this site out. They ended up going with me although my bid was $2K more than the next bid.

They said they were impressed with my posts and figured I knew what I was talking about when it came to roofing.

2 layer tear off re-deck 7/12 cut up hip roof two stories.

all new union roofers do 4-5 yrs of classroom in conjunction with on the job training

Hi RooferR,


I seen nothing wrong with your post.

all new union roofers do 4-5 yrs of classroom in conjunction with on the job training[/quote]

The only roofer I know that was union was my father and that was 30+ years ago. He’s told me the story a couple times and it goes something like this,
He worked for the union for a few years and started to ask his boss’s if he could be paid for piece work. They told him no every time. To prove a point he worked a Saturday and put down around 40 squares. The other roofers were capable of about 8-12 squares per day. His boss figured he worked both Sat and Sun to put down that many squares and he said just Sat. To make him happy he paid him for a full day on Sun. After that day he put an average of 20-30 squares down a day 2-3 times more than the others. After he quit and went on his own he said they paid him every week for 40 hours for several weeks after he left the union.
One would have to think the union he was in was corrupt or at least his boss. Who knows perhaps he had a mafia connection!!! Keep in mind this was over 30 years ago.

Thanks lefty, I wonder if removing it was the thing to do. I do wish I was smart enoughto cut and past it in a message to caballer thou. Just deleted it. Dam.

Did you catch my post I removed caballer, wasn’t on here long.

Hi Roofer,

Yes, I do not remember all of it.

To copy something, put the cursor at the end of the text or picture you want to copy. Click the left button of your mouse. Move the cursor up the page to where you want to copy. Then click the right button. Then choose copy. Done. Then go to where you want to paste the text.
Right click and choose paste and click.