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Hello All!

We are a roofing contractor and I'd like to know what kind of form you use for customer that call in and want estimates. The person that worked here before me has a form that is so outdated and that prompted me to try and find something else to use. We mostly do commercial roofing but do some residential as well. Sometimes a company will call and want repairs on a building they manage so we would need their contact name/address/phone and then the location/address/contact, etc.

What types of things should I have on the form? Type of roof, roof height, insurance claim info, color, style, etc. I've been trying to just create one that suits our company and am getting closer but wanted a little input from the professional here. These may never end up being work order or jobs once we measure, etc.

Thank you in advance. I look forward to your replies.
 

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The Dude
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I'd narrow down mostly by what the customer has, and what they are looking for. Don't worry about color or style too much for a call in form.

Contact info
Property Address
Residential or commercial?
New roof quote, or repair desired?
How old is the roof (if they know)?
How many stories?
Storm damage or no/not sure?
Insurance involved yet?
What type of roof (if they know) - shingle? slate? shake? flat?

The last might not be too important - you'll see when you get there. It might not be the right type even (shingles on a 2:12 pitch).

Mostly things you want to know before heading to the site to talk to the customer. Are you going to need a 40' ladder that you usually don't carry? Has a claim been made? They may have an eagle view already if so :) Is it a roofing type you don't deal with?

Take the prop address and look it up on google maps. That'll show you a lot usually.

You'll have to verify colors, layers, and things like that anyway. Sometimes less is more. A customer may want a repair, but the roof may be shot. "grey" doesn't help much if you're matching shingles for a repair. Better not to waste too much time on things you'll have to verify anyway.
 

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This is a great time to prequalify your customer. All the "rage" is now on attention to them not you and how great you are. Websites are for speaking greatness. Now, now is the time to get to know them.
:clap:

I cannot say enough about pre qualifying your customer!!! Every customer is NOT a potential customer of ours. We treat everyone with the upmost respect but turn away a lot of people.

My "Estimate Request" form is simple and almost identical to the one listed above. What is on the form is nothing without the qualifying questions you ask. To be honest we only see 2 out of 3 people who call and land around 40% of the bids we produce. I have no interest in wasting ANY of my time for less than premium pay.
 

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The Dude
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:clap:

I cannot say enough about pre qualifying your customer!!! Every customer is NOT a potential customer of ours. We treat everyone with the upmost respect but turn away a lot of people.

My "Estimate Request" form is simple and almost identical to the one listed above. What is on the form is nothing without the qualifying questions you ask. To be honest we only see 2 out of 3 people who call and land around 40% of the bids we produce. I have no interest in wasting ANY of my time for less than premium pay.
I almost forgot the "Do you have any money" and "are you a cheap bastige" questions :laughing:
 

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I agree with what is being said. You have only two goals in my opinion on a first call like this. First is to make sure you have all the contact information for follow up. Second thing is to qualify the customer...are they a prospect or not. Only you know what it is you need to have to do that, not anybody on this forum. I don't agree with the write off of people that are cheap however. Your job as an company is to SELL them on why what you are charging is a bargain. If you can't do that then you really don't deserve their business.
 

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The Dude
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I agree with what is being said. You have only two goals in my opinion on a first call like this. First is to make sure you have all the contact information for follow up. Second thing is to qualify the customer...are they a prospect or not. Only you know what it is you need to have to do that, not anybody on this forum. I don't agree with the write off of people that are cheap however. Your job as an company is to SELL them on why what you are charging is a bargain. If you can't do that then you really don't deserve their business.
Some people will not be sold. I have yet to meet a salesman that sells 100% on leads. Haven't seen the company who's business model fits every customers needs either.

Some people have to be sold on a good value. Many people don't know that much about the products and services, and they can and should be sold on a good value since it's in their best interest. It's really a good bit easier than it used to be. The advent of the internet allows people to look the stuff up before they buy - and savvy customers do.

Others will only value a low price. Ever. I had a call in tell me "I'm gettin five bids, and I'm just gonna tell you right now I'm going with the lowest bid!" And she said this triumphantly. When you're swamped with more people than you can get to - you have to prioritize. Am I going to not be able to get to miss priceshopper, or mrs doneright?
 

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...I had a call in tell me "I'm gettin five bids, and I'm just gonna tell you right now I'm going with the lowest bid!" And she said this triumphantly. ...
I've had people brag about the excuses they found, not to pay a prior contractor. No sirree Bob, they're nobody's fool. It makes it easy.

I haven't heard about using paid estimates to qualify customers, in a while. I thought that was always one of the tools in the volume roofing and deck businesses. Maybe times have changed, or maybe one of our deck guys just isn't around to talk about it.
 

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I had a call in tell me "I'm gettin five bids, and I'm just gonna tell you right now I'm going with the lowest bid!" And she said this triumphantly. When you're swamped with more people than you can get to - you have to prioritize. Am I going to not be able to get to miss priceshopper, or mrs doneright?
I will take those all day and sell them the highest price ticket item and make them the best referring customer of the year.

The more they talk the more you have to listen.
 

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that indeed is the point of selling

I agree. This is a skeptical person that is basically saying "tell me why I should pay more?". The reason they are saying they are taking the lowest is bid is to BOTH get you to bid agressively AND to convince them why you are different. You have to sell to turn this customer. I suggest using open ended questions to get them to reveal more about where they are coming from and to create a relationship. Respond to there statement about low bidding with "I understand. Can you tell me more about why you feel that way." Don't close off the conversation or just say "ok let me get you a bid". That is death. Good luck.
 

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I've had people brag about the excuses they found, not to pay a prior contractor. No sirree Bob, they're nobody's fool. It makes it easy.

I haven't heard about using paid estimates to qualify customers, in a while. I thought that was always one of the tools in the volume roofing and deck businesses. Maybe times have changed, or maybe one of our deck guys just isn't around to talk about it.
I've had people tell me they are suing the previous roofer because of the work they did on the other section of the building.

"No need to see the roof"
 

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hmmmmmm. You know how you can go to Yelp or Angies List and see roofer reviews by customers. I've always wondered about a web site where contractors could do customer reviews so other contractors could see what customers not to do business with.
 

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Gutter Hanger
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hmmmmmm. You know how you can go to Yelp or Angies List and see roofer reviews by customers. I've always wondered about a web site where contractors could do customer reviews so other contractors could see what customers not to do business with.
You could make some money with a site like that if you spank people $20 a month like Angie does. :laughing:
 

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Gutter Hanger
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I've had people tell me they are suing the previous roofer because of the work they did on the other section of the building.

"No need to see the roof"
Had an old guy like this a few years back. Bragged about how he got a blacktop contractor to drop his price after the job was done because he threatened to sue. Then about how he sued a painter and got the job done for nothing.
Being a new business owner, I didn't see the red flags. :jester:
Took the job. It turned out good and I never heard from him again, but he was one of those who looked over my shoulder every minute and was a miserable pain in the ass. Lesson learned about when to walk away from a potential customer.
I've got plenty enough work from decent people who know how to treat me. Because they're paying me for a job doesn't give them the right to treat me like dirt. I was a correction officer for 26 years before I owned a business. My days of that treatment from people ended the last day I walked out the gate.
 
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