Tag: <span>Roofing</span>

Roofing industry seeing material prices rising

By Heidi J. Ellsworth, RCS Partner. 

Prices are expected to continue to rise through 2021. 

When the COVID-19 pandemic struck the U.S. in spring of 2020, the roofing industry had to adapt and adjust their business operations. As manufacturers were forced to slow or stop production and shipping became a challenge, contractors found it harder to get much-needed materials. Now, roofing companies are experiencing price increases for all types of building and roofing products.   

The lumber industry continues to see price increases and according to the National Home Builders Association, “Lumber prices increased 14.9% in August, marking the largest four-month gain since such data was first recorded in 1949 and the second-largest gain since seasonally adjusted data became available in 1975.” 

Shingle allocations and price increases have also been prevalent throughout 2020 due to high levels of storm-related re-roofing and limited raw materials. According to a roofing contractor’s website, “This week a roofing manufacturer put out a 4-6% price increase effective August 17 which follows two other shingle manufacturers with 2-7% increases and a fourth manufacturer following with their increase.” 

A key component used by most manufacturers is asphalt which is seeing its own price increases. According to Bud Polston of United Asphalts, there are widespread price increases with asphalt due to how it is processed. The demand for gasoline has been uneven in 2020 and jet fuel has seen a huge decrease in demand. According to Deloitte Insights, “Demand for gasoline has risen as more cars have returned to the road and as shops, retail stores and restaurants have reopened. However, demand for jet fuel has remained anemic, with U.S. demand still half of its pre–COVID-19 levels, as many people defer air travel.” 

The lack of demand for jet fuel has a trickledown effect on the amount and cost of producing/refining asphalt. According to information gained by United Asphalts from a refinery source, “Covid related lockdowns nationwide are impacting primarily gasoline and jet fuel (both lower demand and lower pricing). Most refineries cannot make asphalt and resid (oil products that remain after petroleum has been distilled) without also making gasoline and jet fuel and it appears that black oil production across the U.S. has decreased as a result. This is leading to higher market prices for resid and asphalt on account of the decreased production and to incentivize more production. Although the market price has increased, it is still not high enough to offset our incremental production costs of asphalt and resid.” 

This is not something that roofing manufacturers are pleased about but it is a fact that there will be price increases and roofing contractors should be aware. The Associated Builders and Contractors Chief Economist, Anirban Basu stated in a recent press release, “This dynamic (of building material price increases) is already observable, for example, in the prices of softwood lumber. As America’s single-family housing construction boom continues, many builders are ordering softwood lumber. With suppliers collectively lacking the near-term capacity to easily fill these orders, prices were spiking for much of 2020. Similar conditions may influence other commodities later this year as global growth accelerates. This means that contractors need to think long and hard about the existence and structure of escalation clauses as they negotiate future work.” 

In November and December of 2020, United Asphalts was hit with significant increases to the price of raw materials. They recently announced, “We are forced to increase our prices by an average of 10% in all markets for many reasons, including the ongoing ripple effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.” 

So, although many manufacturers must pass on price increases, they are more committed than ever to extreme customer service. “We are working with all of our customers for long-term forecasting our roofing asphalts so they can bid and complete jobs profitably,” stated Polston. 

And this is being found in the metal industry too. Roof Hugger recently announced, “As most of you are aware, several costs increase in steel have been announced in addition to some constriction in material availability. Roof Hugger, like many other fabricators, has found it necessary to pass along a portion of these material increases. We have done our best to minimize the increase and we are carefully monitoring our inventory levels.”  

They continue, “Please take note that with the uncertainty of steel costs, pricing will be good for a period of 14 days from the quote date and subject to review, thereafter, please qualify your proposals to reflect these limits. Roof Hugger is still committed to providing the best customer service and product quality as we have always been known.” 

Now more than ever a strong relationship with your manufacturers and distributors is essential. Good communication on upcoming material shortages, allocations or price increases is crucial to roofing contractor’s business.  

Roofing Technology Think Tank Seeks Nominations for 2020 Innovator of the Year Award

The award recognizes a roofing contractor who has demonstrated a commitment to technology and the advancement of the roofing industry.

Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3), a group of progressive roofing professionals focused on technology solutions for the roofing industry, announced that it has opened the nomination period for the 2020 Innovator of the Year Award.

This award was created to nationally recognize a roofing contractor that has contributed to the advancement of the roofing industry through technical innovation and/or product development in one of the following areas:

  • Production/Technology Efficiency
  • Safety Innovation
  • Client Service/Quality of Delivery
  • Employee Recruitment/Training/Retention
  • Environmental Impact

Award judging criteria will be based on innovation, results, design and strategy. The 2019 winner was Curtis Sutton of Carthage, Tennessee-based Rackley Roofing, a company that counts innovation as one of its six core values.

The 2020 recipient will be announced this fall at the Best of Success conference. To be eligible, a roofing contractor must be licensed and bonded for a minimum of five years and have a minimum $5 million in annual revenue. They also must be a member of a professional industry association and be able to cite community enrichment ties through support of non-profits or company culture programs.

For more information and to submit an award application visit www.rt3thinktank.com/innovator-award. There is a $50 nomination fee to cover processing and award costs.  The nomination period closes July 31, 2020.

About Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3)
Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3) strives to find innovative technology solutions to be used within the roofing industry. RT3 provides insights from progressive thought leaders both inside and outside the roofing industry along with practical resources for implementing potential solutions successfully. The organization will encourage and enable contractors to embrace technology as they seek to grow their businesses. With a commitment to disseminate technology advancement information, RT3 will help build the professionalism and appeal of the roofing industry.

10 Questions Roofing Companies Need to Ask When Looking for New Software

By Karen L. Edwards.

With so many software solutions on the market, it can be hard to figure out which one is right for your business.

So, you’re at the point where your business would benefit from implementing an estimating software solution. How do you know which one is the right solution? We turned to experts from RT3 member Estimating Edge to offer some tips on what you should be looking for and what questions you should be asking.

Adam Oaks, CEO at Estimating Edge, said, “Some solutions will portray that they can do just about everything.  That of course is never the case.  Some solutions try to be everything to everyone, but that usually means they are just OK at a lot of things, but not that great in any one area.”

He advises that you look for best in breed solutions – ones that work well with the other software that you might be using to run your business while steering clear of those that offer add-ons. “A good example might be an HR solution that also tries to handle your accounting with an add on module.”

Adam says that contractors should ask the following questions when selecting a solution:

  1. Is this software the best for my company’s specific need?
  2. Does it have an open scalable platform?
  3. Is the software scalable and does it allow employees to access and work virtually?
  4. Does it fit the roofing company’s employees, processes or workflows?
  5. Does the software company have experience in commercial roofing?
  6. Does the software company offer knowledgeable support teams, training and service?
  7. What does the industry say about the software?
  8. Does the software company have a history in the industry?
  9. Will the software fit our budget?
  10. Is it Best of Breed?

In their free e-Book, Estimating Edge dives deeper into each of these questions to help you understand why you should be asking a question and what each one means for your business.

Download your copy of “10 Questions Roofing Companies Need to Ask When Looking for New Software.”

Learn More about Estimating Edge, visit their RCS Directory.

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Source: RoofersCoffeeShop

RT3 Special Webinar #3: This Week’s Buzz – Legal Updates, Connecting to Community & Special Message from NRCA Chairman of the Board Nick Sabino

 

Legal Expert: Trent Cotney, Cotney Construction Law

  • What’s the latest from a legal perspective and what should contractors be doing to protect themselves?

Manufacturing Expert: Josh Kelly, OMG Roofing Products

  • A roofing industry manufacturer’s perspective and update

Residential/Commercial Roofing Expert: Brad Beldon, Beldon Roofing.

  • Keeping everyone informed and social distancing as a contractor

Philanthropic Expert: Charles Antis, Antis Roofing

  • Contractors supporting their community
  • Leadership in crisis

Special Guest: Nick Sabino, Deer Park Roofing and NRCA Chairman of the Board

  • How NRCA is helping contractors
  • Industry update

 

RECORDING – RT3 Special Webinar #2: This week’s buzz and tactics for running your virtual roofing business

The Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3) hosted their second webinar in its special series geared toward helping contractors successfully navigate running their businesses during the Coronavirus pandemic.


Topics include:

Commercial Roofing Technology Expert: Michelle Boykin, Rackley Roofing

  • How Rackley Roofing made their commercial roofing company 100% virtual and an update on how the first full week went

Residential Roofing Expert: Ken Kelly, Kelly Roofing

  • Technology that allows us to work from home and handling employee pay while at home
  • Securing materials for emergencies and for when things open up again
  • Leadership tactics and keeping employees focused and calm
  • Budgeting and cash preparation
  • Where I’m getting my information to make good decisions from

Commercial Roofing Expert: Steve Little, KPost Roofing & Waterproofing

  • Business and financial perspective
  • Update on the government programs and what he’s hearing from manufacturers and the industry

Marketing Expert: Anna Anderson, Art Unlimited

  • Google changes and opportunities with new NextDoor tools, renegotiating contracts for cost savings
  • Digital compliance, remote tools and virtual portholes

Sales Expert: Ryan Groth, Sales Transformation Group

  • How the market is responding overall to their efforts, in lockdown markets and non-locked down markets.
  • Best practices for sales leaders transitioning to virtual management
  • The technology and methods being used for prospecting and conducting sales appointments

If you missed the first webinar in the series, you can watch the recording here.

RT3 Members to attend and participate in Diversity & Inclusion Forum

Having a strong record of diversity, equity, and inclusivity is critical to attract top talent, so make plans now to attend the inaugural Diversity + Inclusion Forum on Tuesday, April 21, 2020 at the Washington Marriott Wardman Park.

Brought to you by the National Roofing Contractors Association, National Women in Roofing and the California Hispanic Chambers of Commerce, the Diversity + Inclusion Forum 2020 will help you identify ways to engage underrepresented groups, develop resources to increase your cultural competency, and educate you on why supporting diversity and fostering a culture of inclusion is a business imperative to strengthen your workforce.

During the event, dynamic industry leaders and stakeholders will discuss sustainable strategies for advancing diversity and inclusion and share best practices on how to effectively lead in a diverse and inclusive culture. Throughout the day, you also will have the opportunity to meet and network with fellow roofing and industry professionals from across the U.S. who also are striving to achieve inclusive, culturally diverse and competent workforces.

9:30 a.m. -Registration/Networking Coffee

10 a.m. -Welcome and Overview of Day

  • National Roofing Contractors Association (Reid Ribble)
  • National Women in Roofing (Jennifer Stone)
  • California Hispanic Chambers of Commerce (Julian Canete)

10:30 a.m. – Why Inclusion and Diversity are Essential to Foster High Performing Teams

High-performance teams that advocate for diversity and inclusive behaviors and include a diversity of age, gender, race and ethnicity, or geographic and national culture, allows the company to better serve its consumers. In addition to a mixture of age, gender, and cultural backgrounds, “cognitive” diversity, which is mixing people together with different thinking styles, habits and perspectives, often allows teams to achieve better outcomes and become much more multidisciplinary. Learn how collaboration becomes a tool to access your company’s ‘why’ in more distinctive and boundless ways, ultimately aligning you both internally and externally with your customers.

Presenter: Leah Maguire, Vice President of Inclusion and Diversity, Owens Corning, Toledo, Ohio

11 a.m. – Why Equity, Inclusion and Diversity Matter to Your Business’ Bottom Line

Diverse and inclusive workplaces ultimately impact the bottom line in numerous ways. Diversity supports business performance by helping companies generate unique ideas that can improve the quality of decision making. And, individual identities shape how people experience, learn, and perceive the world, which is then reflected in the different perspectives and skillsets they bring. Our speaker will share how this new source of insight and talent sparks creativity and leads to the formation of new ideas, which ultimately helps businesses progress.

Presenter: Julian Francis, President/CEO, Beacon Building Products, Herndon, Va.

11:30 a.m. – Eliminating Barriers: Building Diverse and Inclusive Organizations

In today’s extremely competitive yet socially conscious business environment, one of the best ways to sustain an innovative organization is to create an inclusive and diverse organization. When a company creates a culture that celebrates diversity and inclusion, they are often faced with barriers within and outside their organization. This session will discuss what some of those barriers can be, how to overcome them, and how to ensure that efforts are maximized.

Presenter: Julian Canete, CEO, California Hispanic Chambers of Commerce, Sacramento, CA

Noon – Luncheon/Keynote Speaker(s), Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA) (invited)

1 p.m. – Leading in a Diverse and Inclusive Culture – Industry Panel

Leading in a diverse and inclusive culture gives you deeper insights into yourself, your team, and the benefits of inclusion at all levels in your organization. Panelists will share best practices, as well as insights and strategies to develop competencies and get tools to create an environment fueled by engagement and innovation.

Panelists:

Mardee Billingsley, Executive Vice President, Tremco Roofing & Building Maintenance, Beachwood, Ohio

Leo Ibarra, Vice President, Blue’s Roofing Co., Milpitas, Calif.

Sherri Miles, President, Miles Roofing Inc., Chesapeake, Va.

James Thomas, President/CEO, Topps Products, Canton, Miss.

Elizabeth Walters, Marketing & Business Operations Manager, Derbigum Americas Inc., Kansas City, Mo.

Heidi Ellsworth (moderator), President, HJE Consulting, Camp Sherman, Ore.

2 p.m. -Takeaways/Networking Mixer

2:30 p.m. -Register/Check-in—Roofing Day in D.C. 2020

3 p.m. – Opening Program—Roofing Day in D.C. 2020

Get more information or register online here.

RT3 board members featured in State of the Industry Report

By Karen L. Edwards.

Each year, Roofing Contractor magazine partners with Clear Seas research to conduct a survey and report on the state of the roofing industry to identify trends and issues facing the industry.  The survey collected responses from 197 roofing contractors throughout the country. 86 percent of the respondents were male, with an average age of 50 and median revenue was between $1 million and $1.9 million, according to the RC State of the Industry Report summary.

Roofing Contractor reported that both commercial and residential contractors expect sales volumes to increase in 2020 and expect that trend to continue over the next few years.  They all noted that labor was still a concern and many are using referrals and referral bonuses to attract and retain talent.

Technology was a main focus in the report, as new tech is emerging that can help contractors do more with fewer workers and work more efficiently and profitably. The survey showed that the most used technologies are cloud services, computing and drones. Software that is the most used ranked as follows: estimating (55%), enterprise/accounting (46%) and aerial measurements (44%). At RT3, we think those numbers are going to continue to grow.

Roofing Contractor turned to RT3 board members for their thoughts on technology in the industry.  Board member Anna Anderson shared that, ““Building envelope measurement is widely used, drone services are now common, but the true value is when all of these tools to connect with each other…. through open application programming interfaces.”

The survey also showed that of the 26 percent of respondents using drones, the majority are using them for before and after photos and videos.  Others were using drones for inspections, measurements and thermal imaging. RT3 board member Ken Kelly told Roofing Contractor magazine that, “We are seeing the use of aerial imagery not only become adopted throughout the entire roofing industry, but the number of uses and benefits are really bringing value. As this technology is just now reaching critical mass, it’s likely more innovation will continue to revolutionize the industry.”

Tom Whitaker shared that RT3 members are excited about augmented reality, telling Roofing Contractor that “augmented reality headsets and communication apps represent the best opportunity to leverage the experience of older workers to train and manage a new generation.”

Contractors also indicated that they are not interested in adopting robot technology into their business. That is interesting because anyone using an automatic welder on the rooftop or a Mini-Macaden® machine is already using a form of robotics.

Steve Little says that with the labor shortage, companies are going to have to embrace technologies that help them become more efficient, saying “streamlining rooftop administrative and labor processes is top priority.”

You can read the full State of the Industry article here

But will it leak? An interesting look at installing a new Tesla roof

By Karen L. Edwards.

California homeowner Kyle Field’s house burned in 2017 and for the rebuild, he knew that he wanted to install Tesla’s Solarglass Roof.

To start the process, Kyle made a $1,000 deposit to reserve the roof and was excited to learn that he had been accepted into the pilot for Tesla’s new home program.  His home became one of the first new-construction homes to receive the Solarglass version 2 roof.

Kyle works for CleanTechnica, a clean energy website that reports news, reviews and analysis related to the clean tech industry, so he was very interested in documenting the entire process from start to finish. He does acknowledge that Tesla’s newer version 3 is larger and easier to manufacture and install.   He and his builder worked directly with Tesla to scope the system. What is unique about the tiles is that Tesla is able to scale the system up or down by the number of photovoltaic tiles used. To scale down, they simply use non-producing glass tiles.

The Tesla project leader for Kyle’s installation worked directly with his builder to coordinate the installation timing and to communicate what their electrical needs were. Because Kyle chose not to have natural gas in the home, he wanted to get as much output from the system as possible. Solar tiles were installed on the north-, south-, east, and west-facing roof planes, not an ideal way to maximize production but for his situation it made sense.

His home has two stories, so the upper roof was installed several weeks ahead of the lower roof. Once the stucco is installed on the house, the Tesla team will return to finish the installation, connect inverters and install the Tesla Powerwalls that store the energy.

While the upper roof was being installed, Kyle got onto the roof to record a video of the installation. He shows up-close footage of the Solarglass tiles with the PV and the ones without as well as shares a look at how the tiles are attached.

Tesla believes that its Solarglass Roof is cheaper than the cost of a regular roof plus the cost of energy over a span of 25 years. But the question remains – how well will it perform when it comes to protecting the home from the elements?

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Source: RoofersCoffeeShop.

Image Credit: Chuck Field

RT3 Supports Roofing Day in D.C. 2020, Encourages All Industry Stakeholders to Participate

All roofing industry professionals are invited to come together in Washington, D.C., to elevate the image of the industry and share the message with lawmakers on Capitol Hill.

Roofing Day in D.C. 2020 is presented by the National Roofing Contractors Association and will take place April 21-22. All roofing professionals are urged to participate and consider bringing one or more employees.

“Help us demonstrate the depth of talent and diversity in our great industry,” says Reid Ribble, NRCA’s CEO. “2020 is an election year, and it is especially critical and important for you to participate in Roofing Day in D.C. 2020.”

Roofing Day in D.C. brings together roofing contractors, distributors, manufacturers and other industry professionals from throughout the U.S. to voice the industry’s priorities to Capitol Hill. It is crucial members of Congress see roofing professionals and hear about the critical issues facing the roofing industry.

Professionals from all segments of the roofing industry will come to Washington, D.C., to discuss the most important legislative issues affecting the roofing industry, including solutions to workforce shortages. The Marriott Washington Wardman Park is the host hotel. Early-bird registration for Roofing Day in D.C. 2020 is $95 for company representatives, and NRCA is offering a special registration rate of $35 for roof system installers through Feb. 29, 2020.

For more information about Roofing Day in D.C. 2020, contact Duane Musser, NRCA’s vice president of government affairs, at (202) 400-2592 or dmusser@nrca.net or visit www.nrca.net/advocacy/roofingday.

About NRCA
NRCA is one of the construction industry’s most respected trade associations and the voice and leading authority in the roofing industry for information, education, technology and advocacy. It represents all segments of the roofing industry, including contractors; manufacturers; distributors; architects; consultants; engineers; building owners; and city, state and government agencies. NRCA’s mission is to inform and assist the roofing industry, act as its principal advocate and help members in serving their customers. NRCA continually strives to enhance every aspect of the roofing industry.

For information about NRCA and its services and offerings, visit www.nrca.net.