Workmanship Warranty

 
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Old 01-19-2009, 06:46 PM   #1
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Workmanship Warranty


Do you feel the contractor’s workmanship warranty is a significant factor in the mind of the homeowner?

If so, do you feel the length of that warranty has much of an impact on their decision making?

What would work best; 1 year, 5 years, 10 years, 15 years or lifetime?

I started offering a lifetime warranty 2008. During that same period my closing ratio went down.

I don’t know if the warranty had anything to with it. It could have been because the economy in Detroit has worsened. I also noticed more of my leads were from referrals in 2007.

Anyway I decided to lower it back down to 15 years for 2009. I wonder if I should take it even lower. What do you think?

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Old 01-19-2009, 07:52 PM   #2
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Re: Workmanship Warranty


Is that 15 year warranty from you, or the manufacturers program?

If from you, do you charge extra for it and if so, how much per incremental amount of time?

In you Michigan economy, I would offer one option that is bare bones and very limited on the warranty, so that they have a budget option to choose from.

Then, try to get them to upgrade after they decided on you as their contractor, if you think it merits further discussion.

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Old 01-19-2009, 08:33 PM   #3
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Re: Workmanship Warranty


Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed the Roofer View Post
Is that 15 year warranty from you, or the manufacturers program?

If from you, do you charge extra for it and if so, how much per incremental amount of time?

In you Michigan economy, I would offer one option that is bare bones and very limited on the warranty, so that they have a budget option to choose from.

Then, try to get them to upgrade after they decided on you as their contractor, if you think it merits further discussion.

Ed
It's my warranty and it's included for free
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Old 01-19-2009, 09:47 PM   #4
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Re: Workmanship Warranty


Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack The Roofer View Post
It's my warranty and it's included for free
Dang, thats an awful long time to hang your azz out on a warranty.

I hope you have good exclusions or requirements, like an annually required maintenance inspection for a nominal fee.

Ed
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Old 01-20-2009, 02:29 AM   #5
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Re: Workmanship Warranty


5 years is plenty,10 years is feel good stuff
reality is:If you do the job right,and only guarantee that they`ll have no problems.leaks caused by labor/and/or workmanship-It`s a moot point
top quality 1st point
reasonable price-2nd point
3rd point-ability to point out the differences between you,and lowball roofer,and why those things are included in your bid
I always stress the prope educating of the homeowners,about how and why you do what you do-helps to build trust,with that-comes signatures
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Old 01-20-2009, 07:01 AM   #6
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Re: Workmanship Warranty


I do feel that the leak free guarantee plays into the mind of the customer. However at some point you may scare them with a "too good to be true". For me I think the only people who buy the life time warranty's are the same people who think financing is a good idea. They are also the same that allow themselves to be high pressured.

A game going on around here right now is companies offering the manufacturer's upgraded labor guarantee, llike the certainteed surestart, for example. I don't think they actually mislead the customer by saying the manufacturer is guaranteeing the roof won't leak but that's what I'd bet most customers assume when they see labor guarantee. If you read the fine print, one company I know of is guaranteeing it for only 2 years.... When I explain what the upgraded guarantee really is, it's usually a pretty easy sell.

I offer 10 years on shingles. I do this because I know what I am doing is better than most and I know that my roof will probably last longer than most, therfore it should be warranted longer. My guarantee is also fully transferrable for the full 10 years, a nice selling point of they are trying to put the house on the market.
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Old 01-20-2009, 08:26 AM   #7
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Re: Workmanship Warranty


Tail light warranty is nice too.
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Old 01-20-2009, 06:09 PM   #8
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Re: Workmanship Warranty


Hi Jack,

Most contractors I have spoken with over the past 37 years have told me how they limit their warranties and add in all kinds of disclaimers in order to protect themselves from being sued. They were very concerned about putting themselves at risk.
After being hired as a consultant and expert witness in countless litigations over the years, I can tell you with all confidence that a limited warranty will not protect you nearly so much as you might think. The only thing that will genuinely protect you from being wiped out in court is to give your customers the very best roof work possible and to stay in a good relationship with them. Giving your customers great warranties will help you infinitely more than being fearful and tight-fisted.
If you remove your potential customer’s perceived risk of doing business with you, you have put him at ease. In other words, you have moved him away from pain and into pleasure.
Any call-backs or partial refunds you might have to make are microscopic compared to the increase in sales you will have by taking the risk on yourself instead of placing it on your customers.
I have learned from decades of my own experience that making good on a warranty is always to your advantage. Each time you do, you can ask for a letter from your customer stating how well you responded and took care of the problem.
Then, if you have a website for your company, you can include those letters on your warranty page. Those letters will win over your potential customers and give them the comforting knowledge that you will also take care of them in the very same way.
Your warranty page will show how extensively you cover your products and installations – and it will be backed up with testimonials of how well you respond to warranty calls. It will slam dunk one sale after another for you.
There is no real value to skimpy warranties, unless of course you plan on doing shoddy work and leaving people out to dry. Even then, your skimpy warranties and failure to correct future problems for your customers will do nothing more than turn them against you and land you in court.
So again, there is no real value in short, skimpy warranties. They will do you much more harm than good.
Suppose you offer your customer a ten-year service warranty. You will be linked to that customer for the next ten years – and that will be a good thing. You can add them to your list of references.
If your company uses quality materials and excellent workmanship, my advice is to pile it on in your warranties. Spell it out in detail. And include a coupon that says:
“Good for one free inspection and roof tune-up anytime in the next 20 years.”
And then spell out on the coupon everything you will check, repair, and touch-up.
Your warranty will cause your potential customer to heavily lean in your favor. It will alleviate his fear of the unknown, such as, if his roof will ever leak in the future. Your warranty will lower his “perceived risk” of doing business with you.
Your customers link your warranty to pain and pleasure – to pain if the warranty is short and skimpy – and to pleasure if your warranty encompasses their perceived needs and extends far into their future.
In reality, your warranties cost you nothing, because they will dramatically increase your percentage rate of getting the job. So, give great warranties and take the risk of the purchase away from your potential customer. He will feel good about you for doing it.
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Old 01-20-2009, 07:03 PM   #9
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Re: Workmanship Warranty


If your referring to shingle work and use aluminum/neoprene pipe collars I would back down to 10 years.I feel 10 years is more then fair.If your install is faulty it will fail in the first year or so.In this area 10 is standard.Like Grumpy pointed out "to good to be true" does pop into customers minds.
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Old 01-20-2009, 07:14 PM   #10
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Re: Workmanship Warranty


Thanks for your input.

I think the lifetime warranty I was offering last year really didn't help me.

My workmanship warranty was equal to the warranty on the shingles, 30 years for example.

THat probably made propects skeptical.

I'm not sure if 15 is much more believable.
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