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Since this is what I do I thought I'd share some ideas about this canvassing thing.

You really do have to be in a mindset to do it. I play mind games with myself to do this. You never know what or who is going to be behind the door. That's what makes this interesting.

I find most people to be receptive to what I'm doing and some others not so receptive. Fortunately there is way more people open, than not. If I run into 3 angry people in a week that is a lot. My record for not running into angry people is 23 days of knocking.

The key for this to work (for me at least) is to be really good at getting up on roofs. Somedays are better than others, obviously. But you also need to know what hail damage is or isn't and know how to play the insurance game. (which is all so verily easily learned)

If you are intimidated at all by knocking doors or dealing with insurance adjusters, hire people who aren't intimidated.

I have an approach that works extremely well for me. Other people do it differently and that's okay. There is no right or wrong way as long as you can make it profitable.

Let me know if you guys are interested in me setting up a blog that covers this entire topic. Also post your questions or pm me. If there is a good demand for this I will go into detail on a blog. Otherwise I'll just post here.

Dave:D
 

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I think it is an interesting and very low budget marketing method, which many contractors shun, because they like to proclaim that they get so many referrals.

Well, what better referral can you get than one the shows how you shine on a cold call prospecting campaign.

I receive an ongoing canvassing training program in the e-mail from one of the canvassing pro's out there.

Even though I have not implemented the marketing plan yet, I am going to start a radius canvassing program requirement for myself and the other estimator/salesman trainee.

Especially when you are either doing a job already, which just makes perfect sense.

The other limited basis method that makes sense is to knock on just 2 more doors when you are already on some block doing someone elses estimate.

Let's go for it and develop a written procedure manual of successful methods.

Ed
 

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Since you do a 4 pass method of knocking, How does the initial message start and then what do you say differently on the next 3 follow up visits?

Do you rehearse basic scripts?

Do you have standard replies for the comments that they might say?

How do you turn a "Not Interested", into a "Wel, Let's Hear What You Have To Say"?

Ed
 

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One point of major contention from the majority of contractors, not only roofing contractors, is that they feel the insurance funds are not enough to compensate them for their normal charges.

I presume that you use a standard contingency agreement form with a direction to pay clause.

I do not utilize Xactimate for my estimates, but for insurance jobs, I do line item as many specific tasks and daily required duties as I can.

That gets me up to my standard pricing, with an already signed contract agreement, contingent upon the insurance company agreeing with the scope of work, at which time, I present the signed contract to the adjuster, with the additional 10 + 10 added on top of for additionally required overhead and profit for the inevitable amount of paperwork and other documentation they will require.

Most home owners and contractors alike, never get it into their head, and believe it convincingly, that once a home owner has a signed contract with you for the agreed upon scope of work, that the insurance company is required by their own contractual language and the true legal definition of "Replacement Cost Coverage", to come up with the actual contract amount minus the home owners deductible.

Ed
 

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We got just enough snow to F' Up the schedule again.

Luckily, the one house I am in progress on right now already has the walk on pitches torn off and we only have the mansards remaining, so I can get the shingles started on them as soon as it get near 40*, which I hope will not take 4 more months like last year.

Ed
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Okay I didn't mean fun. Although that's what I said. A bit of sarcastic humor.

I have never met anybody who said that they love knocking on doors. Ever Ever. But the method works.

The profit part of the phrase is definately true though.
 

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I've stayed away from insurance work. I've not gone after it after 2001 when all there was around was insurance work. That left a bad taste in my mouth for dealing with insurance companies. But I've been thinking long and hard and may try to find an "insurance specialit" who will be responsible to self generate and do all the insurance dealings. If they are willing to handle the paper work, then whys hould I care if isnurance is paying or not.

That brings up another problem. Insurance does not pay enough to properly install a roof even using exactimate figures. I'm not even the most expensive guy around, but a for example... On one job they were offering for labor, material, disposal, etc... it didn't even cover the material costs.
 

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Grumpy

At times I do enjoy canvassing and hate it. The days where I cant seem to knock a door without signing a deal are fantastic but the weeks where no matter what you do or say you cant get a signature are hell.

On the jobs I have sold through insurance I am making an average 35% net profit margin while properly installing roofs.

I use exactimate on every insurance job but I do not use the figures from the updates they send out. I typically will mark their numbers up by 10-15% to get where I want to be. Not all insurance companies will hit this number but it never hurts to shoot higher than where you actually need to be when it comes to dealing with adjusters.

I have worked with the adjusters in my area enough at this point that when they see my name on a claim they will have me write the report and get pictures to send in to them because they know I dont have homeowners call in a claim on B.S. damage. Funny thing is... most of the other sales people within my company dont have this luxury because they call in bogus claims.

Sure there can be huge head aches going this rout but it is well worth it in the end. Your helping a homeowner get what is rightfully theirs and putting a new roof on their home. To me it is much more fulfilling than just bidding jobs out.

I recently helped a homeowner get his 98 square 12/12 roof bought off after fighting the insurance company for over 3 months. This guy was so happy once he got the check in the mail he was calling me "hey man when you wanna come pick up this check you worked so hard for?" Funny thing is I only spent maybe 10 hours total dealing with the claim and Im going to make 8k on the job as the salesperson! Insurance is paying 52k for replacement not including 10&10 for Overhead and profit. The kicker is that because insurance took so long to approve his claim he actually incurred interior damage from leaks which will now give us the O and P on the claim!

Did I mention I only sell for insurance procedes?
 

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Sure! I am interested in how you canvas door to door

But do you have to put it in a blog?

I believe in canvassing door-to-door and have been trying to get started for the past 6 weeks. I had one sales person work for only one day, he got 5 leads in about three hours, and we sold three small plumbing jobs for $1500. I was very excited, but I terminated the sales person the following day because he disappeared for part of the day and I am fairly sure he had a recent problem with drug use.

I am having a plumber work with my sales person so we do not have to play the appointment chasing game. We are getting into homes by offering a free furnace inspection and a free toilet leak test. When we arrive at the door we hand the customer a handful of ink pens, 5 x 7 magnet calendar, and dye tablets to test their toilet tank for leaks. Then we offer to show them how to use the tablets. We also drop off 500 letters the day before we canvass so the customers know we will be banging on their door. We tried dropping off letters in plastic bags and the customers would hang the bag on their door the following day if they wanted the free estimate. The test was horrible because we left the bags on the doors at about 3 pm in the pouring rain and we picked them up the following day at noon in the pouring rain. We did get two people who wanted a free inspection. Maybe we would have received more with more patience.

I also have a C39 California roofing license and am trying to get my roofing company back together. I am curious about your bidding with Exactimate because I always bid restoration work according to what I want and I tell the customer the insurance company pays too little and if they want a better job with more meticulous workers, they need to pay my price. I bid the jobs and tell the customers to haggle with their insurance company. I was reading an article last year saying the insurance companies were getting sued for price price fixing.

Anyway, I would like to hear everything you can possibly say about door-to-door. I am running two ads for sales people this week end and next week. I know of many businesses that do only door-to-door and I think we can a few million in business every year.

Thank you very much for your posts.
 

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With the insurance companies the key to getting your price is having the homeowner sign a contingency agreement for you to do the work for insurance procedes. The reason you do this is so the ins. comp. doesnt just tell the homeowner to go get 3 bids and they will take a look at them.

Where exactimate comes in is when you work with an adjuster. They want to see a line item estimate with a break down of pricing for each item. Essentially your just speaking their language. This will allow you to get paid the maximum amount for the job which will typically be higher by 10-30% than the bids you are currently giving the customers to take to the ins. comp. I know this because I have yet to see a bid higher than what I end up getting paid for an insurance job.

The two programs that are the most popular with insurance are exactimate and integra. Exactimate is the most popular with them and integra seems to be used mostly by allstate. I personally feel that the pricing in exactimate is more up to date with the current market value on materials, labor, etc.

If you are going to have canvassers or sales people doing this kind of work then the key for their success is to say as little as possible before going on the roof to do an inspection. I typically say "hi my name is _____ with ________ how are you doing today? Great! Well I just wanted to stop by and let you know there was a recent storm in the area that may have caused significant damage to your roof and I would like to offer you a free roof inspection. It only takes 10-15 minutes and I will let you know what I find and how I can help you when Im done. How does that sound?"

Sometimes they will have a few questions for you but for the most part if they are going to let you do it they just say go on up. You will want to have some information about your company and what you do to leave with them while you are on the roof. The information I leave with them will practically close the sale for me if they actually read it.

Once you get them to sign... get back on the roof and get measurements and pictures to put your "report" together for the insurance adjuster. I will always put together a report that practically mirrors what the adjuster will put together to submit to the ins. comp. because you never know when they may ask you to send them this info. If they do ask you to do this then they are most likely not even going to come out because they have done inspections in that area and know there is no need if you already have it for them. Ive had adjusters literally just drive by the property and never get out of their car just to make sure my pictures match the house in question.

hope this info helps you out. just pm me if you have any more questions
 

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That is great information.

Thank you very much.

Do you follow storms and how do roofers work in other states without being licensed, or is there some way they get a license? How many contractors are bidding after a storm?
 

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It really depends on the size of the storm on wether or not you want to relocate or open a new office for it. I personally prefer to stay in my area, the midwest. There has been enough storm business in my area to stay more than busy off of it since 2006. Towards the end of last year we were getting pretty thing so we had to drive alittle further on a daily basis to get where the most recent storm was but it really wasnt a problem.

There are typically enough small storms throughout the year within a 50 mile radius of my office. If you are a one man band this could be a problem if you stretch yourself very far between areas you are working. I tend to find to somewhat saturated areas with damage at a time and work them hard. Im in those areas so much people have flagged me down in my truck to ask me who I am and what Im doing because they see me out there so much. In one neighborhood I signed up 3 deals at a garage sale because the HO flagged me down and some of the neighbors asked me to go look at their roofs to! They all had damage and insurance bought all 3! :thumbup:

As far as licensing goes, it really depends on the state you are going in to. The company I currently work for has 3 branches throughout the country working under their own name and a few more working under someone elses name using their license and what not. Im not sure exactly how the latter works but apparently in some states its very difficult to get a license so its better to have an operating agreement with an established company.
 

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What about an area that doesn't have alot of storms that cause roof damage? I'm in the south and we don't have hail issues. We do get hurricane weather occassionally and those seasons will be busy but most of the time we just get rain during the spring and afternoon summer storms briefly due to the humidity.

I'd say 99% of the roofs we do are normal wear and tear so to speak and an insurance claim doesn't fit. What would you suggest to do/say when canvassing?
 

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Hi.

We were in the neighborhood and your roof kept waving at me and called me over.

I'm just kidding about your roof of course, but I am sure you are aware how worn out your roof is already, right?

While you are thinking about that for a minute, please read this very helpful consumers guide that we provide as a courtesy to our newly made acquantances. While you are reading through that guide, would you mind if I take a walk around to see if your roof needs to be inspected on top of the roof by a trained professional?

Yup, just as I suspected when I was walking up to your door. Your roof looks pretty aged and ready to start failing soon. Have you already had leak stains showing up at random spots inside your home?

You wouldn't want to wait too long and have your nice decorations and family heirlooms ruined, would you?

Well, then would you like our trained inspector to stop by and provide you with a free inspection and a follow up report?

Great!!!

When would you like to go over his detail photos of the problem areas that he observed?

Would tonight around 5:00 be okay, or would Thursday afternoon be a better time for you?


Ed
 

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Ed, I think this is the makings of a beautiful friendship! You're the best already and I don't even know ya yet!

This sales pitch is PERFECT for what I was thinking! It will work for a sales person if the roofer can't be the one doing it too. Sweeeeeet!
 

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Ed, I think this is the makings of a beautiful friendship!

Your computer or mine...(Wanted to say, Your Place Or Mine, but that would reveal too much about the Inner Me) :laughing:



You're the best already and I don't even know ya yet!

Wow, you really impress me with your keen observation skills and acute awarness of the facts as I see them too.



This sales pitch is PERFECT for what I was thinking! It will work for a sales person if the roofer can't be the one doing it too. Sweeeeeet!


Getting back down to reality.....I figured it would work as a method to not force the issue on the home owner immediately, but that option would be available, but you also have that ace up the sleeve to schedule the professional inspector to come out when more convenient.

Another point, make sure to get Written Referrals after every job and make sure you mention the neighbor on Maple Street that you are working on right now.

Ed
 

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ha ha... Ed you're a Nut! :jester:

I've already started a list of suggestions to work on the next two weeks. I'm thinking I might need to ask for a raise ?:thumbdown:
 

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Well boys I had my first opportunity to canvass. I went solo at it today (Saturday) from 11-2 and knocked on all doors on the street we are roofing a house on, and the local side streets. 6 leads with appointments set for M,T and a home show coming on Wednesday. Being the owner I think I have a great advantage but I am very happy with the results.
Tried a few ideas but the best one was to the homeowner in the yards..."Do you know a good roofer? Well you do now, I am Ron and we are doing your neighbors..."
 

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Well boys I had my first opportunity to canvass. I went solo at it today (Saturday) from 11-2 and knocked on all doors on the street we are roofing a house on, and the local side streets. 6 leads with appointments set for M,T and a home show coming on Wednesday. Being the owner I think I have a great advantage but I am very happy with the results.
Tried a few ideas but the best one was to the homeowner in the yards..."Do you know a good roofer? Well you do now, I am Ron and we are doing your neighbors..."
Congratulations!!!! :yes:

That is Fan-Fricking Fantastic for a response rate.

How many doors did you actually get the chance to knock on to get so many new leads?

Ed
 
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