Part of being a successful contractor involves anticipating your clients’ and customers’ needs and proactively offering them solutions. Another part of being successful is understanding your market and the various opportunities within your market. Whether it be a brand new business or in complimenting an existing contracting business, being a gutter contractor can open up a lot of different doors. Here are just a few revenue streams that a gutter machine can bring to your business
New Construction Gutter Contracting Services
New home building continues to rise with especially great growth in the multi-family market. And demand couldn’t be greater as many general contractors have a hard time finding an experienced and qualified labor force. And gutter contractors in particular are in great demand. If you have a current roofing or siding installation business and work for general contractors building new homes and developments, don’t you think they’d be happy to contract their gutter work with you? After all, hiring one subcontractor to handle and coordinate multiple trades will make their life much simpler. And unlike roofing and siding, gutters tend to be sold at higher margins which could possibly make your roof or siding proposal look more attractive. And with working with new construction builders you have a constant revenue stream, often even working on projects in the slower winter months. And this, of course, keeps dollars churning year-round while maintaining continuity within your labor force.
Seamless Delivery Service
Another avenue is to offer a seamless gutter delivery service. Most markets have gutter distributors that sell the coil needed to manufacture gutters. And some of those distributors have on site gutter machines that will allow you to pick up custom gutters, run to length, and carry them to your job site. But how long of a length can you carry on your work truck? This is where a seamless gutter delivery service comes into play. There are many builders, roofing contractors, and siding contractors who offer gutter installation but do not have a seamless gutter machine. While they might be able to find a place to pick up sections of gutter, they often have a hard time finding a company that can deliver gutters. You can put your machine to work and make anywhere from .75/ft to a $1.50 ft for…..without ever breaking a sweat. And who is to say that those customers might get to busy at times and need you to install the gutters for them.
Bringing More Value and Less Headache to Your Customers
Whether you’re building a house or an addition or you’re simply renovating a home exterior, there are likely several services that your customers will need that you don’t already provide. For example, if your customers need a new roof, they may have to call up a roofing company, and if they need gutters, they might have to call a company that provides those, too. If they need their front yards landscaped, they’ll need to call yet another company to take care of that.
The more services you can offer to your clients and customers, the happier they will be. The best part is that you can actually save your customers money by planning and carrying out the entire project from start to finish. They won’t have to wait for one company to finish before another arrives, and they won’t have to pay premium prices to specialized contractors. This makes you something of a hero in their eyes, and if you can actually make money by creating gutters onsite rather than ordering them from a wholesaler, the potential revenue stream is tremendous. This strategy also gives you more control over the total project which in turn provides better service to your customer.
Offer Something Your Competitors Don’t
If you take a look at your competitors, there’s a good chance that very few of them (if any at all) are actually making their own gutters on the jobsite. In fact, the vast majority go to home improvement stores and purchase preformed gutters in boxes, and those who don’t hire an outside company to come to the job site and run out the gutters, all coming at an added expense. Become a sustainable solution provider for the industry as a whole! When you buy your own gutter machine, you can compete with anyone in the industry and even open up new revenue streams by providing gutter services to other contractors.
It’s also important to keep in mind that gutters you buy in a box from a home improvement store are not without their faults. As you hang them, you will need to seal them – and that requires more labor that slows you down and ends up costing your customers more. Even when they are sealed, they have a much larger potential for leaks. Finally, these preformed gutters are usually made with much thinner metals than the gutters you can produce onsite, so they will likely not hold up to ice and subfreezing temperatures.
Reduce Waste in Many Areas
Waste is a big issue in the home improvement industry, but the good news is that creating gutters onsite can drastically reduce that waste in more than one way. It reduces material waste by allowing you to cut gutters to precise length rather than simply trimming boxed gutters, and these cutoff ends typically go in the trash or into a recycling bin even though your customers have paid for every foot. You become more profitable through efficiency!
Having your own gutter machine also cuts down on wasted time. Without one, your options include going to a home improvement store and buying sub-par gutters in boxes, hiring someone to deliver those very same gutters to your jobsite, or relying on a subcontractor to come to the site and create the gutters for you. When you have your own machine, far fewer people and companies are involved. Not only does this save you time, but it also saves your clients and customers time – and money.
Start with Raw Parts and Earn More Money
Simply offering gutter hanging is a great way to branch out into value-added services, but if you’re still ordering finished gutter from a wholesaler, you could be cheating yourself out of some money and wasting resources. Think about the difference in price between fully-formed gutters and the raw materials – like aluminum – that go into making them. That difference could be money in your pocket if you invested in a gutter machine.
While a gutter machine is a big investment averaging between $5,000 and $10,000, some can cost $30,000 or more so financing an affordable payment schedule can allow you to start generating more revenue immediately. That revenue could go toward making your payments ahead of time and saving yourself some interest. As word spreads that you offer gutter services at a low price, your reputation with customers as well as your competition in your local area will skyrocket, and at the end of the day, a contractor who has work to do is a contractor who makes money. You’re saving yourself time and money even as you save your customers time and money, and that’s an amazing recipe for success.
Gutter machines are not small purchases, but they shouldn’t be viewed as huge expenses. Rather, think of them as a solid investment in your future and a surefire way to start generating far more revenue within a very short period of time. As long as you source your sheet metal affordably and do your part to provide outstanding workmanship, the gutter machine does all the rest.