I think you are on the right path. One question - will you be solo or with a partner?
Two things I suggest:
- Get a website and concentrate on LOCAL (Local SEO) marketing for it. while there is no “word of mouth”, a good website can get you steady work, almost for free. It works for us!
Here is a great source of info: Getlisted - You should also go to their local university seminar next time it runs in your area - its a wealth of information from best guys in the industry for only $89. I actually drove form Boston to Syracuse to attend one, even thou I’ve been doing SEO / web marketing for years (with great success too). Still, it was worth every minute of my 11 hrs drive!
Two years will give you plenty of time for your site to start ranking and bringing in clients.
- During next two year you can start doing small jobs on weekends. You can start slowly getting required equipment - it will not be that much money for 2-3 guys. Biggest expense will be the truck/trailer (trailer not necessary in the beginning) and then hoist, which you can rent or put on credit.
This part-time roofing will also build you some reputation, for when you go all out.
If you have a partner, you won’t need WC insurance - only liability which will be about 400-600 / month, depending on your local rates (at least that is what we have here in MA).
Also, i wrote a post on how to start a roofing business - it may be biased, but you might pick up some useful tips there:
I’ve recently had the pleasure of conversing with LAMetalRoofs and he is a very sharp guy and the advice he gives you can count on. As a business owner for the past 24 years, I’ve always found Marketing as one of the BIGGEST Factors that determines the success of a business. Marketing can come in many forms from Word or Mouth, Knocking on Door, Printed Media, Online and such. If you are just starting out you will want to focus on the lower cost options like Door Knocking if you have a limited budget, but once you get an advertising budget you can branch out and try other things that will free up your time.
I’m probably a little biased since we provide Online Solutions for Roofing Leads, but ONLINE is a great EFFICIENT way to get people calling you for the least amount of effort and expense. The ROI (Return On Investment) and CPA (Cost Per Acquisition) can be the least of any form of advertising.
As LAMetalRoofs mentions above you can certainly try to tackle a website on your own, but it can be a very daunting task for those who don’t know much about the internet. GetListed is an OK place to get started just remember that alot of how you design your website is how well it will do in Google. We are experts in Internet Marketing so I deal with these things ALL DAY, EVERYDAY! I can always point you to resources if you are interested in setting up your own website. Blogs and Web2.0 sites are a great place to start as well, like FaceBook or HubPages.
You can also joining forums where you can answer peoples questions and provide help and in return people call for your expertise, just as I do here. Obviously this forums is not a good place to find customers, but you might try something like Bob Vila’s Forums or some other Home Maintenance sites. The point is you want to be where your customers are. After being in business for 24 years with the same company, I’ve learned that you want to be a BIG FISH in a SMALL POND not the other way around; A SMALL FISH, in a BIG POND!!
If you decide you can’t tackle the website stuff yourself there are always many options, I just wrote a post yesterday to help give people some information to chew so you might visit that post for some ideas and advice.
As well, we actually provide a great solution for Roofers Online and produce roofing leads in your area by casting a net of multiple website in your local area that produce calls for you and only you. If your interested just give me a call at 281-394-0833. Or if you just need some advice how to get you website started, just ask.
Have a great day,