Laptop programs

are there any out there that are easy to use and work for the roofing business


Need a little more information. What do you want to do.

Quickbooks is a good program for the business end.

For estimating there is no substitute for climbing on the roof, inspecting, and measuring it.
All that is usually required to figure out a roof is basic geometry and the pythagorean theory.
This is taught in high school.

Once again, Axiom proves why he’s the squirrel with the biggest nutz.


I always tell people that when I go squirrel hunting I only shoot the males. After they think about it for 5 seconds and funny look is on there face or they ask how do you know if there a male, then I show them a small pic like axiom’s avatar lol.

the reason i asked there was a guy bidding some jobs this year near where i live that had a satilite(sp)on his truck and was sending bids back to the office off of it. a lady showed me one of his bids and it was off his laptop. i’ve climbed on more roofs than i can remember in 20 plus yrs and just looking for a easier way to do the paperwork.


I use Microsoft Word to print up my proposals & Invoices.


I use Contracker. Been about 6 years. We print the contracts up right in the truck.

Here is my set up.

Here is the link to the software.

thanks i’ll give it a shot

Same here but thinking about buying a software for both just so it looks more professional. Gonna go to Office Max tonight to see what they got. Some one said Xactimate has a section for sending invoices but have yet to find that feature.

As far as writing estimates Xactimate is very quick and very easy to use. You can either print out the estimate when finished or email to either the home owner or insurance company/adjuster. I see a lot of adjuster doing the estimate right after they crawl down the ladder in their vehicle. This is quick but it’s usually these adjusters that miss a lot of items. Most do the estimates in the evening after the sun goes down or pile them up for rain days.

Bought a lap top with portable printer over a year ago and have yet to print anything with the printer! Thinking this Spring gonna start using it for the home owners that want an estimate asap.


Every contract is in the customers hand before we leave. When you leave you move on. Nothing is piling up.
It is easier to finish everything while you are there. When you go back to the office or home you have to get your head back to that job. Wastes to much time.
90% fall into this catogory.
Commercial is different.

Lefty, while I agree with your statement that it’s better to give the estimate right there on site, I don’t think their software is any better than the Excel based estimate I provide to my customers.

I need to get a vehicle based system like what you’ve got set up (with some mods, of course). My problem is that my 3500 4 door is also used to haul kids around as well as roofing work; that means no replacement of the seat / bench unless I figure out a moveable component.

I’ll scan a hard copy of an estimate & y’all will see how nice mine come out looking. I have had a LOT of customers tell me my estimates are the most professional they’ve ever seen & that’s in comparison to 3 or 4 other co’s quoting the same job.

As for pricing the job, I have an Excel spreadsheet I use that allows me to calc exact costs down to the penny & gives me the ability to set my profit margin wherever I want it.

To the calculating the job / size, I prefer a hand calculation vs. their software but I guess it’s because I haven’t used their software before.

Also, some customers like me to Email my estimate to them & on Excel I’m able to send it out (I always look 3x to make sure I’m not sending the pricing worksheet out by accident).

Hi RanchHand,

He asked what we used. Never said or implied that it was the best out there.
Never said that was the only way to set up your truck either. I did only take out 1/3 of the back seat. Thats how Fords are. Still seats 2 in the original back seat.


I never said you said that was the only software to use or way to do it. :wink:

Whatever method you use, I do agree that all other things being equal, a professional looking estimate will get you more sales than a jumbled up, hand written estimate.

Hi RanchHand,

Read your first paragraph.

[quote=“Lefty”]Hi RanchHand,

Read your first paragraph.[/quote]


“No pain reliever works better…”

Not any better is the same as saying just as good as.

Ranch I would be interested in seeing how your estimates turn out using excel. We currently use hand written proposals(which have been effective expect for my messy left handed writing lol). I am very interested in switching to using a laptop and a program to figure costs and make proposals. We plan on making the switch very soon. Since we are in North East Ohio things generally slow down in Jnauary and Febuary. So I use this time to do these type of things. As you know there is never enough time for business when your a small business owner.

If anyone else wouldn’t mind posting there proposals I’d would greatly appreciate it. Thanks

FWB, it’s here:

i’m located in pittsburgh and i’ve figured my jobs all to cost me (shingle roofs) around 100.00 per sq this includes garbage and materials this is usually worst case because usually if you get above 15 sq or so the costs start to go down you’ll notice this with time i use ms word and tables to write proposals and than all i do if the homeowner goes with me i have to add another 2 tables for the legal stuff and their signatures like one table for example as “Any alterations or deviations” etc… if you would like give me an email i’d send you my template its really easy but i do mine by hand just because really roof estimating is really redundant and you can almost tell how big it is and how much it costs just by looking at it at least for me the estimating is the easy part i dont think most of the stuff really matters i do get folders and presentation stuff from certainteed since my company is a shingle master company, that helps and the surestart warranties, but mostly the customer has to like you all i’m saying is try not to waste to much time on what it looks like long as its understandable thats all focus more on doing good work the rest just comes every job i did last year except 3 were on referrals and i think it was mainly because people liked me thats all anyone can do a nice job roofing