What was your most memorable roofing project? Was it the largest project you ever tackled? Was it particularly profitable, or was it memorable because of how much you lost on it? A number of roofing contractors would tell you some of their most memorable roofing projects were performed gratis, and they were not only memorable, but life-changing.

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Giving a roof away to needy and deserving individuals or nonprofit institutions can be a very good thing on a personal level and it can be good for your business as well. Performing work pro bono in your community can also set you apart from other contractors in the eyes of your customers and potential customers.

How do roofing contractors interested in giving away a free roof find deserving recipients? Many roofing contractors become involved in community service by way of their trade associations. Other affiliations, such as church and civic organizations, are in tune with needs in the community. Nonprofits specializing in construction activities, such as Rebuilding Together and Habitat for Humanity, are always on the lookout for roofing help.

Some roofing contractors mount free roof campaigns on their own. Steve Gotschi of DryHome Roofing and Siding, Inc., Sterling, Va., gives away a roof a year to a deserving individual or nonprofit. With a program called DryHome for the Holidays, Gotschi determines the free roof recipient by way of a campaign soliciting nominations. The nominee deemed most deserving is awarded a free roof. In celebration of 10 years of DryHome for the Holidays, Gotchi plans to give away two roofs this year.

Jay Elie of Ridgecon Construction, Shelby Township, Mich., tells us about an initiative his family’s roof-contracting company developed called No Roof Left Behind. Inspired by concepts from two popular television shows — “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” and “American Idol” — the No Roof Left Behind model draws the community into the process from beginning to end. Once a year No Roof Left Behind announces, via social media, the opportunity for a free roof and asks members of the community to nominate a recipient. A committee of volunteers reduces the list of nominees to four, and the community is invited, by social media, to vote on their favorite. It is not only the community that participates, but the rest of the world, as friends read about it from other friends online.

At the completion of the project the community is invited to visit the site of the free roof for a celebration. While the project is run under the banner of No Roof Left Behind, the buzz created likewise spreads the name of Ridgecon Construction and others who sponsor and contribute to the project.

There are many roofing contractors who quietly perform random acts of kindness all the time, and often without recognition or monetary reward. I certainly honor that and applaud their efforts. Contractors who tie marketing efforts in with good works, however, are doing the thing that is required for them to continue doing good works: keeping their business healthy and alive.

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If you are interested in learning more about these and other ways your roofing business can give back to your community check out the links below


Habitat for Humanity International - www.habitat.org

Rebuilding Together - http://rebuildingtogether.org/

No Roof Left Behind - http://noroofleftbehind.com/

DryHome for the Holidays - http://www.dryhome.com/2012/09/free-roof-for-the-holidays-from-dryhome/

National Roofing Contractors Association - www.nrca.net