The themes of this month’s issue of Roofing Contractor include maintenance and repair, as well as retrofit roofing. Although it may not have been planned this way, it is certainly appropriate that this is the issue in which we have rolled out a fresh new look.

Unlike a roofing system that might be worn from years of exposure to the elements, the (now former) look of our publication had really endured. It was not splitting, cracking, or delaminating at the seams. It was still up to current-day standards and did not lack in the looks department, which is, like some roofing systems, an important component of the finished product. In spite of this being the first major redesign (retrofit) of the magazine in around 15 years, the look has endured because it has been maintained.

Every issue our design team, led by Scott Hilling, follows a basic design formula. There are, however, “tweaks” to maintain continuity while keeping the look in line with constantly changing editorial and advertising input.

But despite the tweaks, sometimes it’s necessary to do some major renovations. We’ve done that here with our June issue, and we hope you enjoy the changes. Rest assured that beginning with the next issue, our publishing and design professionals will keep a constant eye on our look and content to maintain both consistency and freshness.

To some it may seem odd to proudly announce our revamped look and talk about changing it at the same time. How about you? When you complete your next retrofit roofing project, how much time will you spend with your client talking about how they will maintain it so they can optimize their investment? It may seem counterintuitive to speak to them about maintaining the roof you just sold them, but this is the perfect time to deliver some added value and extend your relationship with them beyond the one roofing project.

Many commercial contracting firms offer robust maintenance services, so introducing the concept of programmed maintenance has become routine for them. Many retrofit roofing projects are awarded based on relationships started on the maintenance side. Conversely, delivery of new roofing systems can be a good place to begin maintenance and service relationships.

While many residential roofing contractors offer repair services, there are not many offering programmed maintenance. Many feel that the cost of properly performing residential roof maintenance prohibits owners from signing up to have their roof inspected and maintained.

How about offering to inspect the roof and make minor repairs once every five years? Even if you sold it for $500 to $1,000 for an average-sized house, it would be worth it to your client if it tacked another five years of life onto the roof, and on many systems I think it would. And if the numbers above are reasonable given your pricing structure, they translate to less than $9 to $17 per month (which you might offer to finance over the next five-year period for a few dollars more). The owner gets peace of mind, and you maintain a closer relationship with them by staying in touch.

Speaking of staying in touch, please do. We are always interested in hearing from you about the content in our publication and online. Let us know what you think of our new look and/or how you take advantage of repair, maintenance and restoration opportunities in your market.

After all, no matter what part of this business you are in, you must always keep things fresh if you expect to maintain your bottom line.