July 2005 Table of Contents

Featured Articles
Lifetime Plus

If you're going to offer a lifetime labor warranty, it's critical to deliver on your promise. Read more

Sidewall Flashing Jobsite Sidewall Flashing

Shingle roofs (asphalt, slate, or wood) that butt against vertical walls are best protected by metal step flashing placed over the end of each shingle course. Read more

Sales Turn On

Selling home improvement products and projects is an art, to some. Others might define it as a highly nuanced set of skills. The aim, of course, is to win the confidence of homeowners and close the sale. And like everything else today, home improvement selling is going high tech. Read more

Marketing Map Marketing Map

Looking back is important, but so is looking ahead. Start with this question: What's your revenue goal and how do you reach that goal via marketing? Read more

It's an Audit! It's an Audit!

What you can do to avoid a business owner's least pleasant experience. Read more

Legal Eagle Good Things to Have in Your Contract

Contracts come in any number of shapes and forms, but there are a few essential items you should consider including in yours. These can go a long way toward stopping a problem before it starts and preventing small problems from becoming nightmares. Read more

LLC or S-Corp.?

Should a home-improvement company be structured as an S-corp. or an LLC? Experts say choosing a form of business ownership depends on several key factors, including tax concerns, potential risks and business liabilities, desire for flexible management structure, and future investment needs. Read more

First-Call Blues

With today's Information Age prospect, it isn't difficult to close someone who's insisting on another price. That is, provided that salespeople avoid old-school practices designed to manipulate the prospect into buying. Such practices are increasingly ineffective. Read more

Dealing With Cancellations

The customer signed the contract and was approved for financing. But well after draw-down, he canceled because he'd found a better price elsewhere. Roeland Enterprises took him to court. The case dragged on for three years, but the Rockaway, N.J., replacement contractor finally won a judgment for $30,000. Read more

Net Profit

Web site not bringing in any leads? Might be time to step up to some new ways to take advantage of your Internet presence and turn it into a genuine lead source. Smart companies are using the Web to track ads, reach out to their community, and target new prospects. Read more

On the Air

Sports talk shows and shock talk shows fill the airwaves in almost every market. But what about a talk show devoted to improving the home? Well, Houston area listeners have one. It's the Read more

Show It Off, Part 1

To be successful with a showroom, plan carefully, taking into account the many facets of this modern marketing technique. Read more

Safety Net

Jonathan Laurence of Worldwide Multimedia Presentations, says that when it comes to what's on their phones, "most home improvement companies have the radio or nothing. You're paying to have that phone ring, but not for a safety net to make sure that guy doesn't hang up." Read more

Warm Touch

Your job is to walk into a stranger's house and, within minutes, get them to trust you. Otherwise, they're not going to listen to your sales pitch. How do you do that? Start by taking off your shoes. Read more

Sales Help Wanted

Statewide Remodeling uses newspaper ads and informal networking, too, to keep some 30 sales spots filled in three locations. But what works best is radio advertising, explains vice president and partner Frank Manzare. Read more

Be Prepared

Many salespeople start their presentation by asking the prospect questions. What's your budget? When do you want to start? How many estimates are you getting? Read more

Grace Under Pressure

Tom Henderson was midway through his deck presentation when the prospect, in her early 50s, keeled over. He phoned 911. Baltimore paramedics arrived and revived the lady, who, it turned out, had had a minor stroke. Read more

Another Tough Season

Two recently released predictions for the Atlantic hurricane season forecast "above average" activity, with the number of storms likely to exceed last year's total. Read more

Second Wind Second Wind

Vinyl remains a small part of the $2.5 billion decking market, only 2%, according to research by Principia Partners, Exton, Pa., a business consultancy focused on building products. Read more

Certifiable Certifiable

A new program will enable vinyl siding installers to earn certification. Read more

Get the Message

Looking for a place where consumers, contractors, manufacturers, and others can share installation and maintenance tips, and the finer points of various window products? Read more

Seal of Approval

Jery Y. Huntley is president of the Vinyl Siding Institute, in Washington, D.C. VSI recently started a program to certify vinyl siding installers. Read more

Internet Marketing: Be There

A window and sunroom company in Virginia gets 48% of its leads from Web sites, both its own sites (it has many) and the contractor referral services it subscribes to. Sound farfetched? It isn't. Read more

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