Review of the Summit: Going Green in the Home Improvement Industry

The continuing review of the Home Improvement Summit next brings us to what may currently be the biggest opportunity for remodelers and general contractors. Green remodeling is taking the industry by storm as consumers are focusing more on conservation, both for environmental reasons and monetary ones.

One of the proponents of this movement within the industry is Terry Ferraro, who is the President and CEO of Pro Materials Direct, a distributor of specialty products to home improvement companies.  They currently serve over 40% of Replacement Contractors’ (magazine) top 100.  Since 1975, when he first joined Alside, he has dedicated his career to the industry.  His distribution company, American Wholesale Supply, has branches in 7 southeastern states.  He is a founder and director of EBank, a founder of Magnolia Windows and Gutter Protection Products of America.

Terry terms these as “Greenovation” jobs, and he believes that they are rapidly becoming the most profitable jobs for many home improvement companies.

In the surveys that his company conducted, nearly half of all the green specialists said that their green business was doing better than their traditional remodeling work.

One way that many remodelers are finding success is through weatherization programs that help homeowners lower their heating costs.

NARI recommends making energy efficient upgrades as a way to prepare for the season, and many remodelers are also offering winterization programs to help them reduce energy costs.

Terry gave a sampling of companies from within the industry that are having success with green remodeling and I will share a few here:

“Our Home Energy Makeover Sales have the highest closing percentage of any product that we sell. They have the highest gross profit. Almost 80% of the jobs are paid by cash or credit card. They have the lowest cancelation rate. Over 90% of all Makeover jobs are installed and there is little or no service after completion.”
– Scott Alsup, Sales Manager, Taylor Construction, Atlanta, GA

“We had a kitchen lead the other night and we were the homeowner’s 5th estimate. Our salesperson left with an $8,200 home energy makeover sale. Two days later we ran a front door replacement lead and sold a $7,500 eShield Attic Insulation job.”
– Randy Hamilton, President, Erie Construction

“We started running eShield Home Energy Makeover leads about 6 weeks ago and only handed out 10 demonstration kits to our sales  force. Within 2 weeks all 77 salespeople wanted to run those leads.”
– Mel Feinberg, President, FHA Home Improvement, Hollywood, FL”

In addition to home energy makeovers, real time energy tracking will be the energy buzz words over the next 24 months.

Feel free to contact Terry Ferraro directly with any questions regarding this blog posting.

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