Ryan Shantz is the owner of Epic Roofing in Calgary, Alberta. He is also the founder of SumoQuote, a sleek and easy-to-use app that allows contractors to present more professional quotes to homeowners.
During a recent Zoom call with Roofing Insights CEO Dmitry Lipinskiy, Shantz shared his thoughts on a number of topics in the roofing industry.
To watch the full interview, click on the YouTube video above.
According to Ryan Shantz, there are a few key differences between roofing in Canada and roofing in the United States, and as the long-time owner of Epic Roofing in Calgary, Shantz said operating in his region is comparable to other markets in the U.S.
“The big thing in our region is the insurance side because being in Calgary, Alberta, we’re like the Dallas-Fort Worth or the Denver of Canada,”
“We’re the market that typically gets really consistent hail, and in our region, door-knocking isn’t nearly as big as it is down in the south.”
Shantz also emphasized that at Epic Roofing, his company doesn’t use contingency agreements, a tactic that is very popular in some North American markets.
“We don’t use contingency agreements. That hasn’t been our approach to things. Our approach has more been focused on working as a preferred contractor for insurance companies,”
Cooperating with insurance companies has benefitted Shantz and Epic Roofing tremendously. Over the years, they have established enough goodwill with insurance carriers, to the point that Shantz’s sales team often act as field adjusters that the insurance companies trust to properly assess damage and come up with a reasonable price for the roofing job.
“They trust us to take the photos, to put together the Xactimate reports, and to do things according to their guidelines. Obviously, we’re motivated to get every single line item we can possibly get on there, but then we’re the first ones out there and we can establish a relationship with the homeowner earlier.”
“We tend to close a lot more deals by being a strong partner with some of the insurance companies, and obviously picking and choosing which ones we want to work with because there are good insurance companies and bad insurance companies out there.”
In addition to developing and maintaining a relationship with insurance companies, Shantz then broke down how building codes in Canada differ from those in the United States.
“Another interesting thing is that here in Canada we’re not nearly as established as the United States is, in terms of lobby groups or associations,”
“Those aren’t nearly as strong in Canada and the U.S. has gone further down that pathway. As a result, the homeowners don’t end up being as well-protected because the building codes aren’t brought up to speed as quickly.”
Many American roofing companies will find this appalling, but Shantz also said that companies near him are not required by law to install underlayments on every new roofing job.
“In our region, full underlayment isn’t a requirement. That’s not building code, but that’s one hundred percent what we [Epic Roofing] install on every job because it’s best practice.”
The good news for Canadian homeowners is that even though Canadian law appears to be outdated when it comes to roof installation requirements, many of Shantz’s competitors have started to understand the value of full synthetic underlayments.
“What we have started to see in the last five to ten years here is that all of our competitors that we’re bidding against are including full ice and water and full synthetic, so the industry is progressing a lot faster than the government is,”
Yet, because full synthetic underlayments are not a requisite component of every roof installation, there are still companies who do not install them, which consequently makes some final quotes up to thirty percent cheaper than that of Epic Roofing.
But for Epic Roofing, competing against roofers with much cheaper quotes has not affected their ability to be successful in the Calgary market.
“You always have to compete off of value, and I think here in Alberta we are the largest residential roofing contractor in our province,”
“With that, we take for granted that we are never going to be the cheapest and we don’t want to play the price game. We make sure that we’re showing the homeowner that we’re going to give them a better experience, a better warranty, that our production department is more sophisticated, and that we’ve got a better approach to business, which is ultimately going to give them a better home.”
To learn more about Epic Roofing, visit their website today!
And to learn how SumoQuote can help you present more professional quotes to homeowners for as little as $59 per month, click here!