[Job Example] Installing a Weathervane On a Rooftop

Throughout the course of a typical day I usually do a number of projects at a few different customer’s houses. This is what makes up the bulk of my handyman business. I prefer small jobs. In this post I’m going to detail this weathervane project so you can get an idea of what one of my jobs looks like throughout the day. If you enjoy seeing this type of post and would like to see more, let me know in the comments and I’ll create more like this.

Job description: Install weathervane on rooftop

I got a call to install a weathervane on the roof of a house. This is the second job I’ve done for this customer. Any good handyman will notice right away that there is a lot of value in repeat customers. This is now a customer that I don’t have to spend any marketing dollars on because I’ve already earned their trust and their business. Keep that in mind when doing work for any customer. Make sure you’re doing a great job for each and every customer.

I’ve never had the chance to install a weathervane before but that’s no big deal. The handyman business is a trade filled with hundreds of potential projects and you’ll probably come across lots of projects that you’ve never done before. If you are a good learner and you are good at figuring things out, you’ll have no problem tackling jobs that you’ve never done before.

Getting the call

When this customer first called me and asked me if I could install the weathervane for them I happily said yes. I knew this customer lived about 25 minutes from me (since I did work at their house before) so I wanted to make sure that I gave them a price over the phone to avoid an unnecessary trip to their house just to quote it. I often give prices over the phone to prequalify customers because I don’t want to make a trip out to their house if they aren’t willing to pay my asking price.

I asked them if they could send me a picture of the weathervane so I could see if there was anything else I needed to install it so everything could be ready for the installation day. They text me a few different pictures and it was clear that it didn’t come with a mounting bracket. I did a quick search on Amazon and found this bracket here.

Quoting the job

After seeing the pictures of the dragon weathervane that they sent me I figured the job would take me about an hour to an hour and a half to install it from setup to cleanup. I quoted the labor at $125 and the part at $40 for a total of $165. The part cost me $30 from amazon (with free 2 day shipping because I’m a Prime member) so I made $10 profit there.

I waited till the part came in and called them and scheduled the job.

Completing the work

When I arrived at the job I made sure everything was as we discussed over the phone. I always do this because I don’t want any surprises that could change the job and cost me more time than I originally anticipated. I took a look at the weathervane and the customer showed me where on the roof they wanted it mounted. Everything looked good.

Before starting the work I pulled out my iPad and had the customer sign the quote with the labor at $125 and the materials at $40 for a total of $165. I always have my customers sign off on the quote before starting the work. I don’t want any surprises later. This way they know the exact price they are going to pay and I have their signature stating that they accepted this. I do this all through the ServiceM8 app on my iPad. I didn’t always do things like this but since I have been everything has been so much better and there are no surprises at the end when I go to collect payment.

Time to do the actual work. The job went very smoothly and came out great. The customer was very pleased. Take a look for yourself.

Some notes about the job: Just in case you have to install a weathervane at some point make sure that you install the bracket in a location that you know will be very sturdy. You can see that I didn’t go all the way to the edge of the roof because I know this part of the plywood could potentially get the most wear and tear from the weather and I didn’t want the plywood to be too weak to hold the weight of the weathervane for years to come. I could feel when screwing the bracket in that this was a solid location. I also put silicone in the screw holes to make sure that no water could ever leak through. I made sure the bracket was perfectly plumb and that the weathervane pole was also perfectly plumb after installing. I used my iPhone’s compass app to perfectly align North on the weathervane with North on my compass. Lastly, to ensure that the dragon moved freely and would continue to do so in the future, I used grease on the rod where the weathervane sits.

Finishing up

After finishing up and putting all my tools away, I had the customer sign off on the job (again using the ServiceM8 app on the iPad). I always have the customer sign off on the job when it’s complete because this is stating that the job has been completed to their satisfaction. Again, it mitigates any problems later. The customer paid by check and I was out of there and on to the next job.

Time on job

This job took about an hour and fifteen minutes to complete. That’s the time from setup to cleanup not including drive time. So for $165 total – $30 for materials = $135 / 1.25 = $108/hr. My target hourly rate is $100 so this job was a success in every way.

Did you like this post? Do you want to see more real world job examples like this? If so, let me know in the comments below. I have no idea unless you tell me.

Comments

  1. says

    Yes! this is very interesting. It confirms what I have already been doing. I think you should continue or break it up with other content. But continue and ask again later.. Still I think it cuts through all the how to’s very succinctly.

    Thanks,

    Arthur Teel

    • says

      Thanks Arthur. Yeah I don’t want these to be how-to’s in the way of actually how to do the work (I think there are plenty of those out there) but just more of an example to show how a real handyman business is run with real world jobs. I hope others find these helpful as well.

    • says

      Jim, I have to say, ServiceM8 has been a game changer for me with job scheduling and billing. I don’t even bring paper with me to any jobs anymore. I only need my iPad. It’s not the easiest thing to get all setup but once it is, it’s awesome!

  2. says

    I definitely liked seeing the post and would like to see more of them. Just enough insight on the job without overdoing the details,

    Fred Rackers
    Best Handyman Services
    McKinney TX

    • says

      Thanks Fred. Yeah I’m hoping that no one cares for details about how to actually do the job but rather just insight into each job. If anyone needs more help with how to do the work itself YouTube is a great resource.

  3. Mike Ewing says

    Very interesting post. Thanks for the info, it’s always nice to hear about the day in the life of someone in the industry

  4. Steve Norton says

    Hi Travis, steve here in UK.
    I have been a subscriber to your site for a couple of years now and always find the content useful and have put some of it into practice.
    Thanks for the weather vane project, we don’t really have them over here so much.

    Keep up the good work and look forward to next email.

    Rgds Steve

  5. says

    I love the blog! It is exactly what I needed, particularly about having the customer sign off on the quote. Keep it up I want to read more. I love the weathervane. Good job.

  6. Craig says

    Really good post. Nice to see how a real “day in the life” for a handyman man is. Would love to read these regularly

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