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Olde_mohawk_masonry__historic_restoration (Olde_mohawk_masonry__historic_restoration)
Senior Member
Username: Olde_mohawk_masonry__historic_restoration

Post Number: 99
Registered: 04-2007
Posted on Tuesday, December 15, 2009 - 07:42 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

About 15 minutes.
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Slate_man (Slate_man)
Senior Member
Username: Slate_man

Post Number: 533
Registered: 01-2007
Posted on Tuesday, December 15, 2009 - 07:33 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

How far are you from Albany? Ward.
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Slate_man (Slate_man)
Senior Member
Username: Slate_man

Post Number: 531
Registered: 01-2007
Posted on Tuesday, December 15, 2009 - 07:16 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Yes.
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Olde_mohawk_masonry__historic_restoration (Olde_mohawk_masonry__historic_restoration)
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Username: Olde_mohawk_masonry__historic_restoration

Post Number: 98
Registered: 04-2007
Posted on Monday, December 14, 2009 - 05:10 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

2.5 hours from Upstate NY. I also have an office in Melrose, 5 miles north of Boston, where I grew up. Did you receive my email reply the other day?
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Slate_man (Slate_man)
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Username: Slate_man

Post Number: 530
Registered: 01-2007
Posted on Monday, December 14, 2009 - 06:32 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Ward how far to Boston is it for you?
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Olde_mohawk_masonry__historic_restoration (Olde_mohawk_masonry__historic_restoration)
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Username: Olde_mohawk_masonry__historic_restoration

Post Number: 97
Registered: 04-2007
Posted on Monday, December 14, 2009 - 06:10 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

About 1/2 day of work. I would say $800-$1200 for 9-10 slate in the Boston area, including 1 or 2 Neanderthal repairs. Replacement units to be matching, salvaged slate.
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Old_school (Old_school)
Senior Member
Username: Old_school

Post Number: 316
Registered: 01-2009
Posted on Sunday, December 13, 2009 - 09:48 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Work with me Branden! It is not as rosy as a lot of people make it out to be, but on the other hand, there is a demand for good mechanics out there. You just have to be working with the right people. The school of hard knocks is a real bitch, and you are talking to Old School here.
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Branden_wilson (Branden_wilson)
Senior Member
Username: Branden_wilson

Post Number: 59
Registered: 03-2008
Posted on Sunday, December 13, 2009 - 07:53 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

thanks ward, i can't help but point out though that you're assuming i'm pretty nieve. i used to think i knew what it was like down here cause i lived in orlando for about a year and boy was i wrong. i certainly can't tell you what's going on in NY. i live and work here man. i take it pretty seroiusly. i finished high school in 5th grade and i've been on my own since i was 13. i've got a great combination of street and book smarts. south florida is nothing like the state of florida, nothing. look at the posts here about licensed, insured, bonded, bbb member, etc contractors absolutely destroying slate roofs on the regular and explain to me how all those things make someone a good anything. i'm sure once you purchase all those things, you would like to see a level playing field. that's exactly what i want too, but i want it based on qualifications that prove competency not how much money you have or could borrow. i was a legit shingle contractor in mi for several years. i know all about comp and liability and audits and the bank life. one thing i know will never change, of all the people involved in a slate roof; builders, homeowners, architects, contractors, etc...no one, and i mean NO ONE does more homework, more physical work and most importantly CARES more about that roof than me. everyone else involved is watching their numbers and i'm up at night thinking about their slate. i'm gonna find a way to get mine. i may be griping a bit but i'll get there. against all odds i vow to spread the idea of permanent, natural, responsible roofing in the most irresponsible foolish times on earth. and i'm going to do it without making comprimises. you guys can keep trying to make wisdom illegal but eventually the truth will prevail. when i was first inspired by the slate roof bible i actually thought there was a crowd out there already fighting that battle, boy was i wrong. i'm a firm believer that it takes 10,000 hrs to get good at something, not 10,000 dollars. i like doing things the hard way cause i learn more. thanks for being respectful to me but we're not at all on the same page. i really don't want to argue about it anymore, we just keep repeating ourselves in different words. i really don't think we're going to understand eachother. i've still got a lot of respect for all of you though and i'd like to just leave it at that.
http://www.youtube.com/user/REALSLATER
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Olde_mohawk_masonry__historic_restoration (Olde_mohawk_masonry__historic_restoration)
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Username: Olde_mohawk_masonry__historic_restoration

Post Number: 96
Registered: 04-2007
Posted on Saturday, December 12, 2009 - 12:15 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Hey, Branden, there are no hard feelings. First off, the 40% your GC's are quoting is *probably* their mark up for overhead and profit. NY has the highest comp rates in the US. Period. And while Florida looks out for its consumers, it is still a southern state that doesn't give a damn (relatively speaking) about the working man.

From the posts I'm reading I think you've been involved with contractors (who are lincensed, insured, etc.) who have the work coming their way and you get their slating done for them. That can breed some frustration when you're interested in going into business with them and your opposing viewpoints don't jive. And as you've built an impressive portfolio, hoping to get noticed, things haven't taken off and the licensing hurdle still exists.

I think you are holding up dad/grandpa as examples of businessmen with integrity, whom you respect. Certainly you realize that success in business cannot come without a sound acumen, which is all that I was descibing in my initial post. Hopefully you realize that any contractor with an employee or more has to have his act straight or he won't be in business long.

I appreciate your commitment to slating, your unwillingness to compromise quality for the almighty dollar. I am with you. The only difference is that several years ago I went through the struggle to become legit. Insurances, taxes, overhead--they're all real. Not just BS terms made up by GC's when justifying actions to their sub's.

Not every state requires licensing the way Florida does. NY doesn't, for example. Maybe relocating isn't a bad idea if obtaining that license is out of the question. But you're going to have to carry liability and comp insurance if you're going to pull permits and do your own work. And your comp auditor is going to demand access to your tax and payroll records, or else they'll cut you off. And they're not fooled by contractors who lie and downplay their payroll (ie, paying guys cash.) So its a pretty big nut to crack, no matter who you are.

Conversely, most communities don't require any permit for slate repairs, including flashing replacements. You could specialize in repair work, which is very lucrative AND demands a high level of integrity (a chimney is either flashed correctly to a slate roof or it isn't--no in between.) This would remove the need for comp insurance, which is very costly.

Good luck in whichever direction you follow.
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Old_school (Old_school)
Senior Member
Username: Old_school

Post Number: 313
Registered: 01-2009
Posted on Friday, December 11, 2009 - 07:52 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Branden, If you do move up to Three Rivers, or when you come up this summer, make sure and get in touch with me. We always have something going and I would be more than happy to work with you up here. I am sure something could be worked out.

The problem is that we have the same weather as Liam does. Being from here originally, I am also sure that is why you left. Brrr.. It is about 10 degrees right now and the wind is blowing about 15 mph. We don't do much in the winter anyway, because it is too dangerous and you can't make much money fighting the snow anyway.
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Slate_man (Slate_man)
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Username: Slate_man

Post Number: 526
Registered: 01-2007
Posted on Friday, December 11, 2009 - 06:42 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Not till May, man if you only had a job for dec to feb to get me out of this snowy hell hole, no just kidding. Man sounds like a nice jod there, just like the one's I wait for!!! I like to know want kind of pricing you throw at something like that, e-mail me if you like or post it Brandon?

What do you need to start a company there?
Local address and what else.
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Branden_wilson (Branden_wilson)
Senior Member
Username: Branden_wilson

Post Number: 55
Registered: 03-2008
Posted on Thursday, December 10, 2009 - 11:39 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

i really appreciate the advise. i have a couple companies trying to do just that. i really considered that but it always seems that their principals contradict my principals which would only lead to a comprimise. i respect that they built their businesses and put their name on the line and want to perpetuate their principals instead of mine so i always respectfully decline. maybe one of you guys wanna set up down here? i'd be happy to work for a good slater turned business man.
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Plaughlin1 (Plaughlin1)
Advanced Member
Username: Plaughlin1

Post Number: 41
Registered: 03-2007
Posted on Thursday, December 10, 2009 - 09:50 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Hey Brandon,have u thought of partnering with a roofing contractor who would let you set up and run a slate division under their lisc & insurance, and let them keep a percentage of the profits?
Just a thought..
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Branden_wilson (Branden_wilson)
Senior Member
Username: Branden_wilson

Post Number: 54
Registered: 03-2008
Posted on Thursday, December 10, 2009 - 05:14 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

thanks john, i'm actually considering moving to three rivers to be a blacksmith. it's not florida, i just don't see my place anywhere in this country. i mean, the plasterers are already all but gone. i'm sure they tried real hard for a while, then just faded away.

i've got a 150+sq slate roof coming up in may in ft lauderdale that i kinda need to stick around for. it's all 12/12 and 14/12 with a 24 to 12 graduation also a thickness graduation from over 1" to 1/4" unfading grey with several round valleys and some slated dormers. seems to be my story, always waiting on another big one. but maybe, just maybe i'll get more than just that next year.

thanks for the good words, sorry i kinda took over this subject
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Old_school (Old_school)
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Username: Old_school

Post Number: 311
Registered: 01-2009
Posted on Thursday, December 10, 2009 - 10:20 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Branden, Thanks for trusting us enough to spill your guts. I too feel your pain and I too have been where you are. It is frustrating to know you are giving value and people aren't seeing or appreciating it. Principles are a bitch.

What to do?

There were a ton of "contractors" here in Michigan that went by the way with this latest downturn in the economy. Most of them never did a days work in thier lives, they just got a license and then subbed everything out. The sad part from our perspective is that they made more money shuffling paper than we did doing the work. Normally; for the last 20 years, I have not even considered doing work for that type. The fact that I am 57 and have been roofing in this area since I was younger than 5 with my dad does give me an edge, but I like you am involved with the work and I do still get on the roof and love every minute of it.

I also realize that if you can't get a license and don't have the appropriate insurance, you have no choice. At least in Florida. Have you considered going somewhere else? Just a thought. I don't have an answer for you. Keep your head up!
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Branden_wilson (Branden_wilson)
Senior Member
Username: Branden_wilson

Post Number: 52
Registered: 03-2008
Posted on Thursday, December 10, 2009 - 09:02 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

thanks for understanding me ward, i really appreciate that. i thought florida had the highest comp rates by far. the roofers i know all claim 40% here. as far as i know this is the most expensive place in the us to get a roof due to the miami dade regulations. even though things are at their worst here, guys are still getting no less than 300 a square for asphalt and around 700 a square for concrete. only five years ago they were getting much more. one of the roofing companies i sub from gets over 3k per square for slate! most of the roofers here though bid slate at concrete prices and end up installing it that way as well.

i guess you can see my frustration in my posts about owning a roofing company. well, to be honest it's completely impossible for a guy like me to become a licensed contractor in florida. after storms, guys from all over the country try to obtain licenses here with little success. so what then should i do? i have been slating my butt off here for almost five years now. i thought if i put a bunch of good slate roofs out there i could somehow affect the market. there are seriously NO good slaters in florida and you can tell every time you see a slate roof. the good ones were installed by crews from up north. i really thought this would be my own market if i worked hard enough. i've been trying to create a brand of sorts. my idea has been to only sell and install natural, proven products using proven techniques. i stay far away from the roofs that make unproven claims. i feel as though i've come a long way but it stops at a license.

so now i have to watch people get inspired by my roofs only to hire guys that have only proven themselves at running a business, not installing slate just because of that license. i sub contract installs from all of the top companies around here and i have several good people that would love to put me into business, but i can't do that either. i believe a good business can be built on those two principals, proven materials and proven techniques, but i don't know anyone who won't at some point compromise those principals for the business. the contractors i know will install anything that comes their way and that's not what i'm about. i've turned down good paying slate roofs because the builders wouldn't buy the right nails or the right flashings. i turn down plastic slates and painted galvilume roofs without even hearing the numbers constantly. those roofs are undermining the very mentality it takes to understand slate and clay roofing. i will NOT take part in spreading those lies though it would make my life much easier.

i was taught by old school hard men. i was not just told but shown that hard work pays off. my dad is a blacksmith in three rivers michigan. my grandfather is a licensed contractor in three rivers. he's in his 80's, worth millions, retired from a trucking company he started in chicago and a career at gm and he gets up every day and goes and does the work he sells, happily! we're taught that "it's not what you can do but what you can get others to do for you" i say that's a bunch of bs! if you're not physically doing what you say then you're not a tradesman or a craftsmen but a business man. i plan on slating till i die. i always used to want off the roof. i got off the roof to sell and hated it.


believe it or not, i'm looking for advise more than anything. i was trying to come up with a way to still brand myself and sell and install slate roofs legally. perhaps i could put the deal together for the homeowner and then shop contractors? but how do i market legally? should i set up natural roofing distribution so i can market that way? i've got ideas but no money just the willingness to work my arse off all day every day. i look at a really big picture and am willing to wait it out longer if thats what it takes. i've really been considering blacksmithing, just can't imagine never slating again! i'm just having a really hard time supporting my family these days but i can't let go of my convictions.

as far as "i can't believe it takes debt and fueling problems like health insurance to have integrity. i always thought i AVOID things like that BECAUSE i have integrity."

i think i got a little too off topic on that one. i am who i am today because of my faith in god and the bible. i don't want to upset anyone who may not understand that so i'd rather email you if you're interested in discussing that further.

thanks for all the patients and i appreciate any advise
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Slate_man (Slate_man)
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Username: Slate_man

Post Number: 523
Registered: 01-2007
Posted on Thursday, December 10, 2009 - 06:56 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Sigth unseen and in the area, I would go with Old School a $1000 to $1400 with in a hour drive. The thing about this is you should have the client provide correct color and size no matter what. If so then $1000 is dead on.

If I was to drive to the Boston area to do this repair the cost would be about $2500 to $3500. Which we do here and there, NY, Mass, NJ, NH to name a few.

If I had seen the roof which had about 10 pcs to fix $500 to $1000 would to are charge with in a hour drive.

We have about a $25 dollar per slate charge, which can go up and or down depending on the slate and slate roof.
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Olde_mohawk_masonry__historic_restoration (Olde_mohawk_masonry__historic_restoration)
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Username: Olde_mohawk_masonry__historic_restoration

Post Number: 94
Registered: 04-2007
Posted on Wednesday, December 09, 2009 - 03:49 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I don't think you really get what I'm saying Branden, specifically about integrity. But that's ok, I know from your posts that your heart is true and intentions good. "How much does it cost?" is a real sore spot for me because there is no set answer, but future clients can get misinformation and think they're getting hosed.

The point of my post was to illustrate the costs incurred by a contractor with employees. Take, for example, workers comp insurance. I know that you don't pay as much as I do. Why? Because I'm in NY State, home of THE highest comp rates in the nation. Multiply 0.33 times my payroll and that's my premium. If I had no employees, I wouldn't have to carry comp. A lot of guys lie and say they have no workers. Not me.

Maybe you don't have to pay comp because you don't have employees, or maybe Florida is lax in protecting the worker bees. Don't know, don't care.

You said:

"i can't believe it takes debt and fueling problems like health insurance to have integrity. i always thought i AVOID things like that BECAUSE i have integrity."

Please clarify; I'd like to respond but don't follow.

Hey, I'm with you on the $300 to $500 number, if its all going in my pocket. But the point of my post is that isn't! I'm not a one man show without the overhead. Guys that work for me make a good wage and I pay the taxes on that. I also have the right insurances so that the employees, customers and I are all protected ... it's very expensive. And in the winter, if we get slow, they can collect unemployment.

I like to think that you were assuming I'm a one or two man outfit and that's where the confusion comes from. But your final comment leads me to think otherwise.
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Old_school (Old_school)
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Username: Old_school

Post Number: 309
Registered: 01-2009
Posted on Wednesday, December 09, 2009 - 03:19 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Branden, that is BECAUSE you care. On the other hand, that is not the business model of most people or businesses. Those of us that are pasionate about slate and slating tend to over look some of the profit that is out there at times; at least I know that I have.

With that said however, we are doing noone any favors by pricing too cheaply. If we can't afford to be in business, then we will do nobody any good. Got to keep the lights on and the truck full of fuel.
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Branden_wilson (Branden_wilson)
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Username: Branden_wilson

Post Number: 51
Registered: 03-2008
Posted on Tuesday, December 08, 2009 - 08:34 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

i can't believe it takes debt and fueling problems like health insurance to have integrity. i always thought i AVOID things like that BECAUSE i have integrity. you may be able to justify all of your business expenses to someone who cares about things like that, but it should be tuff to explain to some slaters. i would be happy to get anywhere from 300 to 500 for that same job in my area and the average temp roof goes for 700 a square here. does that make me a scab? or a hack? or i lack integrity? i'm not impressed by your business at all myself but in awe of your work.i don't know about your area but "licensed roofers" have destroyed the slate market here(along with hundreds of roofs), not me. i'd love to get paid better, i'm building a family of slaters....not a business.
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Joe (Joe)
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Username: Joe

Post Number: 483
Registered: 07-2006
Posted on Tuesday, December 08, 2009 - 06:16 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

There was an article on slate roofing costs in Traditional Roofing Magazine: http://www.traditionalroofing.com/TR7_costs.html
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Old_school (Old_school)
Senior Member
Username: Old_school

Post Number: 302
Registered: 01-2009
Posted on Sunday, December 06, 2009 - 12:52 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

My point exactly!
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Olde_mohawk_masonry__historic_restoration (Olde_mohawk_masonry__historic_restoration)
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Username: Olde_mohawk_masonry__historic_restoration

Post Number: 93
Registered: 04-2007
Posted on Sunday, December 06, 2009 - 07:30 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I am going to assume this letter is dangled in front of us to start a conversation ... maybe even start a debate. I'll bite.

"How Much Does It Cost?" is always a fascinating question. I like to answer the question by discussing how much it costs to run my business. The bulk of my overhead requires me to make $342/day, 22 days each and every month. That's for workers comp and liability insurances, taxes, vehicle and trailer payments, motor vehicle insurance, tel answering svc, storage yard rent, cell phones, etc. It doesn't include vehicle upkeep, gas, replacing tools or equipment, unforeseeen/incidental expenses, tolls, or payroll (although it includes the taxes/ins associated w/ payroll.)

And it doesn't include any profit for yours truly.

That $342 doesn't go away on rain or snow days. Nor does it give me a break a week or two a year for vacation. It builds up. Like the tide it doesn't stop coming. The $342 doesn't recognize small jobs where only "a slate or two" need fixing, but then the rest of the day is shot. It also doesn't care if a blizzard hits or rain falls every day in August 2008 (when I'm supposed to make up for those snow days!)

The overhead number doesn't stop, and it doesn't go away. It doesn't recognize a poor economy or recession. In fact, it grows.

I didn't even include my family health insurance plan. That has grown from $1300/mo a couple years ago to $1756 in 2010. And it's a pretty crummy plan with high deductibles and NO prescription benefits. But I digress.

'Course I wouldn't have these problems if I didn't have insurance, skipped out on taxes, paid cash to the boys, and faked it so we could have social services pick up the family health insurance.

But I have integrity. And hopefully that's the kind of slater you want on your roof.

So, what does it cost to replace 9 or 10 slates?

(Message edited by olde_mohawk_masonry__historic_restoration on December 06, 2009)
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Joe (Joe)
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Username: Joe

Post Number: 478
Registered: 07-2006
Posted on Thursday, December 03, 2009 - 05:46 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Yes, I posted this from an email I got today.
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Old_school (Old_school)
Senior Member
Username: Old_school

Post Number: 294
Registered: 01-2009
Posted on Thursday, December 03, 2009 - 03:50 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Joe, is that a letter to you that you simply posted for us to see?

I would think that to do what he is asking would be about $1,000.00, sight unseen.


You are going to shoot a whole day by the time everything is said and done anyway. If it is a local guy, they may be able to get it closer and cheaper, but then again, Why? Just my thoughts
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Joe (Joe)
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Username: Joe

Post Number: 475
Registered: 07-2006
Posted on Thursday, December 03, 2009 - 03:24 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Hi

Nice site… thanks for the information..

I need a few slates replaced in an easily accessible roof and all can be reached either directly at the gutter line or from hook ladders…. I have been on the roof many times, but am getting too old now.

A few slates have cracked, and there has been a Neanderthal repair on one….one is complete missing,. There are a total of 5 maybe 6 slates that need repair… and if someone is here I may ask them to walk the roof and take a closer look, so it might end up with say 9-10 slates. I have extra slates in my cellar.

I am in the Boston area and have a number of slate contractors including 12th century noted on your list.

My question is what should I expect to pay for someone to come and repair upwards of say 9-10 slates. Let’s assume that I have needs on both sides of the roof and they need to move ladders into position on both sides. So the project would be arrive, set up, remove and replace say 5 slates on the south side, then dismantle, move to the north side, and do another 5 slates. It’s a Gable roof with dormers. 2 stories, 35Ft ladder to the gutter line, probably a 40degree pitch. No slates at or near the valleys (all mid roof).

I am looking for a reasonable estimate of time, if possible, and also if possible what the general rates are for slate contractors. I understand that 1 or 2 may take a little longer if they are “tough” like undoing the Neanderthal repair.

Thanks for any help.

Kevin

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