Prepared and Progressive
Jasper Contractors was founded in 2004 by Brian Wedding and now has a corporate office in Atlanta, Georgia, an office in Indiana and services extending to four communities in the state of Florida. Over the years, Jasper Contractors has built an excellent reputation in the roofing and re-roofing industry…
The firm specializes in high volume situations, and with its go-getter attitude, it has become an expert in storm damage construction. Jasper Contractors is dedicated to doing top-notch work and facilitating communications between its customers and their respective insurance companies.
Jasper Contractors was originally established to build new homes, but a series of events subsequently changed its course. In 2004, Florida was hit with four separate hurricanes, and in the aftermath, Jasper Contractors was contacted and asked to re-roof forty-eight condos.
“I received a call from a retired contractor asking if we were available to help out. I went down to Florida, thinking that it would mean work for all the guys during the winter,” says Brian Wedding, Owner and CEO of parent company EX Capital. “Once there, we started working for the insurance companies, and there was so much work to be done that we were still roofing in Florida the following year (2005) when Hurricane Katrina hit.”
Originally from Indiana, Brian Wedding had never previously seen a hurricane or witnessed the damage it can cause. “I was watching CNN like everybody else, but it isn’t like what you see on TV; it’s a thousand times worse. It looked like a war zone,” explains Wedding. “When I got there (Florida), there was no fuel, no hotels; most places were completely shut down.”
Today, ninety-nine percent of company revenue is generated from insurance-based jobs, and the substantial volume of roofing done by Jasper Contractors is impressive. Brian Wedding credits the success of his company to its unique business model.
“It’s two companies in one. It’s a huge sales company combined with a very big construction company. The two entities work together, but at the same time, they are built separate,” says Wedding. “The bulk of our employees are sales people or account managers who evaluate roofs. It’s a different business model than most people use in the roofing industry.”
With such a large number of trucks, people can’t help but notice when Jasper Contractors is doing work in the neighborhood. And although the company uses social media and the web to market its services, it relies mainly on its massive sales force.
“Our sales team is always out in the field. They are driven and focused directly on property owners,” explains Wedding. “Not only are we focused on the roofs that we’re fixing, we’re also directly talking to other potential customers – those other houses in that same area,” says Wedding.
After all, in a housing development, most of the homes are built around the same time, so if a windstorm damages one roof in a particular area, chances are that there’s damage to other roofs, too. “So, we offer to inspect their roofs as well, just in case they are also in need of repair,” explains Wedding. “But we do not mislead. We do not use sales tactics. We don’t allow it. We inspect the roof and it is what it is – we’re straightforward with people.”
The majority of its roof installations take no more than one full day and typically start early in the morning and finish in the evening.
Jasper Contractors’ relationship with the insurance companies can be very helpful. Because a contractor who’s working with one homeowner may also be working on another claim with the same insurance adjuster or company, lines of communication and accessibility are better between the two, and this facilitates the whole process when it comes to meeting with insurance companies and assessing damage.
Getting a free estimate is a great option. If the insurance company doesn’t agree with the contractor’s opinion regarding damages, the homeowner is not obligated to get any of the recommended work done. “We work with both sides – insurer and insured – every day, and the insurance companies are very fair. In Florida, they approve about seventy-five percent of all the roof claims we have,” says Wedding. “But, we don’t waste their time. We only call them if there’s damage.”
Knowing the damage that strong volatile winds can cause, Brian Wedding cannot emphasize enough the importance of hurricane preparedness. Unfortunately, when it comes to roofs, there’s not much one can do to prepare. “Unless there is something loose on the roof that needs to be fixed, there’s really nothing you can do,” explains Wedding. “Windows can be covered up; generators can be bought, but as far as the roof goes, it’s either going to withstand the hurricane or it’s not.”
When it comes to your roof, the best thing you can do is be educated. Brian Wedding likes to advise people to call the insurance company’s toll-free number directly and ask the following questions: How do I file an insurance claim? What is covered in the policy? What will the deductible be? If my property is damaged by a hurricane, what is my best plan of action? And is it better to leave or to stay?
“When it comes to roofing, should it get damaged, the most important thing a person can do is file the insurance claim as soon as possible,” advises Wedding. “In the case of a natural disaster, hundreds of thousands of people are also going to be filing their claims. And regardless of how big the insurance companies are, they can only handle so much at one time. So, if you procrastinate and wait two months to file a claim, that could easily turn into six months before work begins on your property, and as a result, your property could sustain additional damages.”
“Get informed and be prepared,” says Wedding. “That’s the message we want out there. Insurance companies are very helpful, and they are the best tool. That’s what they do. When something happens, they take care of you.”
Jasper Contractors is the number one residential roofing contractor in Florida, recipient of multiple awards, and at the top of Owens Corning’s list of top volume producers, but according to its owner, its greatest accomplishment is something entirely different. “We pay 100 percent of health insurance premiums for all our employees,” says Wedding. “I’m proud of the fact that we are financially able to carry that for them and their families, so they don’t have that burden. That is really one of the biggest and greatest things our company does.”
Jasper Contractors strongly believes in giving back to society. “One of our major partners, Owens Corning, invited us to take part in the Roof Deployment Project. They put the wheels in motion, and we were glad to be part of it,” explains Wedding. “It’s all about helping veterans. We donate the installation; Owens Corning donates the materials, and the chosen veteran receives a new roof. So far, we’ve only worked on one of those roofs, but we’re happy to do it again. It’s a great feeling knowing that we are able to help out, and the feedback that we’ve received has been tremendously positive.”
“There is still a lot more room to expand in Florida so that’s where our current focus is,” explains Wedding. “But the next state that we will be honing in on is California, because the weather in both Florida and California is conducive to working twelve months out of the year, unlike many northern locations where, due to winter, construction can sometimes be shut down for four to five months.”
“And on the business side, we haven’t even scratched the surface,” adds Wedding. “Re-roofing is a good industry, and our particular business model is not out there, so we plan to keep growing and hiring, but most importantly, we plan to keep helping customers.”
When natural disasters strike, the best way to ensure that a re-roofing job gets done without delay is to make certain that all parties work together. The homeowner is responsible for filing the claim, the insurance company is responsible for the claims process and the contractors are responsible for assessing and fixing the roof. “It’s a serious business,” says Wedding. And it’s one that Jasper Contractors takes very seriously.