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Nick Nobbe - Selling Beyond the Shingles

Quarrix Podcast with Nick Robbe
October 2, 2021 at 6:00 a.m.

By Colin Sheehan, RCS Reporter. 

What do homeowners value in a contractor? How important is your bid price? Listen to this podcast to find out. 

In Season 3, Episode 41 of Roofing Road Trips, Nick Nobbe of Quarrix Building Products joins Heidi J. Ellsworth to explore how contractors can successfully incorporate ventilation into their sales and education process for homeowners. The two discuss recent data, including how 92% of homes across the U.S. do not have the right ventilation system and how homeowners overwhelmingly want roofing salespeople who are highly knowledgeable, among other ventilation topics such as products, pricing, options and warranties. 

Nick is the senior product manager at Quarrix and acts as the company’s unofficial technical guru. Nick works to bring all of Quarrix’s services to life and helps educate contractors, homeowners and even distribution customers on the importance of correct ventilation. Everything he and his coworkers do at Quarrix can be tied back to creating a healthy, high-functioning home, paying special attention to the home’s exterior.  

One of Quarrix’s most recent research projects focused on understanding the industry from the homeowner’s perspective. They put together a series of focus groups and surveys in a variety of markets around the U.S. and interviewed people who either just had their roof redone within the last six months or were in the midst of a reroof project.  

“We found a couple of really interesting things,” said Nick. “I was just shocked at how little homeowners knew about ventilation. 60% of the people that we interviewed could not tell us what type of ventilation they had on the roof, whether it was box vents or ridge vents, or turbine vents, or some powered fan. They had no idea.” 

Instead, the bulk of the research homeowners do prior to a reroofing project is dedicated to deciding the type of shingles they will use on their roof.  

Another aim of the study was to find out what exactly homeowners look for in a contractor. Nick wanted to narrow down the most important qualities or factors that increase the likelihood of contractors getting selected for the job, and the results were surprising. 

“Not a single person chose the price as the most important factor of why they chose the contractor they did,” said Nick. “I can tell you from sitting in those focus group rooms, almost everyone consistently said that they would get two or three bids on their projects. And just about everyone told us that they did not choose the lowest bid.” 

Rather than price, 60% to 65% of people surveyed said the most important factor was contractor expertise and knowledge. Homeowners wanted someone they could trust, someone who could answer technical questions about products or quotes. Quite simply, homeowners are looking for a contractor who can explain their processes and educate them on what they are doing and why they are doing it. 

“They [wanted] a really solid answer for how things work. ‘Here's why I'm choosing the materials I'm using. Here's why I use this brand,’” said Nick. "So, it was knowledge and experience [that drove] homeowners to choose the contractor they did.” 

Listen to the entire podcast to hear more from Nick and how you can utilize the information from this study to increase your chances of being selected by homeowners. 



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