Metal Roofing and Fire Safety
In this issue of the Executive Report, we’d like to continue our focus on fresh ways to promote the primary benefits of metal roofing. So far, we have covered Increased Home Value, Beauty, and Low Weight. Now, we want to cover an equally important benefit – Fire Safety.
Fire Safety is a metal roofing benefit that many people choose to ignore or gloss over. If the home is not located in a real fire-prone area, salespeople tend to assume that the homeowner won’t be motivated by this attribute of a metal roof. But, like anything, the reality is that they will be motivated once you explain to them just how important the Fire Safety of their home really is.
While for most folks their home is their largest single investment, that home houses most of their other significant investments – their belongings. And, what’s more, it houses and protects their family – nothing more critical than that! And, while we will all do things inside of our homes in order to make them fire safe, the reality is that, even in an area not prone to fires, we’re really only as fire safe as our neighbors are. Many house fires start at neighboring homes, spreading quickly in tight neighborhoods or with strong winds. That obviously isn’t good.
So, even if they live in an area that is not prone to fires, all homeowners will be interested in discussing how a metal roof can add to the safety of their own home. You just simply have to create the emotion and present the information. In that process, here are some important points to cover:
It is important to understand the fire ratings of the roof you’re selling, as well as any fire requirements in your area. This will vary from product to product and area to area. Be sure you know these details and can discuss them with homeowners. In some cases, the fire classification of the product can be increased through the use of fire resistant underlayments.
A key thing to discuss when covering fire ratings is that all products that undergo fire testing are tested when they are new. However, many roofing materials will lose fire resistance as they age. Think of asphalt shingles losing their protective granules. Think of wood shingles drying out. Metal roofing materials on the other hand, do not lose fire resistance as they age. They will be just as fire resistant in 40 yeas as they are when they are first installed. If a homeowner cares about fire safety, then they will care about it not only now but in the future as well.
It will surprise homeowners but the low weight of metal roofing is a significant benefit when it comes to fire safety. Consider this – if a fire starts inside the home, it will burn upward. Once it reaches the attic, it will start to spread across the home through the lumber and other materials. If there is a heavy roof on the home, then that roof is more likely to collapse as the structure is weakened by fire. When it collapses before fire fighting efforts are successful, the total damage will be more significant. Additionally, if a home has a very heavy roof such as clay tile, fire fighters are trained to not go inside of the home to try to fight the fire. The risk is too great if the heavy roof collapses on them when they’re inside of the structure. So, they will try to contain the fire from the outside but not be able to fight it from the inside. The low weight of metal roofing, though, protects the structure, hopefully prolonging the window of time for the fire to be extinguished.
So, how about you, is Fire Safety something you regularly talk to homeowners about? If not, then try building the case and adding it to your presentation. It is a critical benefit that homeowners will respond to.
As always, happy selling! Give me a call at 1-800-543-8938 whenever I can be of help.
Todd Miller has spent his entire career in the metal building products manufacturing industry. He is president of Isaiah Industries, an organization recognized as one of the world’s leading metal roofing manufacturers. Todd is currently Vice President of the MRA (Metal Roofing Association) and a Past Chair of MCA (Metal Construction Association). Through his website, he strives to raise the bar on standards and practices to provide property owners with the best possible products for successful roofing projects.
You may pull quotes from this article provided you include a link back to the original article on this site. You may not reprint this full article, or even a significant amount of the article, without explicit permission. To gain permission, click here.