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Interested in adding restoration services

Dave Weidlich

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Carpet and upholstery business is slow because of coronavirus/COVID-19. I'm looking into learning more about restoration services. I think many customers are interested in sanitizing and disinfecting their homes for coronavirus. Also, wildfires are becoming a regular thing here in Northern CA, so I get calls for water damage and smoke during fire season.

My question: What is a good way to get started with training and certification? Do you recommend any online courses?

Thanks. Stay safe and help out.
 

mrotto

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let me be the first to chime in.

We were a carpet/upholstery company for 14 years before we decided to get into water/fire restoration. We had the carpet cleaning side down pat in other words we had written policies/procedures/hiring/etc all in place. The company kinda ran itself. It was a good point in time to diversify.

The first thing you need to realize is that if you do diversify into water/fire restoration its NOT like just adding another service like leather cleaning or tile/grout cleaning. Its more like starting another entire business. the only thing water/fire damage has in common with carpet cleaning is that they both involve cleaning.

The first thing you will realize is that Water/fire restoration is a 24/7 business. I cant tell you how many times I had to get up in the middle of the night to board up a fire or start pumping water. Then go in early the next morning to run the business. Even if you have your carpet tech go do the emergency work at night, do you then ask them to clean carpet the next day?

There are many other points I will let others chime in on but if I could make a suggestion I would recommend adding Water damage repair. It uses mostly the same equipment you have. If you do decide to do this, you will then need to make the decision if you want to get into the reconstruction part of it to be a full service contractor or if you sub that out to another company.

You will be taking on more than you realize now. The good part is that restoration has a high profit level. The downside is that it is sporatic at best. Kinda feast or famine. Another thing to consider is that you will be getting paid from Insurance Adjusters most of the time. Thats a riot and I will let others tell you of their experiences.......

Good luck!
 

MikeGaure

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Check state laws. Some require contractors license even to demo. If you don’t have that background you can’t get the license.

Also some states you cannot sub work unless you’re a licensed contractor. So do your homework for sure.
 

Spazznout

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Floods is not an Add on.

Its a new commitment and similar to starting a 2nd business.

Money was much better in the late 90s and early 2000's
 
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Anderson

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That being said it is possible to do water damage as an Owner operator.

When I did water damage I did most of it myself and sometimes with a partime helper.
Focus on small to medium jobs.

Water damage for a beginner:
get your certification
1. extract water - and move funiture and block.
2. pull pad
3. cut out carpet - if required.
4. lay down fans and dehumidifiers....pull out in 3 days.
5. pull baseboards - not difficult once you learn how.

That is all.

Leave all the replacement to the owner and the insurance adjuster.
If you do it like this you will cut out half of your labor and headaches.

I would also suggest doing only insurance jobs - but thats your choice.
 

MikeGaure

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That being said it is possible to do water damage as an Owner operator.

When I did water damage I did most of it myself and sometimes with a partime helper.
Focus on small to medium jobs.

Water damage for a beginner:
get your certification
1. extract water - and move funiture and block.
2. pull pad
3. cut out carpet - if required.
4. lay down fans and dehumidifiers....pull out in 3 days.
5. pull baseboards - not difficult once you learn how.

That is all.

Leave all the replacement to the owner and the insurance adjuster.
If you do it like this you will cut out half of your labor and headaches.

I would also suggest doing only insurance jobs - but thats your choice.
So is 3days like a magic number?

What about monitoring your equipment and checking your moisture readings? Invasive or non invasive moisture measurements?

We’ve seen em take much longer than 3days

Just saying
 

Anderson

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True there is a lot of other details.

But as an owner operator it is possible to do water damage if you start on small medium jobs.

I would say as a whole water damage is an easier learning process than carpet cleaning.

But you do have to be on call and go by the book.

When I did water damage i just tried to get about 1 small job a month...2-3k.
Some insurance adjusters will throw these small jobs your way.

You can still keep your carpet cleaning if you will just see water damage as a bonus every 1-2 months.
 
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Anderson

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Suggestions

1. Go talk to some restoration guys...spend a day or 2 going out to 1-2 jobs to see if this is what you really want to do.

3. Sign up with a restoration company to subcontract and do extractions.....

2. Then pay the 300-400$ and get IICRC certified - you will meet a lot of guys who have similiar background and give you vision and direction.

3. Do the online thing later if necessary.
 
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