Tiny houses may not excite you but they excite me. I was recently having lunch with some hiking friends and we represent a market segment for Tiny houses. We are all aging and worried about our finances.  I find myself these days unable to keep up with the younger roofers, I mean it is time to respect these young men and give them all my knowledge and vision.

Coming soon the Tiny House revolution with lots of Tiny roofs.

These aging dreamers on the move looking for Tiny Houses

These aging dreamers on the move looking for Tiny Houses

One of my latest visions is what is coming for the unprepared baby boomer group. The non-savers and big gamblers that thought they would never get old. Reality is setting in and the scarmble has begun. Under the Tiny roof they will sit. The demand for Tiny Houses due  to these independent last minute dreamers will increase 300 % in the next 10 years, We will have a shortage of land and parking for the boom in Tiny Houses. Land developers better see what I see and see it soon because here comes the tsunami and demand for a new class of traveling retirees just trying to survive.

These Tiny Housers will redefine the American spirit and quest for independence. They will travel to where ever theey can park. Even though these Tiny Houses may really be their big coffins the Tiny Housers will not look back, they will jsy continue to rock and roll.

The best is start to plan for these Tiny Houses with Tiny roofs because a leak may end up right on the Tiny housers head .Time to think about making the entire roof a waterproof solar panel with slope. The base may be a complete waterproof membrane or maybe the solar panels may act as shingles.

more info: Tiny house blog

Green Roof and Garden

Green roofs an Urban dwellers experience.

For months I’ve informed my landlord on all the benefits of a green roof. Last year during a heavy rain season, the gutter pipe burst, flooding the entryway of my basement apartment. I woke up to find my living room three inches deep in rainwater and my landlord screaming at the sky in Spanish. “The pump, it was supposed to be strong!” he wept. We had to replace the floors, the area rug and some of my electronics.

The problem with living in an urban landscape is that most of our surface area is not at all absorbent. With our bricks and hard pavement, water runoff enters the sewer system all at once in great volume. The water levels down there rise and this is why during a rainstorm, the city begins to smell foul. Romantic movies forget to mention that unsavory detail as the urban couple runs out into the rain and kisses. If we had more green spaces, there would be no issue.

Anatomy of a Green Roof

A green roof retains water rather than deflect it onto the streets. Rainwater hits the vegetation, seeps into the engineered soil and like a gigantic sponge, it soaks up as much as it can hold. The rest leaks out through the drainage mat, and what isn’t lost gets used by the plants or evaporates back into the atmosphere. The water no longer goes to waste. Stability in the hydrologic cycle improves.

Zeckendorf Towers

At 14,000 square feet, the green roof at the Zeckendorf Towers wins the title of largest residential green roof in New York City. It was installed as an effort to alleviate the flooding that takes place in the Union Square Station every time there is a downpour. Mayor Bloomberg championed the NYC Green Infrastructure campaign that instigated this project.

US Postal Service Green Roof

USPS has the largest green roof in New York City at the Morgan Processing and Distribution Center. It saves them $30,000 each year in air conditioning costs because the vegetation on a green roof provides such effective thermal insulation.

Germany was the first place where green rooftops started springing up in the 1960s. The idea caught on with other countries and today we see the benefits of eco roofing all over America. A green roof doesn’t just catch water, but it grows vegetation, releases heat and filters the air. The inhabitants can appreciate clean air, new wildlife, cheaper power bills, less noise pollution and a whole wealth of benefits.

The environmental bonuses give us incentive to create more green spaces in our cities. Unfortunately, reinventing urban landscapes to build parks and community gardens isn’t always possible. But everyone with a home has a roof over his head and this is a great way to contribute.

Vegetation Roof

Green roofs do require occasional maintenance, but the level of maintenance is reasonably low. Fertilization will be required to keep the grass healthy and green. If you don’t care if it’s green or not, fertilization and maintenance can generally be ignored. It will be ugly, but it will still do the job in keeping basement dwellers like myself from drowning.

Having a pretty green roof like the ones in these photos has its paybacks, the most apparent being the beauty it brings into the community. Especially in the New York City area, we are severely lacking in the nature department. Whenever I go out to my Aunt’s farm in Port Murray, New Jersey, I am always overwhelmed by the abundance of greenery around me, as well as the novelty of seeing so much sky uninhibited by buildings and human infrastructure. Vegetation complements asphalt and concrete wonderfully. Together they create a modern and agreeable aesthetic. I want to breathe clean air like anyone else in this country and not have to sandbag my door every time it rains. So let’s band together and start taking the initiative to build greener rooftops for a healthier city.

 

Designing and Building Green roofs

 All in the city things are happening

First Day Roofing

I was asked to write about my first day roofing by my boss, Mark. I must admit I was a little embarrassed that I have not “blogged” before, being that I am 23 years old and in the generation that is suppose to be “ultra tech-savvy”. Regardless, there is a first time for everything, and my first day roofing is a good place to start. Having completed three years at Rutgers University working toward a computer science degree and having written countless papers, I anticipate this being a breeze.

I will share the experience of my first day roofing, however the journey leading to that day deserves equal attention.

The Journey

I have worked for a couple great construction companies that have taught me different trades and skills. The last one was a local framing company. It was short lived, however, and I was laid off in September of 2013 due to lack of available work. I decided to take the month of September off to relax before looking for another job. I became stir-crazy at the end of that month, and immediately started looking for a job with another construction company.

This is normally an easy task for me having a resume that is more impressive then most other 23 year olds. This time around, though, was much more difficult. All the companies I came into contact with either laughed in my face or told me they would “keep my number” and “contact me when there was work”. Having heard that so many times, I came to realize that’s just their way of getting out of saying “No” directly. I became desperate, looking on Craigslist every day and stopping at any construction site I passed to look for work. Finally, toward the middle of December, I read a post on craigslist searching for a roofer with a valid drivers license. I have a little roofing experience, and as long as you are solid with your general carpentry skills along with a nice serving of common sense, new skills can be picked up easily.

I replied to the ad at 4:15pm on a Tuesday evening and received a call in response around 5:00pm the same evening. I was immediately impressed with the response time. I suddenly became excited at the fact that someone actually read my resume and was interested so much in my skills that they responded to me immediately. Mark was on the other end of that phone call and having talked to him for approximately 10 minutes, I found him to be a very humble and respectful person. He hired me that instant, and that Wednesday would be my first day roofing for Real Roofers.

The First Day Roofing

The next day, I was exited that it was my first day roofing for Real Roofers. I was piked up by one of his workers, and the day began. The roofers that he has on his crew have been with the company for many years and I must admit, I was intimidated by this fact.
Everyone gets nervous their first day at a new job and my first day roofing was no exception. I was sent to my first job site, a medium-pitch timberline shingle roof that needed to be repaired. I was happy that this was my first assignment as the little roofing experience I have is with shingle roofs. The other roofer and I immediately began to work and settled into our own roles, almost as if he and I had worked together before. The day seemed to fly by with little to no problems. By the end of the day, Mark stopped by to inspect the work. He was happy with the work we had done, and even pulled me back up on the roof to teach me the finer points about properly laying timberline shingles to make them last the full 25-30 years, and the importance of safety on the roof. “Most accidents happen from the ladder sliding off of the roof while climbing,” he told me. “Always tie the ladder off and nail it to the roof”. It is advice like this that saves people from serious injury. Roofing requires a certain level of common sense. The very first thing I was taught about roofing was to ask yourself, “If I were a water droplet, where would I go?”. That question can be asked with every shingle or piece of flashing you install. The very last thing Mark told me before the day ended was to have pride in the work you perform. Who would want to hire a company who employs workers that have no pride in the work they do? Right then and there, I knew I was happy to work for this company.

Overall, I was very pleased with my first day roofing for Real Roofers and knew I would want to stick around for a long time.

So roofers drink, roof and die. Now we have Obamacare and I have a a secret about it.

But first a little of this besides roofers Obamacare

 

what pill will kill the obamacare or the roofer

what pill will kill the obamacare or the roofer

I put the roof on a Schering Plough pharmaceuticals facility in Lafayette, NJ in Northern NJ about thirty years ago. We were subcontractors for Mueller Roofing out of Phillipsburg , NJ. I was 22 and the rest of the crew was near the same age. When we arrived at the site the place smelled like a damn dog kennel and we could here dogs barking. We parked, put up the ladder and found a roof definitely needing replacement. There were six huge blowers on the roof that were venting out the building. The roof was a tear off , we were young and we were moving tail. I have always been thankful for the men I had the chance to work with. The building was full of barking beagles hundreds of them that wre guinea pigs for Heart disease testing. The smell on the roof was horrible. Now we know why Mueller a Union shop gave us this job. He might as well have just killed us then.
At the time I provided Health Insurance for the crew . The policies were reasonably priced and I took on the tab. (This was pretty amazing as we were scraping by for work and money was tight).

Fast forward thirty years later. Of an 8 man crew 4 are dead and 6 of us have had heart attacks. None of us have health insurance now, it has been just too expensive. It seems unfair that workers with such great pride in their skill have to go out of this world with not even decent health care. Now we are going to apply for Obamacare and we are expecting to get fleeced. With all respect from the President we have some inside information. One , the healthcare industry has already built into the system a two or three tier system. The insurance policies that pay a premium fee to doctors will get the best care. Others in these subsidized plans will get care at clinics. I know thai because I am experiencing it. We can all expect very little care if we are roofer quality. It really makes me want to quit this planet. You just know that we are getting the shaft, I have lung nodules and I just had a Heart Attack, my second heart attack. I just think people do not care. When  i put a roof on I care, and now I care so much screw it I am raising my prices. Thanks Obama  for thei roofers Obamacare the last few years of my life I will have a bit more cash and f…ing die.

Roofers Union responds

Just roofers angry let’s brawl

 

 

The following I will consider the first short blog of a series called WITABAR short for “When I think about being a roofer” So welcome to my mind and my memory as a roofer.

 

WITABAR- “When I think about being a roofer”

Story number 1,

“Have you seen Pete?”

I couldn’t tell you exactly how I became so rich. I lived in a big house, about 6000 square feet all brick and it looked like me.   I remember waking and looking over the grand foyer in amazement of what I had accomplished. Although beautiful in spatial feature it made me feel doomed. I had dealt with a tumultuous time over the last few years attempting to challenge an understanding of the trauma I had experienced. Miles of hills I felt I climbed trying to reinvent myself falling right back to lower than where I started. I was back in roofing , the jobs were smaller, the men were troubled , less talented, and I was just scared to death every waken and sleepful moment.

Roofer, Have you seen Pete?

Roofer, Have you seen Pete?

I pushed myself each day because I loved my children but there were tears behind my eyes as i struggled with it all.

On the roof was different after closing my big company. Each day I was forced to pick-up my men at their varied residence. It was a routine,.. out of Rio Vista – Mahwah, my multi-million dollar neighborhood down Pulis avenue left on Franklin to 208 and straight down into Hawthorne, N.J.Passing through Hawthorne I remember my favorite roofer Phil, and I wonder if he is safe and happy. I keep going into Prospect park, a right onto belmont and then a left on some discreet street to pick up Tony. Tony was an eager roofer and he always came out of his house turned and locked his door securely. He was big blond man with a lazy eye that seemed to define him. He was very talkative always and he honored me from what other roofers had said about me . He really gave me a tremendous amount of respect. He was not shy at all and he was free to fill me in on everywhere he had been over the last 10 years. Tony was an ex-marine and he was talented,… yet a roofer…need I say more. He was published regularly in Stars and Stripes and was known to be the type of soldier that could get the job done. He served in the first Iraq war and he will be the first to admit that war had zero effect on his conscience for anything he had done. He admittedy had no conscience about anything. People knew this about Tony and I think they took advantage of it. There was the woman that just wanted Tony once a week to have sex with her. No commitment she just wanted it the way he could give it. We talked about that part of his life in deep detail . It was tantalazing to me since I had at that point of my life been solely with the woman I married sexually and quite frankly I was not feeling that was enough. Tony and his weekly stories were great.

Tony had no love in his life except for the many turtles that he friended and rescued from the perils of the road. He named all of his turtles and I believe he loved them deeply.Tony knew everything about turtles and was intrigued by their survival techniques and their age. Tony seemed to only bond with two things in his life, me and his turtles. He claimed that I was the only one that he ever let visit his turtles but I could not be sure of that. He told me something else as well.

Everday after I picked up Tony we would head down through Paterson, NJ AKA Ptown to ramp onto Rt 20 and to Rt 46 East. We pass through Italian Lodi and Garfield , past the “Hill” and the many fast food originals like “Pizza Town” and “Angelo’s” . Traffic was always moving and you had better move with it because it was always a typical Jersey morning. Passing the massage parlors left and right up over route 17 and down the Hill to one of the more seedier parts of New Jersey, on Rt 46 in Little Ferry, NJ. Pete was our next stop.  Pete was right out of jail and he lived in the Quality Inn on Rt 46 , a known refuge for ex-cons and drug addicts just out of jail.

The first day Pete worked for me I was thrilled . He showed up with his tools and he had some understanding of EPDM roofing which was big at the time he worked for me. Petes’ first day of work he proved to be a valuable employee. On the second day I did the same pick-up routine through all the towns. Pete again was on-time and ready to roof. we finished a few small roofs and I dropped everyone off looking forward to seeing my babies. I almost felt that I was getting a groove back and that I could save my home and care for my family. Of course the each day was almost the same routine except that things started getting a little heated. Pete began demanding his paycheck and I gladly paid him just to stop his nagging. The next day Pete did not show up and I really had a sigh of relief. About 10:00 am I got a call from Pete and he asked if I had his tool bag. I told him we might have it but he should come and get it if he wanted it. As it turned out Pete had left his bag somewhere and we could not find it. Pete demanded that I pay for his tools and he relentlessly called for days on end. I tried to focus on work and ignore his constant threats and calls but it was taking a toll on me. I was furious with Pete, he was just drugged out and crazy. I really hated Pete but I kept it together.

Tony and I had a repair that day and it was my job to get up a forty foot ladder and do a repair on the peak of an Old Victorian Cone roof. I needed to trust in Tony to hold the ladder. He had my life in his hands. I asked Tony if he was good with holding the ladder. he answered back yes. I was working and Tony hollered up to me. “I have something to tell you” yelled Tony. He went on…” When I was in Iraq I wasted forty prisoners while they were handcuffed, I killed them all, I felt nothing” Tony was confessing to me a mass war crime. I felt sick about this and at the same time scared for my own life being up 40 feet and in the hands of Tony” When the day and the repair ended Tony and I talked. He explained to me that he was a different type of person. We discussed how he was a person without a conscience. his actions did not effect him. He could coldly do just about anything. I asked him to not feel that way. He told me he could feel no other way. He confided in me that he was scared of me. He told me that something in my eyes scared him. His comments made me feel uneasy but in a way I suddenly felt safe for my own life.

Tony seemed to become agitated and started asking me questions regarding the entire Pete situation. My conversations with Tony became more interesting as time went on. He had a hunch that the Real estate Market in 1995 was going to boom and he was sure that I should invest in as many properties as I could afford. Little did he know that I could afford nothing and I was losing my own home. It ends up that Tony was right on the money . His theory of massive escalation of home prices did come true from 1995 all the way through 2006. I am not sure if he was ever able to invest but I will admit he was right. I dropped Tony off at about 8pm that evenning and just as I pulled up to his house Pete again called and raged on and on. Without incident Tony left my truck and said goodbye.

It was a hot sunny morning in July and most people were probably enjoying the beauty of the day. I found it hard to look beyond the grime and craziness of urban NJ and roofing. It just seemed that it was bad energy every where and sweating made it stink.  I pulled up to Tony’s house and beeped the horn but no one came out. Tony was nowhere to be found. I was without the help of a roofer for this day. I would be stuck doing all of the work myself. I muttered to myself that I could handle it, at that moment my beeper went off and it was Tony. His message read “I love you man, You will never see me again. I am going to OFF Pete today” . My heart dropped to the floor and my groin seemed to shrink and pain me. I was unsure and positive what I should do simultaneously. I had to stop this roofer. I immediately called the Paterson Police and they told me to come down to the station. I did just that.

When I got to the Police station the officer said “Are you the roofer” I said yes. he said “let me see your beeper”, I showed him and he asked me to turn around and put my hands behind my back. he cuffed me walked me outside into a police car, opened the back door of the cruiser, pushed my head down and put me in the back seat. The officer walked around to the front of the cruiser got in and said “you better hope that Pete is still alive”. I asked where we were going and he said we are going to find Tony. Apparently the Police were aware of Tony and they knew what he was capable of. We arrived at Tony’s house and there were other Police cars there. Two officers approached Tony’s home with guns drawn. they knocked on the door and said they were coming in. They were inside for a while but then the officer that drove me there came out. He got back in the cruiser and turned to me and told me that Tony said I was the salt of the earth, a good person. The officer asked me to continue employing him. I was confused. The officer also told me that they found Tony geared up in camouflage and weapons. He was ready to go and kill Pete. I told the officer that it was over I could never employ Tony again.

I never saw or heard from Tony after that. I never heard or saw Pete again either. I am still a roofer and I am happy to be a roofer.

Roofer, have you seen Pete?

Articles of Interest :

Kate White author “attachment

Joseph Schwartz Author “Attachment”

CO-dependent no more

Can a Roofer be like Angel Investors? Yes !

So there is this guy ( Angel investors ) that invested $500,000 in Facebook and cashed out at well over $300,000,000 , that is millions for you roofers. His investment came right when you were buying that $60,000 dollar truck that was going to last you ten years and continue making you money for the next ten years. I guess I am talking about the big “what if” here. What if you were one of the Angel investors? At the time of his investment he already knew that there were other investors behind Facebook. He evaluated the scheme and jumped in. The rest is history. I guess you are thinking right now that it is a lucky thing that Facebook started because now you have 32 likes on your page, although they are just from other roofers. Then came Yelp, now here is a company that had a real innovation. They decided to let customers review small businesses like yours. The harder you work the more money Yelp makes. Their software development at my guess probably cost $40,000 to put together and another $250,000 in marketing effort. Yelp is now worth as of this writing, only 4.6 billion dollars. That is a whole lot of Ford F350′s.

 

Well now that you know that, Can I call you stupid and lazy?

I left the roofing industry a few times in my life and each time it was to pursue a big idea. The first internet auction, a method for creating electricity from traffic, etc. I guess you can call me a very smart guy but I consider myself as stupid as you are.

Angel Investors and roofers know,Risk is always rewarded if the risk is managed

Roofers as Angel investors. The best view of risk is from the Apex of the risk.

Technology cannot succeed without investment. It is not like roofing

It really is not possible to bring the Big Idea without some cash behind you. The fact is that all of you knew that Facebook was going to work. All of you would have known that Yelp was a great idea. But how many of you would have collectively had the balls to commit $500,000 dollars behind the company. Maybe you would have all looked at each other and said “you go first” . Maybe that is true .

True wealth and success can only come from risk. There is no greater risk than roofing from a physical standpoint. We all know that. We all know that sooner or later something is bound to happen at the site, or an employee will rip us off, or we might fall prey to exhaustion and screw ourselves up with some vice. Hell !, that is the way the roofing business has been for years so why change things. We are all supposed to make money , lose it and then fight our way back again. This is the nature of our business because the risk is so high.

I for one think that roofers have the key to success. Cash Flow! Cash flow baby is all you need to invest. That is why the truck dealers love you. You are a good cash flow machine. Now the purpose of this article is to make you think about alternative risks you can take to make money. Mainly you should know that you must be part of innovation and investment. I think we all should consider being involved with Angel Investing and bring our type of smarts to the American start-up revolution.

The government regulates who can be an Angel Investor. They determine that you must have an income of $250,000 and a million dollars in assets. I think most businesses” Good Will” will cover most of that.

Get with other Angel investors

An Angel Investor is not afraid of heights and they lose often and go back to the edge for more. Does this sound like you? They are the job creators at least at the short term and they are the most sought after for opinion and they are the most respected people in the community.

I have been investing most of my profits for 15 years into start-ups and I have not beat the odds yet. My failure does not turn me back from the edge because I know I can handle it, especially the older I get. Reason being , I know I can, just like the day I loaded a roof on 5th avenue in NYC alone. I believed that there was more to life than just a paycheck and risk would bring me reward.

I do not recommend putting your money into a fund for Angel Investing. I recommend collaborating with others in our industry so that our style of doing business is represented by the investments that are made, I think that investment is also steering our economy from real value industries. we do not need more soft hands leading America. We need better leadership and greater vision. Some things you can only see from the roof.

Thank God for my skills as a roofer and my sense that wealth can only be built by taking risk.

.Angel Investors

https://www.udemy.com/blog/top-angel-investors/

http://gust.com/en/angel-investing/directory

 

There are a few papers written on the size of gutter that should be used. I never have these papers in hand when I determine that a gutter is the wrong size. I live by a simple rule when it comes to gutter size.

Some may argue but most houses will agree. Bigger is Better!

Gutters size

 Gutters Size takes experience

Sizing gutters takes experience

 

Let me make it simple for you.

How to find the right gutter size?

2×3 leaders should be used with 5 inch gutter on houses with roof square footage under 2500 square feet.

3×4 leaders can be used with 5 inch gutter that have have runs greater than 40 feet and are collecting water from roofs 1500 square feet and greater

4×5 are generally used for commericial flat roofs with areas greater than 1500 square feet.

5 inch gutters use these on small houses with small fascias.

6 inch gutters Large profile these gutters are not aesthetic on small houses at 1 story but that can work on smaller houses above 20 feet from the ground. These gutters are large and can carry water from roof areas 2000 square feet to 6000 square feet with a number of large leaders at least 3×4.

Leader heads are meant to fit the size of the leader and they can be very expensive. they are meant to be used at scuppers discharging from flat roofs.

For flat roofs it is best to use interior drains with a clamping ring.

The above are from my experience and this information has no scientific basis . It is based on my experience as a roofer.

Here are some other notes that I think are a bit off.

K-Style
5-inch      2,520 square feet- 3500 max
6-inch      7,960 square feet max

Half-round very uncommon and are used in copper or steel. Much harder to seal. These gutters do not hold the water as well. Very old technology
5-inch          2,500 square feet
6-inch          3,840 square feet

Mark Nejmeh is a roofer of 35 years.

Some helpful links:

  • http://www.thisoldhouse.com/toh/article/0,,20486487,00.html
  • http://northclad.com/gutter-sizing-calculator/
  • http://www.copper.org/applications/architecture/arch_dhb/arch-details/gutters_downspouts/gutter_calculation.html
  •  

    The roofing industry is scarred with dysfunction.  I recall my first days at Lawrence Brothers construction in Crystal Lake, Illinois. The crews were always marred with at least some alcoholic or recent ex-convict. You would think that roofing attracts the desperate but I have different theory.

    The nature of a roofer is resilience, a roofer requires stamina.  The mental conditioning is the most critical element a roofer must attain. Many question if this is something that is born into people. I claim that most likely it was kicked into most roofers.  Speaking for myself I am the survivor of extreme childhood abuse. I learned to take pain and handle it with a smile. My most recent hire is a former drug addict and just released convict. We use him for commercial works only and are very cautious and attentive to his behavior. We know not to believe a word he says and to keep a distance as to not let our guard down. The men that have been around more than ten years with me say that he is tranquil but we still watch.

    I am not interested in being a social worker and I despise the weak that suck the energy from the less fortunate just so they can feel better about their improprieties that go on behind closed doors. My kids , 2 of my daughters are social workers and I warn them not to trust the people that they “care ” for. Quite honestly I do not know why they would want to spend their lives treating people that don’t care enough for themselves. But then I started thinking , hmm what about me, and what about the roofers I work with? What about the troubles from the crazed roofers through the years. Could social work help them, or screw that, could it have saved me thousands of dollars and the aggravations from their craziness.

    Could a little thrid party interference actually have saved millions of property and casualty losses if it was implemented in the private sector of roofing?

    It might just be something to explore because I keep seeing the same types of roofers over and over through the years and it ain’t pretty.  Breaking the cycle of the social ills that associate themselves to roofing would not be such a bad idea, God knows that no one is perfect especially roofers.

    Roof repair cost.

    I am not sure how many of the roofers across the country know how to lead in a drain. I am also not sure how many actually lead in modified bitumen roofs but they certainly should. I would like to hear from roofers across the country to determine what methods they are using when installing modified roof systems .

    Below please find an informational video that should help you all with the basics.


    Download Video | YouTube to MP3

     

    Please post your comments

    03. June 2013 · Write a comment · Categories: NJ

    Jeff Adams and I spent a Saturday together doing a shingle roof to feed our families. Watch and learn my friends.


    Download Video | YouTube to MP3

    Real roofers are Union and Non-union and we can get along. Jeff and I are more than job site buddies and we are starting a roofing school together. Watch soon for our full online and onsite roofing school. We love roofing.

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