California Title 24 Part 6 – Part 1

If you do not do business in California, congratulations. However, it may not be long before your state adopts similar regulations so don’t gloat in your good fortune for too long. What changed in California and how does it affect Roofing Contractors there? How can roofing contractors incorporate these changes into their marketing and make the best of the new regulations for their business and their customers?

What is California Title 24 Part 6? It is the Energy Efficiency portion of California Building Code. Enacted in the late 1970’s this portion of the building code has done much to reduce per person energy usage in California.

What changed in 2009? Title 24 Part 6 changed to include the requirement that all residential re-roofs in climate zones 11-15 (California was broken up into 16 climate zones) would be required to use CRRC (Cool Roof Rating Council) rated Cool-Roof shingles or one of six alternatives.

What makes a Cool shingle Cool? In terms of Asphalt shingles, which are the most common re-roof material, a shingle must have increased reflectivity and emissivity. In other words it cannot absorb as much heat, and it must release stored heat quicker than an ordinary asphalt shingle.

Sounds great, what’s the problem? The problem is that Cool shingles are quite expensive (most are close to double the cost of a 30 yr. laminate) and offer a very limited range of colors and styles. As a result many homeowners are shocked at the additional cost of a re-roof now that most areas are enforcing the new regulations. This has been a real concern for many roofing contractors who are already struggling with the loss of business due to the economy and lack of easy financing for new roofs.

If you are a roofing contractor in California how can you adapt your marketing to include these new requirements? These changes are a real opportunity for roofing contractors to differentiate themselves from their competition by taking the time to learn about them, being able to explain them, and to help your customers make the best decision about which option to choose to comply.

One of the first things I would recommend would be to add an “Understanding Title 24 Part 6 and Cool Roofs” section to my web site. Customers will be looking to you to provide information about this. Those that don’t, won’t, or can’t, will be left behind. You will need to make sure that you can clearly explain the allowable trade-offs and why you are recommending the solution that you are.

I would also encourage you to immediately add an offer for a free “Title 24 Compliance Consultation” to all of your advertising. I would try to create a need in the mind of prospects that they should be educated on all of their options before choosing a roofing contractor and that if they are talking to a contractor that does not educate them well on all of their options they should call you before making any decisions. “YOU HAVE OPTIONS” would be the theme of my marketing.

In Part 2 we will discuss what the six available trade-offs are and how you can help your customers pick the best one for their situation.