I am currently down in Florida along the gold coast, and I am selling and managing a commercial roofing company, and since I've been here there are few things I've been noticing.
1) Commercial property owners always use Property Managers, who usually don't know a damn thing about buildings, and they are recommending repairs on roofs that are in danger of collapsing, and I include this in many of my proposals. In fact I almost had a crew fall in, when a section of roof collapsed recently, yet they don't have the money or won't spend it. Something to think about going into older built shopping plazas. The time it happened with my crew, there was nobody in the actual unit but the entire roof fell in.
2) The roofing supply companies, unique to the trade, that carry products you cannot buy anywhere else, are not doing good at all. In fact they are closing stores, and letting employees go, and currently a monopoly is forming in this niche. Currently prices are rising on everything all of the time, and fewer products are available as well. Also certain special orders are on very long delays, why? I don't know, and nobody has that answer.
3) Many roofing companies are going out of business, those with the best reputations too, however they don't close over night, they take time to wind down, due to debt accrued. Many re-roof projects are bid now at below cost, and therefore the better roofing companies will not bid like that, since it is desperation. The companies that do are trying to stay alive, but also have lousy reputations.
4) The best roofers are beginning to do more side jobs as well on their own.
Watching all of this first hand, while thinking about economics, I have concluded that we are not in a free market but a very manipulated controlled market, worse than I thought. Because in a free market, the best companies survive til the end. Maybe I'm missing something, that is why I am posting this.... what is your take?