Hurricane Arthur…a reminder for real estate professionals

Real estate firms & agents might want to expand their horizons and capitalize on an opportunity. Hurricane Arthur triggered our fears early this year. It became a named “hurricane” on July 3, 2014. This is not the usual time we normally associate with catastrophic weather in South Florida. Having personally experienced three hurricanes damaging my Florida property, I tend to think of “hurricane weather” in September & October.

Being in the Florida real estate sector for more than 25 years, I have witnessed these catastrophic storms damage homes, businesses, commercial buildings & personal lives with great trauma/cost. As a real estate industry, I think we can help this process and improve our own image! And we still have some time (see below):

Number of recorded storms affecting Florida

Month Number of storms

January           0

February         1

March             0

April               1

May                9

June               51

July                35

August           97

September    160

October         117

November     17

December      2

Wikipedia Information Above

In 1992, Hurricane Andrew devastated South Florida. I lived in Miami Shores, Florida at the time. This major storm was heading directly in our path. We were forced to evacuate. The storm turned South at the last minute and directly hit South Miami & Homestead instead. I still remember the hundreds of “blue tarps” on the roofs, hoping to alleviate further water damage. People were calling for roofing help, but there weren’t enough resources to handle the overwhelming needs. In times of crisis, local roofers will first care for their family/their friends & their biggest clients. Very understandable, very justified…..but what if you do not have a roofer friend?


Douglas G. Dennison

Here’s the opportunity for real estate companies & real estate agents. When you list or sell a house, you were trusted to facilitate a transaction for most individuals #1 financial asset. They trusted you. They may have asked you to help them with recommending a lawn person, a handyman, a pool company, etc. Again, they have trust in your real estate related relationships. When a catastrophe affects their home, business or commercial building……who should they reach out to for advice? Rather than your clients stressing to call roofing companies or searching on the internet, wouldn’t you want them to contact you? Aren’t you their trusted real estate professional? Aren’t they the ones who have provided you with referrals to their friends & family? The answer is yes!

One of the hurricanes that affected me personally, hit the Hutchinson Island area. I own a condominium there, in a small development. From the time that the hurricane hit, it took almost 4 years to reuse the unit again. Why? Answer is easy….roofers, contractors, etc. will first meet the needs of their family/their friends & their biggest clients. Very understandable, very justified…..however, what if you don’t have a big job that attracts their response? You become the last job!

Real Estate companies have already aligned themselves with third party professionals (mortgage companies, title companies, insurance companies, plumbing companies, home security services, home warranty services, etc.). However, what about the most expensive proposition…..the roof? Real estate professionals should want to be involved!

Hail, wind storms, tornadoes, hurricanes, etc. – damage roofs across the country. Insurance companies have a “set time” to cover storm related damages. The roof may not be leaking, but still may have damage. The damage will grow more serious over time and yet, once it does start leaking….the homeowner may be out of the “insurance coverage window”. Most homeowners don’t know these facts.

Again, Hurricane Arthur……….is a reminder & an opportunity for real estate professionals to help their clients & to help themselves.

Multiple real estate companies & agents today are beginning to align themselves with a professional roofing contractor. They are providing themselves another chance to assist their clients and to hopefully receive more referrals. Finally, they can also earn a referral fee from the roofing company. A “win-win” plan!

There is one last item for real estate companies to consider. There is one last reason for them to align themselves with a roofing company. “When the storm hits” – I am guessing they will want a roofing friend to help them with their family, their friends, their offices & their employees. Right?

Douglas G. Dennison, Vice President of Business Development, Aspen Contracting, Inc. speaks at real estate functions & publishes real estate related articles. He can be reached at: and/or (904) 501-6609,

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