12 Construction Tips for Those Long Winter Months
Nov 05, 2018
If you’re not downing your tools and you’ve decided you’re going to push through the long winter months, we thought you might like to know some of the best tips we’ve picked up from working with tradesmen on a daily basis. To complement these tips, we’ve put together some special discounts and offers that are going to make your winter working life a fair bit easier.
Tip one – Can you expand your services?
Many tradesmen expand their services in the winter months, it’s pretty common. Perhaps in the busier parts of the year you focus on doing the things you can earn the most for, but in winter, when it’s a bit quieter, you need to be more versatile. As well as thinking about what other services you can offer, think about how you can spread the word.
Resource: Check out this social media guide for tradesmen.
Tip two – You are your business
If you want to get through the winter months happily, you will need to be careful about how much you work, and how hard you push yourself. Spending too much time in sub-zero temperatures can lead to frostbite, hypothermia, and worse. Be ready to stop, be ready to say no to days that are simply too cold and wet, and be ready to put your health first when needed.
Tip three – Get out the contact book
One problem that many tradesmen face is a drop in hourly and project prices in the winter. With so much extra competition, it can be a pain point for many. It is a great idea at the start of winter to get out the contact book (or Rolodex if you’re still using one of those) and give your previous customers a call. They know your rates, they know your quality, and it’s much easier to get work from an existing customer than to spend your energy looking for new projects in a competitive marketplace.
Tip four – Bidding smart
Some winter projects are going to open themselves up to bids, pushing people to drop their prices so that they can win contracts. Luckily, the cheapest option is not always the one that gets chosen. Find ways to be competitive, to provide added value, to build trust, and to give the project owner the assurance that you’re the right person for the job.
Tip five – Seasonal Offers
One way to get customers to hire you is to make them think that you’re in high demand, or that you only work with a certain quality of customer. Make them feel that they’re getting special treatment. If you can get in front of potential customers with some excellent seasonal offers, you’re going to give them the impression that your services are in high demand, and that they need to act right away to get you in their diary.
Tip six – Try to work indoors when possible
Let’s be honest, the cold is not nice and many tradesmen go into the winter with a little bit of dread, knowing that their woolly hat, thermos flask, and under-layers are going to get a lot of use. But it doesn’t have to be that way. With a bit of planning and change of approach, you can aim to get interior construction jobs throughout the winter and minimise the amount of time you work outdoors. This will allow you to work more hours, earn more, and look after your health. Don’t forget, we offer free coffee to all Trade Store customers – so keep that Thermos handy when in the area.
Resource: Use our store locator to find the location closest to you. Come and visit us for site supplies, safety equipment, and free coffee!
Tip seven – Dress for the occasion
Keep warm, stay insulated, and invest in high-quality materials so that you can layer up without catching a chill. We want to help you as much as possible, so we’ve dropped the prices on some of our warm winter-wear, such as our beanie hat with a built-in LED torch.
Visit our supplier store online now to take a look at thermal socks, neck warmers and more.
Resource: Check out this guide on what to wear and how to wear it during the winter construction months.
Tip eight – Quality lighting
If you’re going to power through the winter, the short days, and the long cold nights, then you’re going to need more than just woolly hats. You’re going to need lights. You might need big lights, small lights, LED rechargeable lights, and more. We’ve got a great sale on lights at the moment, with the 10w rechargeable cob light being our most popular (grab one while you can here).
Tip nine – Check the weather
Let’s hope you’re not the next Michael Fish with a hurricane on its way! In seriousness though, looking at forecasts to predict good working days and bad working days will be very helpful when you’re planning out your week. Of course, it’s not 100% accurate, but if the Met Office says there is a 100% chance of blizzards tomorrow, you should probably plan to stay at home.
Resource: Despite there beings plenty of apps and reports, the Met Office is the world’s most accurate and trusted weather reporting service.
Tip ten – Use the winter to your advantage
It’s not all doom and gloom, in fact, the winter presents a lot of opportunities. Freezing and thawing pipes can create a lot of work for plumbers, leaky roofs can keep roofers busy, and any savvy tradesman will know that the opportunity to upsell is never better than in the winter. Things like extra insulation, improved roof materials, and double or triple-glazed windows can all be part of your upsell strategy when trying to earn more money in the winter months.
When a customer says ‘It’s getting a bit cold, isn’t it?’, you can try and upsell products that offer better thermal efficiency such as the Keylite roof window range we sell here at strukta.
Tip eleven – Make the most of limited outdoor time
If there are days when you are snowed in, or it’s too icy to work, you can be getting on with some other things, like improving your website, making new contacts, cleaning up your company accounts, or putting together a business strategy for the following year. Even better, you can be planning future projects and stocking up on site supplies, safety equipment, and materials.
Tip twelve – Step up your security
As we covered in our recent article on tool theft, the darkness is an opportunity for would-be thieves to make their robberies without people seeing them. This means your tools and vans may be at greatest risk in the winter, and so it’s a good time to invest in your security. The last thing you want in the middle of winter is being out of work because your van or tools were stolen.
Resource: We put together 15 ways you can protect yourself against tool and van thieves.
strukta’s winter offers…
Each month we send out a new set of special offers for our customers to enjoy. This November, we’ve got great deals on safety supplies, like hi-vis waistcoats and first aid kits, we’ve got cotton dust sheets to protect floors, we’ve dropped the prices on Cleanroom construction tape for indoor decorating jobs and more.
Keep an eye out for the next bunch of promotions that we release to help you save money.