Focus

Lighting a spark

I happened to be in St. Louis visiting my sister and her family during the flooding that took place there in late December. Her chimney started leaking water into the house, and we wondered whether it was a flashing problem or masonry issue. I watched as my sister went to her iPad and searched for "roofing contractor" and "chimney installer." I asked her what she was doing. Her reply? "I'm trying to find someone to come fix this problem, and I don't know where to look."

I told her to turn to professional associations for help. I sent her to NRCA's consumer website, www.everybodyneedsaroof.com, and the Mason Contractors Association of America to look for contractors in her area who are association members.

All the contractors she called asked how she found their companies, and she said their association's website led her to them. I was there when NRCA member Delta Exteriors LLC, St. Louis, came to her house, and I saw how pleased the guys were to discover how NRCA was helping them obtain leads.

One masonry contractor told my sister any of the contractors she would have called from the association list would have been good choices—he said his association provides educational offerings that train its members better than any other organization.

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