For the final instalment of our #IOwnMyOwn meet Chinzi Esposito of Chinzi Esposito Roofing Services who’s provided us with some insight into what it’s like to own your own roofing business!
Hi Chinzi, please introduce yourself and tell us a bit about your business?
I’m Chinzi and I have a family roofing business, working with my father and brother. We do new roofs, repairs and re-roofs and all types of tiling, slating and flat roofs. We work in Peterborough and the surrounding villages and most of our work comes from recommendation. I’ve been roofing for 27 years but that’s not a patch on my Dad, he’s been roofing for about 40 years!
How did you get into this line of work, and how and when did you start your own business?
I’ve been roofing since I was 15, helping my Dad on jobs and then, when I left school, I did a City and Guilds in roofing at college. After that, I worked for different roofing companies for about twenty years until I decided to branch out and set up on my own. People started asking me to do jobs for them, which I started doing at weekends and I soon realised there would be enough work to keep me going full time. Over the years I’ve worked on a variety of projects from new developments, multi-million pound new builds and lots of smaller jobs.
What are the downsides to your trade?
The weather is the main downside, you need to be resilient and be prepared to work come rain or shine! The weather also affects what we can do, for example when we had some very hot days in the summer with 9 flat roofs to do, we had to work quickly as the heat made it set almost immediately! We also have to think about safety too, so we don’t work if the weather makes it dangerous for us to do so, when it is icy or very, very hot we’ll stop.
What three things couldn’t you live without in order to do your job and own your own?
1. My van and my tools – I couldn’t work without my ladders and tools and my van to carry them around in.
2. My mobile phone – I moan about it as it doesn’t stop ringing and it’s often difficult to take calls up on the roof! On the flip side, it’s all business and I’d soon be moaning if it didn’t ring!
3. My wife – I’m not great with my paperwork and rely on her help with it, and her gentle reminders to get on and do my invoices!
If you were to give one piece of advice to someone wanting to start their own business what would it be?
Take the plunge and go for it! Some people are scared of taking on the extra responsibility of planning and managing the jobs, but being your own boss outweighs this and makes it all worthwhile.
Pop back to our blog on Monday where we will continue with the theme of #IOwnMyOwn and will be speaking to our traders about their top tips for owning your own business.
If you have any top tips for anyone wanting to start up their own business, please let us know by visiting our Facebook page and commenting on our post with the #IOwnMyOwn.