Newsline links homeowners to hvac pros

May 9, 2000
/ Print / Reprints /
/ Text Size+
The growing field of contractor-friendly Web sites has recently added another company to its stable — ContractorGuide. com. This new Web site has some “user-friendly” guides for homeowners to check on qualifications of local contractors and rules to follow when choosing a contractor.

The Web site is the brainchild of Larry Sims, a former roofing contractor and holder of a Master’s Degree in Computer Science. The Web site was born out of a concern for finding the right customers for his former company, which he founded in 1995 along with son, Chad.

“I had a hard time finding customers who were a good match for my company,” he said. “I was spending $2,000 on Yellow Pages ads and we were getting calls from out of state for our services. I needed to be nationwide.”

Sims felt he could serve the industry better with his computer background, and he saw the need for a Web site that both homeowners and contractors could use. So he sold his company to his employees last January and committed himself to getting his idea of a contractor Web site up and running.

Some of the features of that benefit customers include:

  • List of qualified contractors who work in their area;
  • List of home improvement product suppliers and manufacturers;
  • Information about how to accomplish home improvement projects (Sims lists over 80 home improvement specialty areas in the website’s database.); and
  • Free and convenient to use.

The Web site includes information about national organizations such as the American Society of Heating, Refrigeration, and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE), National Air Duct Cleaners Association (NADCA), and International Ground Source Heat Pump Association (IGSHPA), and links to their Web sites. There are also rules for hiring a contractor written by Paul Bianchina.

“We have 82 project categories that cover about 90% of what all contractors do,” explained Sims. “We are offering free memberships to contractors, suppliers, and manufacturers who want to list with our service.”


The Web site went on-line in October and Sims has signed up 300 contractors so far, which is lower than what his expectations were.

“It’s been really slow,” he said. “Contractors have been reluctant to pay money to sign up. Ninety percent of them are just taking the free listing.”

Sims was referring to the cost of listing on the Web site. Any contractor can have a free listing and the fees range from $15 to $135 per year for more prominent listings that show up first on Internet search engines.

“We are hoping to get into the top ten of at least 50 search engine categories,” Sims added. “Right now we haven’t done much marketing, staying in the background and sending out a few e-mails.

“We would like to sign up 10,000 to 30,000 contractors,” he concluded. 


Did you enjoy this article? Click here to subscribe to The NEWS Magazine

You must login or register in order to post a comment.



Image Galleries

2014 Energy Efficiency Forum

Highlights from the 25th annual Energy Efficiency Forum in Washington, D.C.


NEWSMakers: Jason Vogelbaugh

Jason Vogelbaugh of Alpha Controls drops in to the NEWSMakers podcast to discuss his role with the company, the InsideIQ Building Automation Alliance, and current energy-efficiency projects being worked on. Posted on Sept. 26.

More Podcasts


NEWS 09-29-14 cover

2014 September 29

Check out the weekly edition of The NEWS today!

Table Of Contents Subscribe

Venting R-22

The NEWS reported that a man received prison time for venting R-22. Should EPA step up enforcement?
View Results Poll Archive


2014 National Plumbing & HVAC Estimator

Every plumbing and HVAC estimator can use the cost estimates in this practical manual!

More Products

Clear Seas Research


Clear Seas ResearchWith access to over one million professionals and more than 60 industry-specific publications, Clear Seas Research offers relevant insights from those who know your industry best. Let us customize a market research solution that exceeds your marketing goals.


Magazine image
Register today for complete access to Get full access to the latest features, Extra Edition, and more.


facebook icontwitter iconyoutube iconLinkedIn i con