The best inventions solve every-day problems and seem simple once realized. The roofer’s buggy manufactured and sold by Equipter is a good example.
Now called the RB 4000, it solves a problem faced by many roofing companies of how to remove shingles without jeopardizing a worker’s safety and creating a huge mess requiring additional clean up on the property? A Leola, Pa., man and his sons built what is now a thriving and growing national enterprise by solving that problem and other challenges experienced in various kinds of construction work.
Equipter offers equipment financing solutions through Madison Capital of Owings Mills, Md. This helps Equipter sell more of its products and it puts capital to work for many large and small American companies doing roofing, landscaping, demolition and remodeling projects in their home state of Pennsylvania and throughout the U.S. David Beiler, the company’s sales manager, says Madison is a favored financing partner because they make it easy for customers by offering flexible financing and lease terms with e-signature capability that speeds and simplifies the process. Customers also value seasonal finance plans with lower monthly payments in winter months when there is less construction work. Beiler estimates that about half of their customers take advantage of financing.
Equipter’s story began in Paradise, a beautiful rural land dotted with Amish farms near Lancaster, Pa. Beiler’s father, Aaron, was part of an Amish family involved in farming, and then became a roofer in 1987. He went on to manage a successful residential roofing replacement business for 15 years. Aaron Beiler envisioned the RB 4000 popularly referred to as the “roofer’s buggy.” He realized a more efficient method of removing roof debris would improve job completion times, and the product developed was first used by him and his sons in their own roofing business.
He is Equipter’s CEO and his sons and other family members are also employed with the company. And, while the roofing solution is a staple product, the company also manufactures a self-propelled dumpster in two sizes, the RB 2000 and RB 3000, as well as a mobile crane, part of the CR 8000 series.
While no longer Amish, the Beilers are true to core values from their roots, which means caring for the environment and building quality products. David Beiler said that when constructing the first RB 4000 his father encountered an opportunity to cut costs through vendor suggestions for less expensive nuts and bolts, but the elder insisted on superior parts even if it took longer to get them. The company wanted to build a product that would last. The products are also designed to move efficiently around trees and shrubs with as little impact on the environment as possible.
“We pride ourselves in being a family business with values that honor relationships, quality, and innovative products that make jobs easier,” he said.
The price of a roofer’s buggy is $32,900, but financing gives customers the ability to spread the cost over time with five-year financing terms. They could start using the equipment immediately. Beiler said one Michigan roofing company did a two-month study using the Equipter RB 4000 and discovered it did the work of 1.5 employees. The Michigan company reported significant savings in manpower and also realized it improved their employees’ sense of well-being; they could learn new skills or apply their time more productively without back aches from hard labor.
Beiler is optimistic about the future, saying there are still many roofers who don’t have the RB 4000. His company also remains innovative, having launched the new RB 2000, a self-propelling dumpster.
He regularly talks to Tom Myers, his representative at Madison Capital, and appreciates the kind of relationship they have. “He’ll get back to me personally, even when he is on vacation,” Beiler said. “We see eye-to-eye on work ethics.”
Swift financing, however, is a key differentiator. “We often have approvals within a few hours of submitting papers to Madison,” Beiler said.