UltraRoof380, the lightweight tile-effect roof from market leader Ultraframe packs a powerful aesthetic punch. Using the patented UltraTile, Ultraframe has delivered a stunning roof that combines simplicity and ease of installation with good looks - so we chatted to Ultraframe’s Design and Development Director Andrew Thomson about the impact of the UltraRoof380 on the refurbishment market and we spoke to James Askew at G Award Installer of the Year finalists Sheffield Window Centre about their appetite for the refurbishment market.
Andrew, UltraRoof380 was a long time in development, was it worth the wait? “Absolutely. As the market leader we’re very used to being first to market with innovation, but entering the solid roof space needed really careful planning. This isn’t a market for ‘quick wins’, in reality the new build and renovation markets do sit comfortably side-by-side so we wanted to develop a range of roof systems that would give our network partners the confidence to walk into any home and regardless of the need of the homeowner, be able to offer an Ultraframe solution that will perform and look as fresh long into the future as it does today. With the launch of UtraRoof380, we now have that capability from glazed roofs and lanterns right through to a choice of two different styles of solid roof.
Let’s turn to you James, Andrew’s point is interesting – do the two markets sit side-by-side in your business? “This year has been spectacular for our business in the renovation space. But in all honesty we’ve sat back and waited for the right roof system to come along that would allow us to offer a tile-effect roof that we believe in, and trust. With the development of UltraRoof380 we’ve had to grow our replacement roof teams in the last few months to cope with the demand. What’s interesting now is that customers recognise the Ultraframe brand so it’s a slam dunk when we offer them the UltraRoof380 system.
James – are you happy to tell us what sort of numbers you’re installing? “No (laughs), but I can tell you that I’ve lost count how many LivinRoof we’ve done this year and we’ve just completed an UltraRoof380 refurbishment on a conservatory we built ten years ago. I can say we’ve got several UltraRoof380 jobs in the pipeline.
Andrew, you’ve been at Ultraframe, steering innovation and design for many years, is UltraRoof380 the ultimate invention to come out of the team? “the feedback we’re getting from retailers such as James is stunning – no question, we’ve excited home owners with something that’s at least as good as the real thing, but even better from an installers perspective, they can equally enjoy fitting something that looks stunning, but be in and out in less than a day – if that makes UltraRoof380 the ultimate invention that I’ll take that.
Let’s focus on Sheffield Window centre James, finalists in the G Awards this year, do systems such as UltraRoof380 contribute to your success? “No question – the roof systems we choose are critical to our success. It goes back to the point Andrew made at the start, as a business we’re not after the ‘quick win’ work, we’ve always taken a pragmatic view about the roof replacement market and really held out until we could work with a tile-effect roof that we can have confidence in. This level of trust underpins our entire business from the relationship we have with our suppliers, right through to the trust we engender amongst our customers.
James, Ultraframe believe its roofs open up new opportunities for retailers, would you agree? “I think ultimately it’s down to the retailer to open up the opportunities, but it’s true in as much as we need the systems behind us. A good example is an UltraRoof380 job we’re underway with in a conservation area, the local conservation officer was blown away by the authenticity of the UltraRoof380 tile and the way the glass floats into the tiled section, arguably this job would have previously gone to a builder using a real slate tile, instead the home owner will definitely be able to enjoy Christmas in their new extension, a promise we can definitely keep.