Established in 1981, L.H. Krueger and Son Inc., is a family operated business that has earned its reputation as a reputable Waukesha roofing contractor.
For over 30 years L.H. Krueger and Son has provided roofing expertise to home and business owners in Waukesha, Milwaukee, and all of southeastern Wisconsin.
With services that include roofing, siding, seamless gutters, and gutter guards, over the course of 30 plus years L.H. Krueger and Son has achieved and maintained an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau, consecutive awards and accreditation’s with Angies List, and recognition of trust with the Metropolitan Builders Association (MBA), Milwaukee NARI, the National Association of Home Builders, and roofing shingle manufacturers across the United States.
With recent closings of Sigma, JT Roofing, and other roofing contractor companies in Waukesha, earlier this year I sat down with Leah Krueger, the CEO and CFO of L.H. Krueger and Son, Inc., to discuss their dedication to customer satisfaction, how their business has been able to sustain themselves through the adversity of an economic recession, and the integrity they extend to all their employees.
Q: How does L.H. Krueger and Son compare to other local roofing contractors in the Milwaukee and Waukesha metro area?
A: L.H. Krueger and Son is one of the only local roofing contractors that offers an iron clad workmanship warranty with no strings attached. When Lyle founded L.H. Krueger and Son in 1980, his primary objective was to offer the absolute best services to all of our customers, and that principle holds true for as long as our company is open for business.
Q: How does your ‘Above and Beyond Re-Roof Warranty’ compare with warranties offered by other roofing contractors?
A: “L.H. Krueger and Son provides a non-prorated workmanship warranty on every re-roof job. Essentially this means our customers pay nothing in the event that something goes wrong. To the best of my knowledge we are the only local roofing contractor that offers this level of coverage.
Q: How has L.H. Krueger and Son been able to make it through the economic recession?
A: “The only thing that saved us was we didn’t owe any debt. Many of these other companies seek financial help when things get tough, but we were able to escape any financial crisis.”
Q: What types of steps did you take to sustain the company through the recession?
A: “All employees took a wage cut across the board. Lyle [the president of L.H. Krueger and Son] stopped taking a salary a couple of years ago, and 2011 marked the third winter that all office staff took layoff in rotations to cut down on payroll. We made no purchases unless it was absolutely necessary. We also became a little pickier when it came to the products we buy. We chose quality products that were more affordable than simply purchasing what we have been for so many years. We also reduced our overhead, which was a huge factor in cutting down on expenses.”
Q: Has any of these cutbacks changed, or otherwise resulted in a lower quality of product or services for your customers?
A: “Absolutely not. As a matter of fact, while analyzing overhead and other ways to save, we realized that it was necessary to extend our expertise and skills by implementing a Service Department. In the past couple of years we have seen a large increase in roof repairs, many jobs qualifying for what would otherwise be a roof replacement. With limited budgets homeowners cannot afford a new roof, so we diagnose problem areas and help homeowners make it through the recession without the worries of a leaking roof.”
Q: How have recent sales been at L.H. Krueger and Son?
A: “At the end of 2011 we had sold over $1.1 million re-roof jobs alone. 2011 also marked the first year that we made any profit. The recession had us on the decline since 2005, but 2011 proved to be a successful year for our company.”
Staff & Employees
Q: How many employees work at L.H. Krueger and Son?
A: “Right now we have a total of 29 employees on payroll. This is up from 2010 when we had 23 employees, but significantly lower than the 50 employees we had at the start of 2005.”
Q: As a family operated business do you treat employees differently than average corporate-based companies?
A: “We take every step to hire qualified workers and provide them with work, insurance, and a safe means to support themselves and their families. We require 100% compliance with safety, and offer incentives and bonuses for their compliance. At the end of every year we provide bonuses to all of our employees to extend our appreciation for their efforts and hard work.”
Q: How did you keep employees working and offer bonuses during the years that the company made no profit?
A: “We take many jobs knowing that the profit margin is going to be minimal or none so we can keep our employees working. As for bonuses, we offer them because we always have. We treat our employee’s right and they offer their best services in return. In the end the overall winner is our customers.”
The Future of L.H. Krueger and Son
Q: How does the company future look?
A: “Like I stated earlier, we have expanded our services and right now the future looks promising. Overall, L.H. Krueger and Son can find and fix roof leaks, siding leaks, and we perform minor chimney tuck pointing and metal flashing repairs. In addition to traditional asphalt and rubber roofing, we also manufacture and install custom architectural metal roofing. We can provide help with insulation and attic ventilation, and we offer window replacement services.”