Want referrals? Clean the jobsite, manage expectations

by WOHe

The results of a survey of homeowners who had completed remodeling work within the past two years clearly indicate homeowners place a high degree of value on keeping the jobsite clean and having their expectations managed. The survey is conducted annually by my sister publication, Qualified Remodeler.

With question after question, the survey reveals that if you focus on certain aspects of a construction project such as cleaning up at the end of the day or managing your clients’ expectations about the project’s progress, they are much more happy with you. As a result, they will be much more likely to call you again for work or refer you to someone else who needs your services.

The first thing you can do is clean up the jobsite. The majority of your clients live in their homes during remodeling projects, and are on site several days a week on new construction jobs, checking on progress. Some contractors go so far as fining their subs if it’s learned they didn’t clean up the jobsite at the end of the work day. Clients who said their contractor kept their home clean were more satisfied than clients who experienced a dirty jobsite.

Regarding your clients’ expectations, it will pay dividends if you stay in contact on a regular basis while letting them know exactly what they’re in for. Before the project begins, tell them about the excitement they’ll feel at the beginning, when they see walls enclosing their home and the roof going on. Then tell them they will become frustrated soon after while the visual reminders of progress become hidden behind these new walls. Let them know what’s coming next at every stage of the project, and they’ll come out happier on the other end.

While these survey results pertain to remodeling jobs, there is no doubt that the principles contained within them can and should be applied to new home design and construction. Your reward for paying attention to these areas of customer satisfaction is repeat and referral business, which we all know is the lifeblood of most construction businesses.

Do you have any tricks for creating satisfied customers?

Share your thoughts by sending me an e-mail. Or, scroll up to the first paragraph of this blog entry, look to the right and click where you see, “Leave a comment†or “Post or view comments.â€

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