Until you got into the contracting business you may not have realized the number of customer needs you’d have to be able to step in and help solve. Some customers simply need some guidance with choosing specific home improvement finishings, while others require additional assistance. Today we’ll take a look at some common home improvement needs that contractors may come across and how to solve them.
Common Home Improvement Needs of Green Customers
Going green is becoming more and more popular — and with good reason. Customers are seeing the benefits of taking the environment into account when they update their homes. Contractors who do the research have a big advantage when it comes to attracting these green-minded customers. Typically, eco-conscious customers are willing to spend a bit more to get the green products they want. Being the contractor who offers these items gives you an edge.
Offering products such as reclaimed wood, environmentally friendly textiles and paints, and energy-saving lighting and appliances make a difference. You may also want to explore the option of installing green energy systems.
Those who really want to promote their green contractor status can walk-the-walk by setting up their office space in an eco-friendly manner. Be sure to promote your environmentally-conscious options and efforts so that green customers know who to call.
Selecting the Perfect Door Color
A lot of customers want to add some personality to their house, but they don’t want to drop a ton of cash to do it. An easy and inexpensive way to up a house’s character is to add a pop of color on the door. If a colorful door is in the cards for your client, the next step is choosing a color. There’s a whole rainbow to choose from, and the vast array of options leaves some clients bewildered. You can help them narrow down their selection by showing them a variety that you feel suits their style.
Red is popular with those who are expressive and bold. Green and blue work well for those who are calm and traditional. More saturated colors like teal are a playful option, and darker shades often work well for those who are dramatic.
Understanding Flooring Options
Clients often come in knowing that they love a certain type of flooring, but are unaware that their choice doesn’t work everywhere. Different types of flooring work in different areas. Helping them to understand the functionality of each type of flooring and the needs of each room helps a lot.
Living rooms are meant to be cozy, so guiding them to warmer toned hardwoods and cushy carpets are good ideas. Entryways see a lot of traffic, so steering clients towards durable flooring like tile, wood vinyl, or laminate is perfect. Similarly, kitchens need to stand up to traffic and spills, so homeowners need easily wipeable choices like tile, stone, or vinyl. Bathroom flooring must be able to resist moisture and be easily cleaned. Bedroom flooring should be relaxing and stylish, but there is typically more flexibility here.
Selecting Storage Solutions
Storage is one of those common home improvement needs that baffles the masses. Many clients know that they need storage, but they have a hard time envisioning what will work best for them. Others come in thinking that they know exactly what type of storage will work, but they actually need something completely different.
It’s important to keep customers on track by reminding them that not all storage systems work in all spaces. While a certain configuration works well for their neighbors, it may not be as ideal in their own space. The perfect storage system makes everything easier to find, simplifies routines, has visual appeal, and creates a more livable space.
Navigating Non-English-Speaking Challenges
Contractors encounter a wide range of clients. Not only do customers vary in their styles and budgets, but they also sometimes speak a different language. Taking on clients who speak a language other than English can be intimidating to contractors. That said, there are ways to make the process work.
If a customer speaks little to no English, it’s important to pay close attention to tone of voice and facial expressions, both from them and from you. By using photos, drawings, and hand gestures, you can help get your point across and they theirs. Picking up some regularly used phrases in your customer’s language can really help, too.
Overall, just remember to always be patient. Keep in mind that the frustrations you feel are probably the same on the other end. The more you remain calm and work with the customer, the more comfortable they’ll be.
Financing for Home Remodel Customers
Not all contractors offer financing, so doing so gives you a BIG advantage over those who don’t. Many home improvement projects end up costing more money than a customer expects. Contractors who offer financing provide a way for those customers to still get the upgrades they have in mind, rather than cutting projects or downgrading their choices.
Some contractors who offer financing elect to provide the service all on their own. This means that they need to work out their agreements and payment terms on their own time and dollar. They also need to keep track of payments and decide on how to deal with customers who don’t make previously agreed-upon payments.
A second and far easier option is to work with someone experienced in financing like HFS Financial. As the contractor, this allows you to focus entirely on home remodeling projects and leaves the financing to the professionals in that field. At the same time, the customer still gets the benefits of being matched with funds for their projects. In fact, the customer is typically in a more advantageous situation, because the financing experts are better able to assess a client’s financial situation and borrowing needs. Plus, you get all of your contractor payment up front.
Customer Financing Without the Hassle
If you’d love to offer financing to your clients, but don’t want to add yet another behind-the-scenes task to your already lengthy list, HFS Financial is here to help. With years of experience in the pool lending and home improvement lending arena, we have the skills to assist your customers with their financing needs. Our 60-second application makes the process completely simple and unintimidating. Get in touch today to find out how to better meet some common home improvement needs for your clients.