After meeting with a prospect, reviewing a house and discussing the many details a remodeling project will include, the typical contractor might feel it's time to get started with the work.
Not so fast.
Before you do anything to the house, it's best to make sure all your ducks are in a row. Providing your client with a detailed spec sheet can clear up any misunderstandings, as well as help inform subcontractors. Additionally, some remodelers report fewer change orders and lowered overall project costs when they switch to using spec sheets, Professional Remodeler reported.
"Costs on our last 35 jobs were within 0.82 percent of estimate and our change orders are consistently just 2 or 3 percent of annual volume," Paul Eldrenkamp, owner of Boston-based design/build firm Byggmeister, told Professional Remodeler. He attributed these favorable trends in part to his company's highly detailed specs.
In short, a spec needs to include everything that absolutely can't be messed up. Be detailed, down to the measurements, colors, codes, cost and installation location.
You and your customer might agree on a neutral color for the dining room wall paint, but if you present a fully-painted wall in almond when your customer had cream in mind, it could lead to a disagreement.
Or, your customer might specifically request chrome-plated outlet covers, but unless you specifically say that they'll cost a few dollars apiece extra, your customer may have an unpleasant surprise when you send the final bill.
When you first get started on a remodeling project, you'll likely have a good idea for the extent of the work, but there'll probably be a few specifications that have yet to be determined. If you don't know something, include that in the spec, Remodeling suggested. Be clear about the details you know and those you're still waiting on. Being as transparent as possible will help make future conversations more productive.
Just as including all relevant details about a project is critical to clear communication, so is including all information about payment. If your customer is taking advantage of a financing program to help pay for the remodel, include that information in your paperwork, such as the terms, payment schedule and the expected monthly payment amount.
Being clear about what you and your team will do for the project, and what is expected of your customer, is important for setting up good communication that will last throughout your remodel. Avoiding confusion and conundrums can help in building a sound relationship, which may even lead to repeat or referral business.
To begin offering financing programs to your remodeling customers, reach out to Aqua Finance. We'll help you get started, and we'll handle all the legal paperwork on our end, so you can focus on building strong relationships with your customers.