Some people are better listeners than others and when you're not a good listener, you have to work hard at listening (that's me). When your goal as a home professional is to build a long-term relationship with your customers, it's critical that you get to know them and their preferences.
When you listen to your clients and deliver what they want, you earn their trust and the opportunity to keep working for them year after year. This story illustrates a long-term customer relationship. It also demonstrates the win-win that comes from a long-term relationship which grows into a partnership where my customer was open to suggestions as we walked through his new condo.
Building the Customer's Punch List
When a long term customer was negotiating to buy a condo, he called to discuss his remodeling goals and confirm if my handyman business could handle the work he envisioned. After several delays in the closing, we met one Saturday morning to walk through the condo and build a list of prioritized projects … what is often called a punch list in the trades. There were some real challenges in picking the best solution for the condo, so let's start by looking at the big picture.
- While the condo is in an oceanfront community, the owner wanted to upgrade the property so it's eclectic, not beachy.
- The homeowner wasn't certain how he would use the condo, so he wanted our upgrades to support both a professional rental and resale when the market comes back.
The biggest challenge was reminding the customer that we could/should not buy the same quality fixtures in a $300,000 condo … as we would put in a $800,000 single family home.
Remodeling a 20 Year Old Condo
Let's walk through the condo and see what's on our punch list. We covered a lot of projects so I jotted down everything and split the list into those things we would do immediately, and future projects when the budget could afford added cost. Here's the list of immediate projects along with suggestions for keeping costs down. A landscaper put in a lawn and border gardens and a kitchen remodel, interior and exterior painting were deferred to a later date.