Do you feel as though you are wasting time preparing building estimates for jobs that you don’t get? It’s frustrating and costly for your construction company. Maybe you are like so many residential builders and making one of the common mistakes builders make when estimating: Not being with the client when they are deciding which estimate to accept!
In this article I will give you three keys to being present when the client is deciding “which builder” to hire.
There is no doubt that the builder who is with the client when they are deciding on which estimate to accept is highly likely to get the job. Wouldn’t it be great if you could be that builder? The thing is…you can.
So when preparing your estimates consider the following.
1. Discuss Other Estimates
In your first meeting with your client make sure that you discuss with them how many other estimates they are planning on getting. Even though they may like you and tell you they are only planning on getting your estimate, it is highly likely that they will consult another builder if only to get a check that you are not “ripping them off.” If they are borrowing money for the build, they may be required to get multiple estimates.
2. Set the Estimate Close-off Date
Again at your first meeting discuss with your client the close-off date for accepting estimates. Make sure that you give yourself enough time to get your estimate together and enough time for your client to talk to other builders.
3. Position Being There
Finally, in your first meeting with your client ask permission to be with them when they are making their final decision. Set a date and time for that meeting on your first visit.
You say, “Will you be getting estimates from other builders?”
They say, “Yes.”
Accept this graciously with something like. “That’s great.” Then say,
“When do you think is a good date to set for us to have all the estimates together?”
“What we request is that when you have all the other estimates together we meet and go over them with you. This way you can be certain that you are comparing apples with apples. Now I know that you are probably quite capable of doing this yourself, but we have had cases where people have accepted estimates they have later regretted. They did not fully appreciate exactly what was covered and ended up paying more than they had expected. So it’s our company’s policy to do this. Is that OK?”
“When would be a good time for us to meet?”
Follow this simple procedure and you will increase the number of times that you are able to be with your client at the strategic time when they are making their decision on which builder to use.
Let me ask you: How many of the last 5 estimates that you presented for your construction company did you close? How did you feel after the “Thank you for your estimate but we have gone with another building company” phone call?
Do your estimates kinda suck? I’d love to hear what you’re struggling with in your building business.
Just post your comment.
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