The web is full of question checklists that homeowners should ask remodeling pros while interviewing them for the job. But to win business and gain homeowner trust, you need to be asking them questions, too. It shows homeowners not only that you’re listening, but that you also care about – and want to solve – their problem.
Every homeowner starts a remodeling project for a reason. Your goal is to get to the core of why they’re tackling this particular project. Do they want to increase their home’s value? Dramatically change its style? Getting as much insight as you can about why they want to tackle the project will help you get a clearer idea of what’s important to them and how to prioritize their needs. That way, you can deliver a finished product that aligns with their project goals and vision.
More than likely they’ll answer with answers you’d expect like “We need more space.” “I want a kitchen that’s easier to cook in.” While helpful, responses like these usually just scratch the surface of their real motivations. You want to get to the bottom of why they want to change their existing space so you can start thinking about solutions that solve a problem you know they have, not one you think they have. By being properly inquisitive, you’ll show the homeowner that you not only understand their problem, but also empathize with their situation and are the right person to help.
Now that you know their goals, you need to know their priorities. Is budget their biggest factor, or is it more important to finish the job by a specific date? Are they more concerned about looks, or is functionality king? Your goal is to get them to be as specific as possible so you are both starting on the same page.
While it might seem like an awkward question to ask, it gives them the opportunity to tell you about their fears, concerns, and expectations. More importantly, it gives you the opportunity to provide references, your printed packet of information (including your HomeAdvisor ratings and reviews), examples of your work on similar projects, and your project philosophy. This shows them you’re not only qualified skills-wise to complete their project, but that you’re an invested and engaged partner in its success.
It’s the number one rule in sales: Ask for the sale. While it might seem forward and direct, it’s the question that can make a key difference in getting the job. This isn’t to say you should be pushy. If you feel confident that the meeting went well, you’ve established a good rapport with the homeowner, and have given them the info they need to make an educated decision, it’s the right time to ask them to hire you. Good luck!