1. Ask Lots of Questions, Listen & Interact Based on Their Answers
Basically, build rapport by following these 3 actions above.
- What would you like to have done? Why/What motivated you to get it done? - What are you looking to achieve? (Ex: a walkway from the driveway to the yard so that the side-yard has a clean appearance) - How many people live in the house? What are their ages? - How would you like to use the backyard? To entertain, for family-time, to unwind? - Is there an important time/occasion you’d like to have the job completed by?
Asking the right questions is important but using those questions to inspire other ideas inspires good conversation and gets the homeowners excited.
2. Tour the Property without the Owners, Take Notes and Measurements, Then Tour Again Accompanied by the Owners
If there are water issues or other considerations the homeowners should be aware of, make them known at the initial meeting. This inspires confidence in your expertise, lets the homeowners better understand your quote and educates them on what to watch out for with other contractors that might be quoting the job.
3. Offer 3-D Design Services
Most homeowners want to see what they’re getting before they sign a contract. Show them by offering 3D design services at a cost, with no obligation to sign the build contract with you. This might seem scary but you can put the chances of winning the contract on your side by offering a credit for the plans if they choose to select you as the contractor.
Image courtesy of Adam Hails. Find him on Instagram @clearstory3dimaging
4. Present the Good, Better, and Best Options in Your Quote
Good: Present a lean version that respects their budget and achieves what they’re looking for.
Better: This is an upgraded version with more plantings, an added water or fire feature.
Best: This is a breakdown of something that achieves the homeowner’s project goals but surpasses their expectations. Think an added cooking area beside the patio, a water and fire feature, maybe a water-slide by the pool, go crazy here and have fun with it.
It's all in how you present it. Explain to the homeowners that they can pick and choose from the best options and to think of it as possible upgrades in the future when their budget allows.
Do you have any tips that have worked well for you? Share them in the comments below!