Summer interior jobs can slow down in this season of sea, sand and vacations. But it can also be the best time for many home improvements to get done. Homeowners typically don’t think about calling on their designer when windows need replacing, plumbing needs repair or appliances have become worn out. Allying yourself with contractors whom you have vetted for insurance, references and credentials will strengthen your client relationships in ways that will pay off for years. Knowing the sources of as many products as possible as well as quality and price could put you in a different league in their eyes. How is this done? Put your organizer’s hat on and follow these steps:
1 – Picking up on small things while in a client’s home like hardware that needs some updating, a chipped sink or electrical switches that should be replaced and perhaps have a dimmer added can be listed in your file. Seasonally the list can be pulled and can become a reason to touch bases and you can offer to line up the help they need. Come with samples or pictures of replacement hardware they might like.
2 –Capitalize on all the conversations you have with your clients. Conversationally ask them about how their major systems are holding up or what construction projects they may foresee. Never come across pushy or embarrass them because it’s not in the budget. Instead gather some facts about lifetimes of appliances, hot water heaters, heating and cooling systems etc. Talk to contractors. Build a brochure about signs to look for as these items start to break down and timelines that would be helpful. Maybe include ballpark figures for costs of the various items. Reinforce that you have resources that could give quotes or ask if you could schedule repairs or maintenance checks for them.
3 – Follow up to see if they had repairs done or time to think about your suggestions. Keeping in touch will often prompt a project in a different direction to take off. Suggesting they have work done by others may be just the timely permission they need to not do it themselves.
4 – Ask your contractors if you could offer a financial incentive if your clients use their services. Keep brainstorming for the perks you can offer.
5 – Simultaneously when visiting note updates you could present for faded furniture or fabrics, worn out decorative pillows or bedding. Outdoor furnishings are as important as indoor in the season of summer fun. Make a list of replacements needed or accents that would take a patio to a new height.