Last week my wife and I enjoyed dinner at one of Detroit’s new, eclectically inspired urban restaurants. While our meal was nothing short of awesome, our waiter and the service he provided was far from great. While we have come to expect superior service at a nice restaurant, don’t we deserve good service no matter where we eat?
Like wise when we pay a company to perform a home improvement project on our behalf, shouldn’t we receive the utmost personal service? Far to often however, Home Improvement Contractors forget about providing quality Service and become too wrapped up in the project itself.
In this, the 5th week of How to Evaluate a Home Improvement Contractor, we will take at what you should expect when it comes to quality Service.
In broad terms, customer service can be defined as the psychological perception of attention provided by a company to its customers before, during and after a purchase. Unlike the installation of new replacement windows, customer service has no manual of execution. While some homeowners require weekly updates and immediate return phone calls, some prefer little to no contact unless they reach out for information.
Here a few things to keep in mind when evaluating a Home Improvement Contractor’s ability to provide quality customer service.
1. Does the company have a customer service department?
- This might sound like a silly question to ask but you will be surprised at the answers you get. Make sure you have a thorough discussion with the company representative about their customer service department. While you hope to have limited contact with this department, if something goes wrong these individuals will need to become very important.
- As a cost savings measure, many companies choose to eliminate their customer service department and opt for universal office personnel to handle a variety of tasks. While these men and women may be capable employees, no one can handle everything! By working with a home improvement contractor who has a dedicated customer service department, future issues will most likely be handled correctly and in a timely manner.
- When in doubt pay a visit to the company’s main office. Ask for a tour and to speak with customer service representatives. There is nothing wrong with taking this small step to get a little more comfortable with the company you will spend your money with.
2. Look at the online reviews.
- This can be a tricky one, as many online reviews are bogus and put there maliciously by competitors only to hurt another company’s credibility. So use your best judgement here. If something sounds made up, it probably is.
- There are a few websites that seems to provide quality reviews through a proper consumer testimonial process. These websites include the Better Business Bureau, Yellow Pages, Yelp, and Angie’s List. In addition to these websites you can also look at a company’s Facebook page or their own website as many companies now have testimonials available to review.
- This step is so easy to do so don’t skip it! Take a few minutes and quickly browse the online reviews today!
3. Ask for a couple of referrals.
- I know, why would a company provide you with a referral that wasn’t happy? While you probably won’t speak with that customer who had everything go wrong, you will be able to get more information about the entire process. Information is power and with power comes control. The more people you can talk with about a project, the better informed you will become.
- I have found that the best referral is someone who lives in your neighborhood. While a complete stranger may be hesitant to become candid about their personal project, a neighbor on the other hand will usually let it all hang out. You will glean more about your project over a cup of coffee with your neighbor than you could from any company sales rep or online review!
- If all else fails, go looking for yard signs. Many companies adorn new project houses with yard signs advertising their work. If you find yourself in a bold mood, knock on the door of one of these homes and ask if they are willing to offer any insight. While I don’t advocate random door knocking, if you can find the right homeowner, this encounter may be worth its weight in gold!
We hope you have enjoyed this weeks blog article discussing how to evaluate a home improvement company. Next week we will take a look at evaluation point # 6, the company Representative.
This article has been written by the publishing staff at Pure Energy Window Company. We are Family Owned and Operated replacement window company servicing all of Southeastern Michigan and Lansing. If you are considering replacing the windows in your home, give Pure Energy a call today. Call (844) 449-9990 or click on the link below to get started!
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